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Repair Shop Advice


Thursday, January 17, 2019

For many businesses, location is key.  A great location might cost extra money, but you’ll earn far more because people will see your auto repair shop and it will be more convenient for them to drop their vehicle off for service.


When it comes to earning business online, however, the customer’s location is important, too.  Did you know that a customer’s location is the factor Google considers most when deciding which businesses to show in the list of three just under the map section of a search result?

Of course, Google relies on several things to determine who earns the best location in the search results, including your reviews, your website quality, and your shop hours.  Location is important too – Google can see where its users are located, and it knows which businesses are nearby.  They’re much more likely to show your business if your location is right next to the person searching for a shop.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing you (or your website provider) can do about a user’s location.  What you can do is make sure that you help Google understand which customers you serve.  For instance, you might be on the edge of a city but mostly provide auto repair services to the residents of another town.  You want to make sure you advertise your proximity to both locations on your website!

Many websites don’t have this level of content.  Some ‘micro-sites’ (those with 5 or fewer pages) don’t even list the cities near a shop.  These websites will often just state where the shop is located, which makes it much more difficult to earn first-page results when people located in nearby towns search for the services your shop provides.

Just listing the towns won’t get you very far, either.  Ideally, your website will have a page dedicated to every major town that you receive customers from.  This demonstrates to Google that your website isn’t just listing nearby cities, but that you’re actively serving customers from those locations.

If you have reviews from customers in those towns, it’s even better.  These reviews demonstrate that you’re not just seeking customers in nearby towns, but you already have customers there.

If you don’t have pages dedicated to the towns you serve, work with your provider to get them there.  You might be surprised with the impact it has on your search results – and how often your phone rings!

To learn how Repair Shop Websites brings business to repair shops across the country, call us at 866-665-1605 or email us at Team_RSW@RepairShopWebsites.com.


Friday, January 11, 2019

Most auto repair shop owners put plenty of work into their shop.  They work to build efficient workspaces, to keep their customers comfortable, and to keep their employees happy.  That work can pay dividends once customers see it for themselves, but unfortunately many shops don’t give people the opportunity.


The easiest way to give potential customers the opportunity to see your auto repair shop is to take some great photos of it and post them on your website.  These pictures aren’t just filler – they demonstrate the environment your customers can expect when they get to your shop.  Customers who know little about cars may judge the work quality of your shop based on its appearance, so when it comes to providing a good visual representation of your shop, it pays to put your best foot forward.

The good news is that it’s not hard to do. Get ready to be surprised by how easy it is to take a great photo!  There are three key points to make yourself stand out among competitors when taking pictures – the camera, the lighting, and the purpose.

If you’ve got a modern smartphone, the odds are high that you’ve got a pretty good camera.  You don’t need a million-dollar camera to take a good photo – most smartphones have cameras that can easily take high-quality photos for your website, social media page, or even marketing flyers.

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make is not taking enough photos.  It’s free!  Take plenty of photos from different angles and pick the best. For the best results, take photos of the jobs and parts of your shop you are most proud of. You will want to avoid pictures of a rusty car or the corner of the waiting room that could use a remodel.

First, you’ll want to focus on the background. If your shop isn’t as spotless as you would like, you aren’t alone – but keep the mess out of the picture. Reposition yourself for a better background that isn’t distracting to the eye. The less mess to stare at, the more people will appreciate why you took the picture in the first place.

Besides taking photos of the work you do, showing your waiting room is important. Have a place for customers to sit and work or relax while their car is in the shop. A clean and comfortable space plays into higher customer satisfaction, which leads to repeat customers.

To capture the best pictures to promote your auto repair shop, take the lighting into consideration. Natural light can play an important role in how your photos turn out. Using the sun’s natural rays through windows or open garage doors can produce beautiful photos. The important thing to remember is to work with the sun, not to compete against it.

Simplicity is better. When you’re ready to snap a quick photo, think to yourself, ‘What do people want to see when they look at this photo?’ and focus on that.

