Auto Dealership Closings Have Had Little Impact to Date on Sales of Nearby Aftermarket Retailers

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Addressing the question of whether or not installers and distributors in the automotive aftermarket industry will benefit from auto dealership closings, The NPD Group, a leading market research company, analyzed sales of aftermarket retailers in the vicinity of auto dealerships that closed over the past several months and found only a minimal boost in sales to date.

As expected, the change in sales is seen in the commercial channel, primarily in hard parts categories

Addressing the question of whether or not installers and distributors in the automotive aftermarket industry will benefit from auto dealership closings, The NPD Group, a leading market research company, analyzed sales of aftermarket retailers in the vicinity of auto dealerships that closed over the past several months and found only a minimal boost in sales to date.

According to a zip code analysis of data from NPD’s Aftermarket Industry Monitor®, which tracks retail and commercial sales at the point-of-sale for over 18,000 auto parts stores in the U.S., stores in the area of a closed Chrysler dealership increased sales by 0.8 percentage points more in the past nine months than a store in an area without a dealership closing.

“As expected, the change in sales is seen in the commercial channel, primarily in hard parts categories,” says David Portalatin, industry analyst of NPD’s automotive aftermarket group. “The important thing is not the amount of the change, but the fact that closing growth outpaces regular growth. The difference, at this time, is only $5,304 per store, but long-term it may be more significant.”

On the same topic of dealership closings, an NPD aftermarket consumer survey of general attitudes about car maintenance included a question on what consumers would do if their dealership closed. Survey results showed that those who currently get their vehicles repaired at a dealer are most likely to continue along the “do-it-for-me (DIFM)” route, and 51 percent of those said they would actually drive to a car dealer in a less convenient location. Twenty-five percent of consumers surveyed said they would switch to independent repair shops, 12 percent didn’t know, and 10 percent chose “other.”

“The decision to go to a dealership may often be warranty-related, but the fact that a majority of consumers may be willing to inconvenience themselves speaks volumes about the trust they have in the work dealers perform,” says Portalatin. “Again, time will tell, if they change their minds and go elsewhere.”

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group is the leading provider of reliable and comprehensive consumer and retail information for a wide range of industries. Today, more than 1,800 manufacturers, retailers, and service companies rely on NPD to help them drive critical business decisions at the global, national, and local market levels. NPD helps our clients to identify new business opportunities and guide product development, marketing, sales, merchandising, and other functions. Information is available for the following industry sectors: automotive, beauty, commercial technology, consumer technology, entertainment, fashion, food and beverage, foodservice, home, office supplies, software, sports, toys, and wireless. For more information, contact us, visit http://www.npd.com/, or follow the Linkedin NPD Aftermarket Discussion Group

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