You will have a hard time finding even one person to say they actually enjoy sitting in a waiting room while their car is being repaired. First, it is an inconvenience. Second, the waiting area at most repair shops is small and dreadful. Third, you have to sit there thinking about how much money you are spending by the minute. If you own and manage a repair shop, you may be interested to know that a waiting room is a huge determining factor for many people when trying to decide where to go.


Competition is stiff in this market. So, it is in your best interest to create a waiting room that gives you an edge over your competition. These tips will help.


    1. Electric Fireplace – Why is it that waiting rooms in auto repair shops are always so cold? It’s bad enough that you have to sit there and wait, but to not be able to take off your coat makes it worse. Fair enough, the doors do open and close a lot, so it is probably hard to keep the area cozy. An electric fireplace will help. Customers will love feeling the warmth radiating from it, and you will appreciate that it only costs pennies to operate. You may want to consider an electric fireplace that allows you to turn the heat off, but still create an inviting ambiance with the dancing flame in the summer.


      2. Beverage Station – A simple beverage station will go a long way in keeping customers happy. Set up a table with a coffee maker, cups, sweetener, and nondairy creamer. Make sure you can make hot water and have some tea bags for the tea drinkers. Whoever is working the desk simply needs to keep an eye on the pot to keep it full.


      3. Magazine Selection – Why are 90 percent of the magazines about cars? Few of your customers really care to learn about engines and new advances in airbags. Have a nice assortment of magazines. Maybe your mechanics can bring in the magazines of their wives, girlfriends, and sisters when they are done with them every month.


        4. Water Fountain – The last thing your customers expect to see in your waiting room is a water fountain, which is why it is such a spectacular idea. It makes a strong and lasting first impression and creates a more tranquil environment. Mount one on the wall, so it is out-of-the-way. You may even want to get a logo added.