By Karin White
Nielsen/NetRatings reported that in January 2006, approximately 69 percent - 205 million - of the United States' population of 299 million people used the Internet.
Ninety-nine percent of ASA collision repair facilities, and 94 percent of mechanical shops, access the Internet to communicate and retrieve business-related material. Fifty-six percent of collision shops and 53 percent of mechanical respondents confirmed operating a Web site. Both collision members (43 percent) and mechanical members (38 percent) report their established Web site is used for attracting customers.
Eighty-one percent of collision shops used high-speed connections (made up of DSL, Cable and ISDN) to access the Internet. The primary uses for the Internet in 2005 include e-mail (88 percent), accessing service repair information (72 percent), staying updated with industry news (58 percent) and product research (55 percent). Collision professionals choose Web-based technical training at a rate of 33 percent, and an average of 23 percent of collision shops train managers online.
In 2005, 77 percent of mechanical shops used high-speed connections to access the Internet. The primary uses include accessing service repair information (90 percent), communicating through e-mail (76 percent) and ordering and tracking parts (65 percent). Fifty-one percent of survey respondents indicate product research and 50 percent of respondents indicate tool/equipment purchases will free time and offer the best price, thus keeping costs down.
You're not alone if you've asked yourself, "What did I do before the age of the Internet?" Those few members reporting no Internet access will soon follow and ponder the same question, reaching out to the more than 205 million surfers in the United States.