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The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation

Garage Says Best ‘Employee’ Works 24/7

Date: Monday 22 January 2024

An independent garage in Uckfield, East Sussex has seen a significant rise in new customers and its online bookings double since launching its new website.

Uckfield Motor Services says its online strategy is also attracting the work it wants most; the ‘clean’ profitable jobs such as servicing, MOTs, brakes, and clutches.

Director, Edward Cockill, appointed leading aftermarket website provider, Garage Services Online 12 months ago and hasn’t looked back.

He said: “At least 20 percent of our customers book in their vehicle online via our website, and it’s growing all the time.

“Operationally, this is fantastic because the whole thing is seamless and the booking goes straight into the diary. And whilst we still appreciate the need to talk to customers over the phone, you have to offer both options; garage customers just expect it now.

“They need the flexibility to organise a vehicle service at 8pm and this is evident in the increase we’re experiencing in late-night bookings.

“As I see it, we have two front of house staff: one behind the desk on reception, and the other on our website. Both are hugely important to the business – and there’s the added bonus that one of them works 24/7!

“Since we got a really good website there’s been an increase in new customers and, crucially, they’re the customers with the work we want the most. That’s the difference between an okay website and one that works specifically for your business.

“Our regular customers are really important. We’ve spent over 30 years building Uckfield Motor Services’ reputation, but no garage has a 100 percent retention rate. What the website does is guarantee our customer base is being added to all the time and that it’s the work we want.

“All garages are busy. We want ours to be profitably busy.”

It’s a strategy that’s working for the garage. It has tripled in size, growing from five ramps and one MOT bay, to 13 ramps and two MOT bays.

Jim Lang, managing director at Garage Services Online, said: “Big or small, any garage can steal a lead on its competitors by simply giving customers what they want – an easy life.

“Garages need to integrate their garage management and booking systems into a website that’s shining like a beacon for the work they’ve identified as the most profitable. That way, the customer can quickly find the best garage for the job, read what they need to know, and book their vehicle in, often in a matter of minutes.

“Edward has done just that and I’m so glad to see Uckfield Motor Services reaping the rewards.”

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