Ebay Motors, the consumer classified website, isn’t specifically marketing itself to RV dealers, but growing numbers of dealers apparently are testing its effectiveness against other classified websites.
“The big reason why RV dealers are coming to eBay Motors is that they get results,” said Tim Wieland, a spokesman for San Jose, Calif.-based eBay Motors, which markets itself as the world’s largest online used-car marketplace.
And although eBay Motors doesn’t track RV dealers’ use of its website, located at www.motors.ebay.com, “many RV dealers do use eBay Motors to sell RVs, and the RV category overall is growing extremely well,” Wieland said, adding, “Over the past few months, we have seen a significant increase in listings.”
Wieland attributes the growth in eBay Motors’ RV listings to increased awareness within the “for-sale-by-owner” market plus increased use by RV dealers already using eBay Motors.
In addition, he maintains, there’s a growing number of RV dealers using eBay Motors as a complementary sales channel.
RV dealers who use eBay Motors gave it mixed reviews at RVBusiness.com. For example, Rob Celeste, Internet sales manager for Meyer’s RV SuperStores, a FreedomRoads dealership operating stores in Hamburg, Caledonia, Syracuse, Bath and Churchville, N.Y., said eBay Motors has worked well for his dealership.
“We get a lot of phone calls and a lot of e-mails asking about the units,” he said, adding that he uses eBay Motors to refer potential customers to the dealership’s website at www.meyerscampers.com
“It’s increased our hits by a couple thousand a month,” he said, noting that he plans to continue using eBay Motors along with RVSearch.com and RVTraderOnline.com.
Danielle Kuehne, webmaster for Paul Everts RV Country in Fresno, Calif., started using eBay earlier this summer.
“We’ve been doing it for about two months and sold about seven units, both motorhomes and trailers,” she said, adding, “We’re doing OK, (but) not great.”
Other RV dealers said their initial impression is that eBay Motors tends to cast too wide of a net. “I’m getting a lot of people who don’t know that much about RVs,” said Dave Brown, owner of Brown’s Sales and Leasing in Guttenberg, Iowa. He did say, however, that he tends to do a little better on eBay with used equipment.
Wieland said about 10% of eBay Motors’ RV listings are 2004 models. “We encourage dealers to sell units they take on trade and new, noncurrent RVs that they need to move once the new model year is out,” he said. “This has been the method that has brought about the highest level of success for RV dealers on eBay Motors.”