Auto parts businesses have to deal with Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard (ACES) if they want to remain competitive in the industry. This standard is important because it helps ensure that businesses share accurate fitment data. The year, make, and model fitment information for all of a firm’s goods will have to be managed. This poses several obstacles in terms of how businesses utilize and exchange this data and the development of their websites, warehouses, and sales operations online or in a retail store.
It’s also noteworthy to mention that ACES was created by the Auto Care Association (ACA), formerly known as the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA). ACES enables businesses to sell their components through an internet store. They accomplish this by keeping track and exchanging part numbers and fitment data among subscribers. They provide a global standard (common language) for the entire aftermarket industry to work with. Today, there are over 500,000 members utilizing these guidelines in their daily lives.
In this article, we will discuss what ACES is and how it affects the auto parts business.
What is ACES?
The Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard (ACES) is a car aftermarket industry standard for catalog applications data management and exchange. Manufacturers will be able to send and receive product data using globally accepted vehicle apps. These include makes, years, models, part types, and other similar parameters.
In more broad terms, the ACES product data standard comprises component data in the form of brand, part number, part type, and other fitment information that identifies which vehicles, vehicle features, and specific drive positions these parts fit. As a result, this fitment information will include things like automobile make, model, year, submodel, transmission gearbox, or engine type.
ACES data is divided into two databases as follows:
- The Vehicle Configuration Database (VCdb) – This database contains more than 60,000 combinations of year/make/model cars and trucks from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. These can be traced back to 1896 for US automobiles and trucks. The data for Canada and Mexico goes back to 1942 and 1961, respectively. In terms of Powersports vehicles, the VCdb’s earliest models date back to 1920. This database is updated and maintained by the Auto Care Association approximately once a month. It’s crucial to note that no ACES data will be found in any parts that are generic and don’t have a precise fitment. ACES is the link between a part number and a particular vehicle that may be found in the vehicle configuration database. Those who want to utilize it will need access. Fortunately, there are two subscription levels available, with each level covering a different set of automobiles, light-duty trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of 1 to 3, and motorized bicycles. All medium and heavy-duty vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 4 to 8.
- The Parts Configuration Database (PCdb) – The PCdb (Parts and Categories Database) is part of the ACES standard. It contains a list of all component types and categories, as well as replacement parts, service items, and other similar goods available in the aftermarket industry. This database will make it easier for manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to build their vehicle catalogs. Automobile owners can use this database to compare the components they need for their cars more simply. When goods are categorized accurately, there will be far fewer errors and interpretive gaps in terms of how each item should be used. As a result, the customer experience will also improve.
The ACES platform is a worldwide network of experts and practitioners in the auto industry. The Automotive Club Association provides an XML-format version of ACES for subscribing members. Each ACES XML file will include information about one brand. Aftermarket companies should validate all their fitment data against the ACES standard to ensure that it is accurate. “Application holes” is a term used in the business when there’s vehicle fitting data missing.
What is Fitment Data?
Auto parts manufacturers and distributors have always had to deal with the challenge of ensuring that the right part goes to the right vehicle. Different models of cars can require different parts, even if they are of the same make and year. This is especially true for aftermarket parts, which may not be as common as original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts.
One way that auto parts businesses manage this complexity is by using fitment data. Fitment data is a comprehensive set of information about a particular part and its compatibility with various vehicles. It includes both technical data about how the part fits into the car and marketing data about what other components or features it will work with.
The Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard (ACES) was created to help auto parts businesses manage fitment data. ACES is a standard for exchanging fitment data between businesses, and it includes detailed information about part compatibility. Using the ACES standard makes it easier for businesses to find and share fitment data. It also ensures that all of the data is in a consistent format, which makes it easier to use.
Auto parts manufacturers and distributors who want to participate in the ACES program must meet certain requirements, including submitting their catalogs in an electronic format that complies with the standard.
ACES and Fitment Data
Auto parts businesses have to deal with Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard (ACES) if they want to succeed in the industry. The standard is important because it helps ensure that parts fit correctly on vehicles, but what does ACES include, and how does it work?
The Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard was created by the Auto Care Association and the Specialty Equipment Market Association. It includes data about vehicle make, model, year, and engine information. This data is used to create a catalog of parts that will fit specific vehicles. When auto parts retailers use this catalog, they can be sure that the parts they are selling will fit on the cars and trucks their customers drive.
One of the benefits of using ACES fitment data is that it helps reduce the number of returns that retailers receive. When parts don’t fit on vehicles, it can be costly for businesses to have to send those parts back and issue refunds. ACES helps prevent this by ensuring that the correct parts are being sold in the first place.
Auto Parts businesses that don’t use ACES may be at a disadvantage because they won’t have access to the same parts catalog as their competitors. This could lead to more returns and dissatisfied customers.
Auto parts businesses need to understand how ACES works and how it can benefit their business. Using ACES, companies can ensure that they sell the right parts to their customers and prevent costly returns. For more information about ACES, visit the Auto Care Association website.
The Benefits of Using ACES
There are many benefits of using ACES in the automotive aftermarket industry. Among those benefits, we can include:
- The standard helps ensure that parts fit correctly on vehicles, which reduces the number of returns retailers receive.
- It makes it easier for businesses to find and share fitment data.
- The data is in a consistent format, making it easier to use.
- ACES includes data about vehicle make, model, year, and engine information
- ACES helps reduce the number of returns that retailers receive
- Auto Parts businesses that don’t use ACES may find themselves at a disadvantage
- Reduced costs associated with managing and distributing fitment data
- Businesses must meet certain requirements to participate in the ACES program, including submitting their catalogs in an electronic format that complies with the standard.
When it comes to ACES and the auto parts business, it’s important to understand the benefits of using the Aftermarket Catalog Exchange Standard. By doing so, companies can ensure that they are selling the right parts to their customers and preventing costly returns. Likewise, businesses that don’t use ACES may find themselves at a disadvantage in the industry.
If you are an auto parts manufacturer, distributor, or retailer, it is important to understand how ACES works and how you can benefit from using it. For more information about ACES and its benefits, contact us today!