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The Benefits of Tire Retailers Providing Fleet Services

Tire retailers are a great alternative to in-house fleet servicing for many routine maintenance issues. That’s because these days, many tire retailers have ASE certified technicians on staff who are able to perform much more than just the installation, replacement and rotation of tires. In addition, tire retailers offer their fleet services in more places (some have over 80 locations) so company cars and light trucks can be taken care of in the field instead of having to return to a sometimes inconveniently located central garage.

More than Just Tires
Unless an individual company has a very large fleet, it many not be cost effective to have ASE Certified Technicians on staff five or six days a week. Tire retailers on the other hand, have mechanics and technicians who can perform manufacturers’ preventative maintenance and corrective repairs six days a week, often with extended business hours. The list of services they can perform include:

  • Lube-Oil-Filter
  • Charging and Starting Systems
  • Tire Service
  • Battery Service
  • Transmission Service
  • Radiator Service
  • Brake Service
  • Air Conditioning Service
  • Steering and Suspension
  • Fuel System Flush
  • Windshield Repair and Replacement
  • Coolant System Flush
  • Brake Fluid Flush
  • Steering Fluid Flush
  • Alignment Services

Fleet Friendly
As stated before, many tire retailers have multiple conveniently located garages, some boasting a total of over 300 ASE certified technicians and 750 service bays chain-wide. That would be hard to duplicate for even the biggest of fleet owners.  In addition, some of the bigger tire retailers can have over 250,000 major brand name tires in stock at any given moment and ready for immediate installation, not to mention thousands of other service items that a fleet owner would otherwise have a hard time paying to warehouse.

A few of the bigger tire retailers have specialized fleet services programs that offer easy and convenient centralized billing, no out-of-pocket expenses for the driver, and are national account providers subscribing with ARI, GE Capital Solutions, PHH ARVAL, MAP, Voyager, Wright Express, Dolen Fleet Management Systems, Enterprise, Wheels Inc. and Lease Plan.

No Long Term Commitment
Because there is no up-front investment to be made, fleet service managers can integrate a tire retail facility into their fleet service program without risk. If for some reason the fleet program they pick doesn’t work out for their particular company, the relationship can be ended with no loss of resources.

Talk to a Professional
Joining a tire retailer’s fleet service program is usually fairly easy. Simply call the headquarters of a tire chain with a large number of outlets in your geographic or operating area and ask to speak to the Fleet Sales representative. The number should be on their website. Or simply click on the website’s fleet services tab — if they don’t have a fleet services tab, chances are they’re too small to be of real help to most fleet operations. While you’re on the phone or on the website you can check the retailer’s history, warranties and billing options.

About Belle Tire
People have trusted Belle Tire for the best value since 1922. For the best tire price, period, and great low prices on custom wheels, alignments, brakes, batteries, oil and lube, shocks and struts, windshield repair and replacement, and more, visit www.belletire.com.  Also join our online communities: BELLE TIRE CARES BLOG, FACEBOOK, and TWITTER

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Tire Discounters Help Frugal Consumers

If money is tight, and time is money, your local no appointment necessary, service while you wait tire discounter or auto service center is the place to go when you need new replacement tires, light service repairs and a whole lot more. Most offer low competitive prices on name brand tires, and some also offer unique customer benefits, services and programs that really can help you stretch your buying power.

Money-Saving Tire Coupons

Many tire discounters and auto service centers offer money-saving tire coupons on their web sites. During a recent cyber shopping adventure, I found money-savings coupons available for tires, shocks and struts, brake service and a battery checkup. Coupons such as these can significantly reduce your annual operating cost, especially if you own multiple vehicles or if you’ve neglected routine maintenance because of the high cost of having it done at your local dealership or neighborhood service station.

Store Locators

Another way tire discounters and auto service centers help you save both time and money is with web sites that include convenient store locators. On one site, after simply entering my zip code, I was offered a choice of fifteen different store locations within ten miles of my home. The list also included the address, phone number, driving distance, store hours and a hot link to each location. A click on the hot link then showed me an exterior photo of the store and also offered a mapping function to help me plan the most efficient driving route from my home directly to the store.

Tire and Wheel Search

Some tire discounter and auto service center sites also include the ability to search and even view the tires and wheels they offer. After entering the year, make, model and body-style of my sport utility, I was offered a choice of 16 different wheels from five different manufacturers, at prices ranging from $109 to $196 per wheel. I was also offered a choice of ten different tires from eight different manufacturers, at prices ranging from $80 to $202 per tire. The site then offered a close-up view of each tread design, plus an invitation read reviews about the tire posted by other customers.

