MARLTON, N.J. — Facing slimmer margins and slow revenue growth in fixed operations, dealer Peter Lanzavecchia is moving used-vehicle reconditioning and detailing in-house, instead of contracting those jobs, and is marketing detailing work to service customers.
These moves will save money and increase revenue, Lanzavecchia predicts. He owns Burns Buick-GMC in this Philadelphia suburb, along with next-door Burns Hyundai, which has a premium channel Genesis franchise.
"I hope to expand customer-pay detailing," he told Fixed Ops Journal. "It's another revenue stream. As maintenance becomes a little thinner, with the product quality improved so much, people aren't coming in as much. We're looking to replace that revenue, and cosmetics is an area we're looking at."
Lanzavecchia says he's confident that detailing will be a popular offering in his market. He already provides courtesy washes to service customers.
"You see it at premium-brand dealerships," he said. "Did you ever see a dirty BMW 7 series or Mercedes S class? Pretty rarely. People like to keep those cars clean, and we think a lot of people with other kinds of cars will, too. Think of the convenience of getting [detailing] done when you're getting a courtesy wash anyway."
Some customers will be in too much of a hurry, and others won't want to spend the extra money, Lanzavecchia concedes.
"We service around 100 cars per day, between Buick, GMC and Hyundai," he said. "Of those, probably 70 are pickup and drop-off the same day, so unless they come in early, you probably can't really offer them detailing."