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  • Similar Topics

    • By nge
      Hey everyone,
       
      I was recently having a conversation over lunch with a college buddy of mine who has a PhD in computer science and owns a web development company we were casually talking about business etc and started discussing websites and ROI. This got me thinking about my shops site and how efficient we are in tracking the ROI. We currently use Autoshop solutions (were with them before he started the web company but plan on switching) and pay about $190 a month in web maintenance fees with includes updates, hosting and a portal to login to track views etc but it made me start wondering if I really knew the true ROI of my website. Every month I look at the numbers and the reports and see bounce rate, time per page etc but never really have sat to think what that really means and if my website is serving its purpose (to capture the attention of and bring in new customers). On top of that we have our adwords budget and all in all I feel like we are just throwing money out there hoping it will stick and assuming that the site is making us money.
       
      So my question is how is everyone else tracking the ROI of their website?
       
      Also, if you don't mind my asking, what is the typical amount (or rough estimate) you pay monthly for web maintenance (if you have it) and do you feel like you are getting your money's worth from your hosting company? My buddy has offered me an opportunity to come into his business (I have a background in IT as well) and to offer some insight in capturing some business from the automotive industry but I just wanted to get a feel for the problems which you guys are facing today to see if I am the only one with these questions and issues or if this could be an industry issue worth pursuing.
       
      Thanks!
    • By Joe Marconi
      You spend a lot of time and money finding an hiring an employee. Whether it be a technician, service advisor or office worker.  However, the real work to ensure that the new employee is up and running begins when you hire that person.  Don't make the mistake of thinking that a new-hire can be put to work without an orientation period. No matter how experienced someone may be, take the time to slowly acclimate that person to your shop, your other employees and your systems and procedures. The time you take in the beginning will help to create a long-lasting employee relationship. 
    • By Alex
      We've created this section here for you to post your shop website. This is a great way to get some feedback and suggestions from your peers.

      Please post relevant automotive shop websites only. Any posts including non automotive shop websites will be moderated and removed.

      Thank you.


    • By DUFRESNES
      How many of you flash computers?  We do and it has been a headache sometimes.  There is a new program, or at least I just heard of it, Drew Technologies RAP.  It is a kit that you pay a monthly fee.  It has everything you need, including the battery tender.  Then you pay $125.00 per flash.  If there is a problem, they take care of it.  My question is, If you have this equipment, how do you like it. and what do you charge the customer.  Of course, it will now be in house.  We have always charged like a fee for the flash and a hour of labor.  Thank you for your information.
    • By ratchetandwrench
      Does your shop use a chatbot on your website, or do you have a chatbot on your Facebook page? 

      If so, what has your experience been like? 
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    • By Joe Marconi
      You spend a lot of time and money finding an hiring an employee. Whether it be a technician, service advisor or office worker.  However, the real work to ensure that the new employee is up and running begins when you hire that person.  Don't make the mistake of thinking that a new-hire can be put to work without an orientation period. No matter how experienced someone may be, take the time to slowly acclimate that person to your shop, your other employees and your systems and procedures. The time you take in the beginning will help to create a long-lasting employee relationship. 
    • By Ron Ipach
      Do you want the The HARDCORE TRUTH to Finding, Attracting, Hiring, And Keeping Top Techs?
      Sign up (for free) here for access to my brand new mini series: http://bit.ly/find-techs.
      Video One Coming Monday, 11/5...

      MORE DETAILS AND REGISTRATION: http://bit.ly/find-techs


    • By Elite Worldwide Inc.
      The top shops in America realize that in order to build a successful business they will need to have team players that are self-starters, who can produce, and who will never compromise their ethics. Over the years I’ve not only been fortunate enough to hire many of our industry superstars, but I have seen hiring mistakes made every day by shop owners all across America. In order to help you with your business, I’d like to share what I believe to be the 5 most common hiring mistakes that shop owners make.

      1. They are afraid to pay top buck. In business there are a number of rules that are timeless, and one is that you get what you pay for. The reason the superstars can command top buck is pretty simple; it’s because they can produce. The techs and advisors that earn average incomes all have one thing in common; they produce average results, and average employees will never take you to the top. Every top shop owner that I have consulted with will agree that once you hire a superstar, you will quickly see that they are one of the best investments you will ever make.

