June 17, 2015
5 min read
It’s no secret that auto repair shops can struggle to build a business. If you don’t do things right, your customers are going to come in for an oil change and tire rotation, and that’s it. There’s no way to run a successful shop with that type of business. Thankfully, there are several things that every auto repair shop can do right now to increase business and build profitability while creating more satisfied customers.
1. Suggest Pending Services
According to industry experts, up to 75% of an auto repair shop’s customer load per day is made up of nothing but oil changes. However, most of these customers need additional services performed. Monitor your customers, make suggested services, and then recommend those services at the next oil change. This is simpler when you have shop management software in place that can track a vehicle’s service history.
2. Meet Your Customers at Their Cars
Do you make your customers come to you? If so, you may be inadvertently missing services and sales. Have a service tech or advisor meet customers at their vehicle. They can use a tablet or other handled device to access the shop’s system, make notes, and then visually inspect the vehicle for potential needed services (it’s simple to upsell a 4-wheel alignment when you can point to the tire wear immediately before the customer even enters the waiting room).
3. Get on Social Media
Think that social media isn’t really worth your time? If so, it’s time to rethink things. According to Social Media Examiner, one auto repair shop was able to generate significant business through their social media activities, including garnering 1,300 views on a single YouTube video and building their Facebook account to over 1,000 fans.
4. Use Your Existing Customer Base
If you’ve been doing your job right, you’ve collected a lot of contact information for your current customers. This can include their phone number, address, and email address, and it comprises a very important tool at your disposal. Use that information. Do more than just sending them periodic oil change discount coupons via snail mail. Email them important information based on their vehicle’s specific service recommendations. Invite them to connect with you on social media. Generate a conversation.
5. A Picture Is Worth 1,000 Words
If your tech is recommending that a customer have their brake pads replaced, showing the brake gauge only does so much good. Have the tech take a picture of the pad/rotor wear and then show the customer. This can be done for almost all recommended services, from transmission fluid changes to tire rotations to engine coolant flushes and a great deal more. It’s simple to do as well – a digital camera is an inexpensive investment that can offer a significant increase in sales.
These are just a few of the ways that your auto repair shop can increase sales immediately, and none of them requires any significant investment of time or money.
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