Summers are relentless. The days are long and your business is busier than ever. At the end of it, you may walk away feeling as though it was one big blur. While summer is one of the busiest seasons around, there is something to be said about making the most efficient use of this valuable time. Implementing a few inexpensive hacks will put money back in your pocket, shave hours off your workday, and reclaim some valuable time to enjoy your summer.
Even better, these efficiency hacks have long-term benefits and will set your business up for success in the coming months. We’ve put together a short-list of 10 pro-business hacks that will surely add some sizzle to your step.
Faster Modern Communication With 97% of Americans using text messages, it no wonder that texting is the most popular and most frequently used form of communication. Text messaging is 10x faster than making a phone call and costs 125% less. Customers are also far more likely to see and respond to your message.
Keep & Update Records Keeping records sounds like the easiest part of good office management – but keeping them updated can be a lot harder in practice, especially when they build up. The easiest way to beat this is problem is to make updating records an automatic routine. When you get a new customer or client, it only takes a moment to enter them into your customer list. Having accurate records is a sure fire way to quickly increase company efficiency and keep everyone organized.
Digital Invoicing/Go Paperless You’ve heard it before: go paperless. Today, software makes it really easy to move to a low-cost paperless solution. Having access to all of your company information will make running your business a breeze. You’ll be able to search for customer information (like billing address and work history) without having to call the office. By utilizing digital invoicing, you can create invoices on-the-fly and update them in real-time with your customer’s ever-changing needs. Your customers will delight in the exceptional service you’re providing by creating quick and accurate invoices, and you’ll love getting paid faster.
Skip the Pleasantries You’re busy and so are your customers. Introduce online booking to your website and give them the freedom to choose a service time that works for them. Online booking will allow customers to choose the service they want to be performed, and immediately choose a time from your real-time updated availability. This software is a great way to reduce time spent going back and forth with customers. It also exponentially increases the chance of getting booked. The fewer steps it takes for them to get from point A to point B, the more quickly they will book with you; simple as that.
Use Free Cloud Storage Solutions Cloud storage makes for some amazing changes to any small business. Simply put, the cloud is just a secure place on the internet for your company to store their information. All the information is in one spot, accessible from anywhere in the world at any time. You and your team can see changes to a contract, schedule, or invoice immediately; not in hours or days. You’ll love the increased collaboration between members of your business. This is also a great solution to store job-site photos. Typically, the photos taken from a job that may have important legal or technical information are stored on an employee's phone. By storing these photos in a company cloud solution, any employee can access these photos, at any time. Eliminate bulky, space-wasting file drawers and move to a clean and efficient cloud solution.
Make Communicating Easier Keeping your customer in the loop is one of the foundations of running a successful business and keeping customers happy. No one likes being left in the dark or wondering what to do next. By sending a few simple messages to your customer, you will ensure they have a clear course of action and decrease any potential miscommunications. Automating these messages will shave hours off your work week. For example, automatic text notifications will let customers know when the technician is en route. By keeping customers in the loop during this process you will reduce no-shows and make sure customers receive an exceptional experience.
Stop Chasing Down Payments To stay successful during the summer, you need to make sure your cash flow is coming in strong and on a regular basis. We recommend using a system that has a batch invoicing option so you can let technology help you collect payments automatically. Your system should also have payment processing, so you can easily accept payment for your invoices out in the field. Keeping these two services tied together greatly increases your business efficiency.
Get Back to Basics With Postcards Customers hate spam, but love appreciation. Consider using postcards as a great way to reach out to customers, remind them to book their next appointment and thank them for previous business. Manually writing, printing, and mailing all those postcards can be extremely time consuming and costly. Instead, use an automation service to send postcards after 2-3 months of the initial job date.
Pro-tip: include a special promotion code on the postcard to track how effective your marketing campaign was and incentivize customers to book another job.
These hacks are designed to save you time, while continuing to foster customer relationships. With improved customer communication, quicker billing and invoicing, consistent marketing, and routine organization, you will be to offer an experience unlike any other. Implementing these changes should also eliminate wasteful business practices, reduce employee hours spent on back-office work, and lower the risk of unhappy customers, which is especially important during your busy season.
If you’re looking for a program to help with some of these hacks, then take a moment to stop by our features page. We’d love to show you brief demo explaining how Housecall Pro can help you accommodate more business with increased efficiency all while being very affordable.
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