If you own an auto repair shop or planning to start one, you need growth. Most of us would like to be larger than our competition, and increasing the customer base is the best way to accomplish this. We will share with you several strategies that have worked for many people over the years.
Establish a Strong Online Presence
Your local auto repair shop has a lot to gain from a strong online presence. Consumers today are using the internet more than ever to find their next mechanic, and if you’re not reaching out to customers with an easy-to-use website they can access 24/7, you’re missing out.
If you want to establish a strong online presence for your auto repair shop, it’s important to have a high-quality website and strong social media profiles. Your website is the first thing your potential customers will see, so it needs to make a good impression. It should have a clean, professional layout that makes it easy for visitors to find the information they need.
Your site also needs to be mobile responsive and load quickly on every device. If people have trouble reading or navigating it, they’ll go elsewhere. Ensure you include contact information, like your phone number and address, on every page of your site, so people can get in touch no matter where they are. A contact form makes it easy to reach out about particular services or ask questions about their vehicles.
You can also use your website to generate leads by offering special promotions or coupons that encourage people to bring their cars in for service. You could offer free tire rotations with an oil change or 10% off all brake work.
Having a good online presence also makes it easier to get loans for your business. Therefore, if you have been looking for loans for auto repair, having a great online presence will help you prove why you are a good fit.
Encourage Customers to Refer You
Customer referrals are a key way to grow an auto repair shop. People trust their friends and family more than they trust advertising, so getting customers to refer you can be a great way to gain new business.
One of the most effective ways to get customers to refer your auto repair shop is to give them a reason to do so. Of course, everyone likes free things, so offering customers a discount or free item is guaranteed to get at least some people talking about your business. You could even offer existing customers discounts for every new customer they bring in for service at your auto repair shop. This gives them an incentive to recommend you and generate a steady stream of new customers.
Get Involved in Community Events
While word of mouth is a great way to build your auto repair shop business, you can’t rely on it alone. You also need to get involved in community events to help grow your auto repair shop.
Think about getting involved in community events to help grow your auto repair shop. Let’s look at some examples:
Your auto repair shop may be able to sponsor a local softball team or 5K race or donate gift certificates for door prizes at charity events. Your involvement will keep your name in front of customers and prospects throughout the year.
You can also get involved with local high schools and colleges by offering part-time jobs, internships, or apprenticeships for students interested in pursuing careers in the automotive industry.
If you don’t have time available for community events, consider opening up your auto repair shop to civic organizations and community groups as a meeting place. You can offer beverages, light snacks, and chairs for small groups that don’t have a regular meeting place. This helps those organizations while providing you with an opportunity to get involved with them.
Ask Customers for Reviews
It’s no secret: one of the best ways to attract new customers is with positive customer reviews. But, if you run a busy auto repair shop, where do you find the time? We’ve got you covered. Read on to learn how to get more online customer reviews.
1. Ask for reviews right after a service
One of the easiest ways to ask your satisfied customers for a review is right after leaving your shop. They’ve already had a great experience with your business on their visit, so they’re likely to write a positive review and share their experience with others.
2. Remind customers that they can write reviews
At the checkout line or over the phone, remind them that they can review your business online to help other people discover it and make sure it appears in search engine results.
3. Let customers know about a few specific places where they can write reviews
Tell them about Google My Business (GMB), Yelp, and Facebook as options for writing reviews so that potential new customers will have multiple sources of information about your business.
Experiment with Google Ads and Facebook Ads
Your auto repair shop is growing, and you’re ready to get out there and tell the world about it. How can you get your name and services known by more people?
Advertising can help you do that, and there are many ways to advertise, from radio ads to TV commercials to advertising in print publications. But what if you don’t have a huge budget for advertising? You don’t have to spend big bucks to get the word out about your auto repair services.
If you’re familiar with Internet advertising or are willing to become familiar with it, you can use Google AdWords and Facebook ads (both of which allow you to set a daily budget) to drive traffic directly to your website. Then, once those visitors land on your site, your SEO work takes over and helps convert them into leads.
Facebook ads are amazing because they allow you to reach your target audience based on demographics like location, interests, and behaviors. This allows you to get very specific with who sees your ads and helps ensure that only people who might be interested in what you have to offer to see it.
Google ads appear at the top of Google search results and allow you to choose specific keywords that trigger your ad to appear. For example, if someone searches “auto repair shop near me,” your ad will appear at the top of the search results.
There you have it, five effective strategies to grow your auto repair shop. Remember that you need to be proactive in marketing and customer retention and not reactive. If you are, we are confident that your auto repair shop will be successful.