Do you have Internet access at your shop? If so, is the computer with Internet access in a location so your techs can easily use it to find technical repair information?
I hope the answer to both of these questions is yes, but I know it isn’t. Nonetheless, the computer remains a viable tool in your quest for technical information.
In June of this year, we conducted an Internet survey among the subscribers of ImportCar and its sister publications, Brake & Front End and Underhood Service. The good news is we found that more than 75% of shops claim to have Internet access at the shop. Also, of these shops with Internet access, 43% have Internet access in the service area. This number is up from 8% when we conducted the study in 2003. The growth in this statistic tells me that you truly value the Internet as a tool to help your shop face the increasing challenge of fixing the ever-growing population of technologically advanced vehicles.
And while our survey showed that you are not spending any more time surfing compared to 2003, I know you’re getting more out of it because 70% of you currently have some type of high-speed connection (either DSL or cable).
How else do you use the Internet?
29% get training information;
48% research equipment and tools;
40% research parts suppliers and manufacturers;
8% advertise for technicians;
27% use chat lines like iATN;
42% order from your main supplier;
41% purchase equipment and tools;
26% purchase shop supplies; and
65% get specific repair information.
To help make your search for valuable information a little easier, we’ve introduced a new email subscription newsletter called autocarepro:news. Autocarepro:news is delivered to your computer’s inbox every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon and is filled with the latest information on new products, tech tips and automotive news. Go to www.autocarepronews.com to check it out and click on “subscribe” to sign-up to receive your own free copy. Let us know what you think. We value your input.