Running a successful auto repair shop means getting cars through the doors. The higher the volume the greater your profits. The recipe for success involves a well-rounded marketing strategy, solid technicians, and a key ingredient- great management practices. Here are some auto shop management tips to drive more business.
A great way to ensure you’re continuously improving and moving toward new milestones is to set goals. These can be a great motivator for employees and a way to track how well and efficient your team and business is running.
Pro tip: Design your goals to be measurable and highly specific. Choose a model you that will help you establish objectives that are challenging and motivating but also well within reach.
A popular and proven model for growing small businesses like an auto repair shop is the SMART goal. SMART is an acronym that helps determine what type of goals to set, for example:
- Specific- The shop will acquire three new regular customers.
- Measurable- The shop will measure its progress by the increase in new customers and the retention of existing customers.
- Achievable- The shop will establish a loyalty rewards program.
- Relevant- Revenue will increase 10% with the addition of new customers.
- Time-based- Three new customers will be acquired every two months.
Regardless of whether you choose to set goals by utilizing a specific strategy or base them on your knowledge of the market, it’s important to track your shop’s advancement toward them so you can make changes as needed.
Track the Numbers
Intuition in business is great, but it can only take you so far. Running a successful auto repair shop by doing things in the dark is unrealistic. That’s why it’s important to look at the numbers.
Once you have the data in front of you, you’ll be able to identify where you can improve the overall efficiency of your business.
Here are a few handy tips to get you started:
- Divide and conquer- Track the analytics of every sector within your shop such as retail sales and the service department so you can identify areas of weakness such as low car count or lacking members in your loyalty program.
- Set specific benchmarks and key performance indicators (KPI’s)- Though you may have developed a marketing and business plan, it’s important to continually test its effectiveness so that you don’t waste resources on the wrong strategies. These may include recording KPI’s such as improved car count, rewards program membership growth, and tracking online reviews.
- Don’t reinvent the wheel- Platforms to help streamline different processes have been created to make marketing strategies easier. For example, BayIQ was created specifically for auto repair and tire shops. It allows you to automatically track performance metrics and develop reports that are available on dashboards.
Motivate your Team
Employee happiness is key to efficiency and output. In fact, a recent survey found that happy employees are 31% more productive meaning 31% more cars through your doors. And as management is the backbone of any auto repair shop, motivating the team falls on your shoulders. Consider implementing the following practices in your business:
- Progressive wage structures- Give your employees long term incentives to stay such as a yearly raise or bonus.
- Efficiency rewards- Set up short term incentives for smaller, monthly goals such as hitting a specific car count.
- Create a fun environment- Simple things like a thank you note, team milestone celebrations, and thoughtful holiday gifts go a long way. Encourage team outings and go!
- Keep training- Nearly 90% of millennials rate career growth and development opportunities as extremely important in a job. Invest in more training and allow your team members to grow with your shop.
Automate Your Marketing
Managing a successful auto repair business is multi-faceted. In order to drive more cars through your doors you’ll need a motivated team, returning customers, and a process for tracking each transaction to continue improving your workflow. That’s why automating where you can is important.
By partnering with companies that specialize in auto repair shops, such as BayIQ, you can rest assured your day-to-day marketing operations are running smoothly allowing you to focus on building a rapport with your client base or bonding with your team.
BayIQ offers a suite of marketing services from a built-in loyalty rewards program to email and text marketing to automatically solicited online reviews. Whip up your recipe for success with ease by teaming up with BayIQ.