Are you looking to start a repair shop, or do you already own one and want to learn ways to improve your business and stay ahead of the competition? From customer relations to marketing and more, read on for the information you’ll need to find success running an auto repair shop.
Trust is the foundation of building customer loyalty which is hugely important in the competitive auto repair industry. All customers — old and new — will appreciate it when you show you’re dedicated to quality. For example, a little customer service goes a long way — consider offering free repairs or replacements on parts that have fewer than 15,000 miles.
This will show that you’re a mechanic who runs a shop that’s truly invested in customer service and satisfaction. Of course, only provide guarantees that you’re able and willing to
Reward Loyalty with Loyalty
With 258,416 autorepair shops operating in 2018, customers have no shortage of options when it comes to getting their cars fixed. A bad, or even average experience, could lead to a customer bringing their patronage to another shop for future work.
Show your customers that you value them as much as you value their business. You can display this in many ways, but small gestures of gratitude and appreciation can have lasting effects that could bring years of income from one customer to your shop.
This could include contacting customers every few months to let them know their next check-up is due, or even forgoing a little income to match a competitor if it means regulars will come back next time.
Additionally, loyal customers are more likely to leave (positive) reviews for your business on places like Yelp, Google Reviews, or Angie’s List. Reviews are extremely important for prospects who are considering bringing their cars to you for repairs.
You could consider incentivizing customers to leave reviews for you by offering a variety of discounted or free low-end services. For example, you could give a 10
Make Technology Your Friend
Consider investing in software or a service that provides scheduling/appointment services. This will save you and your administration staff lots of time organizing schedules,
Some of these services almost take care of scheduling altogether. You can set parameters (for instance, the hours that you’re open), and customers can schedule a time to drop off their car. The service may even be able to block out times that are taken by other customers — automating the tricky process of timing
There are many options out there at varying price points and service offerings, so make sure to research the prices and capabilities to find the right software for your company. To get started, here are some services that Capterra recommends.
Show Expertise with Specialization Certifications
Specializing your auto repair shop is not a decision to take lightly, however it can increase your earning potential. Whether you want to specialize in foreign cars (or, possibly even more specifically, a niche such as German cars) a specific brand of vehicles, or even a specific repair, you want to make sure you can commit fully to specialization.
That does not mean you, at any point, need to turn away more general business, but the expectations for work within your field will be heightened.
With these increased expectations comes a great deal of opportunity. A customer may be loyal to another mechanic’s
Striking a good balance between specialization and general repair can improve your bottom line by getting repeat customers who value all the work you do, and one-time customers seeking your
Invest Heavily in Your Greatest Asset
Even if you have everything else figured out such as your specialization, administration processes, location, marketing, you can’t forget about the most important part of your business: your employees. As the lifeblood of any organization, employees are the ones who make the day-to-day difference, and it’s paramount to treat them well.
Maintaining a high retention rate is usually a sign of positive morale and will ensure your customers receive a consistent level of quality. Paying a competitive (or, if viable, superior) wage is an important factor in keeping your employees happy.
But, it is only one of
Keep a Friendly Eye on the Competition
Being aware of the competition (based on location, specialized servicing, or both), will help you with both
This can help ensure your services are not only competitively
Despite the vast amount of competitors in the space, you can run a highly successful auto repair shop. Remember, your employees are your greatest competitive asset and investment, and your customer’s loyalty can be highly beneficial to your bottom line.
Another great way to improve your revenue potential