Friday, September 18, 2009

24 Ways to Boost Your Average Ticket – Part V

Finally, the conclusion to boosting your average ticket (yeah, I know it’s more than 24 ways, but I thought of a few others mid-stream)…

25. Stand Up Straight, Smile, and Look Customer In The Eye

Have you ever heard someone say, “I don’t trust a man who won’t look me in the eye.”

Ironically, the biggest con men can look you straight in the eye, state the biggest whopper, and never blink. Con men know the actions that lead to trust. Eye contact is one of them.

Your field service personnel will improve add-on sales and repair close rates simply by tucking shirts in, standing up straight with shoulders back, smiling, looking the customer in the eye, and nodding in the affirmative to indicate understanding as the customer describes problems.

26. Practice Good Grooming

This should be obvious, but it’s important to appear as clean and groomed as possible. First, it’s a tangible clue about the quality of your service. If your field service personnel won’t take care of themselves, why should I expect them to take care of my home?

Next, some customers have a low tolerance level for dirty and disheveled people. They are going to be more willing to do business with and spend more time with neat, clean, groomed technicians.

Equip your trucks with handy wipes. Require your people to clean their hands before every service call.

Stock trucks with breath spray. It should be used before every call, especially after coffee, lunch, or a smoke break.

A morning shave should not be an option. Hair should be neatly trimmed and combed, even if a cap is worn.

27. Keep the Truck Stocked

If you want to boost add-on sales, keep your trucks stocked. Identify the most common sizes for accessories and keep one on each truck. Some plumbers, for example, keep storage water heaters on their trucks for replacement NOW. Others keep standard bath and kitchen faucets.

Air conditioning contractors, who want to sell more humidifiers and air cleaners, stock them in their mobile warehouses. Electrical contractors, who want to sell more whole house surge suppressors, similarly stock them.

Not only should trucks be fully stocked with universal (i.e., generic) repair parts that cost less than OEM parts, but trucks should carry common accessories to prevent the need to run to a supply house and to support impulse buying.

28. Conduct Feature/Benefit Training

You wouldn’t send your people into the field without the proper training to make repairs, so why do you send them in the field without the proper training to talk about the features and benefits of accessories, options, and upgrades?

In a service meeting, introduce one product at a time. Ask for a volunteer to call out the features, one at a time. Write each feature on a white board or flip chart.

Once the features have been listed, ask for the benefits to each. Write the benefits next to the features.

If appropriate, ask for a monetary value of the feature to the homeowner. Usually, the total of the monetary value of the features will exceed the installed cost of the product. If so, ask your service force if it’s in the homeowner’s best interest to let her know about the product that’s worth more than it costs.

After the meeting, write up the list of features and benefits, including values, on a single sheet that can be inserted into a price book. Pass it out at the next week’s service meeting for everyone to study.

A week after passing out the feature/benefit list, see who can recite the most features and benefits. To make the exercise more fun, have the tech hold a burning match while reciting the list (the match simulates the pressure of standing before a customer). Make it a contest with a spiff to the winner.

© 2009 Matt Michel

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