Many people are nervous about purchasing a new horse trailer online. We don’t blame them! It’s a big investment and buyers need to feel comfortable with the design process, overall quality, and product safety features before they commit to an order.
In fact, we recently received an email (typical of many from potential buyers) which questioned the online purchasing process. A women named Rachel explained that, while she was impressed with Double D Trailers quality and features, she was worried about the online buying process. Hopefully, this interview with owner Brad Heath will help allay similar concerns that you may have.
At Double D Trailers, we provide personalized service so that online buyers can feel secure and even excited about their purchase. We want you to feel confident about your custom horse trailer when the delivery truck rolls down your driveway.
Here is an interview with Double D Trailers owner Brad Heath:
“The majority of horse trailer buyers that purchase actually do so ‘sight unseen.’ I generally refer to it as building a custom home. How can you hire a home builder to construct your new custom home, yet tell him you need to see it first? Answer: You don’t…you select a builder that has an excellent reputation and can get the job done. It’s no different designing a new trailer.
“Double D trailers has been in the custom trailer building business since 1997 (celebrating 20 years this year) and we are known as being the ‘best of the best’ in design innovation, patents, customer service, and technologies.
“Buyers today have more power than ever in researching the best trailer designers. Fortunately, there isn’t anywhere for bad companies to hide in today’s ‘connected’ world. Search engines like Google crawl every blog page available and Facebook posts are being shared constantly. We aren’t in the business of building and delivering the wrong trailers to clients, otherwise, we would be out of business quickly.
“That being said, we do end up connecting quite a few people. For example, Belinda in Oregon wants to see a SafeTack Reverse 3 horse gooseneck horse trailer so I connected her with Becky in Washington who lives about 2 hours away.
“Sometimes our drivers will stop along the way and do a personal ‘showing’ of a trailer to a potential buyer. We’ve done that many times over the years and continue to do so.
“We understand that many buyers are ‘visual’ and need to see and touch a trailer in order to feel comfortable with the purchase. We offer the buyer connection program to connect a potential buyer with a previous buyer. That program works extremely well. In fact, it’s much better than having to visit a dealer sales lot and being pressured by a salesperson!”
“Absolutely! It’s the most unique experience available online with the highest level of customer support via email and immediate text messaging. We also offer instant messaging and live chat on the site.
“Since all trailers are ‘custom build to order,' it’s a process… but one that’s fun, easy, convenient, and works very well. Allowing customers to easily price out trailers online at their convenience without ever having to spend hours on the phone is advantageous.”
“To start, most clients fill out an email form or ‘contact’ form with their information. We quickly follow up with some preliminary questions. Based on the response from those questions, we will respond back with a model suggestion and wait for an online build out request from the client.
“This means that the buyer will click ‘customize’ and select the items he or she is most interested in. Once we received the build out, depending on the seriousness of the buyer, we will respond with additional questions, recommendations, and suggestions. I mention ‘seriousness’ because some folks are only looking for a price. Once they receive a pricing quote, that is all the information they need at that time.
"For clients looking to press on further, we will next respond with a detailed pricing estimate. Generally there are questions regarding the estimate and changes are requested like, “Add this, remove that, and do I need this option, etc."
“After a few rounds of cleaning up the estimate, the next phase is to create a detailed drawing to match the estimate. Once the estimate and drawing/layout/design are complete, the client now has all of the information needed to determine if they wish to proceed with ordering.
“At this point, normally, several days or weeks have passed. Over this time, we email out educational material and information to further educate the buyer. After all questions are answered and all final changes have been made to the estimate and design drawing, we are ready to proceed.
“When the client feels comfortable and our design team feels confident the design fits the need of the client based on the responses and email exchanges…only then are we ready to convert to an official ‘order.’
“Many potential buyers worry that they are going to need to get on the phone and speak with someone for hours at a time in order to finalize a trailer design. In fact, we rarely speak directly with most clients. Our detailed pricing estimates and drawings combined with the question and answer session we provide (via text and email), ensure a client’s design fits the bill perfectly!
“Another advantage to an email conversation is that we have a complete written record of all design decisions. Much of what is discussed on a phone conversation is forgotten within one hour whereas written emails can be referenced for the entire design process (which can last days to months depending on the trailer complexity). Plus, 99% of the questions asked by customers are addressed on our site so a quick email response with a helpful link is an efficient manner to answer those questions.
