Do you plan on starting a profitable business this year? If yes, then you should consider starting a car repair business. There is so much potential in the auto body work industry. One of which is the fact that each year, thousands of motorist experience vehicular accidents that require the special skill of professionals in the auto body work industry i.e. collision and paint stores.
Professional auto body repairs require training and proficiency and could be a little challenging for new starters. With the right start-up capital and experience coupled with the right steps, you could get started with your auto body store.
In this article, I have highlighted the following steps on how to start auto body store.
1.Acquire the Training and Certification
If you are interested in starting an auto body store, you will first have to acquire the necessary training and certification if you already have not done that. You should learn as much as you can about everything relating to auto body works and painting of cars.
Most likely, you will need to sign up for a vocational or technical repair programme. You should gather enough work experience by working in another auto body store for a particular period of time.
To give you an edge in the industry, it would be highly beneficial to learn as much as you can from somebody who is already in the business. Get advice and wisdom from people who have already established auto body stores to help you get started on your auto body store.
2.Choose a Niche for your Auto Body Store
To get started on your auto body store, it would become much more rewarding to specialize on a particular auto body niche. Although most garages offer general repairs and services, you should however increase your business by focusing on providing niche repairs which your competitors may not provide. Some auto body niche repairs include repainting, detailing and collision repairs. Determine which auto body niche to start.
3.Franchise or Independent
Planning to start an auto body store would require you to decide whether to buy a franchise or start an independent auto body store. You should note that irrespective of the choice you make, you will have to face the pros and cons as you get started with your auto body store.
Starting an auto body store could be very challenging than most service businesses: if you have very little knowledge about how to go about starting your own auto body store, I would strongly recommend you consider buying a franchise.
4.Write a Business Plan
You should never forfeit this step if you are keen on starting an auto body store. The benefits of writing a very good business plan far outweigh the stress and efforts you would put in. Amongst many of the benefits of writing a good business plan for your auto body store are the ability to secure funds and loans from investors and banks respectively.
Your business plan should clearly state the purpose of your auto body store; your financial projections such as your business revenue and expected expenses; and a detailed analysis of the competition in your desired location.
5.Get a Good Location
I would not tell you that location is the most important thing to consider when planning on starting your auto body store or any business; but I would tell you it is a very crucial thing to consider because it goes a long way towards determining the success of your business.
Get a very good location where the competition is not too stiff to crumble an upcoming auto body store like yours. Most important, you should choose a location where your auto body services particularly meet the needs of your target customers. Key locations you should look out for are areas that have very high traffic.
6.Get Registered and Obtain Business Licenses and Permits
As every other business, if you plan to start an auto body store, you must get legally registered and obtain the necessary licenses and permits. Choose a very catchy business name and proceed to the relevant authorities in your country to get your auto body store registered.
You will have to obtain a business license, property use permits, tax structure and ID number amongst many other permits.
7.Get Funding for your Auto Body Store
According to most business plans estimates, start-up capital for auto body stores range from about $32,000 to $150,000 or more. Aside your actual store space and land; your biggest cost would be repair equipment. If you are really serious about starting your auto body store, then you must not underestimate the above figures.
To get started, you should decide the means to get funds for your auto body store. If you are considering securing loans from banks, you would definitely need your business plan to be able to secure loans from banks.
8.Hire the Right Employees/Apprentices and Equipment
Auto body works are not so easy; they are really difficult. You will need to hire the right employees and apprentices. By hiring apprentices and certified mechanics, your new auto body store can establish long-term, fruitful working relationship with a skilled mechanic trained by your own experts.
Also, you should get the necessary equipment you will need for your auto body store. For a start, the following are some of the important ones you must get: tools, lifts and the initial parts inventory.
9.Market and Promote your Auto Body Store
If you are so interested in starting and taking your auto body store to the next level, you can never go wrong by reaching out to others about your auto body store.
It does not hurt to get a business card (just keep it simple). Reach out to family and friends. You should have a website for your auto body store. Have an online presence by promoting your auto body store on social media like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. You should consider advertising your auto body store on radio and on television. You should even consider offering coupons and discounts to your customers; it is sure a very good way to start.