Providing great customer service is an important part of any service-based business. Here are some top ideas you can implement to keep your pest control customers coming back.
Set expectations with your pest control clients
It’s important to set expectations with your pest control clients so that they don’t experience any unwelcome surprises. Most clients don’t have a good understanding of how pest control works. These clients might think that by hiring you once, their pest problem will be solved. Or, they might believe that they won’t ever have to worry about pests again after your treatment. They don’t understand that there usually are no fast and easy solutions that eliminate all bugs long-term.
You can set clear expectations with your clients by teaching them how pest control works. Tell them how pests can adapt to and survive in many different environments. Getting rid of the critters completely might take several different visits or a variety of pest control methods. Plus, it’s possible that the infestation might recur. Your clients might not be happy to hear this, but you can use this as an opportunity to reassure them of your commitment to solving the problem.
Respond to messages promptly
Most people who seek out pest control services are looking for an urgent solution. They likely feel frazzled by a sudden infestation and are looking for a company that can solve their problem the quickest. You should respond to their messages with equal urgency, or risk losing a client. In fact, across industries, a fast response time is the most important aspect of customer service.
Of course, it’s hard to get back to customers immediately, especially if you don’t have a big customer service or support team. Responding to customers’ messages takes time that you don’t have.
One solution is to speed up your email response time by using automatic and canned responses. An automatic response might say something such as, “We’ve received your message and will get back to you within [X time period].” A canned response is a template response that you can use whenever you sit down to respond to messages. Instead of typing the same information repeatedly, you can copy and paste a preset response.
If you haven’t already, set up an instant booking platform. That way, clients can get immediate assurance that someone can come and help them out. Instant booking also saves you from a lot of unnecessary phone calls and emails.
Finally, set aside time throughout the day to check and respond to messages. If you commit to doing this, then customers will never have to wait for more than a few hours for a response.
Take customer feedback into account
Both negative and positive feedback give you information that you can use to keep your pest control customers coming back. Look to positive feedback to find out which of your services are most valuable to customers. Maybe someone mentions an aspect of your service that you never considered very important.
You can also learn a lot from negative feedback. If the customer mentions a specific issue, ask yourself, “is this something that happens all the time?” The customer could be pointing to something that you can improve for your other customers.
Negative reviews also give you the opportunity to correct the problem and win back the customer. When you make an effort to make something right, the customer will notice and respect you more. Think of negative feedback as the customers telling you what they need. Now you don’t have to send out surveys to get this information!
Always finish the job
Sometimes you’ll find yourself having to redo a job that you thought you had completed. Use this as a chance to impress the customer with your commitment and care. The customer is already feeling let down. He or she might be looking at hiring a different company in the future. By finishing the job and making things right, you have a good chance of keeping that customer.
Fixing the problem can also turn a negative review into a 5-star one. Everyone likes being given above-and-beyond service. Often, the most vocal supporters of a company are the ones who experienced a problem and then had it made right.
Train staff on good customer service techniques
Your customer service staff is your first line of defense in maintaining your pest control clients. Check-in with your staff regularly to make sure that they are following protocol. Ask if they’re facing any new or recurring problems with customers they interact with.
One way to ensure good customer service is to have your staff use a few scripted lines. For example, when a customer calls in, your staff could say something such as, “My goal is to help you to the best of my ability. What are you looking for today?” At the end of the call, the staff member could finish with “Was I able to solve your problem?”
Provide regular training to keep your customer service employees updated on new products and services offered by your company. You can also use this training to teach them new office technology and company processes. The customer will appreciate how organized and well-informed your staff is.
Follow-up with clients
Following up with clients is a customer service step that many pest control businesses forget. Arrange for a simple email or phone check-in one or two weeks after your services. Your customers will be impressed by your thoroughness. This check-in also gives you the chance to solve any small problems that have come up, before they become bigger issues.
The driver behind good customer service and loyal customers is an organized business system. ServiceWorks provides an all-in-one platform that helps you manage your pest control business. The one-stop solution includes booking support, customer surveys, and payments and invoicing. Try ServiceWorks for free for 14 days, no credit card needed.