AutoDelta, one of the most important car parts distributors in Portugal, is using the TecDoc B2B Webshop (TecDoc White-Label Solution with Trade Module) as a solid platform to strengthen its market position and secure its growth.
Digital commerce is becoming increasingly complex. B2B customers have specific needs and expectations that need to be met to attract their business. These expectations range from specific website features to the overall user experience.
Auto Delta is one of the major players in the Portuguese aftermarket. Founded in 1977, the company has a wealth of experience in the trade of car parts and accessories.
We spoke to Marcelo Silva, Chief Operations Officer of AutoDelta, about his view on the industry, challenges of e-commerce and the benefits of Auto Delta’s collaboration with TecDoc.
Tell us about yourself, your business, and which sectors do you cover?
Marcelo Silva: Auto Delta is celebrating its 45th anniversary as one of the main Portuguese car parts distributors. Its long history has been marked by the continuous development of this family company from a small retail store to a wholesale business importing components and distributing them in the national market. Today, Auto Delta’s portfolio makes it a major player in the Portuguese aftermarket, meeting the needs of a car parc in permanent flux and diversification. We guarantee all those who work with us a high-quality response to the challenges that the market faces daily.
When did you implement the TecDoc Webshop? What was your goal?
Marcelo Silva: Auto Delta implemented the TecDoc Webshop way back in 2007 when the need to have a digital presence was still not perceived as essential. Even so, we believed in the product and made this commitment. We did it to diversify our customer base, who could now purchase our products much more easily, but also to allow the entire market to know the real breadth of Auto Delta’s portfolio.
What was Auto Delta’s greatest achievement with the TecDoc Webshop?
Marcelo Silva: The tools and more effective responsiveness that the TecDoc Webshop has provided to us have been essential to achieving our targeted results through the years. The credibility of the TecDoc Webshop and its data, the versatility of use and a better and safer shopping experience for our customers: all these are decisive factors for the success of our business and the tool itself.
How has eCommerce developed in the independent aftermarket in Portugal?
Marcelo Silva: Some years ago, only a few companies were paying attention to eCommerce at all. Others considered it an eccentricity only used in other countries. The truth is that those who are not present in eCommerce simply do not exist. The entry of giant eCommerce platforms that sell these products directly to the end consumer accelerated the digitisation of players that were still out and losing sales opportunities. Those who want to succeed in this market now need to have a B2B eCommerce strategy, well-designed and with realistic goals.
Shifting customer expectations: What changes and challenges do you see now that eCommerce plays an increasingly important role in the aftermarket?
Marcelo Silva: We don’t believe in revolutions but gradual adaptation and subsequent growth processes. That’s why we placed this bet, and for a long time, the adoption was only gradual. The truth is that the pressure from B2C eCommerce platforms is quite high and a great challenge for us. Like any wholesaler, we have to support, explain and sponsor the efforts of our retail partners, who are suffering even more from this pressure. We need to empower them to respond and make a difference in the markets in which they operate.
If you could share your plans and ambitions with us?
Marcelo Silva: Our plans and ambitions are to fulfil the goals of our Auto Delta founders, Armindo Romão and Catarina Luísa. With a lot of effort, they were able to sustain surprising growth. As insiders, we know that it has been based on highly rational financial controls combined with a portfolio that provides solutions for the vast majority of cars in the Portuguese car parc.
TecDoc has initiated its Data Quality Management Initiative (DQM) to ensure that there is more standardisation and better quality data available from parts manufacturers, which will bring lower return rates. Do you see value in this initiative?
Marcelo Silva: No doubt. All tools that allow us to provide better and more secure service to our partners are welcomed by all of us. Data and its quality are essential in any business in the 21st century. Because they have a huge influence on the choice of products, better data quality can lead to an eventual reduction in returns, which is a real scourge in the aftermarket.
In 2021, we introduced new features like the Smart Search or the Multi-Shopping Cart; how would you rate the positive impact of those features on your daily business?
Marcelo Silva: Indeed, the evolution of the platform and the tools made available to all the users keep surprising us. If, on the one hand, Smart Search allows greater security and confidence in the correct identification of parts, the Multi-Shopping Cart allows our business partners to precisely segment the contents of their orders. These innovations increase trust in the platform; they are having a strong impact on the success of Auto Delta’s commercial strategy. Another advantage is in reducing returns, which are a huge logistical and economic problem in our sector.
How would you review your work together with TecAlliance and Tips 4Y through the years?
Marcelo Silva: We can only praise this long-standing partnership. Auto Delta never forgets its partners and is grateful to all of them. Regarding TecAlliance and Tips 4Y, it is important to mention that it has been decisive for the results we have achieved over the many years. Taking this fact into consideration, as well as the continuous investment and innovations in the platform, we can only foresee that this partnership will grow and strengthen for many years to come.