How Online Aftermarket Sales Could Change Your Automotive Service Writer Career

Mechanic using laptop to check tires

Are you ready to take your first steps down the road to an automotive service career? A range of job prospects await those with the right training and motivation! For a secure, creative, and fulfilling career, consider becoming an automotive service writer.

Automotive service writers serve on the frontlines of any auto service centre or car company, acting as a liaison between clients and professional repair services. They use their expertise to inform customers about their service options, as well as which parts might need to be purchased during a repair.

As with any role involving sales, service, and connection, today’s automotive service advisor is facing changes brought on by the Internet and e-commerce. If this career seems like the right fit for you, check out how online aftermarket sales are set to shake it up for the better:

Auto Service Training Students Ask: What’s the Automotive Aftermarket?

The automotive online aftermarket is simply the online branch of Canada’s secondary automotive supply market. Our primary supply market is called the original equipment manufacturer (or OEM) market. Aftermarket parts are usually bought after OEM parts, to enhance or upkeep the original parts that come in an OEM vehicle. This usually involves replacement parts and accessories.

“Replacement parts are automotive parts built or remanufactured to replace OEM parts as they become worn or damaged,” reports the International Trade Administration in the Department of Commerce. “Accessories are parts made for comfort, convenience, performance, safety, or customization, and are designed for add-on after the original sale of the motor vehicle.”

If you become an automotive service advisor or service writer, you and your professional peers may look to the aftermarket to buy any parts or accessories your service centres need to properly service their clients. And as it stands, most of these aftermarket purchases will probably happen online.

Online Aftermarket Options Set to Reshape the Traditional Vendor Market

Online retailers like Amazon and eBay Motors are changing the automotive aftermarket scene, leading the way in both units sold and overall revenue of today’s aftermarket vendors.

“In keeping with the recent rise of digital shopping for products such as electronics and clothes, online purchases of vehicle parts have seen a steady surge since 2009,” says Kumar Saha, a Toronto-based automotive analyst. He says the booming online aftermarket has attracted hundreds of reputable vendors worldwide.


Canada’s automotive aftermarket is a .4 billion industry employing about 420,000 people
Canada’s automotive aftermarket is a $19.4 billion industry employing about 420,000 people

“If current trends are indicators, close to 10 per cent of automotive parts and accessories could be sold through online or mobile channels by 2020,” Saha explains.

What Does this Mean for Tomorrow’s Automotive Service Writers?

The booming online automotive aftermarket opens up a lot of new doors for those in the automotive service field.

Most importantly, it gives today’s repair centers and auto service training grads more options for purchasing parts.

If you pursue this path, the right training can help you guide clients through the entire maintenance process, from start to finish. From consultation to part delivery and follow-up, you’ll have the knowledge you need to help bring the best and most cost-efficient parts from the aftermarket to the streets.

Some service centers are even making their mark on this market by creating their own online stores, where they can advertise products to auto service advisors and profit by selling and shipping products to other service centres. Industry experts like Saha call this “e-retailing,” and say it offers service providers an exciting chance to extend their reach from auto repair to auto part and accessory sales.

Are you interested in becoming an automotive service writer?

Visit ATC to learn more about getting started.

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