Increase Your Quote Win Rate
How to convert more job enquiries to profitable jobs
You waste thousands of pounds each year if you do not maximise your chances of converting enquiries to jobs. (See “The Cost of Failed Quotes” for more).
In this article we give you nine tried and tested ways to secure more jobs and do fewer quotes.
Don’t Try to the Cheapest
There is no point winning jobs that are not profitable.
It is important to understand (and accept) that for most customers “the cheapest quote” is NOT the most important factor in selecting a tradesperson. (See “Lowest Cost is NOT What Wins Jobs“)
Of course, price is a factor and some customers will always choose the cheapest, no matter what you do. That’s fine. They will get what they pay for. As with any purchase “the cheapest” practically never means “reliable”, “good quality” or “long lasting”
Converting more job leads to profitable jobs is more about providing good customer service than being the cheapest. But, what is “good customer service”?
Here are nine things that constitute good service in our book.
1. Call The Customer
- What we mean is don’t text or email instead of calling.
- Sure, send a text or email if there is no answer on the phone.
If just sending a text or email:
- It might not be received, and there’s no way to tell that it has been.
- It gives the message to the customer that you aren’t too bothered about the job.
2. Text or email the customer
- This is not instead of calling; it’s to show a customer interest in the work.
- Send your contact details in a text or email after the phone call. The customer then has them handy, while they have to hunt for your competitor’s details.
- To do this quickly have text and email templates set up ready to send.
3. Respond quickly
Customers will often give a job to the person who responds the fastest, and not even wait to see who’s the cheapest.
- Call customers back as soon as possible when they leave a message, ideally within the hour.
- Attend to survey a job within a couple of days of the enquiry
- Send quotes out the same day as the job survey.
- Respond to questions the same day
Of course, on-going work means the above isn’t always easy. However, using good job management software will help make it possible.
4. Give yourself a chance to be on time
- Edinburgh traffic
- Customers wanting to have a chat
- Unexpected problems on jobs
These all mean it’s practically impossible to be precise about appointment times.
Give yourself a chance to be on time by using appointment windows (for example “between 10 & 11”) rather than a specific time.
5. Tell the customer where you are
- Advise the customer via email or text that you are on your way. It’s a small thing and customers really appreciate it.
- Better still send customers a message that allows them to track where you are when you are on the way.
- If you are going to arrive outside of the window you’ve given the customer let them know before the time of an appointment. Don’t wait until after the appointed time.
6. Don’t be afraid to say “No”
No one likes to turn away work. However, it is more damaging to your business to make a promise that you don’t keep. .
Just say “No” if:
- you are too busy to respond properly to an enquiry
- the customer asks for something you don’t have the skills to do.
- the customer asks for something that is unreasonable.
If you provide a bad service a customer will never use you again. If you say “no” they are likely to respect that and return to you for future jobs.
7. Play the part of a professional
A HomeForce tradesperson once lost out on a large job because his competitor turned up to survey the job in a high visibility jacket and with a clipboard.
The HomeForce guy turned up smartly dressed on his way to an evening out with his wife, but in the eyes of the customer this wasn’t professional.
Appearing professional in the eyes of your customer is more than just how you dress; it’s how looked after your vehicle is, the language you use when addressing the customer, the look of the quotation you send and how you write your communications.
8. Itemise quotes & estimates
Would you buy a car from an advert that just said “Used Car £6,000”?
- Used Car
- 20,000 Miles
- 2016 Registration
- Flame red colour
- 3.0l Turbo charged engine
- All wheel drive
- Leather interior
- 0 – 60 in 4.5 seconds
- Sun roof
- Tow bar
- Split rear seats
For any purchase, the more a buyer knows the more likely they are to buy. Itemisation is a chance to sell to the customer.
If your price is higher than another the customer gets then itemisation will justify why this is the case. Perhaps better materials will be used or the work is being done more thoroughly.
Finally, if there are any problems on a job an itemised quote will help prevent or clear up any misunderstandings about the work done. Few things waste more time than resolving disputes.
9. Be liked
People buy people. If a customer likes and trusts someone they are more likely to engage their services. You should try to be:
- knowledgeable but don’t criticise the work of others
- friendly but formal
- confident but not cocky
- respectful but not subservient
- and make suggestions but listen to the customer
HomeForce can’t help rectify personality defects but we can help tradespeople do all of the other things on this list AND spend less time doing admin than they currently do.