Why its a good Idea to Offer an Inspection to Every Customer

I live in Arizona where there is no requirement to have an annual  safety inspection performed on passenger and light truck vehicles.  According to Info.com only 26 States now require regular inspections of automobiles "to rid the highways of dangerous vehicles with bald tires, wobbly suspensions, smoke-filled exhausts, and defective brakes and lights."  You can find that list of States here. If I owned a Tire and Service business in a State that doesn't require regular safety inspections, I'm not sure that I would need another reason to recommend a full mechanical inspection on every one of my customers vehicles at least once a year.  I would charge for that inspection as well. If you do need another reason to offer (sell) inspections to every customer, here is another one!  It has to do with identifying customers that are interested in having a safety inspection performed on their vehicle.  Believe it or not, there are lots of customers that are interested in having a safety … [Read more...]

Is it Time it Rethink your Retail Strategy?

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Independent Tire Dealers face new challenges every day!  Fact is that selling and installing only tires is increasingly becoming a recipe for failure.  Faced with shrinking margins and fierce competition from large chains, clubs and internet wholesales, the Independent Tire Dealers must focus on strategies that provide "one stop" vehicle maintenance services as well as tires just to keep their current customers.  "We do it all, if we let our customers go anywhere else for automotive related services, we may lose them for ever." says John Marino from Marino's Auto Service in Sun City AZ.  "We recently just started stocking tires, because we don't even want our customers to buy tires from anyone else.  Our tag line is "Customers for Life", and we mean it!" National Chains will do whatever they can to put tires on your vehicle, even to the point of losing money.  A Regional Director for a large National Tire & Service Chain recently explained it like this, "It costs us $350 to get … [Read more...]

Pricing Brakes Competitively – And Making Money

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Let's face it, charging book time for brake jobs is quickly becoming a thing of the past (if it's not already). Even my local Ford dealership is offering me a $99.00 coupon for front brakes.  Brakes Plus is offering all "four wheels" for $99.00 (including resurfacing the rotors!). The Questions: How do I make money doing brakes - The right way How do I pay my Technicians enough to want to do Brakes (especially flat rate Techs) Both are great questions, that need serious consideration. First, I think its important to always look at the big picture when doing any type of service.  Big picture meaning what happens if you are pricing your basic brake job at $249 and the guy down the street is doing the same brake job for $119?  What happens when the customer pays your price, then finds out that the same brake job could have been had for 50% less? Short answer:  You probably don't do a lot of brake jobs and the brake jobs you do, you end up  losing some customers over … [Read more...]