DataTracker: Boat lengths in searches and leads

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Every day, tens of thousands of visitors search for boats on Boat Trader and make hundreds of contacts with sellers by phone and email.

This month, we compared the maximum length these visitors are inputting into their searches with the length of boats for which they’re submitting leads. Our data team created a graphic that highlights the boats they were interested in by showing the relative distribution of searches and leads across all lengths from 15 to 55 feet. The report covers the period from Oct. 1, 2013, to Sept. 30 this year.

Observation No. 1: The majority of searches and leads were for boats between 18 and 26 feet.

Observation No. 2: Searches peaked at 24 feet, leads at 21. It might seem natural that shoppers always look at bigger boats, then settle for smaller, less expensive boats. But part of the differential likely relates to our use of the maximum length selected in a search, as opposed to an average.

Observation No. 3: Searches peak at every even number after 25 feet until 32 feet, then jump to five-foot increments at 35 feet and up. Again this relates to the use of maximum lengths as our data point, but it also seems to highlight a human tendency to organize one’s thinking with round numbers.

This article originally appeared in the November 2014 issue.

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