This post has been written in collaboration with Ryobi
Receiving a phone call to arrange a visit to a new client was always a thrill for me. It meant dad and I had new business and we had the opportunity to impress and hopefully gain a loyal client to our business. Keeping clients is not just about showing up and fixing a problem. Satisfied customers become loyal customers when their expectations are met and the service is considerate to them and their home. Here are 8 ways a plumber can be considerate to their client should they wish to receive repeat business.
1. Use battery tools like Ryobi instead of electric to save the client on their electricity bill. Of course there are some tools that will need to be run off a lead or a battery tool may need to be recharged if the battery is run dead on the job. But don’t rock up to a client’s house with tools that have a flat battery. Be prepared and charge all batteries at home at night to ensure the tools can be used straight away onsite.
2. Ask questions and be organized. When a new client rings to organise a call out, ask them what they need fixing and be specific with your questions. If they need a new mixer tap ask what kind they have already and bring a new mixer with you (ie some have vegetable mixers or gooseneck spout mixers). Make sure the mixer you bring is mid-range in price and quality. A home owner won’t give you repeat business if you charge them for a $400 mixer which they had no option to choose. An alternative is getting the client to purchase a new mixer before you arrive.
3. Ring before you arrive to a job so the homeowner knows when to expect you. If you’re going to be late or miss the call out altogether call and rearrange a time. The biggest frustration clients have with using a plumber is having them not show up or at least calling to say they will be late.
4. Give clients the opportunity to pay you using their credit card. Having a mobile credit card reader with you is a convenient way for clients to pay you. Alternatively, you can offer a paypal service. Paypal accepts credit card, but just be aware of the fees to use such a service. Include these fees in your call out fee, don’t add it onto the bill.
5. Don’t wear boots into a client’s home. It doesn’t matter if the boots are clean, take them off and leave them at the door.
6. Use a mat or towel to lay tools on when you’re working in the bathroom or kitchen. Tools placed on benchtops are notorious for scratching benchtops. Prevent being held responsible for a benchtop replacement by using a towel to lay tools on.
7. Bring your own cleaning utensils and products to clean up after a job. It’s more convenient for you to have your own dust pan and broom than to ask a client to use theirs.
8. Don’t swear. Plumbers can give sailors a run for their money with their colourful language. Some clients may not even blink with the odd swear word but it’s best to avoid saying them altogether in case they do get offended. Telling a new client their hot water unit needs to be replaced is much more considerate than telling them their hot water unit is f*#$ed!
Have you ever had a considerate plumber arrive at your home? And if you’re a plumber, how do you look after your clients? Anything you can add to the list?
This post has been written in conjunction with my disclosure policy.