As anyone who reads this newsletter knows, NSPG is a Flat Rate Price Book software and printed books company. We know what people want in their books and how they want to set up those books. What they actually put in their books is often very different. The fear that business people have in charging a profitable price is apparent to us every day.
Most people in our businesses know that nervous feeling as we present a proposal to a customer when we get to the price.Most people in our businesses know that nervous feeling as we present a proposal to a customer when we get to the price. The fear of being challenged because the price is too high is something that every field tech needs to overcome. That’s where flat rate books that offer a range of separate Task options for each job can smooth out most price objections. The choice isn’t between that’s too expensive and do it. The choice is between options A, B, and C each with a different price and service level.
What we see every day is the different fear that the business manager deals with when it’s time to update his price books.
Often the response we get is that they will try to wait just a few more months before they print another set of books. They choose to continue to see their profits decrease rather than take the small amount of time needed to reprint their price books with new, profitable numbers.
We often remind them how much the price of gas has gone up since their last books were printed. How much material costs, health insurance, workman’s comp, utilities, and all the dozens of other components of their costs have gone up. Each of these items adds a small amount to your cost of doing business. Put together, they can add up to tens of thousands of dollars.
Can anyone really afford to lose that kind of money while they wait to update their books?
Sometimes our clients choose to take money out of their own pockets, and continue to charge their customers last year’s prices. As long as they can stay busy enough, the ever smaller profits they earn will allow them to scrape by until they get around to printing new price books.
Most of the time our clients take a hard look at the numbers, and realize that they cannot afford to wait. They calculate their profitable prices, and they print the new books.
And how do their customers respond to the new price books?
They just notice that they had a choice that saved them money and gave them what they wanted.They choose Task B because it saves them some money over Task A, and offers better benefits than Task C. They don’t even notice the price change. They don’t notice that the new price books give the business the few dollars more that it needs to keep running efficiently. They just notice that they had a choice that saved them money and gave them what they wanted.
Now, if you truly feel that your company offers good value to your customers and you’re making plenty of profit at exactly the price in you current books, then don’t print a new set of price books. But just about everything costs your business more today than when you last printed your price books. The fear that you should feel when considering new books is not that your customers will object. You should fear that your business will become unprofitable and weaker because you aren’t charging the right amount.
Your employees who don’t do a good sales job because they are afraid your prices are wrong could be right, but for the wrong reason. Out of date price books are a hazard to your business. If you’re books don’t reflect your real profitable prices, your employees’ future is at risk too.
We have found that the businesses that are confident in the value they offer their customers are willing to print that new set of price books when the time is right. They share that confidence with their employees, so they are not reluctant to sell the correct job to the customer. Balancing your profitability with the value your business offers can reduce the fear associated with your pricing for both management and your field techs.
So, if it’s been a while since you printed new price books, open up Numbers Cruncher and the Price Guide, and get your up to date books on the street. Be sure that your techs understand the value of the quality service you offer. This will translate into happier, more productive techs, satisfied customers, and a stronger business.