When you have an unhappy customer, what do you do to make it right? If your fencing company has a strong guarantee policy, your sales staff and your installers will know exactly how to handle the situation — quickly, efficiently and to your customer’s satisfaction. What’s more, your guarantee policy will help you attract more customers and close more sales.
If you are looking to build your business, it’s time to shout your guarantee.
First, let’s look at the definition of a business guarantee. According to entrepreneur.com, a guarantee is “a pledge, usually in writing, given by a company to any customers that something is of specified quality, content, benefit or that it will provide satisfaction or will perform or produce in a specified manner. A guarantee also outlines what will happen should the buyer not be satisfied with his purchase.”
Second, let’s talk about three simple steps to improving and growing your fencing business with the use of guarantees.
1. Make It Clear.
Many fencing companies have some sort of guarantee or warranty, but they do not promote it to their customers. In fact, their sales staff may not even know about it.
A good guarantee is easy to find, simple to understand and uncomplicated to invoke. An example of a clear and unconditional guarantee is used by the clothing retailer Lands’ End. On the company website, the company states its policy as “Guaranteed. Period: We Want Nothing Less Than Your Absolute Satisfaction.”
The Lands’ End policy is an unconditional one that further says: “If you’re not satisfied with any item, simply return it to us at any time for an exchange or refund of its purchase price.” It is a comforting policy for customers because they know where they stand if the purchase does not meet their expectations.
2. Make It Meaningful.
An unconditional guarantee might work well for clothing, but how does it work for a fence, you might ask. Good question.
After all, a guarantee has to make sense for your customers and for the products or services they purchase. Think about what is important to your fencing customers when it comes to what you sell. Structural integrity? Color durability? Professional installation? Service? If you don’t know what is most important to your customers, ask them.
That’s what Xerox did. In determining its office copier guarantee, Xerox considered offering buyers a 90-day, unconditional, money-back guarantee. However, when they surveyed corporate purchasing agents about the policy, Xerox officials discovered that the agents didn’t want their money back. What they really wanted was a guarantee of a replacement if the machine failed. In response, Xerox guaranteed to replace any copier that required major service within three years of purchase.
Similarly, your fencing customers probably aren’t expecting a refund. They may be looking for a problem with their fence to be solved or fixed. Make sure your policy is specific on what it covers and on the time period it covers. Be as transparent as possible.
3. Promote Your Guarantee.
Now that you have created the specific wording for your guarantee policy, it is time to let people know about it. Place it prominently on all your print and online advertising, including your website and social media pages.
Use your strong guarantee as part of the sales process. It shows you stand behind your work and your product, and it may be the tipping point that converts a looker into a buyer. What are your competitors offering? If they are not offering — or boldly promoting — their guarantee, you will stand out from the rest when you do. What are you waiting for? A guarantee policy builds trust and customer loyalty. It shows that your company is reliable and has integrity. These feelings can translate into repeat sales down the road, as your customers consider other fences for their homes or businesses.
Finally, a guarantee helps you find where you need to improve. Ideally, you won’t have to honor the policy very often — many buyers even forget about a guarantee after making a purchase — but when you do, your company can learn from the experience. While handling the situation according to your written policy, you will be able to see what went wrong with that fence or that installation. You’ll gain valuable information that can help you prevent the same sequence of events from happening again.
And don’t think that customers that invoke your guarantee are lost to your business. When you deal with the problem promptly and to their satisfaction, those customers can become your greatest promoters. They will tell others their story of how you stood behind your fence and your service and made things right. That’s a powerful message.