Today, customers aren’t basing their loyalty on price or selection. The fact is, there are so many products out there, and such widespread availability to them, that customers can pretty much find what they’re looking for anywhere. While this sounds scary for companies, it’s actually an opportunity.
With easy access to almost anything, customer service is what really sets one company apart from the next, and it’s one of our biggest focuses when we teach HVAC business growth strategies.
In this post, we’ll discuss why — and how — customer service can be your best marketing tool, and how you can improve yours accordingly.
Why Customer Service Matters
Today, customer service is essential for a few reasons. Of course, there’s the obvious reason that excellent customer service translates into effective customer problem resolution and increased loyalty, but that’s not all. Customer service is also one surefire way to win word-of-mouth advertising and ensure customers are out there recommending your company.
The reason for all this is simple.
Going into business isn’t all that hard these days. With a few dollars and some clicks around the web, virtually anyone can set up a company. What separates great companies from mediocre ones, though, is that the good ones want to serve their customers.
You don’t necessarily need to provide excellent customer service to stay in business. When you do, however, customers recognize your brand as different, and they naturally separate you from the crowd — not to mention, gravitate toward your business.
Customer Service, by the Numbers
Still not convinced customer service is one of your most valuable marketing strategies? Consider these compelling customer service statistics:
• A customer is 4x more likely to purchase from your competitor if they experience a service-related (rather than price or product-related) problem with your company.
• The majority of Americans have decided not to make a purchase because they had a poor customer service experience with a company.
• It takes a whopping twelve positive customer service experiences to make up for one negative experience.
• It costs 6-7x more to attract a new customer than it does to retain and sell to an existing one.
• 70% of customer buying experiences are based on how the customer feels a company treats them.
• 62% of customers will share their bad customer service experiences with others.
• 80% of customers say the experience a company provides is precisely as important as its products or services.
As you can see, customers prioritize customer service.
Your company should, too.
HVAC Business Growth Strategies: How to Improve Your Customer Service
Now that you know why customer service matters, let’s talk about how you can improve your customer service. Here are a few general recommendations from Gitomer:
1. Have your top management leaders make sales calls. This is particularly important in the HVAC industry, which moves quickly and features rapidly adapting needs.
2. Prioritize customer communications, and make it a policy to return all inquiry or complaint calls in one hour or less.
3. Seek to resolve every customer complaint within 24 hours.
4. Have your top management leaders answer every complaint personally.
5. Follow up with customers who have made complaints to verify they received the services they needed and that they’re no longer waiting on anything additional.
6. Create a slogan that puts service at the center of your company’s priorities.
In the HVAC industry, there are even more ways to improve the customer service experience.
For instance, you can wear sharp, professional-looking uniforms and take the time to explain the required work to customers fully.
You can also offer more accurate service time estimates to customers. Rather than relying on the age-old, eight-hour time estimate window, you can narrow that estimate down and give your customers a more accurate estimate of when their tech will arrive.
If you want to start growing your business, begin with improving your customer service. It’s one of many effective HVAC business growth strategies that can help your HVAC company stand out from the rest.
Want to learn even more? Check out our customer service course!