Customer feedback is a core aspect of your field service business. The ultra-competitive nature of pest control, lawn care, and other similar service-based businesses means feedback from customers could be the difference that sets you apart from competitors in your industry.
Soliciting and collecting customer feedback highlights areas of improvement and demonstrates your commitment to providing exceptional service.
Turning feedback into action is how you grow and expand. Let’s discuss the importance of customer feedback and how to get feedback from customers.
Feedback from customers is information provided by customers about their experience with a product or service. Feedback comes in many forms, including online reviews, social media comments, surveys, and emails.
Asking your customers what they think about your field services lets you determine whether you are providing a satisfactory experience and where you can improve.
Modern businesses must harvest and interpret all kinds of data. Feedback is just one way of analyzing your business and implementing meaningful change.
Businesses have a habit of overlooking their reviews or only focusing on the positive ones. As a business owner, you need to find out what your customers honestly think about your business.
The focus must be on not just individual customers but general trends. If you’ve yet to create a feedback initiative, here are eight great reasons why now is the time.
Customers love businesses that actively want to know what they think. Rather than a hassle, customers look favorably upon these brands.
The stats also back this aspect of the customer experience up. According to the latest data, 77% of consumers view brands more favorably when they ask them for their feedback and act in response.
A successful business is all about giving customers what they want.
Modern customers have more choice than at any other point in history. A simple Google search can reveal not just your services but countless other businesses offering similar services in your area.
With few exceptions, you need to compete like never before. Customer service is one aspect that has become as important as your price or services offered.
It’s estimated that American businesses lose $1.6 trillion per year due to poor customer service. Listening to your clients can help you provide an outstanding level of customer service.
Whether you operate in lawn care, pool care, or pest control, your services must fulfill specific needs in the marketplace. The services a business offers in Florida will differ from the services provided in Washington, especially within this industry where things like geographical seasonality must be considered.
Find out which services your customers would love to see become a part of your business. It’s all about supply and demand. Are you fulfilling the local market’s demands?
Feedback from customers will tell you what you need to know.
Collecting customer feedback allows direct comparisons between you and your closest competitors.
It’s vital in discovering where you excel and where you’re falling short. Your clients will make the switch in a heartbeat if you’re offering a subpar service.
For example, your customers may love the quality of your lawn care services but prefer the response times of your competitor. Feedback like this offers vital insights into how you can beat out your competitors.
In this day and age, most people will discover your brand online via a search engine or social media. Customers judge companies based on their digital profiles. A poor reputation leaves you with little opportunity to convince potential leads otherwise.
Remember, a customer with a negative experience is more likely to publish their thoughts than someone who had a positive experience.
One study showed that a wronged consumer would share a bad experience with 15 or more other people online and offline.
Is your competitor using more advanced lawn care tools? Did another company invest in technology to make pool care 33% faster?
Customers like to talk, and feedback can enable you to find out what the competition is doing. Spotting market trends quickly allows you to pivot and innovate to avoid being left behind.
Relationships between companies and customers are how you breed loyalty. If you’ve constantly provided excellent service and constructed those relationships, you’ll get long-term clients who’ll stick with you through thick and thin.
Start crafting those strong relationships by starting a dialogue. Client feedback is just one way to show your customers how much you value them.
Most service-based businesses will gain the bulk of their income by encouraging customers to sign up for regular, long-term contracts. One-time jobs, on the other hand, will leave you struggling to keep your head above water.
Satisfied customers are far more likely to stay with you. Getting feedback enables you to determine satisfaction rates and expand your business in a way that drives up those rates.
More retention means additional brand devotion and higher retention rates.
Now that you know why customer feedback is essential, it’s time to discuss how to get feedback from customers in the first place.
Maximize the number of feedback avenues open to you, and you ’ll be able to work with a larger dataset. Smaller businesses that utilize several customer feedback methods will always grow faster than those that rely on one or two—or don’t focus on collecting customer feedback at all.
