The secret to running an efficient shop lies in the purchasing decisions you make. If we look at it closely, the two main options here are going to be:
A) Running with the industry leaders and choosing high quality vendors
B) Buying the cheapest items you can find from anywhere you can
Online shopping is an amazing thing, especially when looking for less common tools and equipment. However, it is extremely important to do your due diligence and shop around before making a purchasing decision. A startling trend we picked up on is that many folks seem to be in a rush to make a purchase. They’ll go online, search something up, and then buy the first thing they find on Google, not knowing fully what they are getting.
If this sounds like you, be very careful.
Since (almost) all software is done on a yearly basis now you’re entering a relationship with your vendor the moment you make that purchase. Depending on who you purchase from, this could either be a great thing or a complete disaster.
Say one day your technician is trying to connect up to a truck but the software tells you “License Invalid”. What’s your next move?
If you made the mistake of purchasing cracked software from some hokey website, there is no next move. You took a risk and lost. Now, while trucks start to back up, you need to spend more time and money getting the REAL software.
Industry leaders won’t set you up with hacked/cracked software out of China or Russia. Any vendor worth their salt is going to exclusively work with factory software for all of the manufacturers.
Diagnostic Software Renewals
Some vendors out there try to use shady tactics to ensure you renew your software with them the following year and prevent you from taking your business elsewhere. In some cases, they even remotely lock your computer or start disabling key functions.
It doesn’t hurt to ask your vendor beforehand how their renewal process works.
The questions below are all valid:
“How does the software renewal process work?”
“What happens if I don’t want to renew the software next year?”
“What happens if I want to renew the software through another vendor next year?”
Switching over to diagnostic laptops, the difference is even more noticeable.
When it comes to software and computer vendors, just because they sell a lot doesn’t mean they are the best. Often times, a vendor will become popular because of their low prices. In order to offer such low prices, they sell low quality computers. To the average shopper, these prices seem too good to pass up. These vendors figure that by the time you realize the computer you just bought is a slow piece of junk, you’ll already have all of your software on it, and be using it daily, thus less likely to return it or complain.
Their gamble seems to have paid off, as we hear from more and more new customers every day that originally bought their computers elsewhere only to realize it is a piece of trash and needs to be replaced.
Sadly, part of the problem is that professionals in the diesel industry don’t always know what to look for when buying a diagnostic laptop. This enables unscrupulous vendors to boost profits and offload truckloads of garbage laptops on unsuspecting victims.
We recently published another article detailing what to look for in a computer here
In conclusion, the best thing you can do for your company is purchase real software from real and reputable vendors. It’s ok to shop around, you don’t always have to buy from the first company that shows up on Google.
There are tradeoffs and compromises everywhere. You may find software or computers online that are extremely cheap, but it’s important to note that they are probably extremely cheap for a reason.