Boat dealers should consider expanding their product lines. WALK-WINN, for example, noted that including custom bass boat covers for sale is a good choice. This is because the demand for recreational vessels has reached a 10-year high in 2017, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA).
Boating season in the U.S. has begun after the Memorial Day weekend, which means more Americans will likely shop around for new personal watercraft. This expectation aligns with an NMMA report that showed sales in the previous year reaching 262,000 boats, up 5% year over year.
Total expenses in 2017 amounted to $39 billion that largely comprised sales, while boating products such as engines, trailers, and accessories accounted for the remainder. It makes sense for boat dealers to add more items to their portfolio, particularly businesses that operate in the top five states.
Florida ranks ahead of any other state with almost $3 billion of sales in the previous year, followed by $1.7 billion of sales in Texas. The market in Michigan sold more than $980 million, while North Carolina and Minnesota recorded nearly $840 million and $807 million in sales, respectively.
NMMA president Thom Dammrich said that the 10-year high on boat sales stems from a strong economy, which results in a higher spending power among consumers. This allowed more people to consider buying personal watercraft, particularly in the powerboat segment. The increase in customers then led manufacturers to work double time in meeting the market demand.
Another reason for the growth could be the impact of last year’s hurricanes. Many boat owners suffered losses from damaged or sunken ships, hence causing them to look for replacements.
The strong performance of the U.S. boating industry should serve as a good enough reason for dealers to improve their product and service line. Demand also shows no signs of slowing down any time soon, so it’s probably best to do this now while the business environment remains favorable.