      2. They are afraid to provide a respectable guarantee. Most shop owners are reluctant to give a respectable guarantee because they are afraid the new hire may not produce, and they will be stuck paying a big guarantee. Now here are two important points that they don’t understand. First of all, if they believe they are providing the potential employee with a great opportunity, then providing a respectable guarantee shows the candidate that they have confidence in their business, and in the position they are looking to fill. Secondly, most shop owners are so concerned about how much the guarantee could cost them, they completely forget that if the employee doesn’t produce, there’s a simple solution: You let them go.

      3. They use the wrong criteria when making their employment selections. Most shop owners hire techs and advisors based on their level of knowledge and industry experience. Although those are both important considerations, what’s more important is the attitude of the applicant, their aptitude and their ethics. A wise man once told me we hire people for what they know, and we fire them for who they are.

      4. They don’t look beyond the candidate. The shop owners who employ the superstars all realize that when they hire Larry they get Mary. What this means is that if the candidate has a significant other in their life, you can rest assured that they will play a role in the candidate’s decision. This is why at Elite we encourage all of our clients to ensure their compensation and incentive package has what we refer to as “go-home” benefits. Examples would be retirement programs, paid holidays and vacations, well-days, etc.

      5. They forget that the superstars will be interviewing them. The top shop owners all realize that the superstars they are interviewing will have no trouble at all finding a shop that will hire them. Accordingly, throughout the interview process the superstar will be interviewing the shop owner, and they’ll be asking themselves whether or not they would like to work at the shop. They will be evaluating you by the type of questions you ask, and the interviewing-qualification process you take them through. If at any time they feel you are hiring out of desperation, rather than ensuring it’s a great fit for everyone, one thing is for certain: They’ll walk, because what they are looking for is the opportunity to work at an ethical shop that enjoys a good reputation in the community, has team spirit, and has leadership that allows them to clearly see their future with the company.

      Since 1990, Bob Cooper has been the president of Elite, a company that strives to help shop owners reach their goals and live happier lives, while elevating the industry at the same time. The company offers one-on-one coaching from the industry’s top shop owners, service advisor training, peer groups, along with sales, marketing and shop management courses. You can learn more about Elite by visiting www.EliteWorldwide.com
    • By Elite Worldwide Inc.
      By Bob Cooper
       
      One of the challenges that shop owners have faced for years is finding and hiring qualified technicians. Here are 5 of the most successful techniques that I used to find the superstars when I was still operating shops.
       
      1. Make an offer that is hard to refuse. Go to your local dealerships, introduce yourself to the service manager, and say something like this: “Larry, the reason I wanted to speak with you is I am looking for a superstar technician with ___ experience. Now for the purpose of clarity, I’m not looking to recruit any of your employees; that’s not my interest. What I’d like to do is speak with any of the superstars who have worked with you in the past, and for whatever reason, are no longer working with you here at your dealership. They may have gone on to another shop or dealership, and who knows, at this very moment they may not be very pleased with the company they’re currently working for. Now if you’re able to provide me with their names and contact info, or if you just reach out to them and have them contact me, this is what I’ll do for you… If I hire them, I’ll give you $2,000 on the first day they show up for work, and if they’re still with us after their 90-day probation, I’ll give you another $2,000. In essence, Larry, you can earn up to $4,000 for doing nothing more than putting me in touch with one of the superstar techs who has worked with you in the past, or that you may know of in our community.”
       
      Now before you jump to the conclusion that you’d never pay $4,000 as a referral fee, consider that not only is it an insignificant amount when you consider how much you’ll be paying a top tech, but just think of how much it will cost you if you hire the wrong tech. I have always been intrigued how so many people will not lay down a single dollar for a lottery ticket where they could win ten million dollars, but as soon as that jackpot gets to 100 million, you guessed it: People line up to buy the tickets. Interesting, isn’t it? It’s as though they’re saying “I’m not interested in ten million dollars, but when you offer 100 million, now you are talking real money, so you have my attention!” I have learned over the years that it’s the same with referral fees. The reward you offer has to be large enough to not only capture their attention, but it has to have that wow factor that brings results.
       
