So far, the majority of our ongoing Torque from the Top series of interviews with leading players in the UK tyre business have been with executives hailing from the manufacturing side of things. This month we redress the balance by engaging with Andy Fern who is the managing director of one of the UK’s largest tyre wholesale businesses, Stapleton’s. Here he talks us through the resilience of staff and customers during the turbulent couple of years we have all experience and details the “seismic shift in the market” that has come with increase online demand from consumers.
MAHA UK has launched a LinkedIn page and subsequent advertising campaign to complement the brand’s Facebook page, which has reportedly been “an excellent tool to generate new leads and sales, as well as sharing updates from equipment installations and news from within the UK and other MAHA subsidiaries around the world”. Indeed, MAHA UK has pledged to not just increase its visibility online, but to provide followers with “valuable and exciting material”.
With multiple sources suggesting that the online tyre business broke new ground during 2020, but with data illustrating that trend less easy to come by, Tyres & Accessories caught up with Micheldever Tyre Services (MTS) wholesale director Graham Mitchell in order to get a leading tyre wholesaler’s perspective. Starting by setting the company’s recent online tyre business performance into the context of its recent history, our interview looks to the future of the online tyre business and touches on the importance of search engine marketing in the tyre trade.
Tyres-N-Parts. This familiar-sounding name belongs to a new B2B digital sales platform aimed at car dealerships and workshops as well as tyre dealers. The Michelin-backed venture is initially launching in Germany and aims to act as an online one-stop-shop for tyres and automotive spare parts. Tyres-N-Parts believes it will become “a model that will define the future of tyre and parts retailing.”
On the one hand, most sources agree that online tyre demand is booming as a result of the pandemic and its related lockdowns. However, on the other hand, such rapid growth has also led to increased competition online. One way of finding which tyre firms are getting ahead in the online space is to consider the race for pole-position in Google search results. Since Google is the by far the biggest search engine online holding a dominant 92.47 per cent global market share as of June 2021 (87.7 per cent in the UK specifically), getting your brand ahead of the competition in search results makes a big difference. And paid search advertising, known as pay-per-click (PPC) – is one way to do that. In order to get a handle on the tyre retail sector’s virtual performance in 2021, Tyres & Accessories worked with SEO marketing specialists Evolved who analysed the organic search and PPC performance of the top 23 UK-based etailers and concluded that online specialist Blackcircles is taking ground from bricks and mortar market leader Kwik Fit, amongst other things.
During our recent visit to Magowan’s T&A met with founder Darryl Magowan Snr., Darryl Magowan Jnr, David Magowan and IT manager Ben Tinsley who gave us a guided tour around the bespoke newbuild warehouse and who also explained the thinking that has gone into the project.
Earlier this year a retired tyre industry veteran got in touch to ask if we wanted any of his old copies of Tyres & Accessories. While our archives stretch all the way back to our first edition in 1946, outside the British Library there were some gaps in the first couple of decades. So, we jumped at the chance. The offer of vintage editions from the swinging 60s also comes at a time when we are working hard on digitising our back catalogue. So far, the 132 copies going back to 2010 have been through the process and are now available online. And the first decade of the millennium (2000 to 2010) is also well underway. From here, the goal is to work back in time until we have a full complement. So, should you want to look into the history of your company or find out what happened in the tyre business on an important date such as an anniversary – our digital archive will be there to help you reminisce. And if there is a particular historic article you think we should digitise sooner rather than later, please get in touch via email@example.com to let us know which edition we should transfer to the digital realm and why.
A total of 26 commercial tyre service providers have successfully installed integration between Cam International’s TiDaeX and Bridgestone’s FleetBridge system. According to Cam International, the companies are using e-jobsheet to connect with FleetBridge in order to secure “greater shared data accuracy and efficiency between connected dealers and Bridgestone Europe”. The systemised link is said to make it easier to do business with the global tyre manufacturer, by markedly reducing the dealers’ admin workload where Bridgestone fleet work is concerned.
Tirebuyer.com has been ranked first place by Newsweek in its Statista-powered search for the best customer service experience relating to online tyre buying in the United States. With a score of 8.50 out of 10, Tirebuyer was comfortably ahead of second placed Detroit Wheel and Tire (8.14) as we all third-placed Tire Rack (8.12). And while it is comparing apples and oranges, Tirebuyer also outshone other well-known names in different by not unrelated categories – none of which scored higher than 8.45.
While DVSA data suggests there will be another Autumn/Winter MOT demand peak this year following last years extension related mini-boom, the fleet sector was not part of it in September 2021. According to fleet system provider epyx, there was no substantial jump in the number of fleet MOT tests undertaken during September, despite warnings that deferrals made during the pandemic could lead to massive demand.
Just a few months after Halfords announced that it has entered the B2B software market by making American Tire Distributors Inc. (ATD) the first customer of Halfords’ Avayler proprietary multiple location “service delivery” software, Michael Welch reports that he has been collaborating with Halfords in a bid to find out more about Avayler.
In 2017 Daryl Magowan Snr. hatched the plan for a next-generation tyre warehouse and paperless warehouse management system. By 2019 plans were well underway, with the Magowan’s Tyres team cooperating closely with Mike Allen and the software professionals at Cam. Two years later, both the building and its cutting-edge software system are up and running at the bespoke site just outside Belfast. Tyres & Accessories recently toured the site in order to find out more about the warehouse, its software and the significant efficiencies they offer not only Magowan’s but the wider tyre wholesale business.
Bridgestone has announced that it has developed an integrated TPMS system for its Webfleet predictive tyre maintenance and fleet management system. Designed for heavy commercial vehicles, such as trucks and buses, Webfleet TPMS “utilises sensors that continuously monitor tyre pressure levels and tyre temperature”.