Boost Winter Sales with These Tips
For HVAC contractors, a frigid winter is a good one. When winter temperatures are mild, sales can take a hit as heating system repair and furnace replacement aren’t as critical for homeowners. With a warm winter projected for the 2015-2016 heating season, make sure your business doesn’t fall into a warm winter rut; boost your sales with these tips.
Follow these 4 tips:
1) Revisit old sales estimates
How many times have you heard, “I’m going to wait until next season,” or some variation of this from a customer? During a warm winter lull is the right time to touch base with these customers. This does a few things for your business:
- The call keeps your company at the top of the customer’s mind. The majority of customers will welcome your follow-up, and if they are ready to pull the trigger on the project, they’re more than likely going to do it with you.
- You’ll generate new work to keep your crew busy during what would otherwise be downtime. Even if the customer’s not ready to purchase a new heating system, they may be experiencing problems with their current equipment, presenting you with repair work opportunities.
- You’ll also generate new revenue and profit for your business. Unsold estimates represent missed opportunities, so take advantage of them now.
Winter can be a tight time financially for many homeowners, so if you can make the deal sweeter for them, you’re more likely to make the sale. Take some time to research rebates from manufacturers, tax credits, utility provider incentives, and state or local programs which could lower the homeowner’s purchase costs. Show the customer the savings they stand to earn by installing new equipment now so they can visualize why doing so is advantageous for them.
2) Build a customer referral program
If your business doesn’t already have a referral program, you’re missing out on valuable advertising opportunities from one of the best sources around — the customers you’ve pleased in the past. Building a referral program gives your business a new avenue to generate the new customers needed for your business to grow. When developing your referral program:
- Consider what incentive you’d like to offer your existing customers for their referrals. This incentive will encourage customers to make the referral, and their positive experience with your company will help make the sale to their friends and family.
- Explore how you will inform existing customers of your referral program. Invoice inserts, printed material that can be carried on a truck, and website and social media advertising can all be valuable here.
3) Target old customers
All HVAC contractors have customers who bought once years ago and that was the last time they were heard from. Customers who have already bought from you once are likely to do so again, so give them the nudge they need. Identify who these people are and plan a marketing campaign to reestablish contact with these customers and show them the advantages your products and services have to offer.
4) Track your advertising!
So many contractors advertise without tracking, and never know if their investment was really worth it. Take the time this winter to develop and implement tracking measures for current and future advertising and marketing efforts so you can determine which efforts are actually of value to your business and cut the ones which aren’t paying off. To start, consider:
- If you haven’t already, set up analytics for your company’s website. The data collected will give you valuable information about what sources are driving traffic to your website, which products and services customers are most interested in, and more.
- If you’ll be offering a discount, use unique coupon codes to track the source of the sale. Use one code for direct mailers, another for emails, etc. Each advertising method should have its own code.
- Use unique landing pages for all advertising. Instead of directing customers to your main website, include a URL to a specific landing page. If you’ll be advertising using multiple platforms, consider developing a unique landing page for each advertisement.
- Dedicated phone numbers are another way to track contact from specific advertising. Call tracking services can redirect phone numbers to your main business line, but you’ll be able to access data showing which number the call was originally placed to. Use a unique number for billboards, for newspaper advertising, direct mail, social media, web advertising, and the other advertising platforms your company utilizes.
During warm winters of the past, how has your company drummed up business? Tell us by commenting below!
Are you a contractor and interested in growing your business? HVAC.com can help grow your business by introducing you to new customers in your local area! We are inviting the best HVAC contractors in the industry to join our network so you can connect with customers who need help with their HVAC system.