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Joe Marconi

Do we really want low priced parts from Advance, CARQUEST, NAPA & the rest?

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This post in a follow up from a post I made a few weeks ago directed to part companies about the part quality issues we are experiencing in our industry. As I stated in the post, this is an industry problem and we cannot put blame on one part supplier. The purpose of that post was to attract attention from part companies.

 

I have received calls from reps from a few part companies. They explained their view on the part quality issue. CARQUEST and Cardone came forward to take the time to speak with me. And to be fair and balanced, I think that we need to address the entire issue. There are always two sides to any situation.

 

Although there are many shop owners that want to sell quality and care about reputation, there are shops that only care about price.

 

I dont really know how this started, but for years now we have entered into this race to bottom with respect to price and is part of the blame the shop owners that put too much emphasis on price alone? And to make matters worse, this reduction in prices has eroded the profit margins of part companies, suppliers and shops too. In the end, we all suffer.

 

So the question is; do we really want cheaper part from CARQUEST, Advance, NAPA, OReillys, AutoZone and other part companies, knowing that low prices may also affect the quality of the parts we install in our customers and familys cars?

 

We are now in a situation where there are no real solutions. Too much of what we sell comes from countries where labor is cheap and accountability hard to monitor. I dont know have all the answers, but I do know that putting all blame and responsibility on the backs of the part companies is not the answer.

 

Perhaps we all need to take a long hard look in the mirror.

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