THE SHOP

Performance & Hotrod Business - January '15

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January 2015 n Performance & Hotrod Business n 35 up at stores with the feeling that the worst is behind us. Trucks are more expensive than ever, and since sales continue to be strong, that means that people have money to spend. So things seem to be headed in the right direction. Trucks these days are amazing. It seems their styling, performance and fun factor are always on the rise. The strong have survived the down years we experienced, and that makes the industry as a whole stronger as well. New technology is affecting the Truck Performance market for aftermarket shops by … … with the OEMs, I am seeing things that are a little bit scary. The industry is cyclical, and right now they seem to be trying to bring a lot of the accessories in- house. They are finding more ways to keep the sales at the dealerships. That's my big- gest concern. Also, technology as a whole seems to be replacing cars in many people's minds. Instead of people getting excited about the latest automotive innovations, they are more excited about computers or phones or things like that. Kids are also more focused than ever on being "green," so that will have an effect on the industry as well. A great tip for shops to increase Truck Performance sales is … … buy our (exhaust) tips! Haha! I came from the commodities market, where it's all about price. In our industry it's still about price a lot of the time, but our product is a premium product. We're not the cake, we're the frosting, and as a premium product, it's a good way to add to a store's profitability. Some counter guys' first reaction may be to sell their customers into something cheaper—but that hurts the company, it hurts the customer who wants a premium product, and it can hurt the salesperson too, if he's paid on commission. These customers care about their trucks, and they want to be proud of the products they buy, so look at all the avenues; look outside your normal com- fort zone. If you offer truck accessories, maybe consider adding GoPros or nitrous or something outside the box. When they come into your store, you want to keep them there. (Photo courtesy Sinister Diesel)

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