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9 Ways To Level Up Your Car Wash Business

You’ve heard the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Well, here’s the Definition of Carwash Insanity: avoiding upgrades year after year and expecting to stay competitive.

You’re not going to make your wash a winner by letting it age and not maintaining it, fixing it up or investing in new technology. Nope, competition in this industry is far too stiff for that. When new carwashes go in across town – or right next door – you need to meet the challenge. You need to stand your ground. How do you do it? By Leveling Up.

What Does It Mean To Level Up?

When the competition gets tough, the tough Level Up. It means boosting the quality of your marketing, signage, equipment, chemistry, and more. Leveling Up with NCS will pay you back in proven results. See improved profitability with a complete “like new” rebranded identity, shiny new equipment, or just a few critical upgrades. Level Up Your Wash and you can leave the competition in the dust.

  • Get Noticed: Immediately stand out among relentless competition
  • Get the Best: High-quality, high-value trusted brands
  • Get Savings: Save up to 27% on chemistry costs with Connected Chemistry
  • Get Results: 10+% revenue lift and 50% boost with “Level Up” signage, marketing or rebrand, as proven by a major carwash company rebrand test, reported in Auto Laundry News, 2022 
  • Get Ahead: Powerful, exclusive data, insights and technology deliver consistent excellence in consumer experience

9 Ways To Level Up Your Car Wash Business

Staying current doesn’t have to be a huge overhaul. Make sure to update a few areas of your business periodically to help keep you up-to-date without cutting too far into your profit margins. Below are some of the best ways to level up your business whenever you’re looking to modernize.

1. Make a Branded New Start

Sometimes, success is just one rebrand away. If you have one site but an old brand with outdated graphics – while the competitor site looks new, current, and shiny – time to work with us on making your brand like new. If you have multiple sites with divergent brands, consider the advantages of multiplying a coherent brand identity across several or dozens of sites. 

Rebranding your business identity can help reach new audiences, and renew the interest of previous customers eager to experience your “new and improved” automatic car wash business. A fresh, current look simply equates to quality in the minds of many a consumer.

Rebranding requires a fine balance of modernizing your ideals, logos, and design elements without erasing the things your target market already recognizes and associates with your business. Be sure to announce any changes you plan to make in advance and roll them out gradually so that existing customers realize you’re still the same business they know and love.

2. Level Up Your Site Marketing

A strategic approach to revitalizing your marketing involves 1) onsite and 2) offsite. 

Signage is one of the most recognizable parts of your business and branding onsite. You want your signage to stand out, improving your brand recognition.

Signage doesn’t only include the primary signs with your business’s name on them. It also includes signage advertising your services or features. You want all your signage to be cohesive, as well as attract customers’ attention, so revamping all your signs at once is a good way to update your business.

Offsite, your branding, graphics, logo and business name need to translate to your online marketing. Offsite marketing could also include partnerships with local businesses, and community engagement.

3. Make Your Wash an Electrifying Experience

Today’s site marketing and signage now often include digital signage and menus, plus LED lighting and other bells and whistles that make your wash more fun – and more profitable. It might cost less than you think to give your wash the facelift it deserves.

4. Embrace the Power of New Technology and Equipment

It is a truism that high quality equipment that is replaced when needed will lead to a higher quality wash. It almost goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway. It’s important to periodically consult with a company like NCS to survey and evaluate the state of your hardware and see where reasonable investments in upgrades could yield dramatically improved customer experience and increased sales.

Beyond that, there’s a certain contingent of owner/operators who readily embrace new technology. For some of the rest of us, new technology like the Connected Carwash and managing your wash remotely on an app may seem far-fetched or intimidating. But a whole new world of convenience, control and cost savings await products like the NCS Lens App. It’s just a matter of exploring it a bit to see how you can Level Up big time with NCS Lens.

It’s easy to think of upgrades as an expense, when instead they’re an investment. Today’s equipment for car wash businesses has come a long way. Leveling up means getting caught up on how you can be more competitive. It’s worth it!

