ARI’s sponsorship allows for North America’s top dealers to gather
When members of the inaugural Powersports Business Power 50 gather Oct. 17 during AIMExpo in Orlando for the first-ever Awards Dinner, the dealership principals and staff members will certainly be exchanging ideas and plaudits.
But they’ll also likely be entertaining retail strategies and best practices that their peers are undertaking. All of that led to ARI Network Services, Inc.’s decision to sponsor the first event of its kind.
“From our point of view, the Power 50 is all about recognizing the top performers in the industry,” ARI president and CEO Roy W. Olivier said. “To a great extent, those top performers are exhibiting the best practices that are helping them be more successful and sell more stuff. That’s exactly what we try to do. Being a participant in helping recognize what those dealers do, and helping other dealers understand their successful traits, that’s what we do here. Our whole strategy is to help dealers be more successful selling stuff.”
As part of the inaugural AIMExpo, being held Oct. 16-20, Olivier will certainly be talking to dealers in the exhibit hall about consumer habits when it comes to purchasing decisions of aftermarket products.
“We’re big on innovation, and we like that the fact that AIMExpo is a new show concept. We also think being in front of our current customers and potential customers and having the opportunity to interact with them — and gain insight into what they’re looking for in terms of online and selling more stuff — that’s right up our alley,” Olivier said. “As we continue to work on being innovative and looking for new ways to interact with our customers, we thought it was a good fit. We like the consumer piece of it as well, because we have some new products we’re working on, and getting feedback the consumer end-user is going to be great.”
Olivier said dealers and consumers in attendance at AIMExpo will be learning more about products that ARI is considering.
“One of those is a product that would allow a consumer, via their phone, tablet or computer — to peruse inventory and look at the stuff that fits their ride and body, then be able to select the dealer close to them to conclude the transaction,” Olivier said. “Getting the consumer’s feedback on how they might interact with the technology and what they see as important in terms of those types of portals that exist and the type we’re thinking about doing — it’ll be a great place to get that feedback.”
Not all service companies will be interested in consumer insights, but Olivier is OK with ARI receiving extra attention because of it.
“We don’t have a lot of opportunity to meet with consumers unless we’re visiting a dealership, so having both the dealers and consumers in one place is fantastic. From a timing standpoint, it sets up perfectly with our future product plans,” Olivier said. “We’re excited about it.”
Olivier said dealers can expect to learn more about ARI’s lead management and digital marketing projects, as well as its AccessorySmart PG&A lookup solution.
“Dealers who have opted in are seeing success in a couple of areas, the big one being operational efficiency,” he said. “The second one is that it drives more sales. It turns everybody on the parts counter into an experienced expert. It enables people to find stuff and find it faster than they could in the past. It’s been a nice product out of the gate. It’s disruptive in terms of the way it changes the way people operate at the parts counter today. So far it’s been a great tool helping those dealerships grow their sales in the aftermarket area and beat the competition by helping their customers find stuff quicker.”