The three key things you need to differentiate yourself from your competitors are tools you already have. Take a moment to snap a picture with your phone, use the natural light, and avoid distracting objects in your photo, if possible. If you’re proud of your work, show it off!  Your business counts on it.

To learn how Repair Shop Websites can help bring business to your shop, call us at 866-665-1605 or email us at Team_RSW@RepairShopWebsites.com.


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Back in 2005 when Repair Shop Websites was founded, your website was your business’s online presence.  It was an exciting time for the web – Google had just gone public, valued at $23 billion.

Now consider this: Google’s current valuation is $734 billion.  That’s thirty-two times more money than it was worth in late 2004.


Clearly, the web has become much more important since 2005.  Given that Google makes nearly all of its money by selling online ads, it’s pretty clear that the web is much more important for businesses.  But what does this mean for your business?

For one thing, it means you have to be online now.  In 2004, it was an option for many independent auto repair shops.  It isn’t any longer.

The devices being used to access the internet have also changed dramatically since 2005.  Back then, a miniscule percentage of traffic was from phones – neither the iPhone or the Android operating system had been built.  Today, 56% of traffic is from web devices – and if you don’t have a mobile-friendly site, you’re losing them all.

The other big change, however, is that ‘being online’ has a much more expansive definition.  A website is still critical for business success.  But did you know that your reviews show up next to your shop for many types of Google searches?  Those stars next to your name are a key part of your web presence, and if you don’t have enough of them, many customers will skip right over your shop.

Social media has also become a critical place for businesses to maintain a presence.  Facebook has more than 22 billion visits per month – and the average social media user spends 2 hours per day on social media platforms.

Repair Shop Websites has been innovating through all of that time – mobile sites have been in every one of our packages for years, and we’ve been helping many of our customers bolster their social media presence and gather positive reviews along the way.  And we’re happy to help your company also get up to speed, wherever on the web you might need us –  Because even though our name is Repair Shop Websites, we support your entire web presence!

To learn more about how Repair Shop Websites can help bolster your web presence, call us at 866-665-1605 or email us at Team_RSW@RepairShopWebsites.com.


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

If you want to be the best auto repair shop in town, you need to be different from your competition in a way that really matters to customers. That’s not as easy as it sounds, but if you can pull it off, your business can be hugely successful. Check out this infographic to learn how to do just that.

 


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

From marketing to hiring to shop management, we covered plenty of topics in 2018.  Three of these topics, however, were far more popular than the rest.  Unsurprisingly, these three topics each have the potential to have a substantial impact on your auto repair shop in the coming months and years.


Three Ways to Enhance Your Waiting Room Experience

For a shop owner, it’s easy for a waiting room to look like a cost center.  It takes up space, eats electricity, and if you’ve got a great one, it encourages customers to hang around the shop and chat instead of leaving your employees to work on vehicles.

For many customers, however, a waiting room is the only part of your shop they truly understand.  They might not know much about brake pads and rotors, but based on the money and consideration you dedicate to the waiting area, they can judge the caliber of your shop, how much you care about your customers and how well you treat them.  With that in mind, here are three inexpensive ways to raise the perception of your auto repair shop’s waiting area.

What New Vehicle Technology Will You Be Repairing Five Years from Now?

There are plenty of reasons to care about what automotive technology is nearly ready for prime time.  New technology can provide more opportunities for repairs – or it can provide less.  You might need to budget for new equipment, or it might make your next tech even harder to find.  Whether the technology is good or bad for your shop, you’ll be better off if you’re prepared.  This post covers two technologies coming in the next few years, and one that isn’t.

Hiring Technicians – Three Great Tips from Shop Owners

Having to hire anyone isn’t a fun task in this economy.  When you’re an auto repair shop, however, it’s a whole different level of hard.  This blog post provides three tips that actual shop owners use to get the right person in their shop.  And don’t worry – we aren’t going to tell you to pay six figures or hire the elusive perfectly qualified master tech, because we know that’s unrealistic.

To learn how Repair Shop Websites can help your shop earn more business, call us at 866-665-1605 or email us at Team_RSW@RepairShopWebsites.com.

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