Without question, the first six months of 2020 have been a defining moment in history. Since mid-March, COVID-19 (coronavirus) shut down much of the world (including the United States) forcing the majority of businesses to find new ways to survive.
Despite being deemed “essential” by the U.S. federal government, the tire & auto service industry was negatively impacted. Like most consumer-facing businesses, offering in-person services, auto repair maintenance providers reported revenue declines, which ranged from 30-70%. Now, as the U.S. prepares to re-open, many auto service business owners are wondering if they’ll ever be able to catch up to operations pre-COVID-19 and how exactly they can get there.
The big unknown remains, what will happen to auto service demand post-pandemic and beyond?
Fortunately, a new U.S. consumer survey from Hankook Tire reveals the possibility of good news to come for auto repair and maintenance service providers. In a nutshell, the survey (conducted in late April 2020) predicted that Americans will have a “renewed appreciation for road trips and car rides” as shut-down orders and travel restrictions are lifted.
Three trends Hankook Tire highlights from their findings that are a strong indication auto service demand post-pandemic is likely to go up (and soon):
- Americans are ready and eager to get back on the road: 76% of Americans reported they miss driving and 62% said they consider driving a form of stress relief.
- Americans will opt for car trips for long-distance or vacation travel: 57% of Americans plan to travel by car for upcoming vacations, with survey participants stating they feel 5 times safer traveling by car than by plane.
- Americans will resume driving when businesses open back up: 73% of Americans reported driving less due to restaurant closures; 69% said it was due to shuttered retail stores, and 51-55% said working or learning from home reduced time spent behind the wheel.
With more Americans relying on their personal vehicles, coupled with an unprecedented recession, investing in vehicle upkeep and maintenance is far more likely than purchasing a new car. This prediction is confirmed by trends occurring in China as shut-downs were lifted there, highlighted by McKinsey & Company’s recent article “Beyond coronavirus: the road ahead for the automotive aftermarket.” The article noted that when 75% of China’s workforce went back to their jobs, auto service providers reported an uptick in demand. Furthermore, a recent Future Market Insights Report affirmed that the global automotive repair and maintenance service market will experience a period of growth between 2019-2029.
So, the next question becomes, what can tire & auto business owners do to get ready for this surge in auto service demand post-pandemic?
The team at Conceptual Minds is here to help answer that exact question. We summarized current travel trends and forecasts from a variety of sources, including Hankook Tire, McKinsey & Company, Aftermarket Matters, IHS Markit, and more. We also created step-by-step marketing tips and recommendations designed to be implemented immediately. All this information, resources (and even more) were combined into our 100% free marketing guide. Consider this guide a free roadmap built to help you navigate the current economic climate and take steps to ensure your tire & auto business thrives during the next 12-18 months!
Download your free guide to getting ready for the increased auto service demand post-pandemic and beyond with answers to questions, including:
- What’s the state of our economy and its impact on the auto industry?
- What shut-down orders and job losses mean for tire & auto service businesses?
- How changes in consumer behavior will impact the auto service industry?
- What steps will equip my business to meet growing auto service demand post-pandemic shutdowns?
- What are the ways I can maximize my marketing right now to thrive in 2020 and beyond?