“Once an order has been placed, here is a typical email I will send out when we are ready to get rolling:
Based on our conversations and needs you have described to me, I'm very comfortable and confident with the selections we've put together. This design will meet your trailering needs for years to come!
To finalize, we require three items:
> 20% deposit. You may submit your deposit using the pay by check electronic feature. Click on "invoice from Trailer Crafters" email, "view invoice," "pay now". The entire amount will show due but if you click on it you may enter the amount you are submitting. No additional money is due until your trailer is 100% complete, and ready to deliver. Prior to delivery we will send out 50-60 photos for your review to ensure everything is correct.
> Print/sign/date your invoice/order details and fax or email back.
> Print/sign/date your most recent drawing and fax/email back. Alternatively, you may "digitally" sign the docs if you have that capability, or snap a photo of the signed page with your cell phone and email back the photo.
Let me know if you have additional questions or changes at this point. I’m excited to get this trailer going! Is purchasing a horse trailer online going to be secure?
“Yes, very secure. We were one of the first trailer sites to switch over to HTTP(S) ‘Secure’ protocol a few years ago. So any information transferred is well protected.”
“There are a few reasons actually. The SafeTack is an exclusive design and one of the most innovative safety features that's been introduced in years. No other manufacturer in the US offers this safety feature.
“In addition, reverse load horse trailers are becoming more popular. We actually have a patent on the SafeTack Reverse, so again, it's an exclusive technology that's been proven in the industry and current owners absolutely love it.
“A lot of independent research suggest horses haul with less stress in a rear facing position….Although there are many "reverse loads" available in the industry, most (if not all) fall short in safety features so we solved all the "issues" associated with slants and reverse loads in our SafeTack Reverse.
“Absolutely not. Delivery is a flat rate $395 anywhere in the continental US.”
“Custom designing a trailer can be a lengthy process so we definitely prefer written communication during the design process. Factors that have to be considered are tow vehicle requirements, hitch capacity on the tow vehicle, height/weight/breed of horses being trailered, distance traveled, trailer use (overnight camping/day shows) as well as many other questions. Having all of the details in writing ensures nothing ‘slips through the cracks.’ Our invoices are several pages long and the drawings are extremely detailed.
“Before a trailer leaves our factory, it is inspected to ensure it’s built according to the invoice, and drawing. We do not roll out of the factory until it meets the requirements.
“Also, we send out 40-60 photos to the client so they can actually ‘see’ their new trailer prior to delivery. This way, it's easy to go through the list of features selected and make sure they are all included. We check features like colors, graphics, water tank, rumber flooring, ramps, etc. When and only when a buyer approves the photos do we begin the delivery process.
“After a meticulous inspection process by both our factory builders, sales team, and buyer, the trailer is ready for delivery. Even then, we offer buyer protection just in case something is overlooked or a mistake is made.
“In fact, we feel so confident in our process of customer satisfaction we offer a 100% money back guarantee in writing! https://www.doubledtrailers.com/guarantee/ It's a policy we implemented years ago, and so far…one we've never had a customer ‘cash in.’ This speaks highly of customer satisfaction!
“You truly get what you pay for in this industry. We sell less expensive trailers but they are always lacking in crucial safety features. In fact, many much larger brand manufacturers sell trailers without simple padding to cut costs. If a dealer is trying to sell you a trailer that isn't insulated, and doesn't have padding, run the other direction!
“In addition, our factory direct sales model cuts out the dealer overhead and has allowed us to invest in better, stronger built trailers with more innovative and expensive technologies yet still be competitive in pricing with industry ‘average.’
“Tow vehicles are normally traded every 3-5 years. A lot of folks move from their home every 10-15 years. Our horse trailers will easily last 25-30 years! Making a potential 30-year investment is serious business and custom building to get ‘exactly what you want’ tends to be the best way to go.
“Not to mention, resale on our brand seems to be better than the industry average which makes the actual cost of owning even lower.
Let’s return to our potential client named Rachel from the beginning of this article. Rachel was truly impressed by the innovative features on our horse trailers and spent a great deal of time reading through our website and watching Brad’s informative videos.
After making contact, Brad was able to connect her with three local Double D Trailer customers that have a trailer model like she wanted.
Hopefully, after speaking with them, we can earn her business and start building her custom horse trailer. If you have any questions about the online buying process, please feel free to contact Brad. He will gladly answer your questions.