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How to boost service and fixed ops during the winter months

The winter months offer a prime opportunity for dealerships to institute revenue-generating servicing strategies and add value to customers. Additionally, the fall months provide a great time to start developing promotions and implementing campaigns as we get closer to the end of the year.

If you’re stumped about what to offer or would even like to add to what you already have going, we’ve got you covered.

Here are some tips for boosting those service and fixed ops sales this winter season.

Get that email campaign and template ready

Your email list will likely be your prime resource for getting consumers in the doors this winter. Whether they came in for a test drive or bought a vehicle, the individuals on your email list will be a great audience for your deals and offerings for the winter months. A UK-based behavioral marketing firm, SaleCycle, found that 50% of email recipients purchase from a marketing email once a month. So, using email can be an excellent strategy for increasing your servicing sales.

You’ll also want to ensure you’re keeping up with your customer relationship management (CRM) systems. This is when tracking customer repairs, tune-ups, tire rotations, and other routine services will come in handy, as you can customize your email campaigns with messaging relevant to specific customers.

Prep your sales team

While your email lists will help you get the word out about your offerings, you also want to make sure your sales team is briefed on what promotions to mention to potential customers. They will likely be your biggest in-person ambassadors regarding telling customers about the winter services and incentives you’re offering.

So, keep them up-to-date on all campaigns, and encourage them to talk about any discounts. Also, don’t forget about your online ambassador: your website. It can be easy to forget to update your dealership website with all the winter-related services you offer. Therefore, be sure that the appropriate team adds this task to their checklist.

Focus on tires

Tires are a great place to start when offering car winterization services. Here are a couple of ways to capitalize on them:

  • Offer tire storage – If you’re located in an area where individuals have to get snow tires, this may be a solid service to offer. Drivers can pay to have you store their tires during the warmer months — and even throughout the fall. Then, you can switch out the tires when needed. You can even bundle this service with a winter tire inspection. 
  • Provide an installation promotion – Customers will likely need new tires this winter. So, capitalize on this by providing a discount on the installation itself or offering one or two of the tires (in a set of four) for free. 

Publicize routine maintenance offers 

This step is where you can combine education with routine maintenance. You can offer various standard services like fluid replacements, tread checks, oil changes, and other things that can help keep cars running well during the winter. Then, combine these offerings with discounts and incentives. Lastly, round out the campaign announcement with blog posts and videos that educate customers on how these tasks can positively impact their car’s health during the winter. 

Bundle maintenance offerings 

Depending on the offering, customers like a solid bundle. It allows them to get a lot done in one fell swoop and can lead to overall savings (and an uptick in sales for dealers). You may want to combine certain routine services and price them as a bundle instead of individually. This could be marketed as a “winterized package.” 

For some insight, you could look back at some of the common services that customers get done during past winter seasons and package them in a bundle (where the customer comes out cheaper than if they got each service done separately). 

Final thoughts 

The winter months are a great time to increase your revenue and educate customers on the importance of winterizing their vehicles. Offering the right services and educating them on winterization techniques will make customers feel that they are getting both monetary and intangible value from your dealership, which can positively impact customer loyalty and engagement later in the year.

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Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner is a contributing writer and investigative journalist for CBT News.

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