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Sell Car Parts Online With an Auto Parts Site
There has never been a better moment to sell parts and accessories for cars online to both businesses and consumers.
The forecast for light-duty automotive aftermarket sales is $325 billion, a jump of more than 11 percent compared to 2020. Advanced Auto Parts, a category leader, reported a nearly 6 percent increase in net sales ($2.6 billion) over the prior fiscal year.
Auto parts merchants have an amazing opportunity because of the robust market for car sales and the rapid migration to selling parts online to B2C/B2B customers.
Interestingly, almost 60% of automotive accessories and parts are purchased online by consumers. According to UPS and comScore research, this is an increase of 8 percent over 2020.
Intrigued? We explore the key considerations when opening an online shop selling auto parts and accessories.
Which parts of your car are the most popular online?
When selling parts for cars online, there are several things you need to think about. These include how you plan on sourcing and shipping your products as well as the best channels to reach customers.
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It’s also important to concentrate on the most sought-after parts that consumers purchase online. All car parts sell well making it one of the most profitable eCommerce ideas. However, there are four types of parts that are highly sought-after online. These are:
- Service parts – Tires, suspension parts and brake system parts.
- Electrical parts : Alternators/fuel pumps/injectors starters, starters, fuses relays and cables.
- Mechanical parts – Engine mounts and radiators, transmissions. Timing chains, camshifts. Timing chains, timing chain, camshifts. Timing chains, timing cables, timing wheels, camshifts. Timing chains, timing pumps, spark plugs. Cylinder heads. Valve/pistons.
- Interior parts – Dash panels and sunvisors, shift buttons, seat covers, and many other items.
- Exterior parts : Grilles and wiper blades, bumpers and side mirrors. Headlights/tail lights. Replacement bulbs. Hubcaps.
The first step to selling online is understanding what car parts consumers want. It is also important to understand how and where customers and businesses shop online for auto parts.
Find out who you are selling to
Two main types of customers who purchase auto parts online are wholesale and retail customers.
You can further break down each category into subcategories depending on factors such as user demographics or purchase intent. You can target ads, content, and offers by narrowing down the user characteristics of a particular user group.
These are just a few examples.
- Replacement parts shoppers These are primarily end users looking for the best prices on replacement parts (as well as upgrade parts). These audiences have different motivations and behaviors depending on their age and sex. A recent UPS survey showed that women shop online for car parts online more consciously than men.
- DIY shoppers (DIY: Based on data from the Auto Care Association, DIY auto parts buyers are usually end-consumers who buy parts such as filters, glass, lighting products and electrical parts for repair or replacement purposes. These parts are easier to ship and more affordable.
- DIFM customers: DIFM shoppers can either be end consumers or technicians. The typical DIFM purchase includes more complicated parts (e.g. computers, exhaust components, and so on). The intention is to ‘upgrade’ rather than’replacement. Because these parts are typically heavier than those in the DIY category, they are more tech-savvy and will choose retailers that offer multiple shipping options.
- The B2B Shopper: This broad category covers auto parts wholesalers that sell to small vendors such as auto shops, local garages and mechanics. It also includes any business that sells or services automobiles.
Knowing who your customers are allows you to tailor your content to them and offer a more personal eCommerce experience.
These are the 5 most popular channels to sell car parts online
When buying parts for cars online, there are many options. It all depends on the products you sell and how you source them. These are the three main methods of product sourcing:
- Wholesaler – You purchase your products in bulk at a discount price and then sell directly to your customer. You may need to store your products in a physical place such as a shop, warehouse, or other location.
- Manufacturer – You order parts directly from the manufacturer. The manufacturer may ship the parts to you or to the end-consumer after the order is complete.
- Local sourcing/rummaging You can collect parts from local sources (e.g. junkyards, yard sale, etc.). You can then ship the parts directly from your home to the dealer or customer.
No matter how you source your products you will need an online sales channel (or multiple) to get them into the hands online consumers.
These are the top five online channels to sell auto parts.
01. eCommerce site standard
Your online store is your virtual storefront. You can sell more products online if you don’t have an existing eCommerce website. Online stores allow you to showcase your products without all the competition and clutter of online marketplaces like Amazon or eBay. You can also build trust and loyalty with your customers, encouraging them return to your store whenever they need parts.
eBay’s auto parts marketplace has over 110 million parts. Three auto parts and accessories are sold each second on eBay. A wheel or tire is sold every six seconds. Fourteen complete engines are sold per hour. eBay offers tools that are specifically tailored to auto parts dealers. For example, you can list compatibility specifications (years and makes, models, etc.). You can also sell used parts on eBay, which is not the case with Amazon.
Amazon is more difficult to sell auto parts than eBay. Amazon prohibits sellers from selling used parts. The category is also gated. Sellers must apply for approval to be able to sell auto parts on the site. A professional selling account is required, along with UPC codes for major brands and an understanding of Amazon’s Fitment Data. You will also need to have compliant product images and a manufacturer/remanufacturer warranty on refurbished products.
04. Sites for local sellers
Local consumers can reach you via websites and social media channels such as Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Nextdoor, and Facebook Marketplace. This is especially true for large parts that are more expensive to ship. These sites can be used to advertise parts or direct customers to your online shop.
05. Omnichannel eCommerce platform
An omnichannel eCommerce platform, which is the next level in digital customer service, is an eCommerce website that is your virtual brand face.
Omnichannel selling combines all channels consumers use to search for and purchase products. It incorporates multiple touchpoints and payment gateways as well as fulfillment options, and integrates them all under one roof.
Customers judge businesses on how they have shopped with vendors online and offline. A omnichannel eCommerce platform like Wix eCommerce allows you to connect all the dots in a customer’s buying journey and ensures that you provide the best experience. The Wix app Market makes it easy to integrate directly with Amazon or eBay. Once you have connected your Amazon Seller Account and eBay Shop, your Wix Dashboard will allow you to manage your products via the appropriate sales tabs.
Wix allows you to sell car parts
Wix makes opening an online store quick and easy so that you can start and grow your eCommerce company in no matter how much time it takes.
You can choose from more than 500 online store templates. Our platform also includes a host eCommerce features such as a free SSL certificate and multiple payment and fulfillment options. We also offer robust multichannel inventory management.
Your own online auto parts storefront will help you to establish your brand and leverage powerful website features that can generate more sales. These include:
- Customer loyalty and engagement: Use newsletters provided by Wix CRM and Wix Chat, blogs and loyalty programs to encourage shoppers and promote repeat business.
- Branded Marketing Campaigns: Choose from a variety of stunning email templates that can be customized to promote your brand or store offers.
- Lead generation – Use Wix Formulas for visitor and shopper contact information, online payments, customer feedback and much more.
- Store and product reviews: Build trust and encourage engagement by including product reviews on your website.
You can manage your own eCommerce auto parts website, rather than selling parts on an online marketplace like eBay. This allows you to leverage many other features of the website and eCommerce, such as built-in SEO tools and discounts/coupons. It also gives you detailed store and business analytics.