Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI) has rolled out a new feature with the release Friday (Oct. 18) of August’s retail RV sales report, according to Tom Walworth, president of the Grand Rapids, Mich.-based firm.
The report now has a page detailing sales numbers by divisions of RV companies on the towable side.
“We’re adding this to segregate the data in a little bit different fashion on that one page so that people can look at the strength of (various) divisions,” Walworth said.
The goal, he added, is to make data comparisons easier.
“We’ve never had that page before. For us it’s a little scary. It’s a change in reporting,” Walworth said, adding that all the old preexisting data will remain.
“I think when we were talking to our customer base, they said that there was some confusion developing in using the reports, and we thought, ‘well, what can we do to minimize that?’ We were going to put a whole new system in place, but I thought we could address it by something as simple as a new division section.
“By adding this divisional page, we certainly didn’t want to drop anybody out of the reports. We defined them differently so dealers, manufacturers and lenders can look at it and it gives them a better feel for the market,” Walworth explained.
The divisional section will display unit volume and market share, including two-year percentage of change for volume and share.
With this new approach, SSI also will change the definitions in the model section to keep things consistent, Walworth noted.
Manufacturers who choose to break out their models will have the benefit of being compared to competitive models. “The model section has kind of been a division of models, divisions and manufacturers,” Walworth said. “When the dealers are looking to buy product and they see XYZ product is performing so and so, they’ll have a better idea. It cleans up the model page.
“What was happening before is some of the manufacturers were trying to improve their ranking by combining models together. So, let’s say they had six models they combined into two or into one. Well, guess what? Their ranking goes up in the model page,” he said.
All in all, the changes will allow SSI’s subscribers to get more of an apples-to-apples comparison, Walworth said.