The Buyer’s Journey Part 3: Supporting Buyers in the Post-Sale Phase

The Buyer’s Journey Part 3: Supporting Buyers in the Post-Sale Phase

The Buyer’s Journey should be a key focus for marketing any business, including your RV dealership. At its heart, the Buyer’s Journey is the sales funnel from your buyer’s perspective. Understanding how buyers process their purchase decisions and how you can support them as they shop and post-sale is important. 

In the post-sale/advocacy stage, buyers have purchased their RV and cemented their experience with your dealership. Ensure your customers are eager to spread the word about their fantastic experience! In this final article of our three-part Buyer’s Journey article series, RVT examines ways to help you turn your RV purchasers into repeat customers—and become champions of your dealership.

Image of multiple RVs on a highway including a class C motorhome and trucks with trailers

Post-Sale Follow Up

Once your buyers have driven away with their new purchase, the goal is to remain top of mind so they become advocates for shopping with your dealership amongst their friends and families, and return to your dealership when they need parts, accessories, repairs, and eventually, a new RV. One way to continue their positive experience is by following up after the sale.

A post-purchase email to see how they’re enjoying their new purchase keeps you top of mind and shows you care. You could include: 

  • Tips for getting the most out of their new RV
  • A discount from your parts and service department. 
  • Recommendations for specific parts or accessories that might be a good fit. Don’t turn it into a sales push. Keep it light and informative. 

Customizing the email for the specific customer will increase engagement. Mention the specific rig they purchased, include their names and date of purchase. A generic form letter may be ignored and construed as uncaring. If they personally respond, listen to what they have to say, and acknowledge it whether it’s good, bad, or indifferent. Remember, they are your best advocates. You can also use post-purchase emails to remind your buyers when it’s time for key maintenance like winterizing and spring start up. 

Think an email is too impersonal? Phone your buyer instead. This way you get live feedback and can immediately reassure your customer should something be amiss.  

A good post-sale follow up helps breed loyalty with your buyers and shouldn’t be missed as an opportunity to connect once they’ve left your dealership.


Your Buyers Are Your Best Advocates

As we’ve mentioned in previous articles, superior customer service is vital to creating a positive buyer experience. How you make them feel in the purchase phase flows into the post-sale. Your buyers are more than former customers, they are also advocates for your dealership and one of the best forms of advertising you have. 

Over 90% of consumers check reviews about a business before they visit, and the star rating is the top factor they consider when judging whether a business is worth the trip. 

People want to spread the word when they’ve had a great experience. They are just as eager, perhaps more so, to tell others about negative ones. Good news travels fast, bad news travels faster. 

Consistent high reviews and responses to customer feedback let potential buyers know that your dealership is trustworthy and cares. Ask your customers for a testimonial to put on your website and to please leave a Google review. Over 80% of consumers use Google to evaluate a local business. Other sites with consumer reviews include, your local Better Business Bureau, TrustPilot, and your dealership’s social media pages. Check reviews regularly to get a pulse reading on what your customers are saying. 

If there’s an opportunity to respond to a review, provide a gracious response whether the review is positive or negative. Your customers want to know they’ve been heard and acknowledged. Remember, potential customers also read your responses and will use those to evaluate your business as well. 

Top dealers ensure they provide excellent customer care, follow up with their purchasers, and consistently have strong reviews. We hope these tips help you to get more reviews and remain top of mind for your buyers once they’ve driven off your lot.

Ready to set your dealership up for optimal exposure and views via the RVT marketplace?
Contact us today to request personalized, one-on-one consultation

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The Buyer’s Journey Part 2: Engaging with Buyers in the Purchase Phase

The Buyer’s Journey Part 2: Engaging with Buyers in the Purchase Phase

The Buyer’s Journey should be a key focus for marketing any business, including your RV dealership. At its heart, the Buyer’s Journey is the sales funnel from your buyer’s perspective. Understanding how buyers process their purchase decisions and how you can support them as they shop is important. 

