PMF sits down with Geoff Jones, Managing Director at Optimal UK, to talk about the company’s methods, its commitment to quality and its advice for motor factors.

Q. Just as a brief reminder to our readers, what exactly does Optimal supply to the automotive aftermarket?

Geoff Jones (GJ): We have a great portfolio of products, including our TÜV Certified Steering and Suspension parts, Wheel Bearing Kits, Shock Absorbers, ABS Sensors, and many more. Our new-torange this year has included CV Joints and Drive Shafts, as well as the addition of Dolz Water Pumps, Timing Belt Kits and Trico Wiper Blades. Further information on all product ranges, including Dolz and Trico, can be found by visiting www.rdr.link/FJ002.

Q. Would you say that there is a particular component group that Optimal specialises in? How so?

GJ: All of our product groups are important to us. A good example of this is one of our specialisms, our Wheel Bearing Kits, which are particularly popular. Every wheel bearing is weighed to ensure that the correct parts are in every box. This allows us to give assurance to our customers that our bearings are of high quality, and come with everything required. The TÜV Certification on our Steering and Suspension range is also something we are very proud of. Again, it allows us to emphasise that our products have been tested to a high quality.

Optimal advice

Q. What do customers most commonly like about Optimal products when they give you feedback?

GJ: The high level of quality in all of our product groups is something that keeps our customers coming back to us. Optimal products fit the first time without any issues, and this is important to customers and garages alike. Our brand image is something that is incredibly important to us; we have worked over the years to establish Optimal as a high quality brand that people recognise across the UK and Ireland. When people see our logo on a product, they can rest assured that it is going to be of a high quality.

Q. What would you say are the most common complaints that you receive from customers, and what is the company’s response in dealing with these complaints?

GJ: We have a no quibble guarantee in place. This way, complaints are few and far between. Anything that is brought to our attention is dealt with efficiently, to make sure that the customer is happy. Warranty items are handled on site by a dedicated member of our team, and are dealt with quickly in order to ensure that the customer is satisfied.

Q. Other than products, what support do you offer to your customers?

GJ: We have an ever-developing marketing team at Optimal, which works to get the right information out to customers in the most efficient way. Our regular emails to customers include technical tips, product information, and any range extensions or price changes. We also have regular giveaway offers for our customers, which are advertised via e-mail and social media. Our technical back up on-site gives customers the reassurance that we can give them the best possible help and advice if they contact us with any technical issues or queries.

To make the enquiry and order process easier for our customers, we have our own B2B website. This enables customers to check stock availability, find parts via our VRM look up facility, and manage their accounts easily. We are also able to use this as another marketing platform, which lets customers know about any great offers we have on at the time.

Optimal advice

Q. Is Optimal doing anything to ensure that it is a ‘responsible business’?

GJ: We aim to comply with all waste and environmental regulations, both current and upcoming. Optimal recycles where possible, and is constantly looking for environmentally friendly packaging alternatives to reduce waste. The environment is important to us.

Q. Have you got any tips for motor factors when it comes to stocking and selling products?

GJ: Always try to stock components from credible companies that will give you full support with regular stock updates, accurate cataloguing, and most importantly, quality products. Optimal UK has many ways of supporting customers in terms of correct stock, high quality products and regular updates.

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