      2. Ask every applicant for leads. When you have a tech or advisor filling out an employment application, always ask that they list two great techs they’ve worked with, or presently work with, as references. Not only can those references serve as a good source of info when you are performing your reference checks, but if you build relationships with the references during your calls, they may very well become employment candidates as well.
       
      3. Sponsor a tool raffle. Tell your local tool truck driver that you will sponsor a raffle for a specific tool set, test equipment, etc. that has a value of $500. Now here’s how it works: You pay for the tools, the driver is able to sell raffle tickets at $5 each, and gets to keep all the ticket sales as well. The techs fill out each raffle entry with their contact info, and you get their names, phone numbers and email addresses.
       
      4. Go to where the techs in your community go. Since techs are likely to have a quick lunch somewhere near their shop, consider grabbing a bite to eat at the fast food restaurants that are close to the shops and dealerships in your community. When the techs walk in at lunch time, all that you will need to do is introduce yourself to them, and strike up a casual conversation. Then you’ll just need to tell them you are looking for a superstar tech, hand them a business card, and the process has started.
       
      5. Turn your employees into recruiters. Just like the offer you made to the dealership service managers, make an attractive offer to your employees as well. “Guys, you all know we need another technician, and I’d love to find someone that can not only produce, but someone that all of you enjoy working with. Now as you can imagine, I can invest a good amount of money in a recruiting campaign, but I’d rather see the money go into your pocket than into recruiting campaigns. So here’s what I’ll do: I’m sure you guys know other techs in the community, and I know that you meet them at training courses as well, so if you refer a really great tech to me, and if I hire them, then I’ll give you $2,000 on the first day they show up for work, and if they’re still with us after their 90 day probation, I’ll give you another $2,000. In essence, you can earn up to $4,000 for doing nothing more than helping me find another superstar just like you guys.”
       
      In closing, the superstars are out there. All that you need to do is connect with them, then share your goals, your Mission Statement, the culture of your company, and how you can provide them with what every superstar is looking for: An opportunity to grow with an amazing shop, and help a lot of people along the way.
       
      For additional help finding and recruiting qualified techs, learn how you can team up with one of the top shop owners in the country through the Elite Coaching Program.
    • By Joe Marconi
      There’s no denying it, we have technician shortage problem. In fact, we have a shortage in the country in all the skilled trades. And unless we solve this issue, we will find it very difficult to conduct business.
       
      We can blame this problem on many things, but the time to assign blame is long gone and serves no useful purpose. The only issue remaining is what to do about it.
       
      Here are few thoughts. Please read them and please think about your own shop and your own personal obligation to the industry. And of course, let us engage in an open discussion on this issue.
       
      1. Do all you can to become profitable. Yes, profit, that’s one of your responsibilities as a business owner. The other reasons for profit: to be able to pay yourself and your employees the income you and your employees deserve. Also, the more profitable you become, the more you can offer benefits. Let’s limit the discounting and charge accordingly. Also, we need to attract qualified people to our industry. That means, we need to offer a competitive wage with the opportunity to advance.
      2. Shop owners, think of yourselves as professionals and conduct yourself in that manner.
      3. Create a work environment where people enjoy their work and help to attract quality young people
      4. Reach out to your local high schools and give career presentations
      5. Reach out to all the trade schools and community colleges that offer automotive programs. Let them know that the independent shops need their graduates. Also, check into returning military veterans and retiring veterans.
      6. Create an internship program that allows young people in your community to shadow your seasoned technicians. Mentor these young people
      7. Create an apprentice program for entry level techs. Many shops are already doing this. An apprentice spends time in shop for a pre-determined length of time. He or she is then offered a position in your shop or is helped to find employment elsewhere
      8. Become active in your community career fairs and career days at high schools
      9. Lastly – Please reread bullet point number 1
       
      There’s my list, please let me know your thoughts and what would you add to this list.
       
      Let’s act today, so we can secure our future!
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