How tradespeople can wow with their customer experience
Maintaining good customer relationships is essential to any business, particularly to that of a tradesperson.
If you work in the trades you will know that word of mouth and references are key to maintaining a strong clientele. Here are some tips designed to ensure your customers are getting the best possible experience.
Offer design solutions
Keeping in touch with the latest designs will have a positive impact on your recommendations, and therefore your customer’s experience.
Having the ability to tastefully style a renovation will set you apart and potentially save your customers from having to hire an outside designer to help with the project. In many cases, customers have an idea of what they want, whether that be an image or perhaps a couple of things picked out. If the customer has their heart set on a particular tile or product, keep it in mind when selecting other appliances and furniture to ensure the overall aesthetic fits what they are looking for.
Having the ability to offer advice is great, but at the end of the day the customer has the final say. For projects where you are given more creative freedom, be sure to take photos of the finished product and add it to your portfolio for prospective customers.
Be ready to answer questions
It is natural for customers to ask a ton of questions before their project begins – after all, they are investing their hard earned money into their homes and expecting a great result. Some common questions will address budgeting, technicalities, and the levels of disruption they should expect.
Having an organised approach and a thorough understanding of what your customer is looking for will allow you to provide accurate time estimates and decide upon products and appliances that suit their budget. Have some materials and products in mind and bring your customers to view them in the flesh.
For bathroom showroom bookings commonly used by traders, see iflo’s showroom locator — all iflo products are exclusive to City Plumbing Supplies and Travis Perkins.
Navigate unreasonable requests
Every tradesperson has dealt with their share of tough customers, from the know-it-alls to the extreme budgeters. As frustrating as it can be, dealing with difficult customers is an important part of the job.
For customers who are looking for an unmanageably cheap but extravagant finish, it is good practice to put together and show them a full breakdown of the budget before beginning the project.
When handling an unreasonable request, keep in mind that your customer thinks the request is reasonable, likely due to their limited knowledge of building projects. Having some empathy will allow you to help the customer understand where you are coming from. Ask them for their reasoning behind the request, and then calmly explore alternatives. Never underestimate the power in apologising to an upset customer.
Keep the customer informed
Having a transparent and organised approach leads to a better customer experience. Making customers’ lives as easy as possible by minimising their workload while keeping them informed about the project is a good way to keep them happy.
At the end of the day, every tradesperson is going to have to deal with some unhappy customers, but it is your skill and diplomacy in dealing with them that will make you stand out.
Photo credit: Ulrich Dregler