You’ve impressed a customer when they learned you existed and you answered their queries clearly on your website. Now you want them to invest a bit more time making that all important enquiry and to get a quote. To persuade a customer to make this next step and part with their details, you need to make the process engaging. This touch point has to add value. 

 

What does your customer have to do in order to find out how much your services cost?

Some customers will prefer to call you, and that’s great. This is an opportunity to directly discuss how your service operates and then offer your quote. 

 

However, many consumers are now used to and expect to be able to just get a quote online and avoid phone calls whilst they are still doing their research. Why? Because they want to avoid being sold to. If that is their only option and other websites offer an easier route to information, you can guarantee there will be many people who just don’t make the call. 

Consider these stats: 

Internet Rush Hour (peak web traffic) in the UK is between 7pm and 11 pm (The Independent). Your office is closed or your phone is switched off. We all need down time and no one would suggest you’ll be effective working that many hours. So you need to encourage as many people as possible to submit their details for you to contact in the morning. The text on your contact page saying drop me an email or call sounds slow. They know that they are going to have to wait for a response from you some time tomorrow. A customer has had their own day of work and wants to put in the least effort possible – if there are other surveyors offering a quick quote then sending an email or calling you tomorrow isn’t going to happen. 

You need to be quick to respond to your enquiries. 78% of Customers Buy From the First Responder (Lead Connect). Why? The first time they hear about a feature or a benefit, it’s unique and impressive. You want that to be coming from you. The third or fourth time they hear it, it’s old news – and that makes it harder to stand out (Leif Peters, Senior Account Executive, IntelliChief). If a customer can get a quote and purchase straight away from other surveyors, your reply by lunchtime tomorrow looks very slow. 

The importance of a quote form

Providing a quote online does not mean losing out on opportunities to speak to the customer. In fact, if set up correctly it can mean quite the opposite… A customer fills in your quote form and gets a quote. You now have their details to be able to contact them and answer any questions they may have about your service. These are the details of a customer who otherwise may not have bothered to make an enquiry. 

To get as much as possible from your leads you can also set up automated email flows to provide further information about your service to your customers with no additional effort.

Customers are savvy though. A contact form disguised as a quote form will have low conversion rates. It is very clear to a customer that a contact form labelled ‘Get a Quote’ is not going to offer them instant gratification. In today’s society of a 2 hour turnaround on online deliveries with Prime Now a contact form for quotes doesn’t cut it. If a customer fills in a form expecting to get a quote and all that happens is it says ‘Thanks for submitting your details’ the customer feels frustrated. That is the opposite of what you want to achieve.

This makes what could have been a positive touch point a negative one. Make sure your quote form actually offers a quote. Customers are realistic – they know that you can’t always provide an immediate quote. There may be variables that need consideration first but it should be setup to provide them one wherever you can. Where you can’t offer a quote now, customers will see from the setup you’ve made a genuine effort to provide one and not just attempt to get their details. 

How quickly do you respond?

We’ve just shown that you really need to be first to respond to a customer to win the sale. In fact you are 391% more likely to convert a lead in the first minute (Lead Connect). At the moment when a customer is making an enquiry they are in a buying mode and thinking completely about their survey. Call them an hour later they are thinking about other priorities again. 

During office hours, do you respond as soon as a lead comes in or wait until a break in the day? If it is the latter you’re losing opportunities. 

There are systems you can put in place to provide an immediate response to customer enquiries if you can’t afford an admin team to respond to every lead that comes in. Automation may not win you sales on its own (we would always say a call is important) but it can buy you the time for speaking to them later. After all, you’ve already responded straight away and show you care about being responsive. Your call later is following up to offer more detail. 

Out of office hours – you have no way to respond in person. A setup proving the ability to get quotes and instruct you when you aren’t even working sets you ahead of your competition. People take the path of least resistance.

What are your reservations about providing a quote online?

  • You’re more expensive than others in the area. That isn’t a problem. You have their details to make contact to explain the value you offer that justifies your price. You can also include important information about your service in an instant quote/estimation confirmation email ready for when you can call. This information can outline the additional value you offer to your clients. An online setup that is more advanced than your competitors will also help show your service will provide value. 

  • I like to talk to my customers to give them a quote. We agree – nothing beats a phone call to understand the customers requirements, what they want to learn about their property and to help them understand how your service and report will best answer their questions. But it’s not that simple – if you want to increase the number of opportunities you have to speak on the phone, you need to increase the number of enquiries that are being made in the first place. As we said before, customers are used to filling out forms and often averse to making calls. 

  • My customers call me – is that just because they have no other option? Do you offer any alternative? Consider that there will be many others who have visited your site who didn’t make contact. Just check your site analytics for web traffic received versus calls received. 

  • I don’t like filling in forms. Prospective buyers fill out 3-5 lead forms on average (Source: LeadQual). Setting up processes solely around your preferences and not that of your customers can cost you sales. Any customer can contact me any way they want as long as it’s by phone. Sound familiar? Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants, so long as it is black.