New customers are expensive. Finding them, wooing them and landing their business adds up. Existing customers, on the other hand, can be much more affordable. Study after study agrees. It can cost a business anywhere between 5 and 25 times more dollars to nab a new client than to retain one. Those are no small beans, especially to a small remodeling business. Want to know the best part? The secret to keeping clients is really no secret at all. It’s customer service. Here’s a quick reminder:
Return phone calls. It sounds simple because it is simple. Call your clients and prospective clients back. Every time. Right away. Good, responsive communication is key to good relationships.
Forgo the hard sell. Anymore, clients have done their product research and understand ballpark costs for the work they want done. They aren’t interested in being pressured. What they do want is expert advice on how their project can be achieved. That’s where you come in. Give them their options, step back and let them decide.
Handle unexpected snafus with grace. Snafus happen. It’s part of life. Maybe your crew inadvertently scratched your client’s furniture or a cracked kitchen sink threw off the construction schedule. Whatever the problem, look at the situation from your client’s point of view and then handle it like a pro. A graceful remedy can save more than face. It can save your client and potentially earn you referrals.
Visit the project. Your clients likely hired your firm in part because of the vibe they got from you. Surely they’d like you to weigh in on the work your crew is doing. Plus, it will give you a chance to make sure the work being done is up to your standards and let you address any questions your clients may have face-to-face. And that trumps a phone call any day.
Lest you forget, remodeling is a service. Treat your customers as the assets they are and you can build your business on the more affordably acquired referrals and repeat customers. Keep the Golden Rule always in your back pocket and go get ‘em.