As the keynote speaker at the Goodyear 2019 North American dealer meeting in Dallas, CEO and Chairman Rich Kramer challenged his employees and dealer partners to embrace new ways of doing business in a rapidly evolving world. A case in point? The company’s planned launch of an online tire-purchasing portal geared directly at smaller fleets, from Mom and Pop businesses with a handful of delivery vehicles, up to small fleets and owner-operators running heavy-duty trucks.
According to Paul Green, strategic projects manager for Goodyear, the new platform will be an expansion of the company’s successful e-commerce site initially engineered to serve the passenger car market.
Green said the new commercial tire platform will enable customers to buy a tire from the convenience of their home office (or sleeper berth) and schedule installation within 24 hours of placing the order, either locally or at a convenient stopover point away from home.
Citing research by Goodyear, Green noted that traditionally it can be hard for Goodyear dealers to find and build relationships with these types of customers, who run more than 3 million tires on medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles. “Our research shows that 55% of these customers have purchased vehicle parts online in the past — and that figure is expected to grow by 3% this year,” Green said. “And these fleet customers are no different than consumer customers when it comes to their online buying habits and their desire to do more product purchasing online.”
“Positioning Goodyear’s commercial dealers to connect with customers and capture new business is one of our priorities,” said Dustin Lancy, marketing manager, Commercial Tires. “We are in a unique position to draw on our experience with e-commerce for consumer tires and be the first to bring a commercial program to the market.”
The e-commerce program will officially launch in the third quarter of 2019 and will be available via Goodyear’s commercial tire website. Once on the platform, customers will be able to select the correct tires for their operations and select an installation date and time with a participating dealer.