For over a dozen years,
NSPG has been providing the tools that allow contractors to
increase profits and minimize business hassles. With our
simple-to-use-tools, you can make being a business owner
what you always wanted to it be -
successful, profitable and rewarding.
New Competition - Your Response
Last month we discussed a topic that frequently comes up
during quarterly Phone Review sessions with Numbers
Cruncher users. Price competition is becoming a
real concern for even the most successful businesses.
Once you have measured the changes in your business
performance, calculated your new breakeven, and ordered
your new Printed
Price Books, what comes next?
If you have a temporary lower close rate due to price
competition, you need to increase the number of calls
you get. That way, even if you close a lower
percentage, you can maintain your technicians'
productivity at a profitable level. So, you need
to get that phone ringing. When you interact with
your customer base, you need to project a professional
image and make them an offer that will get them to
choose your company.
Here are a few tips to get you started in the right
your potential customers something for free. It
can be a free safety inspection, a 90 day membership in
your service club, a free water alarm with every water
heater install, or anything that is appropriate to your
business. The idea is to invest a little bit to
reap a big reward. Once they see how good your
service is, you open the door to more business.
Offer Great Service:
Even when competition gets a little tougher, give your
customers more than they expect. Great service
will earn you word of mouth business that is even more
important than ever. Make sure your techs know
what you expect from them when they interact with your
customers. A sullen or obnoxious tech can ruin
Great service and a great customer experience naturally
feed into the upsell. If the customer called to
fix a leak in a clearly outdated fixture, offer to
replace it instead. Highlight the added benefits
of replacement like improved performance and
reliability, and longer warranties. An upsell can
be a create a win-win situation. Again, a little
bit of technician training can lead to big results.
Know your Customers:
Your customers don't view your business and the services
you provide that way you do. In order to earn
their trust and their business, you need to know what
they're thinking. Develop a standard set of
questions that your techs can use to draw the customer
out, and learn what you need to do to satisfy them.
This will allow the technician to respond with the
solution that will earn the job, and get it done the way
the customer expects.
Your customers don't want
to see you, ever!
To most of them, their mechanical systems are a complete
mystery. This means that when they have to call
you, they already have a problem. They're
stressing out about the problem because they don't know
how things work. They don't know how to fix it, or
what it should cost.
It's your job to let them know that you can make the
problem go away, and that you're not going to take
advantage of them. Projecting confidence,
competence, and general good will, can relieve their
stress. At that point, they can make the decision
to have you do the job.
Close the Deal:
Your techs must be able to get the customer to agree to
have the work done. This can be as simple as
writing up the work order projecting the confidence that
it is the right thing to do. A two or three
sentence script can help your tech to naturally
transition into the work order phase, and make the
decision easy for the customer.
Don't Give Up:
We all know that your techs will not close every sale.
Let them know that it's OK to lose one now and again.
Track their performance, and use the numbers as
encouragement for your top performers. Use the
numbers to identify anyone who does not sell as well,
and do a little extra training to get them more
comfortable with your sales process.
All of these tips are designed to improve the numbers of
calls you get, and improve your close rate and invoice
total when you do get the call. They are designed
to yield positive results over the long term by
improving your company's reputation and improving the
skills of your employees.
The bottom line is that the business is changing every
day. You need to be aware of the changes and make
adjustments to meet the new challenges. Using
proven techniques to improve customer acquisition,
technician close rates, and your company's reputation
can help you weather the times when competition grows
and the market slows.
Knowing your numbers, and keeping control of your costs
can help you in good times and bad. The numbers
will even tell you where you need to make changes and
improvements by refocusing your attention on the parts
of the business that need it most. Preparation and
training can improve your business performance in any
Measure Monthly, Adjust Quarterly
& Achieve Annual Profit Goals
The need for trained solar power installers will grow
rapidly over the next few years. This may be a
real opportunity for your business.
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The never ending debate may be settled soon..
The Plumber and Barry Bonds