Tax Returns and a Rough Winter Can Mean Gold For Repair Shops
In the last blog we talked about the huge opportunity the $66 billion in unperformed maintenance can be for smart repair professionals. The harsh winter, combined with the coming tax return season, gives shops a great opportunity to grow sales by performing deferred maintenance services. Smart shops can increase business from existing customers while at the same time driving new consumers into their bays.
Just last week, I was talking to a friend in the industry who operates a large WD serving repair facilities in the northern part of the country. He talked about the business opportunities as well as some of the challenges the cold, snowy winter is bringing. Battery sales are up, of course, but he is having trouble getting enough inventory to meet demand. Beyond the obvious additional battery sales the extraordinary cold weather brings to the industry, we discussed many other opportunities for increased sales. Suspensions that need maintenance take an extra beating from cold related road conditions; frost heaves, potholes etc. Salt can cause many undercar problems especially on those vehicles that have deferred brake and ride control upgrades. The list goes on. Winter can be a time of regret for drivers who have postponed maintenance.
Following on the heels of a winter that makes drivers think twice about car care, is an influx of cash into many households from a tax return. Now is the time for smart shops to create marketing programs to take advantage of this opportunity. Even if your shop is in a warm weather climate, putting a tax return promotion together can make sense. Here are some ideas:
- Send post cards, emails or text messages to your current customers reminding them that vehicle maintenance is a smart way to use a tax return.
- Offer a free front-end inspection to customers on your list.
- Create online ad campaigns that target tax return terms as well as suspension and front-end related search terms.
- Check you local community newspaper and runs ads adjacent to editorial about tax return issues.
There are many other creative ideas you can use to take advantage of the combination of a hard winter and tax return season. If you have some you would like to share, send them to us and we will share them with our readers. Consumers will be more willing then ever to consider needed maintenance after this winter and upon receiving their tax returns. Make sure they consider your shop first.