When harnessed smartly, artificial intelligence (AI) can be a selling tool for tire dealers, says Lukas Kinigadner, CEO of Anyline Inc.
“There may be dealers who don’t necessarily need to think about AI that much, especially if their customers tend to be very loyal, where everybody shows up anyway,” he says. “If you have a set-up like that, I think you can still use the tools you currently have.
“But for the vast majority of tire dealers, there needs to be an awareness that things are going to change” as more customers embrace new and emerging technologies like AI, which is rapidly becoming commonplace in other areas of their lives, he explains.
Anyline recently unveiled its new Tire Sidewall Scanner, which captures information on a tire’s sidewall using a smartphone camera. This includes tire size, tire identification number (TIN), tire make/model and other information, which is converted into digital data.
“There are plenty of ways to implement AI” at tire dealerships, according to Kinigadner, who founded Anyline.
“Let’s take the example of when you’re checking a customer’s vehicle. You need to have the make, model and trim (level) readily available to get a full picture of the car. And that means you have to (collect and) enter a lot of numbers. You have to enter the VIN. You might have to enter a tire size. There are a lot of things you have to do in order to prepare and inspect that vehicle – and those things, by the way, aren’t profitable."
Using AI, dealers can “use a smartphone or any device with a camera to capture all of that data and make it available, in an instant, in a digital format. You can capture the sidewall information. You can capture the tread (depth). All of that information can be packaged into a little file and transferred digitally.”
When servicing vehicles, “data is super-important,” says Kinigadner. “By introducing AI, you create that foundation for your business, because now you have the data for it. And once you have that data, you can be proactive with predictive (vehicle) maintenance – being able to ping your customers” when service is required.
“If you have that data, you can make the best suggestions for your customers and really earn their trust.”
Click on the following links to read recent MTD articles about how tire manufacturers, distributors and dealers are using AI: