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After looking at the ICCU shop in Mumbai India, it made me wonder how the Indians deal with Indian negotiation tactics? I need a good strategy. My shop is among a large Indian population and it seems that they all want to negotiate pricing. So much so that if one doesn't try to negotiate, it throws us off our game! There are few ways to deal with this: 1) Stand firm, 2) Have a pre-made coupon that we can use to move the price a fixed amount, 3) Negotiate, 4) Prepare for the negotiation with inflated pricing, then negotiate and settle on a job price (that is often more than the non-negotiated price).
We do #2 and #4 regularly, with a little #1 and no unprepared negotiations (#3). When we are negotiating, it's always out on the shop floor so that it can be a private conversation. They always seem to feel better when they "get a deal"!
Any better methods or practices?
I started a business idea & funded everything to get the business going. It has boomed faster then I expected, i still own & run the shop from the outside but I have 2 family members that have grown the shop from the sales & service from the inside & have been paid a weekly check plus sales bonus checks above any local shop. I have the idea that over the long haul I will recoop my investment & time. I have told them the more we grow the more you will earn pretty simple plan. The company continues to grow every month so I'm not worried about location & all the other things that go into what is my business worth. My question is if I would sell to 1 of them how would I figure a fair price. Mind you I personally have yet to gain a profit from the business myself. I draw a small check but it goes toward bills that it took to get the company started that came out of my own pocket. My quick simple thought was Equipment+Inventory+ (Net profitx3)= Selling price to walk away. I would like to know others I feel I should gain on taking the risk & putting my personal family finaces on hold, but also feel I don't want to cause family issues that I was trying to cheat a family member that would say the business would be nothing without them.
By Ron Ipach
All auto repair shop owners should know the importance at this point of having an auto repair website for the shop. This idea was brought to me by a client who sent me an e-mail letting me know that she's going to be updating her website, which is a really good idea - If your website is old or if you don't have one, you really do need to have a newer updated website.
I suggest that for everybody. Her question was really to the point, how much should she spend on a website and how important, really, is having a website right now?
Let me go ahead and cover the second question first:
How important is having a website? It's important.
You really do need to have a website. It's not nearly as important as everybody makes it seem, especially with the guys who want to sell you a website, but the reality is, you doneed to have a good website. Most people will go to your website and check you out a little bit before they choose to do business with you.
It's similar to people reading reviews. Everybody looks at a review before they decide who they want to do business with. They're going to review you. If you've got good reviews, chances are they're going to check out your website. If you have an auto repair website that's made by a six year old, ten years ago, and it looks like crap - chances are that's going to turn them off.
It doesn't take a whole lot of time, money, or effort to have a professional looking website, an updated website. It is important that you do have it because people will check you out online. Ever since I started doing my Car Count Daily videos, I've had a lot of people checking out my website. It just goes to show, when people find you they want to know more about you. That's why it's important you have that good, and updated website.
How much should you spend and how much time should you spend doing it?
Not a lot because the reality is, most people aren't going to find you by searching for an auto repair shop in their area. There's just too much competition. Unless you really want to jump into that fray and work with search engine optimizers so that you're at the top of the page all the time - most shop owners don't have the time or money to mess with that. You just need to have a good looking website. You can get a cheap website. You can get one made for $500 and that's pretty much all you need to spend.
I know it will be easy for most people in the industry to argue with me on this, especially with the people who are providing websites as a service. The reality is, you want a good professional looking website, but the majority of people are never going to find it. The only people who are going to find your website are the ones that are actually typing in, doing a search for you.
I wouldn't spend a ton of time on there. The reason why I talk about this in the way that I do is I find that too many of my clients are spending entirely too much time putting together the perfect website.
They spend hours, and hours, and hours with their designer and back and forth, back and forth for the perfect website that the majority of people are never going to see anyway, or it will be difficult to get it in front of the right customers, at the right time.
Put your time, and effort, and money where people are really going to find you. I'd suggest market more to your current clients than market to people that have never seen you before, which is what your website is essentially doing in the automotive repair industry. You're marketing to people that don't know you and chances are they're never going to find you anyway, even though you have a beautiful, well-made site. The better looking your site is, doesn't get you to the top page of Google or the main search engine. Put your money, and time, and effort in things that really matter - like your marketing.
Have a good, professional looking website, but you don't need to spend thousands of dollars and hours putting that together.
-- Ron Ipach (a.k.a Captain Car Count)
President/Founder of Repair Shop Coach More articles and content like this and originated through Ron Ipach's Car Count Daily campaign Auto Repair Shop Owners, Managers, and Automotive Industry Professionals are invited to join 'Car Count Daily Boosters' LinkedIn group to provide resources and gain insight on boosting car count DAILY and filling up the bays in their shops.
I recently did a drivabilty repair on a 1999 Bonneville, a week after all was done the customer called to share his concern about the price of the MAF we replaced. I told him there we many out there and the only ones we have positive results with were the AC Delco new ones. He stated he could buy the same thing for less of course. The sensor cost me over $250 and my margin is 39%. Am I out of line charging this?
And how do you handle price objections similar to this?
We have finally taken the steps to offer commission to our employees. I would like to know how (if you do it at your shop) you go about doing so. Do you have a spread sheet/form that the employees turn in weekly for what they have sold? If you have a form/sheet do you mind sharing it?
Do you offer a percentage of certain jobs (at a certain amount) after the cost of parts and overhead?
We currently pay our technicians hourly and believe the incentives would boost business especially since it has been slow lately.
Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
CA Auto Group