Losing HVAC customers is never a pleasant experience, but it can be a huge opportunity. How so? Many customers leave for reasons that are easily corrected. For example, did you know that 80% of people mention speed, convenience, knowledgeable help, and friendly service as the most important aspects of their interaction with a company?
Today, customer experience has become a top priority, with customers no longer basing loyalty on product or price. Instead, they want to do business with a company that gives them the experience they expect. Stop living up to their demands and they’ll leave.
Since everyone knows it’s far less expensive to retain customers than to find new ones, it’s always worth putting your efforts behind pleasing the ones who already know you. If you want to win back lost HVAC customers, here are three ways you can do just that.
1. Find Out Why Your Customers Left
It can be as simple as placing a call and asking or as comprehensive as doing an online survey. Either way, you want to find out why a customer stopped buying your products and services. Try reading negative online reviews with a detached attitude. Even if you feel a complaint isn’t warranted look a little deeper and see what the underlying issue is. Was a technician late? Was it difficult to get someone on the phone? Did the final price end up exceeding the bid? Then calculate out how these issues can be addressed.
2. Give Them an Incentive to Return
Sometimes the customer’s situation has changed. Maybe they felt unappreciated or undervalued. Whatever the reason, create an offer that responds to the situation. By far the easiest way to do this is through offering a special discount. Just be certain to create a “get them back” campaign that is worth their time and offers something of real value. You may need to take a bit of a loss on the first return order but turning a once-lost client into a repeat customer once again is well worth the expense when it comes to your bottom line.
3. Learn to Communicate Better
The HVAC industry is so tech-driven it can be easy to forget you’re still dealing with other human beings. Being able to talk to your customers in a clear, upfront way can often be what keeps you getting repeat business. When reaching out to a lost customer, be honest. If you made a mistake, say so. Let the customer know how much you value their business and that you want to do whatever it takes to get it back. And once you do have them back, always be forthright about what you can and can’t deliver and at what cost.
Don’t Take it Personally
No one likes to lose a customer, but the natural ebb and flow of business means it will occasionally happen. A few will not come back, but the others can likely be persuaded with the right approach and incentive. Don’t let a lost customer negatively affect your attitude. Keep at it, don’t wipe them off your database, and continue to send them offers, helpful articles, and testimonials.
In other words, show them how you offer a better customer experience. Communicate regularly, make realistic promises, respond promptly to questions and complaints, and provide strategic follow-up to keep the relationship positive. And remember, if you don’t take steps to win back your lost customers, a competitor probably will.