Digital Advantages for Parts and Repair

June 26, 2024
Sponsored by bproauto®

The digital revolution is advantageous to most every industry, and especially the automotive parts industry. Parts counters, ordering managers and technicians are all seeing major gains in the digital space that are helping them order with increased accuracy and helping them to mitigate returns, perform easier installations and minimize customer wait time due to wrong parts ordered.

Online part search functions are adding value to the parts business.

“We’ve noticed that the parts industry has added several features to their parts ordering platforms,” said Alexis Mellos, bproauto® digital executive. “Our goal when creating was to take a flexible approach to hard data to make it the most intuitive, user-friendly parts portal out there.” 

There are six different search capabilities that enhance the customer experience and make parts ordering in the digital space more flexible. Not so incidentally, they are all available on

Search by parts category
Searching an entire parts category like windshield wiper blades or brake pads is common on some part websites. Searching by category can be most beneficial when you are not yet well-versed about that the part you are ordering and need more information beyond the part number.

“On,” said Mellos, “our parts category search offers the searcher several details about parts features, testing, warranty and more, including all of the available part numbers.” 

Search by brand part number
“If you know a part number, typing it into a search field to find details or availability is an easy feature to use, as long as the platform provides a helpful output,” said Mellos. “We have made certain that when a user types in a bproauto part number that they are offered parts information as well as cross-reference information, so they are certain that when they go to order, they’ll get the exact part they need.”

Search by competitor part number
Parts manufacturers realize that sometimes technicians and repair facilities want to try new brands, or their customer has requested a specific parts brand for their repair. For these instances, offers a feature that lets the user type in a competitor’s part number, then feeds them back the compatible bproauto part number for the vehicle and the repair. 

Search by VIN
VIN searching is quickly becoming industry standard and is extremely helpful when multiple repairs are made at once. For example, if a vehicle comes in for a full brake job, oil change and a wiper blade replacement, a VIN search should show all the available parts for the vehicle, making ordering simple and less time consuming than searching each part individually.

Search by year, make and model
Typically, a year, make and model search will return the same output as the VIN search and is used for the same purposes. It’s helpful, however, when a VIN isn’t visible or entering the alternate fields can save time.

Upload an Excel inventory worksheet
While you may experience some of the other search functions mentioned within the context of this article, you probably haven’t used a cross-reference tool like the Excel inventory worksheet upload unless you are already using 

“We wanted to make stocking shelves with bproauto parts as simple as possible for our users. So we talked to several parts departments and repair facilities to see how they managed their inventory. We found that many used Excel,” said Mellos.

“With that information,” Mellos continued, “we decided to offer a feature on our platform where the user can upload an inventory worksheet and we will return a worksheet replacing the part number with bproauto part numbers. Everyone who uses it seems to love it.”

No matter how you choose to search for parts, the two keys to successful searches are simplicity and accuracy. That is part of the bproauto parts strategy, to provide quality, competitively priced, O.E.-backed aftermarket parts that fit, work and last, and to make those parts easy to find and attain.

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