A New SOP for Tire Shops During and After the COVID-19 Crisis

As states and regions continue the slow process of reopening after the start of the COVID-19 crisis, many consumers are doing their best to avoid any unnecessary contact with other people in hopes of continuing to slow the spread of coronavirus. In a world where some people are postponing medical appointments to avoid these social interactions, how are tire shops supposed to increase their traffic? That’s where self-service air machines can help.

For tire shops, the practice of offering free air pressure checks has been an important part of the marketing process. This strategy provides customers with a free service while allowing tire technicians to inflate and evaluate the customers’ tires. Should the technicians notice any issues, it gives them a chance to sell new tires or services.

The problem with this is that it typically requires customers to park, go into a waiting room, and speak to a mechanic or technician. In our current environment, many customers are anxious about unnecessary human interaction and are likely to avoid setting foot inside the shop if they don’t have to.

“As an industry, we need to think about what we can do to adjust to how people want things done,” Roger Audette, Director of Sales and Marketing at Excel Tire Gauge says.

Lately, it seems that ‘how people want things done’ is with as little social interaction as possible. That’s why tire shops need to allow customers to limit human contact by providing them with a contact-less option for service. To do that, more tire shops need to provide customers with access to free self-service digital air machines.

The use of self-service air machines like the SC05 Classic Series allows customers to do things like check their tire pressure and inflate their tires quickly, easily, accurately, and most importantly… on their own.

Should the customers notice any damage or other problems with their tires, they will luckily be right in front of a tire shop, giving the shop the same opportunity to sell tires or services as they would with a more manual process.

This system provides both customers and tire shops with the same opportunity in a way that is notably safer. After all, COVID-19 does not spread easily from contact with surfaces, but it does spread easily between people according to the CDC.

Whether customers are COVID-concerned or not, using self-service machines to provide free air has proven to be just as effective as a marketing tactic. Wendel Burt, President & Owner of Burt Brothers Tire & Service Inc., explained the benefits in a recent Google Review of Excel Tire Gauge.

“We love our machines almost as much as our customers,” Burt wrote. “We do free air and people are loving it. Most places here charge. We have picked up a lot of new customers and tire sales from them. Our associates keep an eye out and assist and tell customers that we fix flats for free if this becomes a daily issue and customers love that too. It’s one of the best ways to advertise our business.”

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