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Go AZ Motorcycles holds steady as No. 1 dealer

Powersports Business announced its 2014 Power 50 dealerships last month during during a dinner and awards presentation sponsored by National Powersport Auctions (NPA) at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., as part of the American International Motorcycle Expo (AIMExpo).

For the second year in a row, Go AZ Motorcycles in Scottsdale, Ariz., was named the No. 1 dealer. With its second consecutive No. 1 selection, Go AZ becomes the inaugural member of the Power 50 Hall of Fame as a two-time winner. 

Powersports Business editor in chief Dave McMahon presents the 2014 Power 50 No. 1 dealer award to Gina Marra of Go AZ Motorcycles.
Powersports Business editor in chief Dave McMahon presents the 2014 Power 50 No. 1 dealer award to Gina Marra of Go AZ Motorcycles.

“Go AZ Motorcycles debuted at No. 1 on our Power 50 list last year, and the dealership simply built on its operational success over the past year,” Powersports Business editor in chief Dave McMahon said. “Go AZ and the other members of the 2015 class set themselves apart with unmatched attention to customer service and providing customers with an optimal retail experience.”

Go AZ Motorcycles retails on a campus that includes three separate buildings for its brand lineup of Aprilia, BMW, Ducati, Honda, Kawasaki, KTM, Piaggio, Triumph, Ural and Vespa. A fourth structure serves as corporate headquarters for Go AZ parent company YAM Worldwide founder Bob Parsons, as well as a rider training facility and a below-ground inventory storage facility. The ever-expanding complex will soon have a fifth structure.

Go AZ made a significant investment in its Ducati and BMW showroom areas, refurbishing the designs to ensure alignment with updated guidance from both OEMs. While several brands may share a showroom facility, the dealership works diligently to ensure that each brand is uniquely represented.

In addition to the distinctive merchandising displays, each showroom features flat screen TVs, comfortable seating areas, clean and well-appointed restrooms and cold beverage stations, which are key for the climate.

The Kawasaki/Triumph showroom doubles as a relaxing customer hub, housing an Internet café, coffee bar and foosball table. In fact, the dealership recently relocated its Triumph display to the Kawasaki/Ural/Aprilia facility, a change that allowed both expansion of the Triumph showroom space, as dictated by recent sales growth, as well as increased traffic for Kawasaki. Calculated approaches such as this allow the dealership to outperform national sales averages.

Also, the dealership added a full-time quality control specialist. This individual is charged with verifying each service item for every bike and performing a full detailed cleaning on each bike serviced at the dealership. A Green Lane was added to the service department for quick minor repairs or maintenance, and a new dyno room allows customers to watch their bike’se’s new performance upgrades in action.

To stay in touch better with its customers, the dealership also added a full-service iPhone and Android app and introduced a live online chat function to its website that’s available 24 hours a day.

On top of all that, the dealership took home a Ducati Platinum market share award and earned Triumph’s first-ever 100 percent score on a U.S. secret shopper test. The dealership was ranked No. 9 on the area’s “Best Places to Work” list.

“Being recognized by Powersports Business as North America’s number one dealer for a second consecutive year is a tremendous honor,” said Gina Marra, vice president of the Powersports Division at YAM Worldwide, who previously was general manager of Go AZ. “I wholeheartedly believe that this year’s award reflects the incredible efforts by our entire team to take advantage of every moment of truth to grow and better our business for our customers. At Go AZ we believe that our focus on customer service and relationships serves to ensure our financial success, and our financial success allows us — and compels us — to serve our community.”

The Power 50 dealers were selected by the Powersports Business editorial staff upon completion of an extensive application process that focused on a variety of business segments, including new and pre-owned sales, events, marketing, service and F&I department operations, employee training and social media usage.


“Congratulations to all inductees of the 2nd annual Power 50,” NPA chief operating officer Jim Woodruff said. “It’s because of your hard work and dedication that the powersports industry continues to grow across the nation.”


In addition to the selection of the No. 1 dealer, PSB once again selected the Top 5 dealerships based on their 2013 performance.

No. 2 dealer: Freedom Powersports, Weatherford, Texas

A 2013 Power 50 dealer as well as 2013 Power 50 Best in Class Service Department winner, Freedom developed a lead logging verification department that monitors every call, email and chat lead that comes into the dealership, then grades them on a customer service scale as well as verifying if the customer was logged into the CRM system. This has increased the level of customer service as well as increased the percentage of leads that are getting logged and followed up with.

An internal call center also has been developed that ties directly to the CRM tool and the lead verification department. This center makes outbound calls to pre- and post-sales department customers as well as post-service customers. Feedback from these calls is immediately available to sales staff members so that they can react quickly to customer needs. As marketing director Sarah McVean says, “This is moving the needle in a big way in areas of customer retention, sales closing ratios and CSI scores.”

In order to continue its impressive growth, the dealership is aggressively seeking out high performing managers.

“A key component of our long-term plans is to get the best of the best on our bench. Sustained growth depends on having the right people on the bus and beyond that, sitting in the right seat,” McVean said.

No. 3 dealer: Adam Smith’s Texas Harley-Davidson, Bedford, Texas

A 2013 Power 50 dealer, the dealership recently unveiled renderings for its new flagship store, and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is in for quite a treat. The dealership will be entering on a performance high, with sales revenues up 37 percent year-over-year. New Harley-Davidson sales increased by 55 percent, pre-owned by 23 percent and F&I Per Unit Sold increased by 16 percent.

