Seattle motorcycle show sees increase in first-time attendees

Publish Date: 
Dec 13, 2010

Just over 29,000 powersports enthusiasts descended on downtown Seattle to view new vehicles and buy aftermarket parts, gear and accessories at the Progressive International Motorcycle Show, held last Friday through Sunday at Qwest Center.

Foul weather dampened attendance slightly from last year; but perhaps the more notable story is that 23 percent of the crowd reportedly was attending an International Motorcycle Show for the very first time.

“This represents a brand new customer base for powersports sales,” said Jim Moore, national sales director at Advanstar Communications, which organizes the annual multi-city tour. (Advanstar is the parent company of Dealernews.)

Another interesting factor: according to show researchers, Seattle attendees spent an average of $129 per person – a 37 percent increase from buying totals one year ago. “A brand new navigation experience, show features strategically positioned at destination locations to encourage a more complete show footprint for attendees, and a repositioning of all retail environments including the Marketplace to prime locations, all contributed to this growth,” Moore said.

Surveys completed at the show reveal that 61 percent of attendees plan to purchase new motorcycle-related products or accessories in the next six months as a result of seeing those products at the Seattle show. Twenty-nine percent of Seattle attendees indicated that they will be shopping for a motorcycle within the next 12 months.

Attendees in Seattle spent an average of three hours on the show floor, versus 2.2 hours tour-wide last season, a 35 percent improvement.

Some other findings:

  • 37 percent of attendees traveled more than 50 miles to attend the Seattle show
  • Cruiser (25 percent), street (26 percent) and touring (23 percent) riders were the most prevalent attending the show
  • 76 percent of attendees made a purchase at the show, up from 56 percent in 2009

The Progressive International Motorcycle Show continues its nationwide tour this weekend, with a three-day stop at the Long Beach Convention Center in Southern California.