Universal Toyota Increases Gross Profits with eMenus

Hammond, LA – July 6, 2010 – eMenus Automotive, LLC (http://www.eMenusllc.com), a leading provider of dynamic service menus for auto dealerships, announced today that Universal Toyota of San Antonio Texas has seen a substantial increase in gross profit as a result of upgrading from outdated paper menus to a top-of-the-line electronic menu system. The dealership is currently enjoying a 48 percent increase in customer pay business over the same time last year and attributes a good part of this to eMenus.
“We have consistently increased gross profit ever since we installed eMenus 18 months ago.   While other factors directly contributed, I can definitely attribute an increase of at least $6 per hour in our effective labor rate to eMenus, which comes to approximately $27,000 per month. The tool is incredibly inexpensive for what we get out of it,” commented Bud King, Universal Toyota service manager.
Universal Toyota has enjoyed substantial growth in recent months. A year ago it was ranked outside of the top 100 Toyota dealerships and today sits at number 15, with plans to be in the top 10 by year’s end. A high volume dealership, it writes 4,500 ROs per month, has 36 technicians and 9 service advisors.
According to King, 18 months ago the dealership was looking for a more consistent and efficient method to sell services to their customers; paper menus quickly became outdated and the dealership lacked consistency in quoting prices. “Prices varied by what each service advisor determined should be charged for parts and labor. Most didn’t know how to calculate profit, so profitability was also an issue. eMenus spent a long time working with us going through the labor hours, parts needed, etc., to determine exact pricing and profit for each service. It’s a wonderful thing to have it all computerized and web based. Now we don’t have to worry about updating menus every few months, with eMenus it’s a simple fix and we save $1,200-$1500 on paper costs alone.”
King likes the credibility an electronic menu system provides. Due to constantly changing prices, the dealership chose in the past not to print prices on their paper menus, which sometimes caused issues of trust with the customer; some wanted to compare prices with other shops. The dealership now offers a two-tiered menu approach, factory recommended and dealer recommended, with all pricing disclosed and a full description of items included in each service. “It provides real consistency and maximizes profitability. Now, instead of competing with cross town rivals, we can add real perceived value for the customer as they can see exactly what they are getting for their investment.  We can even do a side by side comparison and print and show the customer on the screen – it’s highly professional. If the customer has a question we can drill down into the menu and show them the answer right on the screen.”
With the new two-tiered menu approach most customers tend to upsell to the premium dealer service. King teaches his advisors to start with a question, “What do you expect out of your vehicle?” and 90 percent will reply that they want it to last around 10 years. “That’s a perfect approach to switch to dealer recommended,” King said. “We tell the customer that if they want to keep the car longer it will need more service than the typical factory recommended maintenance for 3 years. So here is the basic factory recommended service and here is what we recommend to ensure your vehicle will continue to run well throughout its lifetime. The close rate is phenomenal; 9 times out of 10 the customer decides on the premium service,” King added.
King particularly appreciates the eMenus Op Code Management System. “What was once a big time headache is now automated and something that I can pretty much forget about. eMenus did a wonderful job of setting this up, building the menus and pricing and making sure that there is just a single op code instead of 4 or 5 for the same thing. They also keep abreast of any industry changes to ensure our system is always up to date,” said King.
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