For roofing contractors, good customer service is arguably one of the most important aspect of a business. The quality of the work you do, and the communication that your sales reps and on-site crews provide has a direct effect on your referrals, reviews and repeat business, all of which can translate into big losses or big wins when it comes to the overall profitability of your business.
In order to maximize the potential of your referrals, roofers and contractors should look to how they approach communication with homeowners. Applying service communication best practices towards homeowner interactions can translate into long-term benefits for your business.
Check out these 4 strategies –
1. Come Prepared to Help Homeowners Understand the Process
The first step to establishing a positive rapport with your potential customer is to make sure that your sales reps or adjusters come prepared to the job site. Although it may seem basic, when a sale rep arrives at the home, they should be one time, know the name of the person they are meeting with, and have already reviewed any notes within the file.
Whether a roof was was damaged in a storm or suddenly has a leak, it’s important to remember that your potential the customer is probably stressed out and unsure of how to proceed. It’s important that the person representing your business is both courteous and patient. While your employees may be up to date on the latest roofing products and terminology, your client has probably never heard of a hip ridge and probably thinks you are joking when you mention turtle vents.
Sometimes it is necessary to break things down and explain what is going on, so be ready to teach the homeowner about what you are doing. A confused homeowner will not likely leave a project feeling content, so educating them about the process and making sure they understand the decisions being made is vital to your customer service.
2. Provide Complete Documentation Quickly
Having a pre-filled digital template and real-time access to material pricing can help your sales reps put together a professional, accurate quote in minutes, instead of hours or even days. These estimates can also be supplemented by providing aerial measurements before an inspection, or taking and annotating photos on-site, so the homeowner has everything they need in order to make a decision.
While you as a roofing business owner may understanding the value of respecting the homeowner, crews or subcontractors may not hold themselves to your high standards. To ensure your crew shows the level of respect you want to see, consider the five tips.
3. Keep the Homeowner Up-to-Date
Informing your client on the step-by-step process of their roofing project upfront should only be the first part of your communication. Once a homeowner has signed a contract, an important part of your ongoing communication needs to include updates throughout the course of the project. Preparing your customer for when certain tasks will be happening, where you are in the course of the project, and any complications you run into, are important to continuing to establish trust that will pay out after a project is completed.
4. Be Respectful of Homeowners
Another way to improve your customer service is to encourage your foremen to manage respectful crews. Everyone likes to be treated with respect and your client is no exception. Not doing so can result in a catastrophe, especially in the business world. Although it seems like common sense, make sure it’s clear to all of your employees ahead of time what kind of respect and professionalism you expect from them. That way, there are no miscommunications or unintentional slip-ups. Doing so will ensure that your client always feels respected and is satisfied with your customer service.
Good Customers Services Translates to Referrals and Online Reviews
The purpose of good customer service comes after a project is completed. Happy clients, who have felt taken care of throughout the process are more likely to recommend you to friends and colleagues, write positive reviews online, and call on your again for other exterior projects.
When a project is finished, consider providing a customer survey along with any final documentation or warranties. Reviews provide direct feedback on your customer service, letting you know what you are doing well at and what you could do better.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask!
Studies show “7 out of 10 customers will leave a review if they are asked to” [source] so don’t be shy!
If something did go wrong during a project, and you’re afraid that a bad review might hurt your reputation – ask and respond! By addressing any negative feedback on social media or reviews sites shows that you are attentive, and care about your reputation.
Improving your customer service is a direct route to increasing referrals and reviews. The better your customer service, the more satisfied your client will be with the job you have done. In addition to this, part of having good customer service is to upsell and make sure your client gets the best products possible, a process that often ends up maximizing the profits from each job.
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