There is a trend in retail for discount cards for grocery stores and this has worked well also in the carwash industry. Loyalty type cards work well in carwashes as they do in many businesses and niche service companies. In the mobile auto detailing business there is much use of service programs, where you get your car washed every week and a complete detail at the end of the month. This provides a steady customer base and revenue. This trend is also being applied to the fixed site businesses in the carwash industry. There are a few doing this now.
The scheduled or subscription based carwash programs work well for companies, at least the ones who educate their customers. Mister Carwash (Tucson AZ based) has done a nice job on that. They have unlimited washes for a monthly fee for Carwash detailer Limousine companies, and give away car wash cards to new car buyers, smart move too. In the US; new car sales mimic carwash usage for 3-4 years out. Signing up subscription based carwashes at the point of purchase of the automobile makes sense because that is your largest customer base.
Generally car washing is a good business, if you concentrate on the owners with newer cars although recently consumers have complaints due to fuel prices, which seem to be stretching the consumers and this tends to limit their carwash frequency. A subscription based carwash program can alleviate that issue. But also realize that many consumers are tapped out, max’ed on credit cards, so signing up subscriptions can be problematic, but workable if you understand the customer. You see the car is an extension of one’s personality in so many US Markets; in larger cities in Canada as well. And indeed there are many computerized systems, which are available and most smaller-independents have somewhat similar type systems. We have always liked the carwash card type programs. It makes sense. Think about this.