The Power of Reviews and Feedback for Field Service Businesses

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If your business is providing at-home products and services like pest control, alarm systems, or even solar panels, you might have it tough. There’s stiff competition. It can be a grind to even get your foot in the door with homeowners—literally. And even once you’ve won valued customers, you still might struggle to maintain a positive reputation or to continually earn high satisfaction ratings.In fact, 32% of FSOs are failing to attain at least 80% customer satisfaction. This has a big impact on a company’s online reputation, creates a ton of expensive churn, and can ultimately prevent new customers from signing up.

Luckily, there are two things that can help FSOs not only look great online but improve customer satisfaction.  

Improve Online Reputation With Reviews

reading online reviews

Let’s say you’ve just had a great conversation with a prospect and they want to think about it. What are they likely to do right away? Search for you online to check out your reviews and your reputation. These days, 97% of people read online reviews before they’ll work with a business. That means you need plenty of reviews, but you also need a solid review score that represents the excellent service you provide, so you can earn those great reviews. So, when that prospect searches for you, what they see are lots of people singing your praises and removing any reservations they might have about doing business with you. So how do you get more of those reviews? Here are a few steps any field services business can take to get more of, and more from their online reviews

  • Start asking for reviews – Getting more reviews is as easy as asking, but there’s a caveat. You’ll have more success if you make it super easy for customers to leave reviews. Many businesses are using Swell because it lets you text-message review invites to customers when it’s convenient for them. Since it allows you to send it to them during times when they’re most likely to reply, you’ll generally see a much higher response rate.
  • Use review feedback to improve your customer’s experience – Asking for reviews should be a regular thing. But you’re not just trying to look great online; you’re looking for feedback you can use to improve your business. Take a look at what people are saying. Look for trends that help you get better. Use negative reviews as an opportunity to make your business better.
  • Use online reviews as part of your in-person pitch – One way to accelerate sales is to use reviews as part of your pitch. Your salespeople in the field might be armed with a tablet or sales collateral to help promote services. Make sure your Google, Yelp, and scores from other review platforms are listed (assuming they’re awesome). Then select a few of the better quotes from customers and add them in. Social proof goes a long way.
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Using reviews the right way creates a growth flywheel.

Get Regular Customer Feedback

Reviews provide valuable feedback, but what if you want information about something specific? Say you want to know how well each service visit was. Maybe you’re curious about a homeowner’s overall experience with a new solar install? For this, you should develop a survey program. Here are the steps involved:

  • Pick when and what surveys to send – Will you send a survey each time homeowners get service? Will you send a quarterly customer satisfaction survey? Maybe you want to know about the performance of specific service providers? First, decide what kind of information you want to gather on a regular basis.
Survey quote
  • Find a survey tool – There are dozens of surveying tools out there. Some are free. Some cost thousands of dollars a year. The tool you choose will depend on how robust your survey program needs to be. If you’re sending the occasional survey to a few hundred people, a free option is great. If you’re developing a program to gather regular feedback on multiple facets of your business across thousands of customers, you’ll want something more complex. For simple, text-message based surveys that give you a great overview of how you’re doing as a business, check out Swell Survey.
  • Analyze and adapt – Surprisingly, a lot of businesses conduct surveys but either ignore the feedback or never look closely at it. If you’re not analyzing reviews and using it to improve performance, what’s the point? You might be acting like you’re trying to improve, but are you doing it? Look at your survey data and use it to be better.

For a more thorough look at how to create surveys and gather feedback, check out this piece.

Conclusion

Better service is how you win in the field services game. But it’s not enough to provide stellar service, people need to know about it. Luckily, surveys and reviews can help you do both at the same time. Reviews contain valuable feedback, but they also help improve your online reputation and give you more visibility in local searches. Surveys go a level deeper. When you regularly apply feedback you gather in surveys, your service quality improves. Suddenly you have even more awesome reviews and the whole cycle repeats itself.

If you’re looking for a great way to get more reviews and feedback, check out Swell. Swell helps businesses grow by giving them tools for gathering feedback and engaging with customers.