Impressing customers can be difficult, especially when juggling many jobs at once that require your full attention. But with some planning and method, you can streamline a process that allows you to consistently offer great customer service, thus impressing your customers and making them happy to have hired you, which is a fantastic position to be in.
The process itself isn’t very complicated either, it’s all a matter of having certain routines outlined and ready to go whenever you need them. Let’s discuss what those are and how you can put them to good use!
Quick and free estimates
Estimates should always be free. It’s nearly impossible to find a homeowner who would reasonably agree to paying before any work is done, so estimates should always be quick and free.
Of course, it’s understandable why contractors would pay a fee for an estimate – these can take time to write down, which is time you’re taking away from your work day that could be more profitable.
The solution is to streamline your estimates as much as possible. Write down a “good for all” template that you can quickly edit for the services you provide. This will ensure you can reliably send estimates fast and without losing so much time writing them down.
Set expectations with room to impress
It might be tempting to set a deadline for as close as possible as a way to impress a customer starting from the estimate, but that’s a promise too risky to make most of the time. Think of it this way: if anything goes wrong – especially if it’s something out of your control – your deadline is now compromised.
It’s wise to set expectations with a bit of room to impress. You can set good expectations that you can realistically surpass, like finishing a job a day early, for example.
People love getting stuff for free, so if you can invest in pens, notebook, calendars or fridge magnets with your brand to leave with homeowners as a small token, that goes a long way.
These are especially useful as a way to get referrals – if anyone close to a homeowner you’ve serviced needs a job, they can quickly find your number or address to send it forward, since it will likely be near their desk or their fridge.
The follow up call is an excellent way to exceed expectations, and this goes both for when a homeowner requests you to call again later, or when you follow up on a job to make sure they are satisfied with your services.
Deal with problems immediately
One of the worst things you can do as a professional is to sideline problems in the hopes they’ll go away. It might be uncomfortable to deal with certain problems, especially when they originate from the customer, but trying to pretend they don’t exist is even worse.
If a customer has a problem with your services, it’s better to deal with it right away and do whatever you can to ensure that customer is pleased. You might have to go out of your way, but a happy customer can easily hire you again and refer you to others, while an unhappy one will never do business with you again and usually doesn’t mind telling others they were unsatisfied with your business. The first alternative is better by miles.
Reply promptly whenever a customer reaches you
And this goes for phone calls, emails, social media messaging – anywhere they might reach out.
Social media in particular is where lots of people can easily find you and send messages. While it’s unrealistic to expect you to reply the second you get a message (given how busy contractors tend to be) it’s at least a good idea to set a few moments aside every day to check and reply to those during work hours. It’s an important step in managing your online reputation.
Another important step here is to reply to customer reviews you receive, whether they’re positive or negative. If they’re positive, you can simply thank the homeowner for their words of gratitude, and if they’re negative, take the time to apologize and try to make amends with that homeowner. This is important because reviews are public, and nothing looks worse on your homepage than a negative review that goes unanswered.
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