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ACPN Review – Hanging with the Founders

I remember months ago when Ron Larson, our Director of Sales and long-time industry veteran, said, “We should go to ACPN.” I said, “What is it?”

Well, now I know. It’s the data, the industry standards, the categorization, and ACES/PIES, and all the great men and women that make automotive, commercial, and heavy-duty parts possible to even have information about. It’s really more than an automotive content professionals network, it’s the backbone of parts data.

I was blessed to be introduced to so many important industry folks, people that have really dedicated their professional careers to ensuring data standards enable business. Both B2B and B2C are affected by these data standards. One of my favorite sessions was when someone actually pulled up ACES code to denote the country of origin of parts. That was some geeky fun.

E-commerce trends continue to grow, with Fitment Data being one of the most important pieces. And everyone is grappling with the Electric Vehicle market. The actual VIO – vehicles in operation, is smaller than you’d think, about 3-4% now, 12% by 2025, and forecasted 28% by 2030, but the scramble to have good parts data, categorizations, syntax, and general catalog is a strong effort.

One thing I noticed and appreciated about the folks at ACPN is their dedication to the industry. Some of the people I met have been in automotive data content work for 30-plus years. I even made a funny suggestion that we all not speak of things more than 25 years in the past, just to preserve our aging dignity.

I had the pleasure of hanging with some of the founders. Had a great dinner and time with (clockwise from me) Nick Porrini, Joe Zucchero, and Scott Luckett. All guys have made major contributions to the automotive industry. I might not be young enough to be the “next generation” but Sound Press will continue to help distributors, manufacturers, and online sellers in automotive with e-commerce and marketing to pursue improvements, optimizations, excellence, and business growth.

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What Distributors Are Doing Right

Equipping repair shops to grow their business

An automotive warehouse distributor’s success is deeply intertwined with the prosperity of its clients, especially automotive repair shops. Recognizing the challenges these businesses face is paramount and distributors must be committed to supporting their growth journey. Repair shops are on the front lines of the automotive industry and can be a key factor in a warehouse distributor’s business success.

The path to growth for an automotive repair shop involves a combination of exceptional service, embracing technology, diversifying offerings, investing in staff, building strong supplier relationships, implementing loyalty programs, analyzing performance metrics, and active community involvement. By following these strategies, an automotive repair shop can accelerate its success and become a trusted leader in the industry.

The question then becomes, how can you as a warehouse distributor equip your repair shop customers to succeed by using these strategies? If you are using a B2B e-commerce portal such as Nexpart or CONNECTION, you can make use of the Hometab website landing page or even your Nexpart/CONNECTION messaging that alerts users when you log into their account. Consider building out a “Grow Your Business” webpage that features training seminars, webinars, and resources to equip repair shops and their technicians. For ACDelco CONNECTION users, the ACDelco PFC program offers many of these training resources all in one organized and focused program.

The better your repair shops equip their customers, and the more clearly they communicate their services, the better those repair shops will be equipped to grow their business and keep their customers coming back for more.

In The News

Hacking Cars

We need cyber security standards, but the automakers aren’t pursuing it. Read this latest article on AutoCare about how fragile this situation is.

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Innovation inside of an eCommerce portal

In the rapidly evolving automotive industry, staying ahead of the competition requires continuous innovation. B2B eCommerce portals have become a cornerstone of online sales and for connecting manufacturers and distributors. To thrive in this digital landscape, automotive manufacturers and distributors must collaborate and embrace innovation. Most important to the use of an eCommerce portal is having an intuitive user interface, which is vital to ensure ease of navigation and seamless transactions.

One of the manufacturers that we have served is Denso Auto Parts whose product offering includes oxygen sensors, compressors, starters, alternators, fuel pumps, oil filters, air filters, and wipers. Denso utilizes Sound Press’ “pick-list” product layout found on the Sound Press Hometab site (B2B eCommerce website). Interactive features like this enable distributors to checkout easily while enhancing the overall customer experience. This interactive pick-list has helped customers easily find the parts they need as well as helping distributors move more inventory quickly and efficiently.

The future of the automotive industry lies in embracing innovation within B2B e-commerce portals. By enhancing your B2B e-commerce portal and catalog checkout process, you can help distributors get the most out of the eCommerce portal as well as help your manufacturer relationships continue to be profitable through online sales.

Did You Know?

Sound Press Offers Content Writing Services

Content for websites, blogs, and all this content can be helpful for SEO and branding. Usually, the phrase “content is king” is still true. Most automotive entities struggle with content because it’s not a hot topic, but it is valuable. We’ve done a lot of websites for distributors and manufacturers, and with the rise of AI in content work, there may be some application there that’s helpful. If this is a need, reach out.

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