Cars are big business, because even in a nation with good public transport, many of us still have our own vehicles. For some, it’s a necessity, because their work hours are irregular. They may also need to ferry family members to school, work, doctor’s appointments … and the mall. Then there are teenagers who have their own cars – that’s a whole other customer segment. Of course drivers don’t always know how pricey a car is until they buy one.
For some lucky people, a car just needs insurance, fuel, and monthly payments to the dealership or the bank. But for many, there are accidents and maintenance costs that can get quite high. A car needs servicing every year or so. That’s roughly 12,000 miles of driving, so if they drive further – or more often – they’ll hit that mark faster and need service more frequently. They might also need to check emergency systems (like brakes) and replace tires.
Sanctioned car costs
Then of course there’s your annual car insurance inspection, and body work when an ex keys a car. Heat damage in the summer and snow damage in the winter can cause damage as well, as can other ‘little things’ like cracked mirrors or foggy headlights. The point is, for an owner, a car potentially costs a lot of money. It’s almost like a child. This is all good news for auto repair businesses, because it means you never run out of customers.
Unfortunately, because many of those vehicular expenses are unplanned, you risk gets shafted. Your customers will bring their cars to you during emergencies, but they’ll defer your payments for more urgent matters, like food, electricity, and gas. You’re probably a regular member of the ‘check-is-in-the-mail’ club. You can escape this loophole by taking credit card payments from your customers.
Automate your business
Because car care is so diverse, it can be hard to keep track of all your billing. Merchant processors can help, because your online merchant statement can help a lot with accounting. You can review activity at a glance. When repair costs are too high, you can offer customers an instalment plan charging their credit card at regular intervals without either of you having to lift a finger.
For more information on how credit card processing can streamline your auto repair business, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.