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By Joe Marconi
Below is a link to an article in Ratchet and Wrench Magazine about what Valvoline is doing about the tech shortage. The aftermarket needs to look at social media and other unconventional ways to bring techs to our industry.
Google has a great informational page that outlines best practices to increase your website/business ranking in search results.
Can’t find your business? Improve your info.
You may find that your business doesn’t appear for relevant searches in your area. To maximize how often your customers see your business in local search results, complete the following tasks in Google My Business. Providing and updating business information in Google My Business can help your business’s local ranking on Google and enhance your presence in Search and Maps.
Enter complete data
Local results favor the most relevant results for each search, and businesses with complete and accurate information are easier to match with the right searches. Make sure that you’ve entered all of your business information in Google My Business, so customers know more about what you do, where you are, and when they can visit you. Provide information like (but not limited to) your physical address, phone number, and category. Make sure to keep this information updated as your business changes. Learn how to edit your business information
Verify your location(s)
Verify your business locations to give them the best opportunity to appear for users across Google products, like Maps and Search. Learn more about verification
Keep your hours accurate
Entering and updating your opening hours, including special hours for holidays and special events, lets potential customers know when you’re available and gives them confidence that when they travel to your location, it will be open. Learn how to edit your hours
Manage and respond to reviews
Interact with customers by responding to reviews that they leave about your business. Responding to reviews shows that you value your customers and the feedback that they leave about your business. High-quality, positive reviews from your customers will improve your business’s visibility and increase the likelihood that a potential customer will visit your location. Encourage customers to leave feedback by creating a link they can click to write reviews. Learn more
Adding photos to your listings shows people your goods and services, and can help you tell the story of your business. Accurate and appealing pictures may also show potential customers that your business offers what they’re searching for. Learn more
How Google determines local ranking
Local results are based primarily on relevance, distance, and prominence. These factors are combined to help find the best match for your search. For example, Google algorithms might decide that a business that's farther away from your location is more likely to have what you're looking for than a business that's closer, and therefore rank it higher in local results.
Relevance refers to how well a local listing matches what someone is searching for. Adding complete and detailed business information can help Google better understand your business and match your listing to relevant searches.
Just like it sounds–how far is each potential search result from the location term used in a search? If a user doesn't specify a location in their search, Google will calculate distance based on what’s known about their location.
Prominence refers to how well-known a business is. Some places are more prominent in the offline world, and search results try to reflect this in local ranking. For example, famous museums, landmark hotels, or well-known store brands that are familiar to many people are also likely to be prominent in local search results.
Prominence is also based on information that Google has about a business from across the web (like links, articles, and directories). Google review count and score are factored into local search ranking: more reviews and positive ratings will probably improve a business's local ranking. Your position in web results is also a factor, so SEO best practices also apply to local search optimization.
There's no way to request or pay for a better local ranking on Google. We do our best to keep the details of the search algorithm confidential to make the ranking system as fair as possible for everyone.
By Custom Coach
The town I live in has a college in it that teaches auto, diesel.
My dealings with most of the students over the years has been they don't have the sense to get out of their own way.
These kids come in with hi hopes and big dreams of being the next Smokey yunick, Richard petty or Don Garlits
Most not all when they are through with schooling or somewhere in the middle decide they know it all there is to know so they open up a rented house one car garage in a neighbor hood which is illegal in my city.
Then they hit the internet and any place they can post a flyer to let people know they do repairs better and CHEAPER than anyone else in the world.
Most these young kids have never wrenched on a car in their life till now and as with most people today the word cheap is like cheese to a mouse they just cannot resist the deal until they get just what they paid for Cheap work.
They can afford to give their work away because they have no bills to pay and most advertise they will put your brakes on for 50.00 dollars.
Some even state they will do the work for X amount of dollars and you bring the parts well if the customers stop and think for a minute they are not saving much if anything at all.
I am now 55 years old I have been at this since I was 2 helping my father off and on in the garage at home then at his business everyday after school and beyond until his passing 9 yrs. ago this April 2017
I still consider myself in a learning mode in life I never claim to know it all but this college in town leads these boys and girls to believe that they can go to any shop small or large and make top dollar right off the bat and never have to work their way up the ladder to get to the top.
Most of these CHEAP shops close soon after they open or after the kids graduate school and they head back to where they came from or to bigger cities and then they leave you to deal with the customers who left you just because they thought they could get the same quality of service they got from you but at a cheaper price.
But its like I have said many many times cheaper is not always better Kelly bluebook and the Nada are guides NOT GOSPEL on used car prices.
I just wish this college would not fill these kids heads with top of the ladder dreams when most are not even ready to start the climb
By Framingham Auto Service
I had very high hopes for the beginning of 2017, taking in consideration that we finished the year very strong, and had a very good January.
But it seems that the ground had open it and swallowed all the business......
How about you guys, how are you doing?
By Joe Marconi
With my work as a business coach, I get to speak to other coaches and shop owners around the country. It appears that many shops are slow, others are busy. And while there will always be ups and downs in the auto repair business, the present roller-coaster ride is one for the books.
There are pockets of the country; northeast and mid-west in particular (among other areas) that are going through very tough times. Sales and car counts are down and shop owners are pulling their hair out trying to make sense of all this. There are other areas of the country that are having banner years. Hard to understand, to say the least.
If you are going through a slow period, continue to build for the future. Maximize each week, each day, and each car. Discuss strategies with your employees and look for ways to increase sales and control expenses. Speak with all customers about their automotive needs. Don't get sucked into any negative moods of the customer. Most of all, remain positive. Things will get better with the right positive mental attitude.
By the way, the above strategy applies to all shops, whether you are doing good or bad. Why? As I stated earlier, every shop goes through tough times. The problem? No can tell who will be next. So, plan for the future and keep your eye on your business.