THE ART OF THE OIL CHANGE
Simple Oil Change - for most of vehicle owners it is a time and money consuming nuisance.
But, for auto repair shop owners, it can mean the difference between operating a shop that flourishes and a shop that fails miserably.
That might sound far-fetched, however, the lowly oil change can have a huge impact on the success of auto repair shop.
However, most auto repair shops are not in the business to just do oil changes.
They don't make much money - if any - on oil changes and it eats up the time of skilled auto technicians who could be working on more profitable repairs.
But that does not mean they are not important.
Oil changes are like chips and salsa at a restaurant. The restaurant gives them away for free. They lose a little money in the short term, but in the long run, they hope to make that money up in word of mouth and repeat business.
But not all auto repair shop owners think that way, especially with the proliferation of "Fast Lube" outfits, with whom generally they can not compete both in speed and price.
Over the years, many auto repair shops actually started to turn away oil changes or, worse yet, do them, but do them slowly.
These shops are missing the point, claim the auto repair industry experts.
Some auto repair shop operators actually "love" oil changes and never in their shops turn away an oil change.
An oil change, they believe, serves as a customer's introduction to their business.
New customers will test their organization, and how it treats that customer for something as simple as an oil change, and it will give the customer idea about the auto repair shop as a whole.
The Secret of the Oil Change
There are two aspects of the oil change that every auto repair shop owner keeps in mind.
- It's all about customer service.
- It's an opportunity to upsell.
- It's money-losing by itself.
Oil changes are relatively simple and quick procedures. The average customer budgets about an hour for an oil change. And yet, so many shops can take hours to do an oil change leaving the customer stranded and frustrated.
But many vehicle owners find that the auto repair shop just down the street is just too busy to do a simple oil change.
If the potential customer drives by, or stops in and sees that the shop is just "too" busy and all lifts or bays are already occupied, they automatically assume that a simple oil change, would have taken too long and go elsewhere.
Other places simply just couldn't be bothered to do an oil change.
Simply put, speed sells when it comes to an oil change.
Even if some shop operators have to push another car out of a bay, they always have time for an oil change and can do it within an hour. That type of fast action leaves the customer looking at their organization and saying, "Wow!"
They are providing great customer service, taking care of their customer needs and doing it within a price point and timeframe their customers need.
All of this in a hope that the specific customer will return to their auto repair shop for bigger repairs down the road and the customers will tell their friends and family about the great service they received at the specific auto repair shop.
But the reality is that after few "budget" and super fast oil changes, if you do not consent to a high ticket, big profit for the auto repair shop work, you quickly will become as welcomed as a plaque!
The time factor - fast oil change - is not only about great customer service, though.
It is all about upselling!
The Value of the Oil Change.
If auto repair shop can get your car into their bay for an oil change, it's an excellent opportunity for them to find and fix other problems that vehicle may have.
If they can keep it within the hour time limit, customers are more likely to let them perform a "flush" or other "minor" repairs.
Now the auto repair shop has turned that money-losing oil change into a $100-plus repair ticket!
When they do an "inspection" at every oil change, the purpose is always - upsell!
The "Free multi-point inspection" is essential for identifying another issue that a customer may want to address while at the auto repair shop.
The auto repair industry experts always advise the auto repair operators to look for safety issues first, because those are items that customers know they will have to fix.
Once they find a safety item, they inform the customer of the problem.
Some present a hard sell. while others, instead, let the customer decide if the repair is worth pursuing.
If they can't find a safety issue, then they focus on a maintenance items and follow the same sales pitch procedure.
The chance of selling a maintenance job is less, but it's still worth bringing an issue to the attention of a customer.
Just changing the air filter when it is not really needed, but because it "looks dirty" - makes all the difference between profit or loss for the shop on the repair ticket.
If they have already removed the air filter for inspection, the labor time is the same to put in "fresh" or the "old" air filter, and statistically many customers understand that, and just consent to a new air filter installation.
Most do not even ask the "price" for the air filter and just with some "shock" pay for it when they get the final bill.
Whether it's a safety or maintenance item they are trying to sell you more !
Remember speed is essential so if customer thinks or is told that it will not take any "extra" time to do this or that "extra" work or maintenance, then more often than not, the customer OK's the "extra" work to be performed.
The auto repair shop operators hope is that - If they do your job right and get customers out within an hour and take care of their needs, that the customers will return to their shop at a later date, when they will spend more - a lot more - money.
From industry experience, these customers will spend upwards of $200 on their second trip and even more in subsequent trips to the auto repair shop. This is money they would never see if they would turn away the oil change from the get go.
If they take in as many oil changes as they can, speed up the process and work on upselling, they will make money.
That is why oil changes are important!
Auto repair and service customers are constantly changing, moving away, and yes even dying.
So auto repair shop operators have to always be reaching out to and recruiting new customers. An oil change is the best way to introduce their shop to new customers. That's why you get offers for basic oil change specials in all of the direct-mail pieces you get monthly or even weekly.
The proven fact is that once auto repair shop turns away a customer for a simple oil change, they never return.
If they do this enough times - soon they will find the customer base dwindling.
And that's the "real" value of the oil change.
Is there alternative to all this upsell?
Yes, there is !
SynLube™Lube−4−Life® System that consists of:
- Long-Life Permanent Motor Oil
- Long-Life MicroGlass Oil Filter
- Oil Filter Magnets
The benefits of SynLube™Lube−4−Life® System are: