7 Ways Contractors Can Provide Better Customer Service

Contractors are in a unique position when it comes to service-oriented jobs. As the experts, you’re the final say when it comes to how a project is executed. On the other hand, you’re providing a service, and if you’re not working to meet the client’s needs, then you’re not doing things correctly.

Here are seven key points to keep in mind when focusing on improving your customer experience.

1. Transparent and Reliable Communication

A responsive, easily accessible contractor is always going to gain more customer confidence than somebody who is hard to get ahold of. Respond to emails and phone calls as quickly as you can, even when the news isn’t great.

“There’s no such thing as overcommunication,” says Christopher Bailey, manager of our Erie, Pennsylvania, location. “Your customers want to know how their projects are progressing. Get out in front of any potential challenges by bringing up issues as early as possible.”

2. Have an (Active) Web Presence

Customers like to be able to research you online before working with you. Make sure that you not only have a site or a Facebook page, but also that the information on there is up to date and accurate. Another detail to consider is how user-friendly your company website is, especially since websites can become outdated very quickly. Whenever possible, it is a great idea to reach out to customers to gain their perspective on your web experience, take their feedback into account and make adjustments down the line.

3. Set Expectations Accordingly

Trust is one of the most crucial aspects of any customer relationship. While this may seem like a simple point to veterans in the industry, it is important to avoid setting false expectations or overpromising results when trying to win over a potential customer.

“No day is the same, and things come up. As long as you have open and honest communication with your customer, you can work through just about anything,” says Bob Cate, manager of our Redmond, Washington, location.

Nowadays, one of the hardest expectations to set with customers is around timing. Lead times for products vary and can affect your project’s timeline. “Before talking to a customer about timing, plan ahead by calling your supplier for a realistic estimate of when your materials will be available,” advises Christopher.

If you’re unsure about something, or worried that complications may arise down the line, be sure to let your customers know before the project starts.

4. Empower Your Employees

You can do your best to be kind and easy to work with, but unless you teach your employees to do the same, you’re one bad interaction away from losing your customer’s confidence. In order to keep your customers happy, it is essential that you hire and work with people who you know have strong customer service skills. Studies have shown time and time again that the best way to influence your employees’ behavior is to set a good example yourself.

“Empowering your employees only leads to success for all,” says Bob. “If everyone is ‘in the know’ and feels like they are part of a team, you’ll be able to accomplish big things.”

5. Recommend Innovative Building Solutions

More and more customers are becoming interested in green and energy-saving materials in their homes and businesses. However, it’s also not a good idea to recommend these products just for the sake of doing so. Instead, frame these new innovations through the lens of solving a customer’s specific problem. You’ll look like the expert that you truly are, and the customer will love that you’re thinking of ways to save them money in the long term.

6. Establish a Method for Customer Feedback

If you’ve ever tried to research a new business or service online, you know just how powerful customer reviews can be. Studies show that consumers are significantly more likely to use a service or business with favorable customer reviews. Not only can it boost your online presence, but it can also offer an opportunity to focus on areas of improvement. This brings us to our final point.

7. Respond to Negative Customer Feedback

Try as you might, not every customer interaction is going to be a positive one. One mistake you can make is ignoring negative customer reviews, whether it be on Yelp, Google or your own Facebook page. Take the time to respond to each comment individually, never get defensive or dispute a customer’s account of events and do not use a boilerplate response for all negative feedback. If a customer had an overwhelmingly negative experience, offer them a voucher or some kind of compensation for their troubles. Even if they don’t end up accepting it, the perception to visitors to the site will be that you acted with integrity and did your best to solve the problem.


We hope that you can pass some of these tips along to your team to ensure that customer service is top of mind when taking on a new project or going up for a bid.

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