dexception locked=”false” priority=”70″ semihidden=”false” unhidewhenused=”false” name=”Dark List Accent 6″/>
John Ranney, owner of European Auto Tech, a seven-bay automotive repair garage in Tucson, AZ, understands that. Located near the University of Arizona, he sees how financial pressures affect his business and his customers, many of whom are students and their parents.
Two years ago, the Bosch Car Service network introduced the Bosch Service credit card. As a network member, Ranney immediately signed up for the program, as it provides consumers six months’ no-interest financing, if paid in full on all qualifying purchases — on repairs up to $3,000. A program like that is what he needed to give his customers peace of mind and win their loyalty.
Helping Out His Customers
“For me, it was a no-brainer,” said Ranney. “My customers could have that credit card in his or her possession with our name on it — a constant reminder for shop loyalty. This card can only be used by the customer at a participating Bosch Car Service facility, and only for automotive parts and service.
Most importantly, the customer gets no interest for six months if paid in full on all qualifying purchases. When they need another repair, that card can be used again and again with the same great offer. Truthfully, it makes me feel as though I am doing a service to the community.”
The card is very popular with customers who are either University of Arizona students and their parents, or university staff members. Ranney estimates that half of them are using their Bosch Service credit cards to pay for their automotive servicing, and taking advantage of the favorable payment terms.
Ranney related a particularly heart-warming story of a young woman whose parent lived in another state and was challenged by personal situations, creating a financial strain on the family. The Bosch Service credit card helped them to take care of the repairs on the daughter’s car with affordable monthly payments and no interest charges or additional fees.
Another University of Arizona student needed a lot of work done to her older BMW. Ranney’s staff made a list of work to be performed and prioritized it by safety. With the credit card, she was able to repair her BMW over time, without being burdened with interest charges and fees.
“The point is to give the customer the greatest service value,” Ranney emphasized. “Put yourself in their shoes from start to finish.”
According to Ranney, parents appreciate the fact that they can give their sons and daughters the Bosch Service credit card and know that it can only be used for car repairs at his shop or any other participating Bosch Service facility. The card promotes responsible, need-based spending. It gives parents great peace of mind to know that if there is an emergency, it can easily be taken care of and without exorbitant interest charges or other fees. In Ranney’s own words, “That’s huge!”
The Story Behind The Man, John Ranney
So how did he get into the business of automotive repair in the first place?
“I guess it was in my blood — this love for taking things apart and putting them back together,” Ranney said. His father, who worked as a chief engineer in the Merchant Marines, never called in the repairman and, as far as Ranney can remember, he too has always been interested in fixing things that would break around the house.
Growing up in such an environment, and later working in the Navy as an aircraft electrician on helicopters, Ranney’s familiarity and comfort with fixing broken mechanical objects developed into a love for and, eventually, a career in servicing automobiles.
When an ad appeared in the local paper advertising a position for an apprentice mechanic at a Porsche-Audi dealership, Ranney applied, and when offered the job, he accepted it at once. “There was no looking back after that,” he said. At that time, he and his wife, Bergit, lived in New Jersey. Tired of having endured the East Coast weather all of his life with its gray skies, rain and snow, they decided to move to Tucson, AZ, where they had visited a number of times and loved.
So, they packed their bags ….
“Moving from New Jersey to Tucson was like taking off from a black and white landscape and landing in full Technicolor!” Ranney remarked.
The Bosch Service Network
Sixteen years later, Ranney runs a shop with seven bays, five technicians, two service writers and a driver. Often working with high-end vehicles with complex electronics, he looked for a partner who could provide the training and repair information he needed to keep up with the ever-increasing vehicle technologies.
In 1999, Ranney joined Bosch Car Service, an international network of service centers. By meeting the program’s stringent requirements, Ranney qualified for access to exclusive training, marketing tools, service information and equipment from Bosch. There are nearly 1,500 Bosch Car Service centers in the U.S. and Canada.
According to Ranney, “Bosch stands for quality of service and professionalism, and I wanted to be part of it. More importantly, Bosch invented most of the technology that makes the car work, and provides outstanding products backed by a rock-solid nationwide warranty. I also liked the network of shops that were in every part of the country that could back up such a warranty — like my shop would. It just felt right to me.”
The marketing value of being part of the network, and having tools like the Bosch Service credit card, has been a great asset to Ranney. “We have a powerful company behind us, helping us finance the customers who need help, as well as the customers who don’t, but want to take advantage of the Bosch Service credit card’s special financing,” he said.
Over the last two years, Ranney has seen that the Bosch Service credit card lets his customers improve the quality of service on their vehicle. With the card in their hands, they can now opt for a higher level of service than they normally could afford.
In 2012, Ranney reported that European Auto Tech topped in the country in three sales categories for the Bosch Service credit card — the most consumer purchases charged to Bosch Service credit cards, the most processed applications, and the most purchase-activated accounts. “My average sale on Bosch Service credit cards is over $1,000,” Ranney said.
On Ranney’s list of “must haves” for any shop to succeed are: excellent customer service, an employee-friendly workplace, high ethical standards, a clean environment, a well designed website and an overall focus on delivering value to all.
When asked about his business philosophy, it’s not surprising that John Ranney quotes Robert Bosch:
“I would rather lose money than trust. The integrity of my promises, the belief in the value of my products and of my word of honor have always had a higher priority.” — Robert Bosch
“That is me! That’s exactly the way I feel about the way I do business,” Ranney said, thinking about the business he has built.
For information on the Bosch Service network, visit www.boschcarservice.us.