Photo credit: Street mobile tire fix up (Ifeanyichukwu Ugbo of OMW Roadside)
Similar to how people took a liking to convenience with brands such as:
- McDonalds, where food is made quickly and tastes delicious
- Walmart, where everything you need is in one single location
- Amazon, where you are able to buy anything and everything and have it delivered to you
- Google, where you are able to find anything on the web
- Facebook, where you are able to connect with anyone
- Starbucks, with its coffee stores on every block
- Uber, where there is a private car coming your way instantly
These are brands that bring the concept of convenience to the equation. This is something that needs to be taken note of. People pay for convenience. Imagine this the next time you are outside on a snowy day or blazing hot day. Most people prefer the convenience of living in an air-conditioned rental unit rather than sleeping at a bus stop. People love convenience, because it makes life easier. A plane makes it easier to move from place to place. A truck makes it easier to move from point A to point B. A computer is easier to use than a typewriter. A phone is easier to communicate with than doing carrier pigeons.
The same concept comes to the tire industry. Most consumers have dealt with the inconvenience of dealing with a tire service company that really loafs on the job and has exorbitant waiting times. For example, if you arrive at the service station and your car is the 20th vehicle in line, you will not be serviced for at least 2 days. This means you are left with the bus or ridesharing all day. Many service shop technicians are people who enjoy showing off their industry knowledge, though they know nothing of serving customers faster and better.
The Old Way of Doing Things
Photo: Flat Tire on the Road (credit Ifeanyichukwu Ugbo of OMW Roadside)
When you are stuck on the road at 3 AM, you call your vehicle insurance to see what type of coverage you have (bad news, you should know it before you need it). After 20 minutes of waiting (because the customer service line is full of other customers at 3 AM, of course), you get a customer service representative who tells you that you have coverage for a flat if you use their service provider. That’s great news, so you are put on hold while she calls someone from a towing company to pick you up. You wait 5 minutes, while she tells you that no one is picking up at the moment so you should hold on tight. I mean, there is nothing you’re able to do other than sit there, stranded on the side of the road, and read a book. She calls back 10 minutes later with a last minute person who thought he was off, though now is getting ready to come in and save the day. She tells you it is going to be 45 minutes to 1 hour long. You give a dry smile and tell her thanks on the phone. While sitting in your truck, you are deep into your book on investing in real estate when you see a sketchy looking vehicle with its headlights on, pulling up behind you. You turn and see a crotchety looking man who looks like you interrupted his beauty sleep. You think to yourself, “Excuse me for making you do your job that you signed up for. No one forced you out here.” After assessing the situation, he tells you to get in the truck, while he loads your truck on his vehicle. Your eyes daze as you fall asleep. A half hour later, you wake up to a -bump- and realize you are at a service station near your apartment, which is really convenient. After looking at the front of the shop, you see the sign and are perturbed. Not unexpectedly, the shop says “-CLOSED- open on Monday”. It is Sunday morning at 4 AM, so you know you are taking the bus to work now. Looking at the fleet of cars in their parking lot, you are able to tell this will be a long wait. You head home and sleep at your apartment, take the bus for a couple of days and get a call from the service station saying I need a special type of vehicle part, because the tow truck chipped something while transporting the truck. They say the wait time is 1 week. Your mouth drops. Wow. In the meantime, the tire has been replaced. One week later, the part is in the vehicle and your public transportation chronicles come to an end. From start to finish: 1.5 weeks, all from one flat tire.
New Way of Doing Things
Photo credit: Highway flat tire fix up with mobile tire service (Ifeanyichukwu Ugbo of OMW Roadside)
You are stuck on the road and pull over to the side to see what is going on. You see you have a flat tire, you literally pick up your phone and type in mobile tire repair near me, and up comes a list of mobile tire service companies. You pick one that seems to have favorable reviews of a 4.5/5 stars. After 10 minutes, you have a confirmation of a van that is coming to your location. Within 30 minutes, a van pulls up saying “MOBIL TIRE SERVICE”. Looks like they forgot the “E” in mobile, though it works. They take a look at your truck and see what happened to the tire with their sophisticated equipment. After assessment, it is able to be repaired without causing long term damage to the car. Within a 30 minute time frame, your vehicle is literally back on the road, and you are driving home. Start to finish: 2 hours.
Not an Exaggeration
This example is of a true story. It is so much more convenient to have the tire shop come to you rather than go to the tire shop. You effectively cut out the middleman (tow truck, service station) and are able to be back on the road. Additionally, they are also able to tow your vehicle back to a service station if you have extensive damage to your car, so you still are able to get towed to the service station as an option.
In terms of one stop shops, mobile tire services are the creme-de-la-crop and will only get more popular as people see that they are able to save more and move faster.