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Podcast

More Than Just Truck Parts with Kelly’s Truck Parts

Learn about how Kelly’s Truck Parts sells more than just truck parts, and how they have benefited from being a member of HAD Truck Pride.

Episode 192: We are in Orlando, Florida at HDA Truck Pride’s Annual Meeting. Over the last few years, we’ve seen the trucking industry evolve at an exponential rate. How have Kelly’s Truck Parts embraced these changes?

My guest today is Ronnie Kelly, the owner of Kelly’s Truck Parts.

Kelly's Truck Parts Logo. In this episode, learn about how Kelly’s Truck Parts sells more than just truck parts, and how they have benefited from being a member of HAD Truck Pride.

Guest Website: KellysTruckParts.com

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Disclaimer: This content and description may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, The Heavy-Duty Parts Report may receive a small commission.

Sponsors of this Episode:

  1. Want to look up parts but don’t have a part number or the VIN? Download Diesel Parts for free on Desktop or on your Apple or Android device.
  2. Looking for high-quality fuel injection for heavy-duty applications? Visit AMBACInternational.com/Aftermarket

Buy Parts:

Are you looking to purchase heavy-duty parts and get your commercial vehicle repaired? Get access to one of HDA Truck Pride’s 750 locations across the United States and Canada. Visit HeavyDutyPartsReport.com/BuyParts.

Transcript of Episode:

Jamie Irvine:

You’re listening to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. And this is the show where you get expert advice about heavy-duty parts that keeps trucks and trailers on the road longer while lowering cost-per-mile. We’re here at HDA Truck Pride’s annual meeting in Orlando, Florida, and we are talking to the independent service channel, getting a chance to meet both members and suppliers. It’s been a great show. I’ve got with me today, Ronnie Kelly, and he is a HDA Truck Pride member. I’m really looking forward to talking to him about what he does, how he helps his customers in the trucking industry. Ronnie, welcome to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report.

Ronnie Kelly:

How are you doing, sir?

Jamie Irvine:

I’m very well. Very well. Thank you for coming on the show. I appreciate it.

Ronnie Kelly:

I appreciate the invite.

Jamie Irvine:

Maybe give us a little background on your company and what are the things that you focus on when you’re selling parts?

Ronnie Kelly:

Well, we focus on really just comradery with our customers and stuff. So we really like to build a big relationship with our customers. That’s really what our mainstay is. We consider ourselves a one stop shop, so we basically have everything they need to keep ’em on the road.

Jamie Irvine:

I was looking at your website and when you go to the website, it’s not just truck parts though. There’s a lot of stuff there. So tell us a little bit about that.

Ronnie Kelly:

So I guess probably three or four years ago, we really started dabbling in some things that our employees were interested in, like grills, guns, ammo, cookers, anything like that. So, and it’s amazing how really the trucking side of it’s really just interested in all those items as well. So it’s been a great add on.

Jamie Irvine:

When I saw it right away, I thought, oh, I’m gonna look forward to talking to this guy. This guy knows what a lot of people in the trucking industry are interested in. So over the years, how have you seen things change and how did you adapt your company to the changes that you’ve seen?

Ronnie Kelly:

Well, as far as adapting to the changes, we really just tried to listen to the customer base and really see what they needed, what they really needed. So, you know, there’s one thing that we really can’t help with is fuel, right? So, and that’s something that’s really driving the market right now. And so it’s really a big concern for everybody. So we try to help on deliveries to keep them from having to come back to the store and we try to have everything in stock that they need. So, you know, they don’t have to come back. Right.

Jamie Irvine:

Right. You know, all the years I sold parts, one of the things I really tried to focus on was helping the fleets figure out ways to lower their total costs. So you’re right, things like fuel, but also in the type of parts that you recommend, right? So how do you take those steps to make sure that when a customer comes in and says, I need, you know, this part, they’re getting the part that they maybe, not necessarily what they ask for, but what they need.

Ronnie Kelly:

Yeah, that’s true. We always try to go the extra mile if they don’t have the part with them, you know, which that’s always the best way is if they have the part with them, but we have great access to all VIN lines and stuff. So we can actually look up their VIN and make for sure that they are getting the correct part. And we usually try to upsell as well. So if they’re coming in for brakes, you know they’re always gonna need oil gaskets and stuff like that. So we try to get ’em the first time around. So they don’t have to make a turnaround trip, or we don’t have to stop what we’re doing to take whatever they need to them.

Jamie Irvine:

You know, my mentor, I can hear him right now in my ears, he’s saying Jamie, sell, them what they need, not what they ask for. So let’s shift gears a little bit. The industry is changing. Things are becoming more complex. What are some of the problems that, you already mentioned fuel, but what are some of the other problems that you hear your customers talking about? Like what are they up against on the street with the fleets, with the owner operators?

Ronnie Kelly:

Right now it’s inventory, you know, besides the fuel prices, it’s inventory, it’s really a struggle to get merchandise in. So, you know, we usually have one supplier for everything, but since COVID, we have to have like three suppliers just to be able to keep the inventory in, you know, to keep them going up and down the road the way they need to be.

Jamie Irvine:

And that makes, that makes it difficult for you, but at the same time, you gotta take care of your customers. So you’ve gotta do what you gotta do.

Ronnie Kelly:

Definitely do.

Jamie Irvine:

We’re just gonna take a quick break. We’ll be right back. Don’t have a heavy-duty part number and need to look up a part? Go to parts.diesellaptops.com or download the app on Apple or Android to create your free account. Looking for high-quality fuel injection for heavy-duty applications? Having one supplier for fuel injection allows you to better serve customers by providing them with a complete line, which increases your sales and profitability. Learn more at ambacinternational.com/aftermarket. We’re back from our break. And before the break, we were talking about some of the innovative ways that Ronnie and his company have come to the market to take care of their customers. We were also talking about some of the challenges that his customers are facing. And I think those challenges are felt everywhere in the industry. We are at HDA Truck Pride’s Annual Meeting. You’re a member of this great organization. What is being a member of HDA Truck Pride, like what has that meant for your business?

Ronnie Kelly:

It meant for our business really opened up a lot of different lines for us. You know, we started out we’re a real small company, one store, and we became an associate dealer, which under associate dealer, we were under a main member. So we weren’t as liable as they would be for, you know, a lot of things. But as we grew and everything, we were able to become a full member. So it opened us up to a lot of lines that we never would’ve been able to get our hands on. So that’s been the blessing it really has.

Jamie Irvine:

And this has always been a people business. I think it’s always going to be a people business. So as you’ve grown in your relationships with people here at HDA Truck Pride, what impact has that had on you personally?

Ronnie Kelly:

Me personally, it’s helped me to be a better customer relations type person. It has. So coming to the meetings like this, you get to meet a lot of new people. You’re not really forced to talk to people, but you definitely get more engaged for sure.

Jamie Irvine:

Well, it’s like anything, the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. If people, we were laughing before we turned on the button and hit record and said, one of us is gonna mess up this website, if people wanna check out, what you’re selling online and I’m telling you, go check it out, because it’s not the same website you see with most parts companies, where do they go? It’s Kellystruckparts.com.

Ronnie Kelly:

It is Kellystruckparts.com and it is like a one stop shop. And he’s right. We’ve got a little bit of everything there for everybody that’s for sure.

Jamie Irvine:

We’re gonna put links in the show notes so that you can go and check it out. This has been The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. We’re at HDA Truck Pride’s Annual Meeting, I’m with Ronnie Kelly, thank you so much for being on the show.

Ronnie Kelly:

You bet. Jamie. Thank you. Appreciate the invite.

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