Adding technicians and improving dispatch helped the service department grow by nearly 40 percent. It all added up to operating profits that increased by 235 percent in 2013 compared to 2012.

In 2013, this dealer built upon its culture and business beliefs that Adam Smith brought to the store when he purchased it in 2011. With that keen focus, the dealership continued to push staff development, bringing in industry speakers, using online training programs and offering daily sales refresher courses. Events and promotions were also strong, with the staff striving to give customers a reason to buy every day.

No. 4 dealer: New York Motorcycle, Queens Village, N.Y.

A newcomer to the Power 50, New York Motorcycle implemented a major overhaul of its inventory. Want to know how much stuff can be accumulated over 30 years? Ask these guys. The parts inventory led to a DMS update with an accurate count; bin locations were assigned for all parts, and a storage room was cleared and remodeled using funds from Pro Yamaha to build a new watercraft and ATV showroom. The results are astounding: watercraft sales were up 300 percent, and ATV sales were up 100 percent.

In addition, the dealership built and remodeled a new EagleRider room, customer lounge and new parts and accessory room.

No. 5 dealer: Coleman PowerSports, Falls Church, Va.

The No. 2 dealer in the 2013 Power 50, Coleman PowerSports chalks up its success by “planning for the unforeseen. We want and strive to understand and stay on the edge of our industry. We watch for new ideas that can be implemented and watch for new, inventive products, like the Slingshot. With 50-plus years of experience in the industry, we carefully examine new products for their quality and determine if they would benefit our customers. We grasp the need to understand our customers, which comes with excelling at customer service,” according to general manager Kim Harrison.

Inventory strategy includes six turns per year on the total parts inventory, and 3-4 turns per year in accessories. The strategy is to keep an approximately 4- to 6-week supply of parts on hand, and 8-10 weeks supply of accessories, and reorder as needed.

The addition of dealership track days in 2013 included track day seminars leading up to each event, where a control rider presented the track and safety elements. The dealership then offers track-specific specials in-store to help prepare riders to consume as much knowledge from their track experience as possible.

Coleman PowerSports continues to go to great lengths to grow its customer base by educating riders and non-riders alike. The dealership, with two Virginia locations, offers free two- and three-wheel motorcycle seminars in partnership with APEX Cycle Education. The dealership attracts customers with its strong marketing, which includes exhibiting at local motorcycle, boat, and hunting and game shows, along with hosting a slew of events at the dealerships.


Powersports Business editors Dave McMahon and Liz Keener also handed out Best in Class Awards to the following dealerships.

Best in Class: Customer Service

Steamboat Powersports, Steamboat Springs, Colo.

Steamboat focused much of its efforts over the past year on customer service.

But the clincher for this dealership is its VIP customer event. Now three years running, the event “is the best marketing money spent for our store. We invite about 150 people for dinner and provide lodging for approximately 60 of the 150,” general manager Jason Stanhope said. “We trade for part of the event with a local lodge to help with the cost. We have 10-15 demo snowmobiles and a couple of ATVs and side-by-sides with tracks for customers to ride, if they would like to experience a new product. After dinner we have door prize giveaways and enjoy live music until midnight,” Stanhope said. “They are telling their friends and their friends’ friends that these people care, know what they are doing and can be trusted.”

Best in Class: Events

The Transportation Revolution, New Orleans

When it comes to events, TTRNO always makes them memorable, and that’s done with a relatively small staff. In fact, the dealership hired its second salesperson in the fall of 2013, part of a growth surge that since 2012 has seen the addition of two salespeople, an F&I manager, an accessory specialist, two service advisors and a mechanic.

With a goal of selling 400 units per year, this dealership simply creates its own fun, and its customers follow in droves. Starting with quarterly tech talks that feature topics like “How to change your oil” to “Everything you need for a track day,” customers are given a reason to get into the dealership. As general manager Zach Materne says, “Contrary to what you would think, our service talks create service appointments. Once we explain how we do things, customers appreciate our work even more.”

While those small, intimate events drive traffic and revenue, this dealership also hits mammoth home runs by piggybacking onto a local event that attracts 20,000 to its urban neighborhood. The dealership’s Summer Open House is held in conjunction with a popular art party.

Finally, as we all know, November is now known as MOvember, and this dealership ensures that its customer base also knows that it’s MOvember. A tire sale event called “Get New Rubber for Your Mustache Ride” saw proceeds go to prostate cancer research.

Best in Class: Service Department

Crossroad Powersports, Upper Darby, Pa.

At this Philadelphia-area dealership, a total revamp of the service department paid major dividends that led to a 61.15-percent increase in gross margin compared to the previous year.

As manager Derek Osner said: “We completely rearranged all four bays and added lockers next to each. Also we now have runners that grab parts for our service techs as needed. We have seen our labor hours dramatically grow just with a few simple tweaks.”

In addition, the service techs are provided with reports based on actual hours vs. billable hours. A time clock has been installed for the techs to clock in and out of for each RO.

Service department employees are kept happy thanks to an annual survey sent out to all employees that asks questions like: “What is your favorite candy bar?” and “What is your favorite restaurant?”

“It’s amazing how a candy bar or gift card can motivate a person. We also do quarterly reviews on each tech and assess raises based on their performance,” Osner said.

Simply put, the service department makeover has been an important part of the dealership’s rising success.

“Even in this troubled economy, we still have been able to succeed when other dealers around us have not. We have grown by double digits this year and plan on that same growth to continue for years to come,” Osner said.

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