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How to create a pleasant customer payment experience

As we all face an uncertain economy amid record inflation, homeowners are being a bit more cautious about entering into home improvement projects. They want to keep costs down and ensure the work fits into their overall budget. Even though they may be watching their wallets a bit more closely, many homeowners are still hoping to make needed repairs as well as practical or cosmetic renovations. 

As a home improvement professional, you can help turn their dream into a reality with affordable and flexible financing solutions that make the customer payment process as streamlined as possible. Use these guidelines to ensure your customers’ experience leaves them with a great impression of your business and confident in their decision to work with you.

Keep pricing transparent

Creating positive customer engagement begins with the first estimate. Avoid sticker shock by giving a fair, honest and comprehensive price estimate for the job . Providing different project options that fall within their price points can also help set you up for smooth sailing from the start. 

Break down costs so homeowners understand what makes up the total price.  Whenever possible, deliver estimates in person, so you can answer questions or address concerns face-to-face. Customers may want to know why you choose one material over another or how spending more now can save money in the long run. Be prepared to demonstrate the value of your work. Starting on the right foot and establishing trust upfront is the first step toward a happy and satisfied customer. When it comes time to pay the bill, they’ll have peace of mind knowing they didn’t overpay.

Keep it simple

No one wants to deal with a complicated payment process. To ensure your customers don’t leave feeling frustrated, take care to make the task as user-friendly, easy and streamlined as possible. For online transactions, limit the number of clicks and pages required. Try to keep the entire process as short as possible. Your customers are busy, show respect for their time with an efficient payment system.

Offer a variety of payment options

No two customers are exactly alike, why should their payment options be the same? Providing a wealth of alternative payment choices can help you reach a wider customer base. Homeowners are looking for affordable ways to get the job done. They may not be able to pay upfront, which is why financing options are essential. 

Point-of-sale (POS) lending allows credit-worthy customers to get a personal loan for a specific purchase. They can even pre-qualify with no impact on their credit score. As long as they can make regular payments in time, POS lending is a great solution for those who can’t pay all at once. 

Another attractive option is buy now, pay later. Particularly for customers with no credit or a less-than-ideal credit score, BNPL offers an affordable workaround. This option can also help homeowners save on interest. 

Whatever options you choose to provide, be transparent as possible and give your customers all the information they need to determine the financing option that works best for their budget and lifestyle. A borrower-friendly application that lays out the options helps customers feel confident they’re making the right choice. 

By offering flexible financing options you’re better equipped to win business from customers with different budgets and priorities. To make financing even easier, an on-the-go digital application process (like Ally Lending) can give clients the ability to pre-qualify, sign documents and receive notifications letting them know their loan is approved — all online. Homeowners are sure to appreciate the convenience.

Take security seriously

In this era of frequent data breaches, customers are more cautious than ever about keeping their private information safe and secure. Make sure your payment processing platform has proper security protocols in place and know what to do should a compromise occur. Homeowners will be glad you’re doing everything possible to protect them and their hard-earned money.

Make payment as pleasant as possible

Top-notch home improvement work speaks for itself. In addition to delivering quality results on time and within budget, ensuring a smooth payment process is essential for creating a repeat customer who will also be inspired to spread the word about your business. Take the steps necessary to make paying for your services a positive and hassle-free experience.

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