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Tips for Starting an Auto Parts Ecommerce Store

Right now, only one out of three aftermarket auto parts businesses use e-commerce as part of their business strategy. This is problematic, as consumers are gravitating more and more toward online shopping. If you want to gain a competitive edge, your brick-and-mortar store isn’t enough.

As history has shown, running a successful e-commerce business for auto parts depends on two key factors: convenience and trust. Nail these two factors, and you’ll be well-positioned for e-commerce success.

Convenience

E-commerce for automotive must be convenient for customers. If they experience any roadblocks to making a purchase, they’ll soon try a different e-store or drive down the road to their local dealer. For a business owner who’s probably more passionate about spark plugs than web marketing, consider outsourcing this task to an expert to ensure a seamless customer experience.

It does not matter if you are selling Chevrolet, Ford, Toyota, or even Honda parts. Having a selection of specific parts such as ford parts canada does for each manufacturer. This will give you the edge over your competition by giving your customers the convenience to shop for the specific part or by the manufacturer.

Choose the Right Selling Platform

If you’ll only be offering a limited range or specialize in very niche parts, consider selling via a platform like Amazon or eBay. You’ll make a smaller profit on your parts but the bulk of the work will be done for you.

If you’d like to sell a large range of parts or wish to build a strong brand image, consider launching your own online store like conquest auto parts with the powerful automotive eCommerce platform. This option requires more work at the start, but the earnings and relationship you maintain with your customers will be 100% yours from the get-go.

This will heavily depend on your business model, but you have to keep your long-term business goals in mind. While it’s always possible to expand your offering, it’s best to accommodate any big moves early on as part of your growth strategy.

Create Keyword-Rich Content

Once you create your online store, you need to make it easy for customers to find you. Auto parts customers usually know what they’re looking for and search by the part name along with the make and/or model of their car. You will need to fill your website with content that specifies these details to help you appear higher in internet search results.

Keep in mind that content should also be full of useful information and not fillers. Describe your products in detail in a way that helps your customers make their buying decision. Things like compatibility with certain makes and models, alternative SKUs, and installation instructions may accommodate your visitor and turn them into a buyer.

Establish Simple Product Filters

After a customer lands on your site, guide them quickly and effortlessly to the parts that they need. Most e-commerce for auto parts sites offer a product filter with any or all the following categories:

  • Make
  • Model
  • Year
  • Trim
  • Engine
  • Fuel

When the customer clicks on the part that they want, they’ll be interested in the features and benefits of the product. Make sure you list all compatible vehicles on the product page, along with warranty details and an accurate, professional product image.

Make Myriad Payment Options Available

Ultimately, the goal of your e-commerce site is to convert web traffic into sales. In order to finalize the sale, you’ll need to partner with an authoritative processor like Unicorn Payment to set up secure, affordable, PCI-compliant payment solutions.

Some of the best merchant providers will allow you to provide a variety of payment options to customers all around the world. Look for a provider that offers all of the currencies that your customers use as well as alternative payment options like Apple Pay and even cryptocurrencies. 

Offer Expedited Shipping

Ideally, e-commerce for auto parts caters to all kinds of people—from the local mechanic who’s servicing a luxury BMW to a young college student who’s been tied up at home with a flat. Whichever sector you choose as your primary market, the reality is that the customer will need their parts quickly

To fulfill delivery expectations and reduce delays, research the third-party shippers in your area and ask about overnight and expedited delivery options. You’ll also need to pack the parts securely, so have plenty of boxes and bubble wrap on hand.

Trust

For better or for worse, e-commerce for auto parts has suffered greatly when it comes to trust. The high number of auto-parts traders that deal in stolen, secondhand, and faulty goods has forced genuine dealers to raise the bar as far as proving that their parts are authentic.

Describe Your Inventory Accurately 

To build trust with your customers, make sure that you describe your inventory accurately:

  • Is the produce made by an OEM (original equipment manufacturer), third-party manufacturer, or produced in your own aftermarket facility?
  • Which vehicles is it compatible with? Which parts can it replace?
  • What kind of warranty is available?
  • Do you cover return shipping?

Stay in Touch 

Provide constant confirmation messages, such as when a customer completes a purchase when their order is shipped, and when delivery is confirmed (tracking numbers are a must). You can also offer shipping insurance for added assurance. 

To further build trust with your customers, consider adding an automatic email follow-up to request reviews for products purchased. Glowing reviews from satisfied customers go a long way towards raising sales!

Provide Reliable Customer Support 

Even with a detailed product filter, you’ll still have customers who need more assistance or prefer to talk with a customer representative. More importantly, customers want to know that there’s someone on the other side who can answer their questions and quell their concerns. 

If you don’t have a staff member who can be available throughout the day for answering messaging, calls, emails, and web forms, consider adding a chatbot to the site for a more guided and supported experience. Just make sure to follow up promptly with real human support. 

The Takeaway

Branching out into e-commerce for auto parts is a smart move in a digitalized world. To make sure your online venture is a success, decide which products you’ll sell online, hire a web expert to build (and/or run) your site, make the process easy for customers, and build trust with well-described, guaranteed products. 

Soon, you could find yourself enjoying a thriving online business with happy customers and growing profits.



The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

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