There’s a sense that the motor trade in Britain is in decline because of the fact that the majority of car makers from the country have either been bought up or have gone out of business. But just because ownership has changed hands a number of times doesn’t mean that the motor industry no longer exists. In fact, according to recent estimates from the Society of Motor Manufacturers, the motor trade employs more than 770,000 people.
Because the market is so big, there are lots of opportunities to start up new businesses in the sector. In fact, for those with the right knowledge, the industry can be highly lucrative. But, as with any business, there are some significant challenges you’ll face along the way. Here’s some advice for those just getting started.
Step 1: Think Branding
Every motor company needs some type of branding effort at the start, even if all it means is coming up with a name and some colours for your logo. The trend in marketing right now is for simplicity in logo design which is why Apple transitioned away from a rainbow-coloured apple symbol to one that was monochromatic. Stick with three colours at the most, and prioritise vector graphics and elegant typefaces over more traditional styles.
Once you’ve got your brand name and colours sorted, you can then transplant these to every part of your business, including your website, app and shop floor.
Step 2: Study The Insurance Market
The legal requirements for insurance in the motor trade are strict. You have to have insurance in place before you start trading. If you don’t, you could be breaking the law.
Before getting motor insurance, it’s important to ask yourself a few questions. What is the definition of a part-time motor trader? Part-time traders could pay different rates to full-time traders. Also, what level of cover do you need? Again, this depends on the type of motor trade business you run. If you keep a lot of stock, then the chances are you’ll want more than simple third party cover. Remember, your home insurance won’t cover your business stock, even if you trade from home.
Step 3: Put Your Business Online And Start Marketing
Many people in the motor trade can’t immediately see the benefit of having their own website. After all, they’ve always done business via telephone and in-person. It’s important to remember than customers today aren’t usually using your website to find out about your products and services. Instead, they’re using it as an indicator of whether or not you’re a reputable business. This means that it’s really important to make sure that your website appears professional.
To get the right type of person to your website, you’ll need to reach out via social media advertising. Think carefully about the type of content your customers are interested in (how to videos for servicing cars, blogs on their favourite vehicles, etc.) and then reach out over social media. Because social media is so crowded these days, you may have to pay to get your first few adverts seen by your clients on platforms, like Facebook.