“Over 99,200 jobs were added to the employment roll, according to Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA). The automotive aftermarket is a vast and diversified industry, generating some $248 billion in annual sales, according to the AAIA”
The automotive aftermarket is expected to grow; AAIA sentiment about the jobs added into the $240 billion annual market projects a growth indicator. These projections point to the fact that more and more people are holding on to their old vehicles and this benefits the aftermarket ecosystem. Addition of new vehicles means more business on road. On the other side industry concern regarding aftermarket performance optimization in established and emerging markets sense a pulse of market saturation. Technology plug ins to report maintenance issues using app and automate repair quotes are already trending the aftermarket industry. Industry trend also predicts growth of online B2C sales, as direct sales to the customer estimated at around $20 billion business by 2020 in North America and Europe. Service aggregators like Openbay (U.S.), RepairPal (U.S.) and WhoCanFixMyCar (U.K.) do exploit the channel between the customer, the service center and the supplier also exhibit a trend in the industry. Technological advancements such as use of synthetic oils have extended oil change intervals thus impacting the aftermarket industry. Globalizing OEMs with modular architecture do exhibit scope for standardized components and spare parts thus a global cue for the aftermarket industry. Other trends like touch screen information systems and other configured electronic & communication accessories would considerably add to the aftermarket. The issues faced by the industry are the increasing parts complexity, channel consolidation, imports from low cost countries and the impact of the internet. Strategies usually revolve around innovating new services, restructure sales and distribution channels, implement loyalty programs for wholesalers and dealers, improve service quality and service customization at dealer and repair shop levels and create brand awareness for services. The future of the aftermarket is marked with stronger investments in the sector and towards a central unit that integrates fairly distributed aftermarket components in order to optimize the processes. The industry will have to focus on unique selling propositions and concentrate on the emerging technologies in the field of telematics, navigation and entertainment. One report identifies standard IT solutions working in advantage to the market. In a nutshell the automotive aftermarket industry in order to sustain would need to leverage onto the global segment to drive profits and margins. When entering the global markets companies instead of investing in their own sales channel should rely on ventures and partnerships with access to proven sales channels. In order to survive the aftermarket value chain need to respond effectively to the changes and still preserve the value.