It’s no secret that many auto shops have trouble attracting women to their business. And although they also need car maintenance, you’ll find that not too many shops really cater to women on their level. Done right, marketing to women can create a huge opportunity for auto repair shops, as 85% of people bringing in their vehicles to be serviced is women. Here are 4 strategies auto shop owners can use to better market to women:
The auto repair industry is currently thriving in the United States. The industry has grown by 2.6% over the past five years, reaching a revenue of $67 billion in 2018. This is primarily due to the average length of car ownership for new and used vehicles, which has increased 60% in the last 10 years - leading to more auto repairs. In addition, 75% of repairs and maintenance completed on vehicles is done at independent automotive shops, in comparison to 25% that is done at dealerships.
Did you know that more than half of automotive internet shoppers conduct research on a mobile device? If your competitors have a fully mobile-optimized website and you do not, you are making it more difficult for consumers to purchase from your dealership. According to the 2017 J.D. Power New Autoshopper Study, over one-third of internet research time is spent on a mobile device. There is a continued upward trend as consumers of all ages become more comfortable with online research and shopping. The bar for customer experience continues to rise as retailers such as Amazon, Target and Walmart create straightforward shopping sites and mobile apps that are exceptionally easy to use.
Any good auto dealer can tell you that closing a sale means providing for a lot more than just a vehicle and service package. People don’t come in looking for a new (or new to them) car. They’re looking to meet social and emotional needs: long-term reliability, safety for both themselves and those they care about, an expression of what they’ve achieved… A parent may ask about safety ratings, but what they don’t say is that they’re worried about the kid headed off to college. (Their child, on the other hand, will probably openly tell you they want to feel cool driving it.) They may ask about mileage and repairs, but they won’t mention that they have to have a car in order to get a job
Higher automotive quality has given repair shop owners a reason to celebrate. According to a 2016 research report form IHS Markit, that’s the reason consumers are keeping their light vehicles for 11.6 years on average. Longer ownership means consumers are more likely to invest in repairs and regular upkeep.
Auto repair shops face a lot of complex marketing issues. For starters, competition is fierce, customer loyalty is critical, and winning trust takes time. On top of that, horror stories about unscrupulous mechanics have contributed to an environment of distrust — and social media has made sharing those horror stories even easier.