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Dealer Support

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mowerman90, Mar 12, 2007.

  1. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,491

    I imagine that any of you who read the title to this thread were expecting to hear me rant about lawn guys not supporting their dealers. Well, that's not what this thread is about. It's about dealers not supporting us, their customers. Last week I strolled into my local dealer only to find out that he was dropping his Echo line of handheld equipment. I thought, oh well, I don't have much Echo equipment anyway and don't plan on getting anymore. Upon questioning him he revealed that he was not only not going to sell any more of their equipment but was also not going to be able to get any of their parts! While it doesn't effect me, it will effect many lawncare providers in my area. One of my friends asked me what he should he do if he needs parts for his Echo hedge trimmer, his edger, or his chainsaw? I guess he'll have to drive to another county to get parts and warranty work or get stuff over the internet. It seems that my dealer, who carried Stihl, Echo and in years past Redmax and Kawasaki, was asked by Stihl to drop all other lines and concentrate on selling only Stihl. I don't know if this is true or not but Stihl has pretty much overtaken his store. Or, maybe my dealer is mad at the Echo distributor, I don't know and probably never will. But it effects my productivity. Why should we be expected to maintain loyalty to any one dealer when they do things like this? In the past he has carried Dixie Chopper, Cub Cadet, Walker, Toro, Exmark, and Hustler. Now he only carries Hustler, Exmark and Walker. How would you feel if you just bought a new Echo backpack, edger, trimmer, and hedge trimmer and now had nowhere to buy parts or get service for them? I know I'd be a little ticked-off. I think from now on I'm going to buy wherever I can find what I want the cheapest and not worry about supportiing my dealer anymore. Why should I, he's not supporting me!

    WALKER LANDSCAPE LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,413

    I agree totally. The turn over rate is getting slower at our dealer too. I guess there is so many MA and POP LCOs now a days. LOL Save us money or time Hmmm. No brainer
  3. tallimeca

    tallimeca LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,229

    there are many reasons for dealers to drop lines. It's one of the hardest thing for a dealer, just for the reason you stated, but it's not always up to the dealer. Sometimes lines are pulled from them and they don't have a say.

    As of recent, John Deere is pulling out of many dealerships all over the country. They don't want small guy dealerships anymore. Dealers who have invested in Deere for 20 plus year, rug pulled right out from under them.

    To be a dealer, the manufacturers require you to sell the product, service the product, stock parts for the product.

    The reason is because they don't want a guy who isn't promoting Echo, selling and serviceing echo, to be able to sell parts over the counter for echo. This is the same for most every manufacturer.

    Echo is set up by distributors, so maybe the distributor in that area was asking your dealer to buy more than they could sell. Maybe their distributor was not paying them fair reimbursement for warranty repair?

    A manufacturer like Stihl wouldn't tell your dealer to drop Echo. They can't legally do it for one. Maybe your Dealer was selling more Stihl then Echo and decided to downsize to make things easier?

    Dealers dropping line happens all the time. You can't be everything to everyone. Sometimes dealers have to make concious buisness decisions to do what is best for them, and sometimes it hurts customers, but might be better for them in the long run.

    What I would do if i had to drop one of my major lines, is still offer parts and service to guys that bought the equipment from me. I would order the parts in from another dealer, basically do the leg work for you. Might end up costing you a little bit more, but it's done.

    Don't be too down on your dealer for this. It happens regularly.
    Usually when a dealer drops a line, the distributor sends a salesman out to the next closest dealer to offer him the line.
  4. newz7151

    newz7151 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Tejas
    Messages: 2,419

    #1: Echo will not set up dealers as "service only" dealers. You either sell the product with it, or no go.

    #2: If your buddy needs parts, tell him to find a local Home Depot store and make them sell him the parts. Until Echo starts letting the **** flow both ways and will set up a dealer as a service only station just like Home Depot is pretty much just a new unit sales location without service, then expect for this to happen. Maybe Echo dealers are just now waking up to the way Echo thinks about them. HD is allowed to sell product online and ship it out, independant Echo dealers are forbidden to by the dealer agreement. HD can discount their stuff at the end of the year to a price almost below what an independant dealer pays for the stuff from his distributor, so why should the dealer care where people are going to get service once he drops Echo? Sure, it's bad for you guys that bought from him, but you can't expect him to stay with something that is probably losing him money and go out of business because of it. There's just so much crap that a dealer has to deal with concerning the OEM, and you consumers just will never see it or care to see it.

    I think this is my final post.
  5. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,808

    im glad i have an outstanding relationship with my dealer! he realy goes out of his way.
  6. gene gls

    gene gls LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,213

    I agree with this post.. My dealer has made changes in the past, not to his likeing, but the floor plans are getting bigger and bigger. A lot of times the MFG's want items displayed that just will not sell in certain areas. In fact, Exmark is putting the squzze on him right now. My dealer has top notch service, so I will buy what ever he carries as long as it will do my job.
  7. tallimeca

    tallimeca LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,229

    Again, this isn't just Echo, this is everyone. And again, Echo is sold to dealers through a distributer. They make the call.

    There are 2 other posts that popped up like this one concerning Toro and someone else. Happens all the time.

    You think you are pissed, what about the dealers? You don't they are happy honestly do you?

    Dealers make money on parts and service, not on equipment sales. So if they loose a line, or give up a line, all the parts and service they would be making money on for the equipment they sold is going down the street to the next shop. Don't be foolish.

    I gave up Bunton because their distributor sucked in plain english. They cost me thousands and cost my customers thousands. Didn't stock crap worth of parts.......weren't sending out service bulletins for problems.........weren't covering warranties, so i was fixing the stuff for nothing to keep good customer relations. Finally I said this isn't helping me, it's costing me. I sold off what I had at a discount and told the buyers i was getting rid of the line. I honored the warranty for anything that broke while under warranty, and I'd order parts for anything I sold. Anyone who had equipment from other dealers was on their own. So here I am, dropping the line, and i'm still paying out of pocket because of them.

    Dealers dropping lines , or loosing lines is a financial hit.

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