At the decision-making/purchase stage, buyers are solidifying their choice. So, what are buyers looking for from your dealership in this phase? And what can you do to ensure they choose your dealership to purchase from? In part two of our three-part series on the buying journey, RVT shares some tips for engaging buyers in the decision-making and purchase phase.

By the time buyers have reached the decision-making/purchase phase of the journey, they have typically researched units, read reviews about model(s) and dealerships, received opinions from family and friends, and established their price limit. At this point, they may know exactly which make, model, and floorplan they want to buy, or they might only have determined the type of RV they want, but are ready to purchase if they see the right one.

They’ve entered your dealership—make sure they want to invest with you.

RV Salesman handing the key to an RV to the woman in the driver's seat

Maximizing Buyer Experience

Walking into your dealership with the intent to purchase doesn’t guarantee a buyer will buy from you. Buyers want to feel confident and comfortable with their decision. It’s important to create a solid rapport, establishing you as a trustworthy advisor. So how do you create an ideal buyer experience that will help them choose your dealership?

  • Listen to your buyer. This is so crucial, it requires extra emphasis. Active listening is vital for understanding what your buyer is—or isn’t—saying. It lets your customers know that you care and want to help, rather than just sell them a unit. Salespeople typically talk about 80% of the time, which leaves customers a mere 20% to express themselves. Try reducing the amount you speak.
    Listen to their words, watch their posture and other non-verbal cues, suss out their pain points, and help them find the solution: the best possible RV for their lifestyle. Listening well allows you to make more solid recommendations and bring up points your prospect may not be thinking about. When you listen, rather than just hear, your potential buyer will feel acknowledged, understood, and the bond of trust will be deeper.
  • Establish yourself as a reliable authority by listening, answering questions, and sharing your knowledge. Know your inventory well. Keep in mind, buyers don’t like a hard sell at any point in their journey. Support their choices without being pushy.
  • Offer valuable tips for getting the most out of their new RV. Whether it’s tips for set up, maximizing storage, or destinations you’ve enjoyed, sharing tips further builds your relationship, especially with RV newcomers.
  • Emphasize the benefits of purchasing from your dealership. Explain any special offers, perks, partnerships, or programs your dealership offers.
  • Make sure your buyer understands the financing and insurance options available to them. For many buyers, this is a critical component. Discuss warranties, payment plans, and service contract options in a concise, easy-to-understand manner.

Keep all communication with buyers open and straight-forward. Don’t use pressure or confusing language. Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Your buyers will appreciate honest, above  board communication. 

Reaching Dealership-Shy Buyers

Some purchase-ready buyers won’t enter a dealership until they have every duck in a row. They may be concerned about pushy salespeople or may have had a poor previous experience. How can you reach buyers who are dealership shy? A digital presence may help. 

  • Share the benefits of buying from your dealership on your social media accounts and dealership website, and keep those sources up-to-date. Positive testimonials from previous customers will help support your claims.
  • Advertising on trusted sites like RVT can help build brand awareness and may help overcome objections at a distance. Dealership perks, special offers, and financing options are excellent advertising subjects

Providing Exceptional Follow Through

Once your buyers have signed on the dotted line, your job isn’t finished. As a dealership, you need to have great follow through from the time they sign the papers onward. 

  • Walkthrough: Be sure their unit is in top condition before it ever leaves the lot. Do a thorough, hands-on walkthrough of the unit with your buyer. Take note of anything that isn’t up to par and ensure that it’s fixed properly before pick up.
  • Pick Up: Make sure that all buyer concerns have been addressed. Top dealerships don’t let buyers leave with a unit that still needs repairs. The quickest way to an unhappy customer is by not following through with promises made during the sales process.
  • Touch Base: Within two weeks of the pick up, take time to follow up with your buyer. Make sure everything is running smoothly with their new rig and they have no complaints. If issues arise, promptly address them. After-sales care is as important as the pre-sale.

How your buyer feels at the purchase and pick-up stages sets the tone for the aftersale. Will you develop a repeat customer, or someone who speaks negatively about your dealership on review sites? Ultimately, top dealerships recognize that a sale is an opportunity for a continued relationship with their buyers. They take steps to ensure they return for parts, service, and eventually, a new unit. Taking good care of your customers is the best way to ensure they return.


