When you think of great customer experience, who do you think of?
For me, two notable examples are Chick-fil-A and Southwest.
But what is it about these brands that shape your impression?
In the example of Chick-fil-A, it’s not simply that they have an efficient way to take your order, or that the chicken sandwich tastes good or even their easy-to-use mobile application.
It's the sum of these interactions that leave you feeling great about your purchase and your decision to do business with them again.
There are many definitions for what customer experience is, but the one I like the most comes from Jeannie Walters at Experience Investigators.
She defines it as “the total relationship your customer has with your organization through communication, interactions and transactions.”
As a roofing contractor, you have an opportunity to elevate your customer's experience.
All too often we hear or read about another contractor that took a homeowner's deposit and never did the work.
This type of news can lead to a negative perception of who you are and what you do.
But it’s not just these horror stories that lead to a poor customer experience.
There is the time I didn’t let the customer know that the crew would begin tearing off the roof at 7 a.m. and it woke up their newborn baby or the time I had to push back a start date because the sales rep sold a product that’s not locally available.
So how can we make improvements?
Here are five actionable ways you can enhance your customer's experience today.
Over communicate—Much of a customer's frustration happens because of a lack of communication. Let your customers know when and who will be coming out to their house to provide an estimate, when their project is scheduled to start, and any delays. This leads to less anxiety and a better chance for referrals and reviews.
Be respectful of their time—Today's homeowners have little time to meet with your sales rep. The days of spending an hour or more in the home are numbered. Be structured with your process and use solutions that can help with efficiencies, automations, and that eliminate redundancies.
Be transparent—While you don’t need to provide pricing for each nail that goes in the roof, you should detail what the items are that will be used and the process for which you’ll take. When I buy that spicy chicken sandwich from Chick-fil-A, I don’t know how much the lettuce or pickle cost, but I do know each of the items that went into making the sandwich and the total price. Give your customers a similar experience, and make sure they understand what they are buying.
Offer payment options—When a customer says you are too expensive, what they could be saying is that they cannot afford your price. By offering payment options, you give your customers a choice on how they want to pay, and it makes your service more affordable.
Close the loop—There's nothing more frustrating than to give feedback and feel like you’re simply blowing into the wind. Take your customers feedback and reviews seriously and be sure to thank them for it while addressing any outstanding concerns. This will go a long way toward building a strong organization.
While you can't magically transform the entire customer experience in one step, you can begin to make small strides today.
Talk to your customers, learn what their journey with you is, and work to create a wonderful experience at each touchpoint.