The Rhythm is Gonna Get Ya
Why is it that some quick lube shops effortlessly complete non-stop fast oil changes along with a healthy dose of extra services in a timely, mistake-free fashion, while others struggle to get through a few oil changes?
It all has to do with the rhythm of your crew and how well they work together. No doubt, every person on your team must be tuned in to what the rest of the crew is doing.
Think of your day in the lube shop as a performance for an audience. Just as audiences at a rock concert don’t go to the show to watch their favorite entertainers stand still on stage and play scales on a guitar, your customers don’t come to your lube shop to have you go about the mundane business of draining old oil, putting in fresh oil and screwing on a new filter.
Anybody with even a modicum of mechanical ability and only a couple of hand tools can easily do an oil change on their car, yet they choose to come to you. Why is that?
Is it because they don’t know how to do the work themselves? Certainly that accounts for a large portion of customers. Or, is it that they don’t have the time to do it themselves, even if they do have the skills? That is surely another percentage of your customers’ reasons for coming to you. Then, there are those who just don’t want to do it themselves, even though they might have the time, skill and tools necessary to do so.
We’ve established why oil change customers come to lube shops. However, let’s try to understand why they would choose to come to your lube shop as opposed to your competition. What is it about your lube shop that attracts your regular customers to you over the other lube shops in your area?
It could be the price. Is your price lower than the competition? That will surely get customers through the door at least the first time. However, if what they find once they get through that low price means poor service, a dirty shop, sloppy work and indifferent employees, they will surely not be back.
That is the ultimate waste of time and money on your part if you are guilty of this. We all realize how difficult it is to get a fresh customer through our doors, and if you go the trouble of discounting your oil change and basically giving up your profit margins just to get them to come in that first time and provide a service that is neither impressive nor memorable enough to get them to want to come back again, then you have gone to all of that effort and expense for absolutely nothing!
Is your shop located in a good traffic area? If so, you are one of the lucky ones. There are lube shops located in not-so-prime locations that do not have the luxury of a huge contingent of possible customers driving by at all hours of the day and night.
The truth of proximity is not what many think it is. However, a well-located lube shop that enjoys healthy car counts solely because of its prime location is many times operated with an indifference to its good fortune. Management doesn’t feel the need or pressure to actually do their best at running a successful, customer-friendly, high-volume lube shop. They simply gather up all the low-hanging fruit without any real effort to maximize their day by actively picking fruit from the higher branches.
Over the years, I have been a witness to many lube shops around the country that are part of a chains and the No. 1 store of that chain is heralded as the best store, naturally.