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Did You Know – 3D CAD Manufacturing Users on average Each Download 50 CAD ModelsYear

Question: ‘How often do you typically search for and download ready-made 3D CAD models?’

2016, 2015, 2014 CAD Trends Surveys - How many and how often do designers download product CAD models?

For industrial manufacturers and distributors doing online marketing and/or sales (eCommerce), this is a really important question because if you can get your products ‘designed in’ by potential customers they will likely be purchased when that design is manufactured.

The 2016 worldwide CAD Trends survey (conducted late 2015) by CAD Market Research Specialist Business Advantage Group offers an up-to-date answer to this question and shows the upward year over year growth trend from 2015 and 2014. The chart above and numbers below are re-published here with their kind permission and the full report is available here. As Business Advantage point out, year over year, there has been an “overall increase in the number of users downloading 3D Models monthly” and a “significant decline in those never downloading to 1 in 10.” Here’s the 2016 worldwide answer to this question but if you want to know how these numbers vary by region or country contact Business Advantage.

Answer: For CAD users across all industries, 83% download at least one ready made 3D CAD model a year, 59% do so at least monthly and 28% do so more than 5 times/month.

For those that download CAD models, the weighted average downloads per person across all the industries surveyed is 48 CAD model downloads per year, up from 45 in 2015 and 30 in 2014. Specifically in Manufacturing, the weighted average downloads per person is 53 CAD model downloads per year.

For many years now, the best way to get your products ‘designed in’ has been to offer CAD models of them for download from your website and promote them online (for example in CAD portals like This year-over-year growth in CAD model downloads continues to increase the value of your CAD product CAD models as a type of marketing content available for download! It’s a do it once and reap the benefits forever play – though you’ll, of course, need to add new models for new products that you introduce!

If you don’t already offer 3D CAD models of your products, how do you find out if this approach will work for you? The above CAD Trends 2016 survey result is an average across a worldwide audience of CAD designers – to confirm if your customers and potential customers will download CAD Models of your products from your website answer these questions or survey your customers to ask them:

  • Have your customers asked you or your company for CAD models or drawings of your products? If ‘Yes’ how do you meet that need today and what does it cost? Would it be less expensive/disruptive as a self-help solution for customers visiting your website?
  • Do any of your competitors offer online CAD models of drawings of their products? If so what has been the customer reaction – is it a competitive advantage over your company? (See chart on the right for the importance of CAD model downloads when selecting a supplier ref: CDS Survey of CAD Model Downloaders)when downloaded CAD models of parts are purchased - how many units are ordered?

That’s what we think, but please tell us what you think? As always, if you’d like our opinion on your situation or want see an online demo, call or click either button below:



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