June 9, 2020
Historic marketplace highs in May suggest boat buying boom is underway
- Leads across all U.S. regions are seeing triple-digit growth
- Interest in boating climbs as leads for all categories heat-up; ski/wake boats see over +300% YoY growth
- Listing views are +82%, indicating an expected surge in foot traffic, phone calls and emails
The latest marketplace data from Boats Group showing sustained traffic growth and even stronger lead activity in the month of May give no indication that the demand for boats is slowing. In fact, with traffic (+56% YoY), listing views (+82% YoY) and leads (+177% YoY) on Boat Trader, YachtWorld and boats.com hitting historic highs last month, the mounting interest is added proof that the shift away from travel and crowded entertainment venues, has turned new people to boats for leisure activity.
Further analysis of the audience in May has revealed that approximately 40 percent of visitors to the Boat Trader, YachtWorld and boats.com platforms were new users. As boaters browsed the largest selection of inventory across the Boats Group sites, all boat classes experienced dramatic increases in leads. Ski/wake boats (+338% YoY) and pontoon boats (+292% YoY) continue to be among the most popular segments, pointing out that boaters want family-friendly experiences on the water.
Regionally, all areas of the U.S. saw triple-digit YoY lead growth figures. Seeing the highest lead conversion rates were the Southwest (+254% YoY), Plains (+223% YoY), West Coast (+218%), and the Great Lakes (+202%) regions. Growth in these markets further reinforces the increased interest in ski/wake and pontoon boats.
While this activity surge may lead to limited, tightened inventory later this year, dealers and brokers across the industry should be riding this wave. Now is the time to invest in digital marketing channels, convert buyers and nurture prospects as popularity in boating grows.