With customers and prospects in today’s marketplace cutting budgets and slashing costs, contractors are faced with ever shrinking profits, lower margins and higher cleaning requirements from customers. It is across the nation and not going away anytime soon.
So what do customers really want from you? Here are a few tips that will help you be on the winning side every time:
- Respect and Recognition. Nothing sounds better to a customer than his or her own name. Use it throughout your conversations and communications with customers. They love to hear it.
- To be listened to with empathy and understanding. Hear what the customer is saying to you. Don’t assume you know what they want. Listen and HEAR, then act.
- Satisfaction (find a solution to their problem). Even if you don’t have the solution to the problem, take care of the customer by finding an alternative or someone who can address the problem. You will retain your positive relationship with the customer by doing so.
- Trust and Trustworthiness. Human beings are hardwired to want and need trust in a relationship. Show your trustworthiness by doing what you say you will do. Never willingly brush off the concerns of a customer.
- To feel important. When we treat each customer as if he/she is our only customer, the level of satisfaction and important rises.
- A quality service for a fair price. While some customers are price only, many want a quality service and are willing to pay a fair price for it.
Customers know when you care. Over 68% of the customers who stop doing business with you do so because of poor service or miscommunication. Something as simple as a negative tone of voice or not solving a customer’s needs adequately can make the difference between a satisfied customer who sill stay with you for years and one who will be tempted by every advertisement from competitors that they see.
Survey your customers for a “read” on their satisfaction level. Ask what they want from you as a service provider. Keep in person contact at the top of your “to do” list. Only by regularly talking with customers and visiting with them will you get a picture of what they are really thinking about your company. If your customer communications are strong, a cancellation should NEVER come as a surprise. You should have a constant handle on what your customer is thinking. They know when you care and they will take action accordingly.