Week 8 of Shelter in Place

Even though Bay Area counties have not loosened up restrictions, citizens decided they’ve had it with bureaucrats controlling their lives. People are walking, jogging in much larger numbers. Stores are busier. Friends are visiting friends.

Auto repair shops are busy. Revenue for most of our clients is back to normal, some are posting numbers better than they did in May last year.

For the first 2 weeks of May, our worst performing shop is down 22% compared to the first 2 weeks of May 2019 – but in 2019 that shop was up 31% over 2018 ( y-o-y), so in the grand scheme of things, it’s not as bad as it may seem – and the shop is still running at 1/2 of the normal marketing budget.

Best performing shop is up 20% over the first 2 weeks in May 2019.
Over 80% of our clients are even or up compared to the first 2 weeks of May 2019 – despite their counties still being under Shelter in Place.

Naturally we monitor things on daily basis, and run weekly numbers to make sure shops hit their goals. One observation that continues to hold true since the beginning of Shelter in Place:

Average RO is up around 20-25%. Car count is still below normal, but the jump in ARO makes up the difference.

So now that car count has almost recovered, shops are getting the same revenue as last year, but with less work and with less liability.

But can we keep the ARO up?

Phones are Ringing Again!

Well, we are one day away from partial opening of California. Some client shops are back to normal pace, even though technically speaking San Francisco Bay Area will be under shelter-in-place until end of May. Yes, auto repair shops are exempt, but it didn’t help much at the beginning of April – things were pretty rough for a couple of weeks.

Now Bay Area stores are starting to reopen, regardless of the health directives, and the traffic at all auto repair shops is picking up. Surprising amount of walk in traffic – something we normally don’t count on, but these days it’s a nice addition to the marketing and advertising we do. 

Might have mentioned before – we have been super busy supporting our clients – for the past 7 weeks I have been working full days, 7 days a week. But situation was changing from week to week, so had to keep on top of what was working, what was not.

Granted, some things, like SEO, don’t require day-to-day attention, but we run a lot of pay-per-click campaigns that had to be tweaked and even turned off, because they were not producing. Fortunately pay per click is working again, though not (yet) nearly as well as before the virus.

On the positive side, got a lot of good SEO work done in between checking all that ppc stuff. Clients’ websites will be even more effective as we are coming out of the lockdown.

Until next time – be sure to answer the phones – they are ringing again!