An auto dealership business is a fantastic way to earn a living. Not only do you get to be your own boss, but you also get to work with a product that you’re passionate about – automobiles! What’s more, an auto dealership business is relatively easy to get started. You only need a small amount of start-up capital and a prime location. Once you’re up and running, you can expect to see a healthy return on your investment.
So if you’re looking for a profitable business venture, an auto dealership is a good choice. However, it’s important to know that no business is risk-free – including auto dealerships. But by being aware of the potential risks associated with this type of business, you can work to avoid them and protect your investments. Here are the key risks that auto dealerships face, as well as some tips for avoiding them:
Fluctuations in the market
The automotive industry is notoriously volatile. There are always major fluctuations in both the stock market and gas prices. These fluctuations can have a direct impact on auto sales. For example, when gas prices go up, people are less likely to buy gas-guzzling SUVs and trucks. And when the stock market is down, people are less likely to make big purchases like cars.
To mitigate this risk, it’s important to have a good handle on your finances and to be conservative with your spending. Don’t go crazy with dealership expansions or hiring new employees when times are good. Instead, use that extra money to build up your emergency fund to have a cushion to fall back on during tough times.
Competition from big box stores
In recent years, we’ve seen an influx of big box stores like Walmart and Amazon getting into the auto sales game. These stores have deep pockets and can undercut traditional dealerships on price. They also have the benefit of name recognition; people know and trust these brands, which makes them more likely to buy from them over an unknown dealership.
To compete with big box stores, it’s important to focus on customer service and offering a unique buying experience that people can’t get at these larger stores. In addition, make sure you’re staying up-to-date on the latest industry trends and technologies so that you can offer potential customers the latest and greatest products and services.
Bad online reviews
In today’s world, potential customers turn to Google and other online review sites before making any major purchase decision—including buying a car. If your dealership has bad online reviews, it will be difficult to attract new customers.
To avoid this risk, ensure you regularly monitor your online presence and address any negative reviews as quickly as possible. You should also proactively reach out to customers who had a positive experience at your dealership and ask them to leave a review. The more positive reviews you have, the better your chance of attracting new business.
The auto dealership business is notoriously high turnover. The average tenure of an auto salesperson at a dealership is less than eighteen months—in other words, it’s a job that people tend to leave quickly. This can have major implications on your bottom line as it will require you to constantly train and onboard new employees.
To combat this risk, focusing on offering your employees a good work-life balance is important. This means providing regular training and development opportunities so that they’re constantly learning and growing their skills. It also means paying them a fair wage that reflects their level of responsibility at the dealership. Additionally, make sure to invest in a strong onboarding process for new employees so that they’re set up for success from day one.
Auto dealerships are prime targets for crime. Dealerships often have high-value inventory inside and out, making them a target for thieves and vandals. If your dealership doesn’t take the necessary steps to protect this property, you could be putting yourself at risk of losing serious money each year.
To mitigate this risk, it’s essential to have a robust security system in place at your dealership. This should include surveillance cameras, alarm systems, and specialized software for inventory tracking and management. You may also consider hiring a dedicated security team or working closely with local law enforcement to ensure your property is as protected as possible.
Additionally, you should get an auto dealer insurance policy. This will help cover the costs of any property damage or stolen inventory, helping you avoid significant financial losses in the event of a security breach. It can also help protect your business from lawsuits if a customer is injured during their visit to your dealership.
Overall, it’s essential to be proactive in identifying potential risks at your dealership and taking the necessary steps to avoid them. By doing so, you can help ensure the long-term success of your business and continue serving customers for many years to come.