Jul 19 2023
By Jason Doring
Inflation has been outpacing wages for many years, which has created significant hardship for workers and forced them to extend the life of key necessities such as their personal vehicles. Kelley Blue Book (KBB) has found that the average vehicle life has now been extended to 12 and a half years, in an effort to avoid adding a new car payment to already strained budgets. Timely, cost-effective, and quality vehicle maintenance is necessary to attain this ambitious lifespan, and customers typically have many local options for servicing and repairs. The parts and services industry has become an enormous market ($137 billion in 2022 from dealerships alone) with intense competition, so how can these businesses generate the customer loyalty and positive experiences needed to thrive with repeat business and word-of-mouth recommendations?
OEM Service Schedule Data, which can be licensed from DataOne, offers vehicle services providers manufacturer-sourced recommendations on vehicle servicing. In addition to the standard service intervals, OEM-backed service recommendations with more frequent scheduling based on usage and driving conditions are also included and are cross-checked against vehicle service manuals. Along with these time and mileage-based intervals, DataOne’s solution interprets OEM warning and maintenance codes to provide clear direction when these are returned by the customer’s vehicles. DataOne’s OEM Service Schedule Data also standardizes the naming conventions for the services recommended across model brands, to optimize the shop’s ability to effectively communicate and engage with their customers’ vehicle-specific needs.
These core operational benefits can be seamlessly incorporated into your vehicle service business’ marketing, sales promotion, and customer service mix to drive toward new profit milestones. Below are the 3 most common strategies we have seen to enhance revenue growth with OEM Service Schedules Data.
When personal vehicles are operating properly, their service schedule is usually not top-of-mind for the driver, but underlying, easily ignored issues can become a pressing, financially devastating repair if not addressed. Product recalls can also easily fly under the radar – KBB’s Senior Director of Product Development Juan Flores notes the ongoing consumer frustration with product recalls that often require a manual 17-digit VIN decode to find.
OEM Service Schedule Data empowers auto service businesses to set the best possible promotional messaging and cadence with customers, driving them to your service lanes. DataOne works alongside Dealer Management Systems (DMS) to retrieve 6-12 months of service history for your entire business, identifying customers with priority vehicle needs. Data can then be tied to workflows that will send customer emails, text messages and/or reminders for direct mailings when regular service is due and when recalls are announced, instilling confidence in your shop’s vehicle expertise. Tying your direct-to-consumer marketing to OEM service schedules data also helps provide a regular flow of customers, plugging gaps in your income stream.
Anyone who has been to a vehicle service center has been told by a technician that a certain filter, fluid, or part is wearing out and needs replacement, based on the technician’s direct interaction with the vehicle. OEM Service Schedule data can be licensed at the technician level, meaning that the vehicle can be reviewed for needed maintenance as it is actively being serviced, just by looking at real-time information directly sourced from the manufacturer. This is a valuable upsell opportunity, and catching issues not directly identifiable during the service appointment helps customers meet that desire for a long vehicle life. The clear and non-technical nature of the product makes it ideal for this purpose. Additionally, when a service center is associated with a dealership, making the consumer aware of upcoming service and maintenance costs has also proven to be a great way to naturally introduce an upsell opportunity to a newer vehicle.
Service centers directly tied to dealerships can also leverage service schedule data to benefit the dealership side as well, through equity mining. Alex Snyder at FRIKINtech explains that the “service drive” is an opportunity to identify vehicles whose trade value remains high. If that trade value significantly exceeds the customer’s remaining car loan, the dealership can make an offer to buy the car and turn a profit on its resale. Access to OEM Service Schedule data makes finding the ideal prospects for these “equity mining” opportunities much simpler and more automated, as the database is at your fingertips and you can quickly filter for high-value, well-maintained used cars.
Additionally, since some of these cars may have high-ticket service due soon, providing dealerships with a valuable leverage point to move the sale forward more quickly. The trust that has been developed between customers and the service center during the course of the vehicle maintenance relationship makes accomplishing a sale far simpler than cold outreach.
Passenger vehicles have made an unprecedented leap in complexity and costs in recent years. Vehicle service centers will need to adapt to the more intensive repair and maintenance processes and provide exceptional communication to stand out in this crowded, in-demand marketplace. OEM Service Schedule data provides an in-depth source of truth for your customers’ vehicles, which enables businesses to acquire the optimal, cost-effective parts, provide smooth service, and keep customers fully informed on their vehicles’ condition so they can maximize their lifespan and potential resale value.
If you would like to learn more about how DataOne curates service schedule data to further expedite integration with your core operations, you can reach out to a data expert at the link below.