SAN JOSE, Calif.Kukui Corp., a developer of marketing software solutions for the automotive repair industry, has added a tire module to its platform.
The company said its tire module will enable Kukui clients who sell tires to market their products and services online, with the online component easily integrating into a tire retailer's or automotive repair center's website to guide consumers through the tire purchasing process.
We have a ton of different clients who kind of work in a little bit of everything...and we have a ton of tire clients who really wanted to have a tire module where they could sell their tires on their websites as well, said Christina Solorzano, director of marketing for Kukui.
Through the tire module consumers can, for example, seamlessly browse a shop's tire inventory, obtain pricing by size or by the year, make and model of their vehicle, view rebates and schedule service appointments, according to Kukui. The new module also offers the ability to check suppliers' inventory in real time and includes an email marketing feature with simple campaign creation and management elements.
Ms. Solorzano told Tire Business that the module is based on a tire lookup tool developed by Dealer Plus Inc., a Canadian software firm catering to the retail tire and automotive industry.
We took (the tool) onboard, integrated it with our product and put our own little touch on their product, she said. We've kind of customized it to work with our own platform.
Kukui cited Dealer Plus, a resource for industry research, which stated that 68 percent of all tire sales start with an online search. With only 17 percent of replacement tires being sold through new car dealerships, according to the company, that encourages many traditional auto repair shops and other retailers to expand their services to include tire sales.
Over the history of the automotive industry, shops have been fragmented into different specialties: transmission, auto body, tires, mufflers, etc. Now we're moving into a trend where shops are beginning to do it all, said Kukui President and CEO Todd Westerlund. We researched the tire industry and found growing demand for a fully functioning tire module.
Though Kukui's tire module has only been available since July, Ms. Solorzano said results have been positive.
So far, from the clients that we have seen come on board with the tire module, they've already seen a spike in sales, she said. So aside from those customers being able to go in and get a quote over the phone, they're actually coming into the shop and getting their new tires.
Founded in 1996 as a Hawaii-based information technology firm, Kukui began marketing its software platform in the U.S. in 2011.
Kukui said that through its software platform, the firm is able to accommodate all of a service shop's marketing needsfrom website development to social media support to direct mail fulfillment. The company's product suite includes: smart Web pages optimized to boost sales conversion rates; a content management system; and customer retention tools such as email service reminders.
We work one-on-one with businesses instead of them having to have an email retention company, an SEO company, a website company and an advertising company, Ms. Solorzano said. All of that stuff we provide under one roof.
The platform also offers detailed analytics to help shop owners determine which marketing channels are generating the most business. The company said it is continually upgrading its platform to offer new features to help clients grow sales.
We believe this new module allows us to serve our clients better, Mr. Westerlund added, and establishes Kukui as a leader in the marketing software solutions space.
Kukui provides businesses with a custom website platform and software solution that integrates with each organization's point-of-sale (POS) system. According to the San Jose-based firm, This empowers each of Kukui's clients with quantitative data showing their monetary return on investment, the number of new clients based on their POS system, statistics revealing their customer retention rate, and areas to improve their business through the tracking of phone calls, appointment forms, and feedback from customer reviews.
More information about Kukui and its software is available on its website at www.kukui.com.
Earlier this year Kukui partnered with the developer of Virtual Service Advisor to offer the customer communication program to its users at a discount.
Virtual Service Advisor can be integrated seamlessly with Kukui's marketing platform, equipping automotive repair shop owners with new knowledge about their customers and where they're coming from, the firm's website notes.
With the Virtual Service Advisor program, according to its website:
c Customers up-sell themselves before stepping into your shop;
c Customers are requesting 2.5 more items per service order; and
c The software takes only seconds to send a pre-made form to customers.
Greg Buckley, developer of the Virtual Service Advisor program and owner of Buckley's Auto Care in Wilmington, Del., said on the software's website that developing and using the Virtual Service Advisor, we recognized that 38 percent of our customers selected higher quality oils on their own, which resulted in a 7-percent increase in oil profits alone. This is just some of the customer insight we're starting to see.
He also claimed that the system will greatly benefit shops that desire additional sales, better profits and unique purchasing insight from their service clients.