Check out these seven methods and take advantage of customer comments now.
Creating dedicated feedback surveys you can hand out to new and existing customers is easier said than done. Respect your clients’ time and keep them short and sweet. Try not to ask more than five to seven questions.
Think about what you want to find out from your customers. Some examples of great questions include:
Why do you invest in professional care for your service needs?
Were you satisfied with the response time of your services?
Did you find it easy to book our services?
Do you believe you are getting value for the money spent on your services?
What would you do to improve our services?
It’s strongly recommended to opt for multiple-choice questions the majority of the time, as it speeds up the process for customers and makes it easier to quantify the data.
Email is an informal, candid channel for getting your customers to sound off. Since it’s a support channel for most companies, it’s also an easy way to build personal, one-on-one relationships with each customer.
Maximize your chances of getting a response by promising to respond within a specified amount of time. You could even offer a small discount on some of your core services to everyone who responds.
Enlist your employees to interview customers after they finish a job. It doesn’t have to take more than a few minutes after cleaning someone’s pool or removing a rat infestation from a basement.
When sitting down with customers in person, keep these three points in mind:
Maintain an open-ended dialogue. Don’t push your customers into a corner or initiate unintended bias.
Get more specific toward the end of the interview, based on what they’ve already said.
Become an expert in active listening. Be open and receptive and mirror back what your customers are saying. It sends the message that you’re interested in what they have to say.
Customers’ comments on social media are an easy way to get immediate insights into your business. Platforms like Facebook allow customers to leave short or in-depth reviews on the brands they’ve worked with.
Social media comments are not the only way to tap this reservoir of feedback. Consider creating simple Instagram or Facebook polls. That way a simple click will be all it takes for customers to tell you how they’re feeling.
Encouraging interaction via your social media pages is also a way of training your customers to talk to you. Make sure you reply to each comment, rather than just leaving a ‘like’ or only responding to positive feedback.
Over time, customers will be more likely to leave a comment about their experiences because they know they’re guaranteed a response.
Amplify the importance of customer feedback by opting for an alternative feedback method. The analytics from your website can also tell you about how good your customer experience is.
You don’t need to be an e-commerce expert or online marketing guru to extract value from your web analytics. It’s always a good idea to examine how visitors to your website behave from time to time.
Let’s look at some examples:
Do you have a high bounce rate? It could show that you’re not providing straight, precise information on your website.
Are your customers spending little time on your services page? It may indicate that your message is getting lost.
Does your brand have a problem with abandoned bookings? It could point to an online usability issue.
Gaining insights into your failed conversions can help you craft a better online presence. Even in highly localized niches like pool and lawn care, your online footprint is key to building your brand, and the importance of customer feedback can help you to do just that.
The best time to ask for a customer’s comments is immediately after providing a service. The experience is fresh in their minds, and it’s the time when they’re more motivated to leave feedback.
Send an SMS request for feedback in the hours after receiving payment. The best way is to use a custom URL shortener linking to a small survey. Again, short, multiple-choice surveys typically get the highest response rates.
You could even send an SMS thanking them for their business and a number to call if they were unsatisfied.
Live chat functions have become a pillar of a memorable online customer experience. Equip your online platform with a live chat function. Embed it not just on the core pages of your site but during the payment process as well.
Approximately 42% of customers selected live chat as their preferred support option. You can access it with a click on a desktop or mobile device, connect with a staff member, and get immediate support. If you’ve yet to install one on your platform, you’re missing out on an excellent source of feedback.
Archive the data you get from live chat conversations and analyze it for snippets of feedback that can tell you where you need to improve.
Customer relations is not an area you can afford to overlook. You can provide excellent services at an affordable price, but if you’re not thinking about the relationships you have with your market, you’re vulnerable to poaching.
FieldRoutes understands the importance of collecting client feedback and taking meaningful action. Building an online platform that lends itself to understanding new and existing clients is crucial.
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