Customer Experience: Post-Purchase Communication
The first few days after a buyer signs a contract are critical for home improvement contractors. Unfortunately, many contractors leave this period up to chance instead of seizing the opportunity to secure the project.
Depending upon where you live, how you sell, and where the contract is signed, there’s likely a period of rescission where the homeowner can change their mind and cancel the contract – a “cooling off” period. Obviously, you want to avoid any cancellations. So, rather than holding your breath for a few days, here are some strategies for ensuring the contract remains intact, meeting your customer’s needs, and maximizing referrals.
- Immediately after they sign the contract, ask a final “buttoning-up” question. Here’s my favorite, “Is there anything you can think of that we haven’t covered today?” There are other ways to phrase this, but I prefer to keep it simple and non-threatening. Give them the floor here; put the ball in their court.
- If you’re in a state where you must provide notification of the right to rescission period, rephrase to, “As you may know, you legally have a three-day period to rescind this contract. Of course, we always hate to see that happen, but our goal is your satisfaction. Is there anything we should discuss now that might become a problem for you over the next three business days?”
- Within twelve hours of signing, the customer should receive two confirmation emails. One, from the CEO, thanking them for their business and instilling confidence, and two, from your customer service team, thanking them for the order, painting a picture of satisfaction, and re-affirming the value of their decision.
- Within 24 hours, your customer service team should call the customer and lay out the expectations regarding project timing. This contact should be someone besides the salesperson. The customer needs to hear a different voice and know that your company will deliver and be with them every step of the way. Agree beforehand on their preferred method of communication and how often they’d like to be updated.
- Within 36 hours, your customer service team should email the customer to let them know the steps that you’ve already taken. By now, you’ve ordered materials and scheduled the crew, and the quality department is aware of the project and customer expectations.
- Two to three days after the contract is finalized, the customer should receive the most recent issue of your company’s customer-focused e-newsletter. Add them to the subscriber list for regular updates.
- Five days after the contract is signed, send them an email listing all your social media handles and platforms so they have additional ways to stay informed of the great things you are doing.
- From there, communication and follow-up should be in regular updates, keeping them involved, invested, and in the loop.
Every customer wants a pleasant and memorable experience, and consistent, frequent communication creates that. Paint the picture of how great their project will be, their enjoyment, and how much value it will bring them and their home. Excellent post-purchase communication will generate positive reviews and even referrals by leveraging a vulnerable period in the customer experience.
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
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