“We all fear what we don’t understand.” – Dan Brown
As an expert in your respective field, it’s easy to forget what it’s like to know virtually nothing about plumbing, HVAC, electrical, or whichever industry you serve. But when customers come to you with seemingly ridiculous questions, it’s important you answer them accurately and provide resources for further education and peace of mind.
In this article, we cover common household concerns and strategies to turn customer questions into customer service opportunities. Whether your customers are knowledgeable about your industry or not, it’s important to be a source of truth for their questions.
9 Safety Questions Americans Google About Their Home
These questions are being asked by tens of thousands of Americans every year. Do you think you can answer them correctly? Take our quiz below or jump to our infographic to see the answers.
Are daddy long legs poisonous? | 64,800 searches per year
Is tap water safe to drink? | 36,000 searches per year
How many volts can kill you? | 33,600 searches per year
Can you smell carbon monoxide? | 32,400 searches per year
How long do smoke detectors last? | 25,200 searches per year
Can you microwave aluminum foil? | 21,600 searches per year
Can mold kill you? | 13,200 searches per year
Are bed bugs dangerous? | 7,200 searches per year
Does bleach expire? | 6,000 searches per year
Pro Tips For Educating Customers and Alleviating Fears
The following are tips on how to turn your customer’s questions into opportunities and their fears into trust.
Some customers want limited interaction, while others want solutions explained in granular detail. Either way, you should take the extra steps to provide health-related education at every opportunity, no matter how basic.
If you are a pest control professional trying to eliminate bed bugs, you could give the customer an outlined strategy. Let the customer know you plan to start with local fumigation and if that doesn’t work, only then will you recommend structural fumigation, which is more expensive and dangerous.
Also educate the customer on preventative measures and steps to remain safe, such as to evacuate the home, remove pets, double bag food, alert neighbors, and more.
Offer Recurring Service Agreements
One way to keep customers at ease is to offer recurring service agreements for maintaining a healthy environment.
Whether you are a pest control pro, HVAC pro, home cleaning pro, or any other service pro, recurring service agreements can be extremely beneficial for both you and the customer. For the customer, the process of finding a service pro, vetting their abilities, checking reviews, requesting a quote, and arranging a housecall is extremely time-consuming. Recurring service agreements can solve this issue.
As a business owner, having a recurring relationship with customers can not only increase customer lifetime value, but can also increase word-of-mouth marketing since customers are more likely to remember and recommend your business the more frequently your services are provided.
Answer Safety Questions Before Being Asked
Being proactive in providing safety information to customers before they even ask is a helpful value-add that customers deeply appreciate.
Even if the information seems obvious, it’s worth reiterating because many customers are uneducated in your field of expertise. Returning to our pest control example, customers might wonder why you wouldn’t start with structural fumigation since it is likely to have the highest success rate.
You could first tell the customers that bed bugs are not dangerous and besides skin irritation, there are no health concerns. Then explain that the poison used in structural fumigation is dangerous, and reiterate that human exposure can be toxic.
While it may seem obvious to you that bed bugs are not dangerous and the gas used in structural fumigation is dangerous, we suggest you be proactive in educating users of these facts.
Provide External Resources
Some customers are wary to trust the opinion of pros or will feel that a quote is too high. Citing a credible external resource can build trust.
Before your customers seek a second opinion, provide external evidence supporting your suggestions. This may not always prevent customers from turning to another provider, but it may make them think twice before they do or come back after they’ve connected with other pros.
Answer The Questions Americans Ask About Their Homes
Great customer service is less about what you say and more what you do in response to a customer’s request.
A small change to your process can have a huge impact. If customers ask questions that are out of your field of expertise, don’t shrug the question off with an “I don’t know” response, and instead take initiative to research and contact an expert who can answer the question. This can help you form relationships with complementary businesses and generate referral business from that partnership.
If you want to review some common questions Americans ask about the safety of their home, check out the visual below. If you want more helpful information and tools to operate your business more efficiently, sign up for our newsletter and a 14-day free trial.
To determine the most common questions American’s ask regarding their home, Housecall Pro used Ahrefs to calculate how many times various home safety phrases were searched per month.
We combined similar search queries and multiplied by twelve to calculate annual search volume. For example, “can you smell carbon monoxide” has 800 searches per month and “what does carbon monoxide smell like” has 1,900 searches per month. We combined these and multiplied by 12 to calculate 32,400 annual searches.