Written by Beth Walter, Sr. Product Manager – Digital Marketing
May 12, 2021
You have most likely heard by now that the global chip shortage is causing many auto manufacturers to slow vehicle production – or, in some cases, pause it entirely – thereby disrupting the new vehicle supply chain.
Adding salt to the wound is an impending shortage of another critical automotive component: rubber. A volatile combination of leaf disease and ongoing shipping challenges is causing a serious rubber shortage and sending everyone in the industry scrambling to secure their share.
So, what else could possibly go wrong? Plenty. The change in supply has already created a chain reaction currently reverberating throughout the industry. Customers shopping for a new vehicle are facing stiff competition and limited inventory. In fact, many dealerships have stopped offering any discounts and started selling cars at or above MSRP.
Additionally, a disproportionate number of customers are complaining in dealership reviews about vehicles that are seemingly sold right out from under them. They call for a price, but by the time they arrive at the dealership the vehicle has already been sold. The dealer doesn’t even offer them a replacement – because there isn’t one.
This problem isn’t just limited to new cars, either. The same thing is being seen across the board for used vehicles as the unmet demand for new bleeds through.
So, what does this mean for the service side of the business? Well, if a customer can’t get a new car, they are going to have to double-down their efforts to keep and maintain their current vehicle. This means reconsidering all of the service and maintenance and they’ve been putting off, such as:
- New tires
- New brakes
- “Check Engine” light diagnostics
- Part replacements
- Computer system upgrades
- High-cost repairs
- Body work
In short, now is the time to reach out to those customers who have been putting off or declining work for the last six to eight months and get them booked in for their needed service. Make those phones calls. Promote those special offers for services they need through your various marketing channels. Now is the time to reach out to your customers with timely, attractive offers that address their needs.
Do it now, before that aftermarket location down the street beats you to it!