As the economy continues to ride on it’s present financial rollercoaster one of the hardest hit industries has been the automotive industry. Fewer individuals are buying new cars as a result of either a loss in monetary savings, or concerns as to what their financial future might hold.While this might seem catastrophic for the sales department of a dealership, it has created new opportunities in dealership service departments. The fact that a lot more individuals are holding on to their older cars creates a new demand to keep those cars operational, opening the opportunity for a higher sales potential. The dealerships are seeking resources in order to maximise this opportunity, and because of this new potential has created a demand for automotive consulting.You can go to nearly any dealership and when you consult the service team you would discover that training focuses mainly on vehicle knowledge and customer service. This of course is vital when your chief purpose is to maintain and repair vehicles on behalf of vehicle owners. The first thing a quality individual in the Automotive Consulting field will identify for you is a new need to focus the service department’s training on sales. Anyone can look at a computer and inform a consumer that their vehicle is in need of various services based on mileage and time of use. Though, a properly trained sales person can express this information in a manner that will convince a client of how these services benefit them while making a connection with the person. When this is done through the training of Automotive Consulting you’ll discover more clients accepting these additional services and boosting your sales potential.The very first thing which you will discover when you look into Fixed Ops Consulting is that the dealership environment is rapidly changing. The focus is no longer on the sales of vehicles, but on the relationships you can develop with consumers which produce long-term business results. Dealerships could no longer rely on simply selling cars to keep their business operational. Client loyalty and relationships are the new opportunity to achieve long-term profits and while this might start with a vehicles sale, the Fixed Ops Consultant will show you that this is continued through the service department. When you can keep consumers content with quality services and a well trained staff, not only would they continue to use your service department they would likely return to your dealership, when they are ready to start buying again.Every dealership could benefit from Fixed Ops Consulting in order to further their sales potential through the development of long term client relationships.
I remember the days when I was a kid when my mom would take her three boys to the local travel office before we went out on one of our family’s summer vacations. She would end up spending about an hour there while we languished in uncomfortable chairs talking to an attendant and getting us one of those magical Trip Tics, a hand-held flip map that highlighted our route and told us where to go. This was years before automotive GPS devices hit the consumer market, but that is exactly what these devices would become modeled after.Today, you don’t need to spend any time at an office to learn about all the different places you should stay on a road trip. All you need to do is take your trusty Garmin, TomTom, of Magellan with you on your trip. These powerful navigation computers are utilize information made available on the Global Positioning system (GPS) and are now much smaller, much more accurate, and much easier to use than old local travel office Trip Tics.Automotive GPS has literally replaced every single aspect of the Trip Tics functionality, even the voice from the passenger seat directing the driver where to turn. Most modern GPS will come with turn-by-turn driving directions that will lead you directly to your destination. Some models even let you hear your directions in over 30 different languages and in over 50 different voices.An automotive navigation GPS is also going to help you get a better picture of where you are at on your trip and how long it will take you to reach your destination than a Trip Tic will. Taking information from the satellites spinning around the earth, the GPS receiver can pinpoint your location to within a three yard radius. Constant monitoring of your location can tell the device how fast you are traveling. These two bits of information are then used along with the known distance between you and your target destination to calculate an estimated time of arrival.Automotive GPS has dramatically changed the way that people vacation and navigate their world. The technology behind these devices is constantly being integrated into all sorts of other gadgets, creating navigation GPS out of many new and interesting items – like the cell phone. The future of GPS navigation is with the cell phone.
Washing cars at home with soapy water of detergents is a thing of the past. The practice of self cleaning of cars was quite time consuming and never gave the expected results. Being the 21st century the automotive franchise sector has also grown tremendously offering new services and leisure. The increasing number of automotive franchises is leading to emergence of lot of car wash brands in the segment. Car-care service centres not only wash the cars but also maintain them.Automotive franchise: Unorganised to organisedNo doubt car wash segment is still dominated by unorganised brands, but the industry is gradually moving from unorganised to organised segment. Gauging the rise in the sector lsome of the players have taken the franchise route. Anckur Sama, Founder and Director of CarzSpa said, “We entered into this industry four years back with one outlet, but today, we have around 25 outlets across India. The idea of switching over to car beauty clinic hit me from one of my foreign visits where I saw such centres flourishing. I liked the concept of grooming cars to perfection. Hence my profession of selling cars coupled with a passion of grooming cars brought me into this business.”Need of car care centresIncreasing awareness regarding maintaining cars is the first and foremost reason for the popularity of car care centres. Earlier car owners used to get their vehicles cleaned from local car cleaners, as they had no other option, however now with the availability of car care centres people prefer to get their cars cleaned professionally. Various other factors contributing to the increasing popularity of car care centres are:Increased car owners: With cars becoming purchasable for the middle class, there has been a rapid increase in the number of car-owners. Clients who have spent over Rs two lakh to two crore for a car do not want to spoil it by washing it at home. This had lead to the popularity of organised car centres.Increase in disposable incomes: With increase in disposable incomes, people do not mind spending a few extra bucks on the care and maintenance of their cars.Hectic work schedule: Cleaning a car is a long and a tiring work. Usually people do not have the time or enthusiasm to wash cars due to lack of time. The best substitute for them is the car-wash centre.Proper maintenance: Organised car care centres not only wash and clean cars but also maintain them perfectly. They do a complete check-up of cars, which make them worth-while for each penny that a customer pays.Why franchising of car- care centres?Car-care has emerged as a popular business concept due to its need in the Indian market. Smart entrepreneurs who had seen the vast potential in this business had started small but later on took the franchise route. The reason for expansion through franchising is the well-established brand name. Clients always prefer to send their cars for cleaning to a well-established and reputed centre rather than an unorganised washing unit. Sama shared, ‘Franchising has always been the preferred route for business development. It becomes very difficult for one company to handle the entire business across the country hence we require entrepreneurs to run the show in different cities and locations for further development and success.”Moreover this sector does not require huge investment for its set up. However, keeping expensive machines and a large workforce would increase the budget.Players in this fieldThis is a growing segment with not many players but the car-care business shows great potential for future. The main players in this segment till now are CarzSpa, Express Car wash, Speed Car Wash, Pureshield Car Glass Sealant and 3M Car care. All these payers are successfully expanding via the franchise route.Challenges for successThe car-care franchise may have many benefits but also has a few drawbacks.Firstly many aspirants enter the arena with big dreams of making fast cash. Like any other business, there is a lot of hard work in car washing business. Aspirants take a franchise believing that there are machines to do work and staff to manage it. However it should be kept in mind that even the owner (franchisee) has to struggle. As said by Sama, “To create sufficient footfalls and business in initial months is a challenge for an automotive franchise. We can overcome these challenges with low budget marketing advertisement and good services so that the customers become our permanent clients.”Secondly, the competition from the unorganised players is another challenge that can be dealt with by providing excellent services and showing professionalism.To conclude, it would not be inappropriate to say that current trends certainly favour the automotive franchise business. People are spending huge amount on expensive vehicles, and are ready to spent few extra bucks in keeping their cars in a excellent condition and the preferred choice would always be a branded car-wash centre. There is definitely a large potential for aspiring entrepreneurs as, ‘No matter what happens, it is likely that as long as there are cars, there will always be a need for car wash’.