April 21, 2010 at 11:41 pm #4921
Something I would like to call to your attention. There is an online company called AutoMD that claims to help consumers from bring “ripped off” by auto repair shops. The reality is that AutoMD is owned by a large online parts seller and wants consumers to buy parts online form them rather than we sourcing the parts. Watch the video on CBS and check out the website. My personal opinion is that this is going to make it harder for us to do quality repairs. Check to see if your shop is listed in the find a shop area. Again, my personal opinion, is that we all should remove our names from the list. Also, be prepared for customers having an AutoMD estimate in hand and wanting to negotiate your price with you. I hope none of us are letting customer bring there own parts. Click on, or cut and past the links to see info.
Car Owners Can Save Hundreds of Dollars on Auto Repairs in 4 Easy Steps (news article)
Is Your Mechanic Taking You for a Ride? – The Early Show – CBS News
How did I find out about this you ask? Through ASA and ASCCA, Californias shop owner association. Just shows the value of belonging to the trade organizations.April 22, 2010 at 3:12 pm #10814
I view these type of sites as just making our jobs that much harder. Went to their site, plugged in an O2 sensor for a 00 Civic, I just wrote the estimate up for. If the customer where to go on that site, I now would have to explain why the sensor we are using is SIGNIFICANTLY higher than the $40.69 sensor they would try to sell them.April 23, 2010 at 11:23 am #10815
i love these stupid sites, my favorite saying to those price shopper customers is ” you can buy a steak and a beer at the grocery store for $5.00, but if you go to a restaraunt its $30.00, SEE IF YOU CAN BRING YOUR OWN STEAK TO THE RESTARAUNT AND SEE IF THEY COOK IT FOR YOU”. This sometimes help customers understand that we need to make money just like everyone else, and if not tell them to get the #### out of your shop!April 23, 2010 at 12:28 pm #10816
Checked out the site. It shows our shop at $108.00 per hour. At that rate we should be rolling in the dough by the end of the year. I have requested that someone contact me through their feedback form. I’ll let you know what happens.April 23, 2010 at 1:44 pm #10817
Phillip Hoskins wrote:
> Checked out the site. It shows our shop at $108.00 per hour. At that rate we should be rolling in the dough by the end of the year. I have requested that someone contact me through their feedback form. I’ll let you know what happens.
Funny, our shop is listed, with our current labor rate, and our web site is also listed, which is incorrect. I’d like to know how that got the correct and incorrect information because I NEVER give that to any of the many unsolicited phone calls we get asking for it. You all know the calls, “we’re just verifying and updating your business information for our directory…” – NO THANK YOU!April 26, 2010 at 3:29 pm #10818
Here is an update. I talked to a lady from AutoMD on Friday. I asked where there info came from about our shop. She said the labor rate came from a phone call for an estimate for water pump replacement on a Honda. I told here that was odd becuase our labor rate would not be $108.00 for that. I told her the other info on their site about our shop was also incorrect such as what vehicles we worked on & customer supplied parts. I requested our removal from their site.April 27, 2010 at 6:31 pm #10819
My belief It is hard to keep up with all the Internet sites and info being put out thier in cyberspace.
Clients that will be long term will not take the estiamte to heart of what they print. Personally I think the info the client learns makes them better prepared. When they come in and you discuss thier needs and expectations they already know some of the choices . As always you will have the one that will challenge you. One thing the internet and economic times has done is make all of us surviveing better buisness persons.
Cyberspace is no different then the price shopper that calls or goes to ten places before coming in. Good luck.April 27, 2010 at 8:06 pm #10820
Dan, you make some points, but if your name is associated with a site that is giving poor information and has ulterior motives, you will be seen as one of “them”.
This particular site, I do NOT want to be associated with.April 28, 2010 at 12:01 pm #10821
Ah, I guess some body has a good hook with the Insurance Companies. The Labor rate postet is only used for Insurance work (they allways try to lower our rate). None of the information provided is accurate.
I requestet to be removed from the listing.April 29, 2010 at 1:27 pm #10822
Took a gander at the site and in trying to keep an open mind. Our shop is not listed but the shops around our area are with their shop rates at where I believe is accurate. The estimates are based on National Average Hourly Labor Rate, it does show the hours to do the job pretty accurately if not a bit on the high side. It also shows how long it would take if the customer did it themselves along with tools required. Yes, they show cost of parts and offer to sell to a potential customer. Something I learned along the way before getting into business is know what your “Core” business is. We are in the business of Service and service in my mind means that we sell “Labor” to fix cars. There are other things to know like cost of operations, etc. but our business starts with the core. We also know our bottom line. I’m not sure at this point if sites like this would have a negative impact on our business, you get folks who shop and those who don’t. We present our case in a tactful way, explain why they are and if that customer walks out then the next customer gets helped, business as usual. We do installs with customer supplied parts, they pay book time on labor, we void our warranties and disclose the details to the customer and get their approval before we tear into things. We’ve actually had some customers pay us twice the labor time because the part supplied failed a week later. No warranty on parts from us. We also reserve the right to refuse to provide our services to anyone. We all have different philosophies and opinion, all I’m doing is sharing mine. I’m in no way indicating what’s right or wrong or trying to sway anyone. Thanks for sharing yours.July 28, 2010 at 3:50 am #10827
well, in checking this out, I estimated a common repair for my own vehicle, a front bearing hub on an 01ranger 4×4 the labor time was a bit higher than mitchell time (1.5 vs 1.0) the labor rate probably average to above average for our area, but the part was about $200 less than either OE or a good quality aftermarket part. The price quoted was a few bucks less than the MSRP on OReilly’s competitive line hub (master pro) so I suppose you could make money on the quote from AutoMD, provided you were comfortable using competitive line parts. Not so sure I want to do that on a regular basis, and sure would not give my standard 12/12000 mile warranty on it.June 2, 2015 at 5:24 pm #14278
I’d like to know how that got the correct and incorrect information because I NEVER give that to any of the many unsolicited phone calls we get asking for it. You all know the calls, “we’re just verifying and updating your business information for our directory…” – NO THANK YOU!
It is a long time since this was written and so much has changed. Thought I would provide an update.
Now days cooperating and assisting directory websites is a win-win relationship. You should do everything you can to make sure every mention of your business online is accurate.
Ignoring the AutoMD controversy, making sure any information about your business on directory websites is very important. Any mention of your business NAP (name, address, phone number) on the web has benefits for search ranking. Cooperating with these directory websites to verify and correct your data benefits you. Also, since directories are an incestuous bunch incorrect data just keeps getting copied and passed around. The longer you leave it the worse the problem becomes.
Being listed in the correct directories and making sure all your citations are correct is very important. This is why Yext is pushed so much. Speaking of which Yext is a good way to establish a good initial “foot print” on the web for a “new” business, but for the long run it is very expensive. Especially so since if you stop paying Yext all your listings and corrections vanish… For new a business use Yext to quickly generate citation listings, then manually claim them, and cancel Yext. For established business it is much better to manually claim, correct and optimize citations. Yes manual citation process is labor intensive, time consuming work that needs to be done correctly. And it will take months to flush out all the errors. But once it is done you shouldn’t have to touch it again.
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