Exactly which spare parts are our customers searching for? Which parts do they need when and in which countries? For which vehicles are parts being searched for? PMs (Parts manufacturers) can now get answers to these questions with the new Analytics Manager module – Demand Dashboard from TecAlliance. The business intelligence module enables targeted optimisation of a company’s product portfolio and supports valid data-driven decisions. Dr. Bartosch Belkius, Vice President Analytics, and Jens Störmer, Product Owner Demand Dashboard, explain the new tool. This is one of the most comprehensive business intelligence solutions in the independent automotive aftermarket (IAM), thanks to its available data.
What is this Demand Dashboard and why was it launched?
BB: Data-driven business models promise considerable potential. Data helps us to understand how markets work, how certain customer segments operate, how product characteristics can be improved or distribution channels made more efficient. It is becoming increasingly important for suppliers in the IAM to use our data to understand how the market works.
With the new Demand Dashboard module, we offer our data suppliers standardised data analysis that is based on the search behaviour of users in the TecDoc Catalogue, one of the world’s leading spare parts catalogues. Moreover, searches in the attached web service, through which traders fill up their individual spare parts catalogues with TecDoc data, are also included in the analysis. To start, the emphasis is on Europe. In the future, we plan to integrate more data resources and regions into the Demand Dashboard.
This database makes the Demand Dashboard one of the most comprehensive business intelligence solutions currently available to the independent automotive aftermarket. Our mission is to provide a global view of the market to our customers.
JS: Demand Dashbaord is a cloud-based web solution. The module can be used worldwide without any installation or hosting effort. It supports simultaneous use by multiple users.
How was the Demand Dashboard developed?
BB: We transformed our company into an agile organisation at the end of 2018. “Agile transformation” means that all teams, processes and the IT landscape at TecAlliance are set up to develop digital solutions for our customers in a more flexible and focused manner. The Demand Dashboard was developed in an agile process.
JS: As a team, we first examined some practical application scenarios and determined which information would be useful to reliably map the demand for a certain product. With UX-Designers, we have integrated appropriate methods of data aggregation with a practical, user-friendly presentation. We always had the specific needs of manufacturer product managers in mind. They want to launch new products in the market and optimise their existing portfolios. You can use the Demand Dashboard to make better and smarter decisions.
Which customer groups benefit from using the Demand Dashboard?
BB: Suppliers can learn more about their customers’ needs with the help of the analysis capabilities of Demand Dashboard. They can gain deeper insights into their markets – quickly, easily and cost-effectively. With this data, TecAlliance data suppliers can uncover previously untapped business potential, optimise and target their product portfolios, systematically expand their presence in the independent automotive aftermarket and justify purchasing and planning decisions with valid data.
JS: To be precise, the Demand Dashboard aims to reach all TecAlliance data suppliers. This includes large players and small and medium-sized manufacturers of spare parts. The module can be used as a cost-effective stand-alone solution, but the reports can also be transferred to users’ own systems with an export function. For instance, reports can be linked to other data sources, which in turn facilitates more complex evaluations up to machine learning-based analysis, such as pattern recognition.
It is conceivable to correlate the demand for windscreen wipers for a particular model in a particular country with weather forecasts for today and tomorrow. Or to combine the demand for specific wear parts for a specific vehicle model with data on registration figures, maintenance intervals, kilometrage, economic development and weather data to more accurately predict future sales.
To tackle complex projects such as predictive analytics, you need to record the current situation as a basis to predict the future. This is the data we deliver with the Demand Dashboard. We show ‘today’ so that our customers have the foundation to make the right decisions tomorrow.
Currently we are working hard to make a version of the Demand Dashboard available as soon as possible to IAM parts traders. More information will come soon!
How exactly does a query in the Demand Dashboard work?
JS: Queries are easy to create and can be configured individually. Filter options are available for “generic articles”, i.e. the product or product group – e.g. brake discs, as well as by time period, country or region.
A parts manufacturer can get an initial overview of demand for its most important products in different markets. Clicking on an individual brand, product or vehicle takes the user to the detailed view, with additional information and drill-downs. How often has this spare part been selected in the individual categories? How often and through which article number (article number, OE number or rival’s article number) or vehicle search? This makes it easy to identify seasonal or regional bestsellers, which aids precise production planning.
Product managers can rely on the results from the Demand Dashboard. The solution identifies a search as relevant when users click on items from the search results and look at them in detail. To us, this signals a clear interest to assign to the respective brand.
How can PMs buy the new Demand Dashboard?
JS: The Demand Dashboard will be available for sale at the end of March 2019. Further information about the Analytics Manager solution and its modules Demand Dashboard and PMA (Product Management Analytics) can be found on our website.
Manufacturers interested in the Demand Dashboard can see the potential for improvement in the visibility and findability of their products by looking at selected sample analysis linked to other TecAlliance data, such as OE Data or TecDoc Catalogue data packages. We are happy to advise those who are interested and discuss the next steps. Just contact us!
If a parts manufacturer is still not a TecAlliance data supplier, that would be the first step. In order to provide its own article data and become part of the TecDoc Catalogue, an interested supplier should fill out the contact form.