At some point, you may have wondered:
“How do I drive more customers to my shop to increase profitability?”
Implementing an auto repair marketing plan is an excellent way to keep existing customers coming back while expanding your customer base. In this blog, we discuss some auto repair shop marketing ideas to transform your business!
1. Create a website for your shop
Showcasing your brand through a website is one of the most effective auto repair marketing strategies.
Why build a website?
A website helps you establish an online presence and gives potential customers more clarity about your brand. Research shows that approximately 77% of customers visiting auto shops conduct online research before picking a service provider.
What should you include on your website?
Here are items that the best auto repair shops include on their website:
- Shop information: What does your shop do? A website can be effective in highlighting the services that you offer. For example, a shop called “John Smith’s Auto Repair Services” does not convey the full story to potential customers. By specifying whether you provide collision repair services, mechanical parts, or detailing, it’s easier to attract the right customers. You can add specific service pages about your specialties so that visitors can quickly understand where your strengths lie.
- A personalized touch: It’s important to show customers that your shop cares about them. A website can help you stay away from developing a “corporate image”. With a personalized “About Us” page, tell customers why you’re in the auto repair business and what keeps you going. For some shop owners, a love for cars and helping people may have inspired them to enter the industry—there are no wrong answers here!
- Relevant call-to-action (CTA) buttons: You’ve done the hard work of getting customers on your website, now what? The best auto shops use relevant CTAs to encourage conversions. For example, you could offer potential customers a free inspection if they sign up for your email list!
- Value-added content: Content marketing helps bring more traffic to your website through search engine optimization (higher ranking on Google). By writing value-add content on topics that your customers find useful, such as weekly at-home car maintenance, you can increase your readers’ interest in your business and make them loyal customers.
2. Make the most of word-of-mouth marketing and customer referrals
What’s better than free marketing from your existing customers?
Nothing! People are more likely to trust auto repair services that someone in their circle recommends. Research from Nielsen indicates that 92% of people trust recommendations from friends and family over any other type of advertising.
So how do you ensure that customers spread the word about your shop?
Step #1: Provide your customers with impeccable customer service. This includes going the extra mile for them and dealing with unhappy customers appropriately. Here are some simple ways to win over your customers’ trust:
Step #2: Now you’ve gone the extra mile and provided an amazing customer experience—so how do you turn that into more customers? Here are some tips to increase your word-of-mouth referrals:
- Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals – There’s nothing wrong with asking your most trusted customers to provide a referral for new customers.
- Offer customers an incentive to provide a referral – Sometimes customers need an extra push to provide a referral so you can offer an incentive such as a free tire change for customers who refer a friend.
- Host events – By hosting a special event in the neighborhood (for example, a vintage car show or even something as simple as a local BBQ), you and your shop can gain recognition in the area and build trust with the community outside of the shop.
3. Run email marketing campaigns
How often do you think someone checks their email?
According to optinmonster, 99% of email users check their email daily. So, is email marketing still effective? Research by WordStream indicates that email campaigns have the highest conversion rates at 4.2% compared to other digital platforms. For instance, social media conversion is only 0.7%.
Below are some points that will help you get started with email marketing:
- Invest in the right tools: Mechanic shop software such as AutoLeap allows you to create an email list using your customer database. You can group customers with similar spending behavior together and target the correct audience for each campaign. Additionally, AutoLeap allows you to schedule campaigns, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to send the emails. Plus, you can schedule follow-up emails to remain in the customers’ consideration set for when they need a mechanic.
- Provide relevant content: Nobody likes receiving emails knowing that it’s just an advertisement, so it’s important to produce content that adds value for your reader. Sending periodic newsletters to your customers can also help keep them updated about new offerings at your shop.
4. Build a reputable online brand through positive customer reviews
Online reputation management involves getting positive customer reviews and strategically addressing negative ones. Research by BizRate Insights reveals that 59% of people check Google Reviews before visiting a shop.
The most successful auto repair shops appear on Google Maps, making it easier for potential customers to find them. They also invest in auto repair marketing software to manage and reply to reviews directly from the app.
By addressing negative reviews and solving customer complaints, you can make your auto shop more credible. The leading auto shops include a testimonials section on their website to build trust with potential customers.
5. Establish a strong social media presence
Here’s a question:
What’s the first thing you do after waking up in the morning?
According to IDC Research, around 80% of people check their social media within 6 minutes of opening their eyes.
Here are some auto repair marketing ideas to target your existing customer base and new audiences online:
- Choose the right channels: Facebook and Instagram are excellent platforms to promote an auto shop since they’re easy to use, and they are the most popular platforms.
- Make interesting and relevant posts: Posting short video content on Facebook talking about the disadvantages of improper maintenance could be a great way to engage your audience. Additionally, posting polls on Instagram stories about what services customers want from your shop enables you to informally communicate with them. If you want to learn more about leveraging digital platforms, check out our round-up of the most effective social media ideas for auto repair shops.
Getting new customers into your auto repair shop is not easy, but these marketing ideas for auto repair shops will keep your existing customers coming back while enabling you to target a new audience to drive up your car count.
Auto Repair Shop Management Software
AutoLeap is a powerful all-in-one auto repair shop software that helps to keep complete track of your business – from scheduling appointments to managing technicians and generating invoices.