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Old 01-15-2016, 11:05 AM   #1
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Default What Do You Do to Raise Your Closing Rates?

I'm curious about what you guys do to boost your closing rates and how you look at your estimate process from a stage break-down standpoint. Specifically, here's what I mean...

I've always broken up the estimating process into a few major parts:

Pre-Positioning (What you do to build trust before you arrive onsite)

Presenting (What you do onsite stage-by-stage BEFORE the estimate is presented)

Post-Positioning (What you do on-site AFTER the estimate is presented)

Follow-Up (What you do after you leave the site and the customer says "maybe" but has not signed the contract)

How do you break these parts down in your process? And what are your best tips for WHAT to do and WHEN to do it to raise closing rates?

Thanks guys and I hope to take away a few gems! Brandon
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Old 01-15-2016, 11:27 AM   #2
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Pre-quallify as much as possible on the initial phone contact. No sense pursuing a job that you won't be able to fit into your schedule or is out of the scope of what you do.

Show up for the bid on time and look professional. Ask lots of questions, listen, and take clear notes. Be respectful of their time and home.

If it's a small to mid-sized job, I try to give them my price before I leave. Then I ask if they'd like to scheduled the project. It's low key and polite, never pushy or aggressive. I think many customers prefer to quickly have a price and to get on my list so they can more or less forget about it until it's time to start the job. Being able to do so on the spot can be very appealing.

If I email or snail mail my bid, then I will touch bases a week or so out to see if they have any questions. I will then be able to usually determine if they want to proceed or not.

Nothing magical or ground breaking IMO. Just a common sense approach that seems to minimize the time and effort needed to land jobs.
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Old 01-15-2016, 05:23 PM   #3
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RH - Do you send snail mail or email pre-positioning materials/content before you arrive? We've seen a big difference using this. Autoresponders make it very easy these days to even do a series at the click of a button.

Thanks and have a great weekend! BL
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Old 01-15-2016, 05:26 PM   #4
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I had 3 leads through my website last 7 days or so. I followed up by phone and email with all 3 immediately. Did not hear back from any of them. In the past I would have just let it be. Instead I waited a couple days and sent a very short but professional follow up email .

Heard back from 2 of them today one lead was traveling so he just got back to me I booked appt with him for estimate this week. The other lead called and thanked for following up as he was also very busy with new home 3 kids etc also booked a appt for estimate with him as well. It does pay to follow up and follow up again.
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Old 01-16-2016, 02:56 PM   #5
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I'm not sure why, but for some reason we find on most of our small to medium sized jobs, if we don't close the deal on site the day of the quote , then we don't get the job. I've Always told my guys, When I'm giving quotes to people, They are buying us and our company. Not the cash guy down the road in the beat up car, wearing his old oily jeans and tshirt smelling like tobacco and beer. I drive up in a clean truck, Park on the road, wearing whites, but clean ones. Remove my shoes before knocking and then proceed with the quote, asking questions and taking notes. I can usually tell right away if they like me, and it leads to getting the job. The professional, quality job we actually deliver leads to follow up work, and referrels. But its that first impression that really helps close the deal, for us anyway
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Old 01-16-2016, 04:09 PM   #6
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Remove my shoes before knocking
You really remove your shoes before knocking?
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Old 01-16-2016, 04:37 PM   #7
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You really remove your shoes before knocking?

Absolutely! if they are runners, slip them off and put them by the door, or steel toed boots, untie and do the same. Home owners take pride in their homes and I like to show that I respect that.

a lot of times, they say "Oh, you didn't have to take off your shoes" I always respond "Its just one the many things we do" seems corny now typing but it makes them happy
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Old 01-16-2016, 04:40 PM   #8
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I drive a dodge that helps

Mike
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Old 01-16-2016, 04:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FraserValleyPainting View Post
Absolutely! if they are runners, slip them off and put them by the door, or steel toed boots, untie and do the same. Home owners take pride in their homes and I like to show that I respect that.

a lot of times, they say "Oh, you didn't have to take off your shoes" I always respond "Its just one the many things we do" seems corny now typing but it makes them happy
It does sound kind of corny but I'm going to have to try it on some nicer homes (or homes that you can tell the owner cares about), if it looks like the inside might be dirtier then the outside I might keep them on lol

Good advice tho!
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Old 01-16-2016, 05:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FraserValleyPainting View Post
Absolutely! if they are runners, slip them off and put them by the door, or steel toed boots, untie and do the same. Home owners take pride in their homes and I like to show that I respect that.

a lot of times, they say "Oh, you didn't have to take off your shoes" I always respond "Its just one the many things we do" seems corny now typing but it makes them happy
I get the same response most of the time "you don't have to do that". I still do.

