All types of do-it-yourself (DIY) activity have dropped over the past 10 years, according to new research from AASA. A detailed DIY analysis is included in the soon-to-be-released 2006-2007 AASA Automotive Aftermarket Status Report.
Based on consumer surveys conducted by IndustrialMR, AASA grouped service jobs into light, medium or heavy DIY categories. AASA data reveals that between 1995 and 2005, “heavy” DIY activity fell from 33 percent of the jobs in the heavy DIY group to 25 percent; “medium” DIY activity dropped from 35 percent to 28 percent; and the percent of jobs in the “light” DIY service group declined from 54 percent in 1995 to 40 percent in 2005.
According to AASA Executive Director Steve Handschuh, increasing vehicle complexity and changing demographics have led to all three levels of DIY activity declining, with light DIY declining more rapidly than the other two types.
“While still declining, the decreases in the past few years have been slower than in previous years,” Handschuh said. “One possible explanation is the increasing use of the Internet with a corresponding increase in the depth of information that can be found. It is now possible to find step-by-step instructions, along with illustrations, for many service jobs.”
Frank Hampshire, AASA research director, noted that AASA’s DIY estimates are not simply the proportion of retail over-the-counter sales which are the substance of some DIY reports. AASA’s statistics are strictly based on consumer purchases for DIY repairs.
Hampshire also explained that DIY fluctuates with vehicle type, vehicle age, owner age, household income and gender.
“Understanding the DIY market is important for manufacturers in order to segment the aftermarket and allocate resources to appropriate target markets,” Handschuh noted. “For example, the estimated level of DIY activity for some product lines dictates the placement of advertising and the importance of brand awareness.”
The full AASA report is due to be released soon, and can be found at www.aftermarketsuppliers.com