5. Level Up With Connected Chemistry

Traditional car wash chemistry relies on manual controls. With a fixed ratio of cleaning agents, detergents, and water, this one-size-fits-all approach is often inefficient. It can lead to the overuse or underuse of car wash chemicals. This obviously affects wash quality and profitability.

From an operational standpoint, dosing has usually been a headache, full of inconsistency and frustration. Seasoned carwash owners know the woes of onsite visits, empty reservoirs and lost or clogged dispenser tips. It’s not unusual to have unauthorized “dose ghosts” changing the settings. And no one likes the lack of reporting or chemistry bills that say “surprise!” when they arrive.

Connected Carwash Chemistry helps carwash owners conquer chemistry troubles. This three-component system starts with AccuDose technology available only from NCS, no other carwash equipment suppliers. With 6000 settings, this dispensing system doses more accurately and consistently. The result? Cutting waste and saving up to 27% in chemistry costs. Consistency means cleaner vehicles, greater efficiency and happier customers coming out the other end of your tunnel car wash.

The second part of the system is the NCS Lens System and App. No onsite visits are required to change dosage, nor manual labor to change out tips. An owner can adjust chemistry remotely and dial in efficiency, as well as set permissions and access levels. That way you get complete control and accurate reporting as to who changes what, when and by how much.

The third part of Connected Chemistry involves Ultra Concentrates, covered in detail in the next section.

6. Level Up Your Back Room

When it comes to your literal, physical backroom, nothing makes a bigger difference than making your chemistry…smaller. Ultra-concentrated chemicals minimize mess, spills, and waste, offering a more efficient and cost-effective wash. Replacing traditional 55-gallon drums with gallon jugs reduces shipping costs and handling difficulties. These jugs are easier to manage, leading to savings in time and labor.

Switching to smaller containers frees up valuable space in storage areas, allowing for a more organized and efficient workspace. Ultra Concentrated chemicals shrink your carbon footprint and energy usage, aligning with sustainability goals and appealing to eco-conscious consumers.

7. Switch to Branded Chemistry Customers Prefer

You may not realize it as a car wash owner, but customers notice the products you use behind the scenes. When they recognize brand names they already love and trust, like Armor All® and Rain-X®, it makes a difference in how they view your car wash business. 

Think about it. If you walked into a hotel and saw it used generic soap and shampoo, you might question the quality. But when you see familiar luxury brand bottles, you instantly feel more at ease. Why? You get a sense of familiarity that gives you a positive perception. 

That positive impression translates into greater uptake of your top wash tier and your wash in general. According to a case study major national carwash operator, there was a $1.51 average revenue increase per car with branded chemistry vs. unbranded.

8. Surprise and Delight With Extra Amenities

Level up your wash with “little extras” that customers will drive across town for. Offer free vacuums and a self-serve window detailing station featuring easy-to-use spray bottles, organized towel bins, and a convenient storage cabinet. Stock it with durable, non-abrasive microfiber towels for perfect detailing. Nobody wants to drag around towels or wash them later. Save your customers the trouble!

These additions not only improve the customer experience but also guarantee the cleanest cars, boosting customer loyalty. Eye-catching signage in the vacuum area attracts new members, converting visitors to loyal customers, while efficiently cleaning car interiors. It’s all about the proverbial “surprise and delight,” exceeding customer expectations. 

9. Parts and Maintenance

It’s not rocket science. Proper maintenance equals maximal uptime. (We all know that instinctively, don’t we? It’s just a matter of following through.)

We call it “Leveling Up Your Maintenance” to the standard where it should be. Learn exactly how to save on costs and maximize uptime when you Level Up with NCS.

  • Work with NCS to regularly evaluate the working order of equipment
  • Keep key parts and supplies onsite for quick changeout
  • Be proactive and stay ahead of breakdowns to avoid costly downtime (Connected Carwash technology can help, with Predictive Maintenance and electronically monitored chemistry, water and vacuums to get ahead of breakdowns and downtime)

Level Up Without Downtime

With NCS, you can level up your car wash business quickly, efficiently and smoothly. Our experts can help you revamp everything from your equipment to your branding. We work with the latest and most innovative solutions to provide you and your customers with the best possible wash experience. Contact us to see how we can help your business keep moving forward.

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