Resilience In A Time of Change
The COVID-19 pandemic—and all the lifestyle changes that have come with it—has accelerated change in the automotive industry, including collision repair.
Companies are enabling employees to work remotely and distance learning is required in K-12 public schools. Occupancy rates for office buildings are down 30% nationwide.1 These shifts have contributed to a 14% drop in national miles driven.2
As more customers move to digital interactions and vehicle technology rapidly evolves, it’s important to consider how your shop can adapt to new ways of doing business. Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) continue to improve the driver’s ability to react to dangers on the road, and claim frequency for all coverages have already been slowing. Now, with fewer vehicles on the road, vehicle repair counts may be down between 15-20% in 2021.1
Success in Our New Business Environment
Parts manufacturers, distributors and auto repair shops have been classed as an essential service. Many shops have implemented parts procurement and logistics technologies to minimize the need for face-to-face transactions with suppliers. Shops also use technology to provide their customers with a quality, touch-free service experience.
Shifting Consumer Behavior Drives Business Change
Today, more and more consumers are finding an automotive repair facility via an online search. Therefore, it’s critical for your shop to have a solid online presence with active social media posts and positive Yelp reviews.
If you haven’t already, now is the time to establish and build your social media presence. In past issues of Collision Pros, you’ll find a series of articles that guide you through the basics. From managing your Yelp presence and setting up a Facebook page to managing reviews and creating quality posts, these articles can help you build a following, create advocacy and build business:
For more social media information click through to any of the following CP stories: The Power of Social Media: Part 1, 2 & 3
Social media is the foundation of your online presence, but your ability to provide quick, accurate and competitive estimates is essential. At this year’s MSO Symposium, a recent survey indicated that 25% of respondents identified estimated price as the most important factor in choosing a repair facility.3 While the rise in photo estimates may simplify the process for the customer, there are some challenges in ensuring accuracy and customer satisfaction. The Collision Pros article “Photo Estimates–Tips for Working with Customers” provides guidance in helping your customers with photo estimates.
Pivoting quickly has positioned repair shops to reap the opportunities. As you adjust your business, in the post-COVID world, customers may remain cautious and seek the safe, sanitary and reliable service that your shop provides.
Disclaimers & Footnotes
 CCC Information Services Inc. (2020)
 U.S. Department of Transportation (2020)
 MSO Symposium trend review: Beyond Consolidation: What is Driving the Economy and Investor Interest in the Collision Industry (2020)