Successful Dealer Magazine
In looking ahead, there are major opportunities and challenges on the horizon for the dealer channel. The success of 2017 and positive returns in January show reasons to be optimistic for business this year. Beyond that, the market wears a veil of uncertainty. Change is on its way.
Two of the biggest opportunities materializing in the dealer channel today are found in parts and service.
One is the burgeoning world of e-commerce. As more and more customers grow comfortable with making purchases online, dealers are uniquely positioned as the only sources on the Internet for proprietary OEM parts. For customers who know exactly what they need, online accessibility will soon be the top priority in purchasing decisions.
Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) recently opened new parts distribution centers in Dallas, Indianapolis and Des Moines, Iowa, to further support its dealer network in this area, says John Finn, director of aftermarket marketing.
“The world is evolving. Logistics and supply chain is becoming a differentiator,” he says.
Dealers are saying the same. Steve Brent, general manager at Inland Kenworth, says his company’s online parts counter was one of its biggest growth areas in 2017 as more customers turned to the simplicity of an online portal to make stock orders and basic purchases.
“The new generation isn’t going to know all of the part numbers like older generations did,” says Carlos Junquera, Navistar vice president of parts sales for the U.S. and Canada. “They are going to go online and expect the computer to spit out the information for them.”
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