In September, RVT will examine how to create a solid post-sale experience and get those all-important testimonials and word-of-mouth recommendations in part three of our three-part series on The Buyer’s Journey.

Ready to set your dealership up for optimal exposure and views via the RVT marketplace?
Contact us today to request personalized, one-on-one consultation

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The Buyer’s Journey Part 1: What Dealers Need To Do in the Research Phase

The Buyer’s Journey Part 1: What Dealers Need To Do in the Research Phase

The Buyer’s Journey should be a key focus for marketing any business, including your RV dealership. At its heart, the Buyer’s Journey is the sales funnel from your buyer’s perspective. Understanding how buyers process their purchase decisions and how you can support them as they shop is important. So, what are those steps, and what’s the best way to engage them along the way? In part one of a three-part series on the buying journey, RVT shares some tips for engaging buyers in the research phase.

The Steps in the Buyer’s Journey 

  1. Awareness/Interest – Interest in RVing
  2. Research/Consideration – Examine the lifestyle, makes, models, dealerships, finance options, vehicle reviews etc.
  3. Decision/Purchase – Made decision on what and where to buy
  4. Post Sale – After sales support, products, services
  5. Advocacy – Testimonials & Word of Mouth

Many experts agree that over 60% of buyers already have some idea of what they’re looking for before they ever connect with a sales rep. Why? Because much of their research is done online using social media, Youtube, and sites like RVT and Your dealership should be building digital connections before buyers enter your lot.

How Do You Engage Buyers During the Research Phase?

During the research phase, buyers are looking for information without the sales pitch. Typically, they are exploring RV types, brands, features etc., and examining the RV lifestyle. At this stage, you want to build brand awareness without being pushy. What are some ways you can do that?

Share Experiences

When buyers start researching the RV lifestyle, prior RV/camping experience or a desire to experience the great outdoors often fuels their interest. Perhaps they have fond memories of camping with their parents or grandparents. Or maybe they love the idea of traveling cross-country or boondocking deep in the backcountry. Connecting with buyers on a casual level can help build connections without making buyers feel pressure to buy.


  • Blog Posts: Consider creating blog posts that share the joys of camping, best practices for traveling, or what buyers should look for in an RV. Make sure your posts have strong SEO-optimized content so buyers can easily find your articles when they search. Share your posts on all your social media channels as well. A helpful online presence can help make your dealership a trusted and familiar source of information.
  • Videos: Utilize short-form video on your website or Youtube channel. Share valuable tips and tricks that potential buyers can use—for instance, how to set up a campsite or hook up their towable, hacks to expand storage space, or share the best way to empty the gray and blackwater tanks. Video can be especially beneficial for first-time RVers and may help establish your dealership as an expert authority. Want to express a quick tip? Facebook and Instagram reels and Tik Tok videos are another venue for very short videos.
  • Social media: Most buyers will use social media as a resource at some point during the research phase. Whether you’re sharing links to blog posts or offering quick tips and ideas, social media posts are a simple way to share information and build familiarity. Social media is also a great place to display some of the inventory you have in stock.  Don’t limit yourself to words. Use images and video to make your posts stand out.

Show Buyers Who You Are

Your website is a great way to showcase your dealership. Here, you have the space to highlight all the best attributes of your business and your inventory.

In your About Us section, take the time to let people know how your company started and what the benefits are to finding their dream RV with you vs the dealership down the street. Be honest and helpful. People want to work with people they feel are trustworthy and genuinely interested in their needs. Testimonials on your website, social media, and through sources like Google reviews and TrustPilot are helpful for establishing credibility and trust.

Consider interviewing past customers about their experience with your dealership, or interview them about RVing in general, and add those testimonials to your website for shoppers to review during the research/consideration phase.

Familiarity Breeds Trust

The more familiarity buyers have with your brand, the more likely they are to think of you when they are choosing a dealership. RVT is a trusted resource for shoppers during the research process. They can search and compare a variety of RV types, styles, and brands without ever having to enter a dealership.

