Aftermarket urged to make the most of MOT surge

LKQ Euro Car Parts has outlined how the independent aftermarket can make the most of the MOT wave this month without being overwhelmed.

Nearly three quarters of the MOTs due last spring were deferred to autumn because of Covid-19, meaning they will soon be due again. These are on top of the MOTs that have always fallen later in the year, presenting a significant opportunity for garages.

Anthony McAteer, trading director at LKQ Euro Car Parts, said: “The events of the last 18 months have turned the traditional MOT demand curve on its head and, while the impact of the pandemic has presented many challenges and unknowns for garages, the opportunity is now crystal clear.

“By following a few simple steps, they can effectively manage the surge in demand and maximise revenue.

“The first step, if they haven’t already done so, is to reach out to customers whose tests are due in the coming weeks. This will help them to plan resource in the most efficient way, not just getting more tests booked and putting every billable hour in the workshop to good use, but also spreading out that work over time. After all, vehicles due for an MOT can be serviced up to a month in advance.

“When it comes to mapping out imminent demand, data and technology also have a big role to play. Our garage management software (GMS), CarSys, is fully integrated with HaynesPro – which allows garages to accurately estimate labour costs and identify the right parts – and it has stock management, parts ordering and invoicing features to streamline workflow.

“Finally, it’s never been more important for technicians to keep on top of their training, making them more likely to win their customers’ loyalty and trust by sharing relevant product knowledge and recommendations following an MOT. This can help customers to avoid repeat problems in the future, or stop small issues from becoming serious – while generating opportunities to upsell.”