How to balance tech and human touch in your home improvement business
When you’re working on someone’s home, you get a glimpse into their day-to-day lives. Home is where the heart is, so it makes sense that your home improvement business is driven by a strong customer-first mindset.
Although people may be at the center of your business, technology, and how it could be leveraged when managing your business, should also have a place. In fact, digitizing certain processes may help your business run more smoothly and faster without losing the core of the provider-homeowner relationship. Consider these strategies for utilizing technology to improve your business while maintaining the human touch.
Use CRM software
Long gone are the days of Rolodexes and filing cabinets filled with paper records. While you may choose to primarily communicate with your customers in person or by phone, customer relationship management (CRM) software keeps it all organized by enabling you to store contact information, identify sales opportunities, record issues and interactions, and manage marketing campaigns.
Take it one step further by using CRM software to analyze data and find patterns, allowing you to gain helpful insights on trends in the market and sales performance. With increased automation offered by the platform, you can reduce human error, maintain consistency and help scale your business.
Be social media savvy
If your business does not yet have a presence on social media platforms, you’re likely missing out on a major marketing opportunity. From Instagram and Pinterest to Facebook and Twitter, social media is a great way to connect with both established and prospective customers. You can share photos of your work as well as highlight your expertise and knowledge.
Even if your business does not yet have a social media strategy, your customers are likely already there. Social media is the ideal medium for organic customer testimonials. You can ask the homeowners you work with to share their experience with your business with their followers. You can also keep tabs on what is being said about your business online. Far from being a replacement for face-to-face contact, social media offers a way to extend your in-person relationship with homeowners. Start small and find which platform(s) work best for your business.
Experiment with virtual design tools
Seeing is believing, and showing your customers what’s possible with the aid of virtual design tools that use 3D rendering can help your projects come to life. With various tools like Room Sketcher and Cedreo, you can virtually change the materials, layout and features to ensure homeowner expectations are in line with what you can deliver.
These tools also enable easier collaboration — both with customers and other professionals like architects, landscapers and interior designers.
Offer flexible financing
Digital payment systems drive increased sales, improved customer experience, reduced risk and increased cash flow. Ally Lending’s home improvement financing options give customers the ability to pay over time, while you get paid once the work or service is completed. An easy online application process allows customers to pre-qualify with no impact to their credit. Our user-friendly, agile platform with web-based and API integration capabilities seamlessly integrates into your point-of-sale.
Use tech tools wisely
As a home improvement provider, face-to-face interaction and strong relationships are essential to your success. By strategically implementing technology, you could improve service and business outcomes in a way that strengthens your relationships with customers.
Sticker shock is real. Whether it’s a new car, new furniture or appliance, customers are often surprised when something is more expensive than they thought it would be. Losing a prospective client because they weren’t prepared for the cost of a home improvement is no different.