Having your inventory listed on RVT means that buyers can find your units easily when using RVT’s search functions to search for particular RVs. RVT’s retargeting and display ads can also help raise your dealership’s recognition factor. Buyers can be targeted multiple ways, including geographically, by RV type, or even RV Brand. Retargeting ads have the added benefit of being able to follow buyers into their social media feeds or across the Google network.

Providing relevant resources and having a solid online presence helps keep you top of mind as buyers enter the decision stage of the Buyer’s Journey.

Next month, RVT will examine how to engage buyers when they are actively making a purchase decision.

In September, we’ll look at post-sale connections.

Ready to set your dealership up for optimal exposure and views via the RVT marketplace?
Contact us today to request personalized, one-on-one consultation

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How to Compete with Larger Dealers

How to Compete with Larger Dealers

If your RV dealership is new, or smaller, you might be wondering how you can make your dealership look ‘bigger’ to compete with larger companies. There are over 2600 RV dealers in the US and roughly 500 in Canada, the majority of which are small to mid-sized, but the big dealerships can be tough to compete with. Often, online presence is what helps ‘level the playing field’ for smaller dealers, and can help you appear just as robust and competitive as your larger competition.

The Benefits of Appearing Bigger

Consumers often have more confidence in a larger company. Typically, larger companies are more established, they’ve been around for several years and may be perceived as being more trustworthy. After all, they must have done something right to get to that size, so bigger can automatically mean ‘better’ in a shopper’s mind.

What Do People Perceive Bigger Dealers to Have?

Big dealerships are often perceived to have more purchasing power (typically true), along with better deals and the best brands. Shoppers may not realize that smaller dealerships have access to the same top-quality brands and can have great deals too! The goal is to overcome those initial perceptions about smaller dealers and prompt consumers to find out what your dealership has to offer.

So, How Do Smaller Dealers Compete?

RVT has a few tips to help you increase your dealership’s online presence.

  1. Spruce up your website. A robust website is one way to make your dealership look larger.
    Include an ‘about us’ section. Make it about ‘us’ even if you’re a one-person dealership. Use this space to let people know all the unique things that make your dealership stand out from the competition.
    Keep the content on your site fresh. One great way to do that is to have a blog on your site that offers tips for owners.
    Make sure your site is mobile friendly. On average, about 60% of people use their phone or tablet to access sites, so make sure your site is responsive and will adjust to fit a variety of devices.
    Link to your social media accounts on your website. As you’ll see in the next point, your social media presence is important.
  2. Have a strong social media presence. These days, presence on social media is key. Shoppers will use it as a source of information about your company, including reviews of your products and service. Keep in mind that you don’t want your social media feeds to sound like one big sales pitch. Be sure to share interesting news or tips with your followers, along with links to your blog posts, rather than posting solely about your inventory or current sales.


  3. Have professionally branded materials. If you don’t already have a logo, consider having one professionally designed. Your logo is used for all your branding and is vital from a recognition standpoint. Consistency in branding is essential. The same logo, fonts, and colors should be used in all of your branded material to help build recognition. Consider using a freelancer or graphic design student if budget is a concern. The cost savings over using an ad agency or a large design company could be substantial. 
  4. Establish brand awareness. Top-of-mind awareness is important to create. It establishes you as a forerunner in buyers’ minds, prompting them to think of you first when they want to shop for an RV.
    One simple and effective way to create brand awareness is through advertising your inventory and your services on trusted sites like RVT, where your target market is already gathering. RV shoppers trust RVT as an established source of ‘for sale’ listings and information. Beyond listing your units, RVT can help alert your buyers to sales at your dealership, your commitment to outstanding customer service, or your exceptional parts and service department through display advertising. Or help you to re-engage shoppers who have demonstrated interest in your units.

The more shoppers are exposed to your name and the merits of doing business with you,
the more you become a top-of-mind dealer for them.

Implementing these tips can help your business look bigger and help bring RV shoppers to your lot. Once you’ve connected with them, it’s how you treat them that will determine the ultimate success of your dealership. Solid reviews, word-of-mouth recommendations, and a good reputation for fair treatment, competitive pricing, and excellent after-sales service will keep consumers coming to your dealership—large or small. 

