The automotive industry has experienced significant changes in last two decades that has moved owning a four wheeler from a luxury to a necessity. Increased use of four wheeler has forced the industry to develop new services or accessories, some of them being spray and fragrance machines, high-pressure water pumps, spray guns, foaming brushes, etc to increase gross profits. Due to the ever increasing sale of cars, people have started investing more in car wash business, which has been a success for most of the owners. Due to this only, many people are being inclined to open their car wash business, but doing so requires a lot of research, competition study and finances. A sustainable car was business requires planning, setting the business in motion and then marketing it.
Steps to write a Car Wash Business Plan
Step 1: Planning Your Car Wash Business
a) Even if you’ve had some idea or worked at a car wash company, you need to be aware of all the latest technologies and trends to have a good understanding of the business. You need to visit other car wash facilities and know the type of car wash you would like to start (e.g. self-service, automatic, water-less, full detailing, etc.)
For example, when the economic system is doing well, people tend to use car washes more.. When people have more disposable incomes, they are more willing to pay for a car wash. Knowing the car sales in your area could help you predict success for your business.
You need to research the other similar facilities in your area. If you have already chosen a proper location for your car wash, know about all the competition in that vicinity. What are the service offerings? What are the prices of various packages? Take a note of everything, as you search for details.
b) You can finance your new car wash business through banks or through private investors. The best manner to do this is by presenting the plan to your potential investor, showing the feasibility of your idea.
c) Choose the right location for your car wash business. A successful site should be near a shopping centre, in high traffic, residential area, have quick access from the road, allow for expansions and business growth, and have enough space for cars to line up. Choose a place large enough to accommodate the bays, pump rooms, vacuum and drying areas and office space.
Step 2: Opening Your Car Wash Shop
a) Getting the necessary permits and licenses is of utmost importance. You will need a permit or a license to start your business. However, the requirements will differ depending on what region you live in.
b) The equipment you buy depends on the type of car wash you have decided to open and the services you offer. Full-service car wash, self-service car wash, or an automated car wash will all have different needs. You will need to invest in a washing system (e.g. mobile wash systems, pressure washer, conveyor, self-service equipment), chemicals (e.g. solutions for cleaning, wax, pre-soaks, etc.), dryers, vacuums, brushes, towels, pumps, and a water system and billing systems.
c) Market your business: Use a 360-degree way to advertise your business that includes social media, advertisements, pamphlets, flyers, posters, etc. The display for your car wash should be colourful with a clear message. Make sure that people can quickly notice it from a distance. A popular way to attract customers is by giving coupons or offering discounts on car washes.
An essential aspect of marketing your service is social media. Start a website and establish a presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.
Consider starting a loyalty program. This will ensure customers come again and again instead of some people who use the coupon once and don’t come back again.
d) In the car wash business especially, people need to be skilful, hard working, punctual and have relevant experience.
Step 3: Efforts to run your business profitably
Certain service offerings along with the car wash business are needed to make it a profitable one. Additional services like a convenience store or even a waiting area will make your car wash more viable to customers.
Express detailing should be offered. Those services include wax, sealant, carpet shampoo. You can offer these services at a lower price than a free-standing detail shop. It is also more convenient for your customers to have their car washed and detailed at one location.
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