It might not be the career that you dream of as a child, but as countless mechanics will testify, the rewards can be immense if you start out your own automobile repair shop. At the same time, like any other business, the risks are high. There is a high failure rate amongst all types of start-ups, and unfortunately, car repair businesses also fall into this category. Bearing this in mind, today’s article will take a look at four of the most important steps you need to take in a bid to make your new automobile shop a roaring success.
Location can be everything
It’s a bit of a cliché, but give us time. While the power of Google and other online means of advertising can make it a lot easier for people to find your automobile shop, nothing can quite beat that passing foot trade. If someone has a problem with their vehicle, knowing that they see a shop specialising in the repair each day is something that is going to stick in the back of their head.
By the same token, you don’t want your shop in the middle of nowhere. Quite often, a lot of customers will leave their vehicle with you for the day and need to somehow get from your establishment to somewhere else. If it’s out in the sticks, this is going to be difficult for them to achieve.
Look after your customers with a waiting area
At the same time, some customers may opt to wait with their car while the necessary repairs are carried out. This is where a waiting area is essential and again will play right into your choice of real estate at the start of your journey. Try and find somewhere where you can put a few seats, as this might be the deciding factor between you and the competition down the road.
Look after your employees even more
We’ve spoken about looking after your customers, but even stronger rules apply when it comes to your employees. Quite often, employees in the automobile industry are almost not taken seriously, perhaps because of the manual nature of the job. In reality, these are customer-facing, and their work directly impacts the reputation of your business. Make sure they are looked after, whether it’s by providing the appropriate safety equipment to look after their skin or just offering flexibility in their calendar when it works for both sides. It will make all the difference later down the line.
Don’t be tempted for quick wins
Finally, whatever you do, don’t be tempted into quick wins. Sure, there might be countless opportunities to make a quick buck from a customer, and perhaps charge for a part before it’s actually needed – maybe as a precaution. However, over time, this is just going to hinder your reputation. The best and most successful automobile repair shops take a long-term approach with their strategy, and this means speaking to customers and providing both short-term and long-term fixes, depending on the situation at the time.