Ready to set your dealership up for optimal exposure and views via the RVT marketplace?
Contact us today to request personalized, one-on-one consultation

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Preparing Your Dealership for Success This Season

Preparing Your Dealership for Success This Season

Now that the RV industry is beginning to normalize following some pretty interesting trends over the last two years, inventory is rising and RV buyers are taking more time to assess all their options. More units on your lot means more opportunity to draw in discerning buyers and create repeat customers. But how do you do that? What strategies will help in 2023? RVT shares some tips and insights to start your RV season off strong.

What Consumers Expect When Shopping

The 2023 RV market is a different sales environment than it has been for the past three years. While the pandemic years had an overabundance of customers clamoring for RVs, often with not enough stock to satisfy, this year is a bit quieter, but with more stock available. So what are consumers looking for in 2023?

  • Knowledgeable staff who are personable and interested in them as people, not numbers.
  • Staff who listen to their needs and can make solid recommendations based on what the buyer is looking for.
  • Staff/dealership who will go the extra mile to help them get the best RV that suits their needs, according to their budget.
  • Honest staff who will help steer them away from poor choices.

Take the time to train your staff to be good listeners and look for ways to go the extra mile. A happy customer will refer others to your dealership and return themselves when they need service, an accessory, or a new unit.

What Catches Their Eye?

Today’s consumers are savvy. They do their research and many will familiarize themselves with your dealership online before they ever come onto your lot. So what can you do to catch their eye?

  • Photos and videos are key. Using photos and video helps attract interest and get your units more clicks and more leads.
    • Take the time to take good, clear shots of your inventory. Choose a sunny day, if possible. Include interior and exterior shots, and take many. The more photos you have, the more appealing your listing is.
    • Video walkthroughs have become the norm, so make sure your listings include them. It gives buyers an opportunity to stroll through the unit and see if the floor plan works for them before coming to the dealership.
    • Clear, thorough descriptions of your units are also helpful, providing buyers with useful information that aids their research. Make sure key features are listed, along with details such as length, weight, and number of people it sleeps. 
  • List all your inventory. Consumers are looking for selection and suitability. If they want a specific make or model and you don’t have it listed, they may assume you don’t carry it instead of asking if you do. The more inventory you list, the more they have to choose from, and the greater the possibility they will contact your dealership.
    If your inventory is currently listed with RVT, our marketplace specialists can quickly and easily adjust your account to show all units in your feed.
  • Make your inventory count. Even if you only have a small number of units, make sure they are displayed according to the best selling best practices listed above. Dealerships of any size who build a reputation for caring about their clients, display their units well, and have a solid online presence will draw interested buyers.

What Makes Buyers Choose Your Dealership Over a Competitor’s?

Buyers typically look for a dealership that checks several boxes. What do buyers use to evaluate whether your dealership is worth contacting?

  • Good reviews. A good reputation is vital and positive reviews are a great way to build your reputation. Strive for happy customers and people will be glad to give you a good rating. Ask your customers to provide testimonials. Most consumers read some form of testimonial before they buy, and peer reviews are one of the most valued. Keep in mind that many buyers are wary of reviews that are all 5 star or make your business sound ‘too good to be true’. 
  • Strong social media presence. Consumers will read the comments and look at the posts, both as a source of reviews and inventory.
  • Presence on trusted sources like RVT. This helps build familiarity not only with your inventory, but with your dealership. Your presence in a trusted environment often results in a higher level of brand recall. Familiarity breeds top-of-mind awareness.

Ensuring your dealership ‘checks the boxes’ will help bring in more buyers

Why Do Consumers Go to RVT?

These days, buyers are looking for ways to save time and resources, and that means fewer will go from dealership to dealership looking for what interests them.

  • On RVT, buyers can comfortably search, browse and compare a variety of units without leaving their home.
  • RVT is a trusted shopping source – over 800,000 unique shoppers per month check out the listings on RVT.

Ready to set your dealership up for optimal exposure and views via the RVT marketplace?
Contact us today to request personalized, one-on-one consultation

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