Appliances aren’t the only thing you need to be prepared for when you start an appliance repair company. Here are five common questions you need to have verifiable answers to:
1. Do you have references?
Appliance repair technicians, like most people in the service and repair industries, often have to fight against an unfair negative stereotype. There are a lot of different reasons for this, ranging from cultural jokes to previous bad experiences. But no matter where a potential customer’s suspicions are coming from, they’re going to ask for references and look for your online rating.
Even though most people will search online instead of asking you questions directly, you still need to have an answer ready. Build up customer survey responses you can site and make sure you have a good local business directory site (like Yelp or HomeAdvisor) that you can send customers to.
If you want to work for commercial chains or get government contracts, then you need more formal references. Find a few customers, especially commercial customers, that wouldn’t mind picking up the phone.
2. Do you run background checks on your employees?
Just like when customers are asking for references, they want to make sure inviting you into their home is a good idea. So have your answer ready and make sure your office knows how to reassure customers without accidentally giving away your employee’s personally identifiable information.
Background checks aren’t just your customer’s way to verify the integrity of your business. They’re also a way to protect your business’s good name when you’re expanding. Whether you think customers are likely to ask or not, always run at least a criminal background check.
3. Do you have insurance and the right licenses?
This is the third check customers have to make sure your company is reliable. Most of your customers don’t know much about appliance repair, the industry, or the appliances themselves. That’s why they’re hiring you. But in order to make up for that lack of know-how, customers look up how to make sure they’re hiring a good company. Insurance and licenses are high on the list. In many states, they’re also a legal requirement.
So make sure all of your employees are versed on how to answer the question, whether they go out in the field or they answer the phone in the office. They should also carry proof of insurance and licensure since many customers push for verification.
4. Is this covered by the warranty?
If your customers don’t ask this question, be prepared to ask it for them. Customers want to know what they’re expected to pay before you start working, and warranties are part of the equation. Even worse, they can get complicated fast. Some customers might have read through the warranty and expect things to be covered that aren’t. So before you get to work or settle on the price, make sure everyone agrees what part the warranty is going to play in the final bill due.
5. Are you authorized by a factory or manufacturer?
The majority of warranties only apply when the work is done by a factory- or manufacturer-authorized appliance repair company. Keep an updated list of all the manufacturers your company is authorized by, as well as the various brands they represent. When customers ask this question, they want a quick, definite answer. If you aren’t authorized, that’s okay. Just have a list of how the customer benefits by you not being authorized if it starts to sound like a deal breaker.
Don’t just prepare for the tough questions. Prepare for tough appliances. Go to Fred’s Appliance Academy for hands-on appliance training and troubleshooting tips.