Tires and More

Most tire discounters and auto service centers know that the purchase of new replacement tires represent a significant investment on your part. It’s not a spur of the moment decision nor is it one to be taken lightly. That’s why, when you do purchase, some stores offer unique customer benefits to reward your decision to purchase and possibly convince you to become a customer for life. These unique customer benefits may include:

Light Duty Service and Repair Capabilities

Because worn tires may be a warning sign of other less visible vehicle problems, many tire discounters and auto service centers now offer additional light duty service and repair capabilities. They may include wheel alignment; service for your air conditioning, battery and brake systems; oil and lube service; and steering and suspension components service and repair. Some stores also complete a multi-point vehicle inspection of your vehicle’s major mechanical systems before it leaves the shop. By offering additional service and repair, some tire discounters and auto service centers help you save money now by correcting an existing or potential vehicle problem before it compromises your vehicle’s performance during everyday driving or endangers the safety of your family during an extended family vacation.

Preferred Customer Clubs

Many tire discounters and auto service centers also offer preferred customer clubs. Once you enroll, you’ll receive money-saving coupons and timely service reminders either by mail or e-mail. Both can be especially important if you own multiple vehicles or if you sometimes get too caught up in daily life to remember when your vehicle might need tire rotation, a battery check-up or a coolant check-up to help prepare it for winter driving conditions.

So, if money is tight, and time is money, be sure to take advantage of all the unique customer benefits, services and programs offered by your local tire discounter or auto service center. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the savings you’ll discover.

About Wally Koster, Freelance Writer
Wally Koster is a retired marketing and advertising executive with more than 40 years experience in the automotive industry. He now enjoys life as a freelance writer for Belle Tire and is a published philatelist. http://www.belletire.com

About Belle Tire
People have trusted Belle Tire for the best value since 1922. Now we’re working even harder to bring you the best tire price, period! And get you Out-The-Door with More… more value, services and protection the other stores can’t offer at any price! For the Best Tire Price, Period and great low prices on Custom Wheels, Alignments, Brakes, Batteries, Oil and Lube, Shocks & Struts, Windshield Repair and Replacement, and more. Visit Belle Tire, for the best tire prices, period. www.belletire.com

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Tire Mechanic and Consumer Clutch Twitter

Some things never change – for example, the customer is always right. This statement is still true today and the voice of the customer is amplified more than ever via social media. Consumers are becoming more empowered every day, thanks to technology and the power of social media. Reviews, coupons and ideas can be shared at the click of a Tweet or the push of a Yelp!

Having access to communication tools such as iPhones, Netbooks and the vast information flowing constantly via the social internet – such as blogs (e.g. WordPress), microblogs (e.g. Twitter), social communities (e.g. Facebook) and other niche communities can help both the consumer and the business. For example, what if a customer clutches Twitter as a method to complain about an auto repair experience at a local tire discounter? And better yet, what if the tire mechanic or representative of their business was listening?

Many progressive businesses are genuinely responding to customers who did not have a good experience, right now – at this very moment. This can not only help the damaged relationship by directly addressing the needs of the customer but it can also change consumer perception. Helping the customer and resolving any issues they experienced is the main objective. Yet, responding to a customer via Twitter is like returning their phone message – only with the world watching, in real time.

Sentiment Matters

Both positive and negative sentiment can be shared by a consumer about a particular business. Whether it is good, neutral or bad – businesses are listening. In the example above, if a tire mechanic does not immediately meet their customer’s expectation in the shop – offline, they may be getting a second chance. Of course, the tire mechanic should take every effort to keep the customer happy before they leave. However, in the case of the customer using Twitter to vent, the business has another opportunity to reach out and improve the situation.

Those familiar with social media properties, such as Twitter, can follow the vast conversations traveling to us in ones and zeroes. A customer-centric tire mechanic who wants build a longer relationship by meeting and exceeding the needs of customers, will succeed both offline and online.It’s about people!

The importance of communicating online is critical these days. Businesses have been realizing that they have an opportunity to correct a negative experience a second time, by reaching out to them immediately to resolve the situation. It can be the difference between a lost customer and building the relationship, having a customer for life.

On a positive note, what if the customer uses social media to compliment the user? From your loyal Facebook fans to compliments on your company blog, thanking loyal customers for support is equally important. Many companies use common promotional strategies adopted to support the loyal customers in the form of coupons and promotional offers.

Overall, communication is critical to the positive impact that companies make by providing top level customer service to their patrons. We’ve all heard that the importance of listening in communication is enormous. Today, with more ways of listening, businesses are making sure that they are helping, supporting and servicing their customer at the levels that they should expect. The customer is (still) always right and is being listened to, in better ways.

Wally Koster, Freelance Writer, is a retired marketing and advertising executive with over 40 years of automotive industry experience. Belle Tire is working even harder to bring you the best tire price, period! And get you Out-The-Door with More… more value, services and protection the other stores can’t offer at any price! Learn more about Belle Tire at www.belletire.com.

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About Belle Tire

People have trusted Belle Tire for the best value since 1922. Now we’re working even harder, as your team of tire discounters, to bring you the best tire price, period! And get you Out-The-Door with More… more value, services and protection the other stores can’t offer at any price! So, when you’re rolling out the door with your custom rims and wheels, you can rest assure you are getting the best deal and unparalleled service!  Get more information at: http://www.belletire.com

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