Tips to Improve Your Auto-Repair BusinessBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
When you start up your own business, after you have established a sound little enterprise with frequent customers and orders, you discover that business is not just about doing that one thing that your business is built around. Like every other business, there is this one type of product or service that you provide, it is the primary function of your business and it's what everything else is built around. But it wouldn't be correct to say that it's the single most important thing in your business; no, a business has countless other aspects that are indispensable for its successful operation. There are some critical aspects of a successful enterprise: excellent customer service, good management, a good business plan and constant re-investment back into your business to make it grow and get better. The focus of this article will be how you can improve your customer service and the experience your clients have with you, by using a better invoicing system, the digital invoice; other ways will also be discussed of course. You can get your very own digital invoice template at https://www.freshbooks.com/invoice-templates/word for your auto-repair business and give a huge instant boost to your trade.
A digital invoice system is going to prove useful to you in the following ways:
Receive the payment for the repairs faster:
In the auto-repair market, the payments for services are made after the repairs have been done. This is the custom all over the world for auto-repair and there is a need for a good invoicing system. With a digital invoice system, you will no longer have to worry about getting the invoice to the customer; because you just need to push a button and it will pop up the customer's email or messaging app. This way the inconvenience of paying in parts will be avoided as the customer will know beforehand how much money they need to take with them when going to get their car. It is common that customers walk into the mechanic and realize that their bill is more than they have brought with themselves, and they have to come again with the full payment to get their car. Digital invoicing will also help to speed up the work. It is also very frequent in the repair industry that people often forget about their cars after handing them over to the mechanic; so even after the repairs have been completed the car is kept parked in the mechanic's garage until its owner comes to take it. With digital invoicing this is less likely to happen: when the repair work of a vehicle is completed the digital invoice with all the details of the repairs and the total amount can be sent to the customer and when they receive it on their phones, they are going to come by and take their car on time. On the other hand, if manual invoicing is used it will be upon the customer to come and check if the work has been completed so they can take their car if they don't show up the car would stay at the garage, taking up parking space which creates a problem for the business as there is no space to park the new cars or vehicles that have come in for repairs.
Your invoice serves as your advertisement:
With a professional digital invoice template, you can customize the invoice just the way you want. Consider this: you have a nice, good looking, professional invoice that has your business name and logo on it and you send it to one of your customers so they can pay you; your invoice sitting in their phone or laptop, or in case they print will be an automatic marketing medium for your repair business. When your customer's friend or family members see your invoice it conveys a very perfect and professional image of your business and will attract them to get their next repairs done from you. Under other conditions, if you use the same old manual invoicing method that is written by hand or typed on a spreadsheet, you are bound to miss that charismatic image that only a good digital invoice can provide.
Gives you more time to be an actual mechanic:
In small auto-repair businesses that are run by one or two mechanics, it is odd to see the mechanic on the desk with all the invoices and account books around them while they try to figure out the source of an imbalance in the accounts, but it does happen. Frankly, being on a desk and surrounded in account books and invoices is not the natural habitat of the mech, and they also don't like working around figures and sums and would want to go back to their original work. A digital invoicing system will help you avoid getting into this fuss of numbers because you are covered by cloud accounting. You will have more time to focus on the work that you are supposed to do.
Apart from adopting the digital invoice system, there are some other steps that you can take to make your workshop grow and be a bigger and better enterprise. In this age of social media, you should engage on social media sites to make the presence of your business felt by the community that lives around. The first big reason why you should engage on social media is that is free to sign up, which means free advertising. It certainly takes effort and social media skills to get adept at it and make it work, but there is also the option of paid advertising options that you can use your boost your posts, target specific audiences that live around the area where the business is present, and have insight on campaign effectiveness. Another reason you should use social media is that it houses immense audience sizes - in the United States alone there are nearly 70 million Twitter users. While you aren't going to need to reach as many people, you can target the specific lot that lives in your city to utilize this golden opportunity. You can also connect with local businesses and have a mutualistic agreement with them. For example, you can make a deal where customers of your auto repair shop can get discounts at a local restaurant, and in return, that local can advertise for you.