Looking to grow your contractor business? Whether you have plans to stay small or scale your business over time, it’s important to find effective ways to bring in new customers.
Here are 6 tips for growing your business.
1. Perform an Internal Review.
Start by performing an internal review of your company. There are a few key areas you want to focus on:
- Financial stability
- Customer referrals
- Repeat business
- Employee turnover rate
- Customer ratings and reviews
To find out this information, you’ll need to review your books, talk to your employees and see what people are saying about your business. Look for areas of improvement, and start working on plans to fix these areas.
If customer service is lacking, you may need to hire a new team that excels in this area, or implement a training program to improve service.
2. Build a Great Team.
Contractors rely on their teams to get the job done and to provide exceptional work. Hire talented subcontractors with good reputations.
If you’re working on a new construction, you’ll need to find a certified electrician, plumber, roofer and craftsmen to handle the interior work, like cabinetry and painting. Take the time to find qualified, experienced and reputable subcontractors to add to your projects.
As for your own employees, promote and reward them for doing a good job. Be discerning when hiring.
3. Make an Investment in Your Business.
Growth requires investment. Invest time and money in your company. Buy new technology and equipment to streamline operations and improve the quality of your work. Train your employees and actively market your business to attract new customers.
Growth costs money and resources, but the investment will pay off in the end.
4. Make Customer Service a Priority.
Lack of customer service is one of the biggest complaints people have about contractors. Make yourself available to customers. Hire someone to answer phones. Yes, this is an added expense, but customers and potential customers want to speak to a person – not a robot – when they call your business.
Be sure to clearly state your office hours on your website, your social channels and your business cards. Customers won’t expect someone to be there to answer the phone after business hours. To make customers feel valued, consider setting up automated social media and email messages when the office is closed. Just let customers know that you received their message and will respond within 24 hours.
If someone asks a question or leaves feedback on social media or a review site, take the time to respond.
5. Join an Industry Association.
From writing contracts to determining your fees and product recommendations, industry associations can help you learn the skills you need to succeed with your business.
6. Focus on Marketing.
Marketing is essential in every industry, but it’s even more important for contractors. Word of mouth will get you repeat business and loyal customers, but you also need to attract new customers with no connections to previous clients.
Your marketing efforts should start with your website and also include email, social media, blog posting and video creation (if possible). It’s also important to invest in local marketing. Attend chamber of commerce meetings, answer questions in local newspapers and invest in local advertising.