Michelin has added the last 60 per cent of leading French tyre e-tailer Allopneus to the 40 per cent stake the leading tyremaker bought in 2015. Michelin now “intends to develop its knowledge of customer behaviour and the purchasing process and thus continue to offer the best possible experience, from online information seeking, right up to tyre fitting”, company representatives wrote in a statement dated 25 August.
Tirebuyer has formed an exclusive partnership with mobile tyre franchisor Tread Connection in order to capitalise on the “explosion” of mobile tyre fitting demand. Tirebuyer will use the Treadsy brand as the identity for its mobile solutions division and over 11,000 existing Tirebuyer brick and mortar install partners as well as more than 80,000 American Tire Distributor customers will be given the opportunity to add a Treadsy van to their business to provide mobile tyre installation services to their own consumers in exclusive geographic territories. Tread Connection’s existing network of franchisees will be integrated with the Treadsy brand and technology that will also be assigned preferred territories within Tirebuyer.com.
Tyres in Stock’s online shop has details of more than 30 million tyres. The firm reports that it has always done its best “to make the process as quick and simple as possible”. However, recently Tyres in Stock rebuilt its online presence to accommodate the growth that the firm is expecting.450 suppliers already offer their products through Tyres in Stock, which is active in over 15 European countries. The new software allows the business to pursue what it perceives to be growing international possibilities.
Blackcircles.com, the UK’s leading online tyre retailer, reported a steep increase in sales from new customers during June. According to the company, this includes 80 per cent who have never previously bought tyres online. The metrics indicate that tyre retailing, which has traditionally lagged online adoption in other sectors like banking and travel, is going through something of a transformation.
Pneusmart, the Amsterdam-headquartered online tyre dealer, has secured seed funding of 765,000 euros led by Shark Bites, Digital Magics and a group of international angel investors.
According to the company, the funds will be used to consolidate Pneusmart’s position in the Netherlands, Germany and Italy. The company will further invest in its Milan office from where it will coordinate its activities in Southern Europe. In the coming months new websites will be launched in Spain and France.
Wales’ Huw Lewis Tyres has added a one-click-fit feature and dual-language support to its website in a move that was part-funded by the Michelin Auto Professional programme’s business development fund.
The revamped website showcases the Michelin Certified Centre dealership’s entire tyre product range and service offering in both English and Welsh, along with a ‘find my tyres’ page that matches prospective customers’ cars with their ideal fitments.
Online tyre retailing continues to grow in volume and influence – something that has been expected for a long time. However, the proliferation of differing online strategies is something that is proving to be less predictable. Gone are the days when online tyre retailing was simply a price competition, or in other words a race to the bottom. That strategy has resulted in the demise of many here-today-gone-tomorrow startups and has instead led to the development of a considerably more nuanced market place. Still, the online tyre space remains fiercely competitive with the likes of Blackcircles and Tyregiant each signing deals with supermarkets Tesco and Asda respectively; and with National Tyres backing the AA’s tyre offer, as another example, In other words, this market is now about far more than who can offer budget tyres for the lowest price.
Tyre wholesaler Bond International has increased its direct involvement with the online tyre retail website Tyre Giant (tyregiant.com). Launched in September 2011, Tyre Giant was supplied by Bond from its inception, while the running of the operation was subcontracted to another retailer. Now, Bond has entered into a joint venture with digital marketing company Colewood Internet named Boco Tyres, which has taken over Tyre Giant operations, as well as those of Asda Tyres, the online tyre retail portal of the Big Four supermarket operated using Tyre Giant’s retail system. Boco Tyres has signalled its intentions to grow the online retailer’s penetration with a new price-match guarantee and a plan to grow the network of dealers within the Tyre Giant network. Tyrepress asked current director of Tyre Giant Philip Hankinson about the current plans to increase the online retailer’s business.
The influence online tyre retailing is growing so fast that 20 per cent of Europe tyres sales could take place online by 2020. That’s the view of market analysts at Frost & Sullivan, which also reports that the influence of the internet on the auto industry can be seen in the continuous growth of the eRetailing market for automotive parts in general. According to the analysts, eRetailing of automotive components has given aftermarket participants a fresh boost and presents a new sales channel dynamic enough to be in sync with evolving macro-economic conditions and also flexible enough to address customer needs by offering a personalized shopping experience.