Window and door installation can be a lucrative business, but it's important to know when to walk away from a potential customer. Sometimes it's just not worth the hassle to try and work with someone difficult or unprofessional.
In this blog post, we will outline four warning signs that a window or door installation customer isn't worth the trouble. By knowing what to look for, you can save yourself time and put more energy back into scaling your business.
We've all had that one customer who just seems to make everything difficult. Maybe they're never happy with the work, or they're constantly changing their mind about what they want. Whatever the case may be, working with a difficult customer can take a toll on your business.
Not only does it consume a lot of your time, but it can also negatively impact your team's morale. When your installation crew constantly has to deal with difficult customers, it's easy for them to start dreading going to work.
And of course, let's not forget the financial cost of a difficult customer. If they're never happy with the work, you might find yourself doing a lot of re-work or refunds. In the end, it's just not worth trying to please a customer who will never be satisfied.
Most importantly, working with difficult people can set your business up for damaging feedback. 8 out of 10 consumers won't partner with a company with negative reviews. Individuals who share their negative customer experiences on social media are reaching wider audiences every day, which means it's more important than ever that you focus on building positive feedback.
Now that we've gone over the true cost of a difficult customer let's take a look at five warning signs that they're not worth your time.
If a potential customer can't decide on what they want, likely, they'll never be happy with the end result—no matter how hard you try. It's best to cut your losses and move on to someone who knows what they want.
In a large-scale study of more than 2.5 million recorded sales conversations, anywhere between 40% and 60% of deals ended up lost to customers who express an intent to purchase, but ultimately fail to act.
That's wasted time you could've spent on other window and door projects.
A window or door installation is a big investment, and your customers should know what they want before they even reach out to you. If they can't make up their mind about the project, they're likely not ready to move forward—and you don't want to be stuck in limbo. Next!
If you're already dealing with an indecisive customer, there are a few things you can do to try and move the project along.
The first is to provide them with a short list of options within their budget. This way, they can choose from limited choices that you know will work well together.
The second is to set deadlines. Tell them that you need a decision by a certain date so that you can order the materials and get started on the job. If they're still not sure by the deadline, be firm and tell them that you'll have to move on to another customer.
We all love a good deal, but if a potential customer is constantly asking for discounts, it might indicate that they're not serious about doing business with you.
You can’t win by being cheap. We’ve seen this over and over in the home services world. There’s always someone willing to be cheaper. So don't compete on price, and don't waste time convincing a customer who's only interested in a cheap window or door installation that your business is worth their investment.
It's important to remember that quality window and door installations are an investment, not a purchase. And potential customers who understand this are usually more serious about doing business with you.
If you're already dealing with a frugal homeowner, there are a few things you can do to try and work with them.
The first is to be upfront about your prices. Let them know what the current cost is for the job and what discounts you're willing to offer moving forward. This way, they won't waste your time haggling over something that's not up for negotiation.
The second is to offer financing options. Many homeowners are more likely to invest in a window or door installation if they can finance it over time. By offering this option, you make it more affordable for them and increase the chances that they'll follow through with the project.
The third is simply to walk away. If they're not willing to budge on price, it's probably not worth your time to continue trying to negotiate. Is this step drastic? Yes. But sometimes, you have to know when to cut your losses.
This is a big one. If a potential customer has already purchased window or door products and just needs you to install them, it's best to steer clear.
The reason for this is that they might not have purchased the right products for their home or the job at hand. If that's the case, you'll be stuck trying to make something work that wasn't meant to be—and we all know how that turns out.
If you're already dealing with a customer who already purchases their materials, there are a few things you can do to try and make the job work.
The first is to ask for a contract. This will help protect you from any legal issues that might arise from installing products you didn't source and purchase yourself.
The second is to inspect the materials before installation. This way, you can ensure that they meet your quality standards and that you won't be held responsible if something goes wrong during or after installation.
The third is to charge an extra fee for using already purchased materials. This will help offset any additional costs or risks associated with the job.
No one deserves to be treated badly—least of all by a potential customer. If someone is being rude or aggressive from the start, likely, things will only get worse as the project progresses.
In these cases, it's best to walk away before things get too heated.
If you find yourself in a situation where you're already dealing with a rude or aggressive customer, there are a few things you can do to try and diffuse the situation.
The first is to remain calm and professional. This can be difficult, but it's important to remember that the customer is likely not acting this way because of anything you've done.
The second is to offer a solution. If they're upset about something specific, see if there's anything you can do to fix the issue. Often, this will help diffuse the situation and help them see that you're trying to work with them.
The third is to end the conversation politely. If nothing else works, sometimes the best solution is to close the book on the project. Thank them for their time, and let them know that you'll be happy to speak with them again when they're ready to talk calmly.
These are just a few of the warning signs that a window or door installation customer isn't worth the trouble. By keeping an eye out for these red flags, you can save yourself a lot of headaches—and maybe even some money—in the long run.
Remember, as a window and door installer, your time and energy are valuable commodities. Don't waste them on potential customers who are difficult or unprofessional. By knowing when to walk away, you can devote your time and energy to finding the right customers—the ones who will appreciate your expertise and be thankful for your work.
There's an old saying in the home services business - eventually, your business matures to a point where you hire and fire customers as much as they hired and fired you. Strive to get to that point as soon as possible.
What are some of the warning signs you look for in a potential window or door installation customer? Share your thoughts and experiences by messaging us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. We'll feature your story (and business) in a future post.
Learn more about what's working for window and door installers in today's economy by checking out our free guide, "The Plain Truth on How to Sell Windows and Doors."