Fall trade shows sizzle with the excitement of new possibilities

This is the time of year when mobile distributors start to learn about the innovative products presented at the fall aftermarket trade shows (ASRW, AAPEX and SEMA). It’s an exciting time.

Based on what I saw in Las Vegas this fall, the excitement is well-founded. It’s not just “me too” products being introduced. There are a lot of new, time-saving features in many of the scan tools, pneumatic tools, battery chargers, fluid evacuators, fluid exchangers, leak detectors, gas analyzers, meters, lab scopes, camera probes, coil-on-plug testers, hand tools, storage solutions, shop equipment—you name it.

Innovations galore

Several new leak detectors were on display in Las Vegas with expanded detection capability. Innovations in this category are important considering vehicle emissions regulations are becoming stricter in more states. Some solutions offer increased pressure and volume capacity and can be used in many different automotive applications.

Handheld diagnostic test equipment continues to become more versatile. Some aftermarket testing tools allow technicians to work on tablets and smartphones. Some work on the Android operating system.

More testing tools are also incorporating reprogramming capability. Not every shop wants to get into reprogramming, but for those that do, more options are now available.

Tool carts seem to be coming out of the woodwork, some of which have trays for holding tools and parts. With technicians using more handheld test equipment, these tool carts spare them the trouble of having to walk back to their work station when they need a new tool.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement all these new tools present. But as a mobile distributor, it’s important to stay focused on how these new products will improve your customers’ productivity. You are the aftermarket shops' gateway to better productivity and profitability.

Is it possible to know exactly how these new innovations apply to your individual customers? Every customer is different, and not every tool is for every technician. Knowing the customer’s specific needs requires communication. Your sales success actually rests more on communication skills than on product knowledge.

Now it’s up to you

There’s no way most techs know what they might need on any given day. They never know what vehicle will roll in. But who better than you to help them be prepared?

Professional Distributor offers plenty of information about these new products in its In Focus (page 28), Sneak Peek (page 32), Most Wanted (page 20) and Driving Sales (page 22) sections. To get started, visit VehicleServicePros.com/AAPEX/new-products.

Tool and equipment manufacturers are giving mobile distributors more products that provide solutions to customers’ needs than ever. Distributors who truly know their customers are able to visualize how these new products improve customers’ productivity. Armed with this visualization, they can win the sale through effective communication.