Doesn’t it still feel like early 2018? Wow, this year has simply zipped by. A blur. At the end of the year it’s good practice to reflect on the year’s performance, major influencers, and celebrate successes and think about how to improve on opportunities missed.

December is also a good time to get serious about planning and doing your best to predict what you think 2019 will hold for your store and for the industry.

2018 started out a little choppy for the industry, and quickly we had to dig out of a shortfall in unit sales for most of the country while surprisingly, automotive repair remained solid to strong. But market demand for units climbed back close to the second quarter and by mid-year, the industry as a whole was about par with the prior year. Manufacturers were reporting an uptick in orders, and most predictions at this point in 2018 were indicating the industry would finish the year with modest growth. If you finished the year down in units, your competitors were stealing shares from you – and you should figure out why.  Read More…