I like to think of those things as 1%er's. Like cleaning the windows, mirror, lights, polishing hardware, vacuum out the vents, etc. They're all little things but those 1%'s add up and customers really notice and comment to their friends about it.
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Old 01-16-2016, 06:48 PM   #11
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Exactly PRC, Its the little things. One thing I do which I would suggest to anyone is while your there giving a quote, explain the steps involved. For example for us we 'paint' them a picture of how easy dealing with us is. "We enter the home with about 15 drop clothes, cover every inch of floor we can (depending on space being painted) and cover any exposed furniture with poly. Then we remove all switch covers and remove any nails/pins/screws. We give all surfaces a hard sand to bring the drywall down to a smooth finish, we then take out bright work lights and scour every inch of the wall looking for holes, old drips, or anything that needs patching, By the time We are done the walls look like a spotted monster. We then proceed to sand all those spots, spot prime with sealer, and start cutting in our first coat. After rolling out that coat, we sand walls again lightly and patch again anything we may have missed. We sand, spot prime, and intermediate coat those patches, and start cutting in our final coat. when we are all rolled out we roll up our dropsheets/poly, hand wash wood/laminate/tile and use our shop vac to vacuum carpet. We re-install wall covers, move our tools to the truck, and come back for a final walk around."


home owners love to hear that, They know by my original introduction I am professional, and now they know we are neat, tidy, and take care to protect every surface.
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Old 01-16-2016, 09:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FraserValleyPainting View Post
Absolutely! if they are runners, slip them off and put them by the door, or steel toed boots, untie and do the same. Home owners take pride in their homes and I like to show that I respect that.

a lot of times, they say "Oh, you didn't have to take off your shoes" I always respond "Its just one the many things we do" seems corny now typing but it makes them happy

Following your same principle, I've found huge success on raising my closing rates ever since I bought and started using this on all of my walkthroughs:

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Old 01-16-2016, 11:29 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Painters Academy View Post
RH - Do you send snail mail or email pre-positioning materials/content before you arrive? We've seen a big difference using this. Autoresponders make it very easy these days to even do a series at the click of a button.

Thanks and have a great weekend! BL
No, just don't have the time to do that though I think it could be a good idea. We respond to enquiries the same day and usually try to schedule bids soon after. We find that being amongst the first to respond/bid puts us in a position to best land the job.
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:51 PM   #14
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One quick thought on closing the BIG JOBS. The bigger the job, in the mind of the homeowner or business owner, the bigger the risk. This means the sales cycle is typically longer, they have more unanswered questions, and your competing for MORE of their disposable income.

Consider focusing on this: Work in more information about your people, processes, and products before, during, and after the estimate. Trust = # of interactions X quality of interactions. Compress these into the 72-96 hour time-frame you have to work with. You'll watch your closing rates for the big jobs begin to climb.
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Old 01-19-2016, 09:34 PM   #15
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Following your same principle, I've found huge success on raising my closing rates ever since I bought and started using this on all of my walkthroughs:

I've been seeing these pop up in paint stores lately. They were priced at $170 at Sherwin-Williams. Where I live (pretty rural area with some smaller cities around) I'd imagine I'd get laughed at for using those.. but I can see how they would be seen as a nice gesture in high class urban areas.
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Old 01-20-2016, 12:52 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RP Mike View Post
I've been seeing these pop up in paint stores lately. They were priced at $170 at Sherwin-Williams. Where I live (pretty rural area with some smaller cities around) I'd imagine I'd get laughed at for using those.. but I can see how they would be seen as a nice gesture in high class urban areas.
Your sales rep should be able to get you one for around $120, plus it includes a plastic refill roll that lasts for about 250 pairs of covers.
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Old 01-21-2016, 08:52 AM   #17
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The Contractors Closing Sucess Blueprint. Great read by Mike Jeffries read it again on my flight to and from my destination .
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