A prospect who requests that you come to their home to give a flooring quote is the hottest of red-hot prospects. It’s a near 100% certainty that they are going to buy flooring. The only question is will it be from you or one of your fierce competitors?
Let’s look at how to leverage this opportunity to create differentiation when you step into your prospects’ homes.
First impressions matter. Call 5-10 minutes before you arrive to let them know you are on your way. Dress professionally, wear a smile and greet your prospects warmly. Show genuine interest in their needs by inviting them to sit down so you can ask them question. Listen attentively and address any concerns they may have. And demonstrate respect for their home.
Offer expert guidance. As a flooring expert, your prospects and clients rely on your knowledge and expertise to make the right choice. Obviously, you should use this opportunity to educate them about various flooring options, their pros and cons and the latest trends. But go beyond this and offer guidance on cleaning, using walk-off matting and how to get the longest life out of their floors. If their new floors are part of a larger remodeling project, refer them to quality contractors they can trust. Plus, actively listen to their needs.
Provide transparent quotes. Transparency is key. Avoid hidden fees or surprises that may erode trust. Let them know ahead of time about potential cost overruns, such as sub-floor prep. When possible, give them several different options: good, better, best.
Showcase samples and visual aids. Make the most of your in-home visit by bringing along a range of flooring samples, catalogs and visual aids. Allow your clients to see and feel the textures, colors and patterns firsthand. Take photos of the rooms and upload them to a room visualizer so they can see what the flooring will look like in their home.
Close in the home. You should have the tools to provide quotes, close and collect payment right in the home. This will curtail any “shopping around.”
Follow-up with timely communication. After the in-home visit, promptly follow up with your clients, especially if the project can’t be quoted right in the home. In fact, if you aren’t able to close in the home because you need to work up a quote, schedule a phone appointment to go over the quote with them. Email the quote right before or at the beginning of your phone appointment. Send a personalized thank you note expressing your gratitude for the opportunity to serve them. Provide any additional information or clarification they may need. Timely communication shows your dedication and leaves a lasting impression, setting the stage for referrals and repeat business.
Exceptional customer service and differentiation are important keys to success in our industry. By providing a remarkable experience during in-home measurements and quotes, you establish a strong foundation for lasting client relationships, repeat and referral business and long-term growth.
Jim Augustus Armstrong is the founder and president of Flooring Success Systems, a company that provides floor dealers with marketing services and coaching to help them attract quality customers, close more sales, get higher margins and work the hours they choose. For information visit FlooringSuccessSystems.com.