New showroom is helping Watton car salesman run a ‘24/7’ business

Fresh Motors founder Jacob Freshwater. Picture: Ian Burt

Fresh Motors founder Jacob Freshwater. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Archant

Starting a new business can be a daunting prospect, but one Norfolk used car salesman is pushing his high-growth firm from strength to strength to meet rising demand.

Jacob Freshwater, founder of Fresh Motors in Watton, has seen sales accelerate quickly since launching his business in 2016.

Now, just two years after incorporating the business the 23-year-old has been able to move from a small office with a modest storage space to new 6,000 sq ft indoor showroom.

Mr Freshwater explained that the new showroom, opened in March, meant the business was able to focus on the customer experience.

'All our stock is now under one roof, designed around the consumer so when customers come in it's comparable to somewhere like Car Shop,' he said.

'It helps put customers at ease and I think it's all a bit more subtle – the atmosphere does a lot of the sales.

'By virtue of our new premises, we can conduct viewings anytime of day or weather, allowing flexibility to the customer, which we find popular for after-work and evening viewing appointments.

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'We can really run the business 24/7 and that is a massive boost for us.'

Since moving to the new showroom, University of East Anglia graduate Mr Freshwater said trade has continued to increase.

Now in its third trading year, the company turned over £250,000 in its first year and increased this five-fold to £1.3m in its second.

The company also won the Rising Star award at the 2018 Autotrader retailer awards. It was one of six retailers to win the accolade, which recognises growth, out of a shortlist of 1,500.

He said: 'The conversion rate is high when customers come down because the room creates a professional atmosphere. We have increased stock, day-to-day has increased as has revenue.'

Using channels such as Auto Trader and Gumtree to direct customers to the Fresh Motor website and showroom, the business has seen its commercial side of sales grow to match the used car side of the business.

Mr Freshwater said: 'The business is 50/50 between commercial and car sales. They're completely different customers, one is very practical and the other is more emotional but we've been able to build up the commercial side because the demand is there.'

This year Mr Freshwater is hoping to take on his second employee, alongside his brother Isaac, to help with the growing workload – but added that he would like to see more automation in the business.