Automotive Business – Mobile or Fixed

The other day I was talking to an individual who’d been a mechanic for over 20-years and was now considering starting his own business. He looked at various models, but realized that fixed site automotive services required one hell of a lot of start-up capital, and that he’d have to take out huge loans in an uncertain economy. Finally, he thought what about an oil change business? Did that make sense – what about one that came to you, a mobile operation.You see, he’d recalled recently having to wait in line at a quick lube, and how frustrated he was. He himself being a mechanic knew it didn’t take that long to do, but he also realized he didn’t have a place to throw away the used oil when he was done, so he paid to have it done. He reiterated to me; “While getting an oil change one day I considered the amount of wasted time in the average Joe either changing oil himself or waiting at a Jiffy Lube.””Yes,” I told him, “it is BS, everyone agrees with you, and yet people with their smart phones these days complain less and less and stay busy playing on their personal tech gadgets.”Indeed, in considering all this, he thought; “This brings me to the next thought of someone coming to my house to change my oil while I am not there.” But then, after contemplation he thought; “Quickly that notion is shot down by looking from the other side and seeing driving house to house as not a viable business model.” Yes he is right actually, You are right, especially considering his cost – fuel for instance.What about going to corporate office parks while cars are parked all day long, every day in the same place, waiting for auto services, amenities if you will? Okay, yes, this is a potential automotive business venue. Plus, all these people have jobs and an actual income to afford it and not put it off when they know they must maintain their vehicles. Still, this might not be the perfect business model because, well, it’s not as good as you think, you’ll be lucky to get 8% repeat customers, each car with a different oil and fuel filter, hard to deal with folks, challenges where the HR department will not send out a mass reminder email, stuff like that.Indeed, he will need a solid software package to keep track of all the customers, to stay efficient right? Yes, there is software available, several that I’ve seen and used, most is good and similar to a spread sheet, the best ones help with billing and link into Quick Books and Constant Contact. Please consider all this and think on it.