Cell phone repair businesses are opening at a brisk pace to keep up with the growing
demand from consumers, particularly smartphone users seeking to fix fragile LCD
touchscreens, inaccessible batteries and other breakable parts. In the last year alone,
more than 100 new cell phone repair businesses have opened. The bulk of the
business in 2017 was screen repair and replacement (54.7%), followed by button and
headphone jack repair and replacement (16.0%), according to IBISWorld.
It’s also important to note that cell phone repair businesses do more than their name
describes. In addition to repairing cell phones, they repair tablets, computers, drones,
etc. The business owners know that, in order to stay competitive, they must be able to
fix whatever device the customer brings in. As homes become more connected, cell
phone repair shops have to be ready to scale and repair the latest devices.
However, with so many new businesses entering this growing market, the landscape
is becoming more fiercely competitive. Cell phone repair remains a relatively
unconsolidated sector without industry standards, inhabited by mostly single-location
dealers battling it out among themselves, as well as with larger wireless chains that
also offer repair services. At the same time, in an age of convenient online shopping,
consumers now expect quicker delivery and more personalized messaging.
Some other business hurdles also are challenging cell phone repair operators:
Price competition is tough for any independent business, while demands for quick
turnarounds mean replacement parts need to be on hand and quality control is
key. Inventory management and financial discipline can quickly become critical as
the business grows; and taking in a repair and customer service may require more
structure as demand increases.