When you’re out in the field or working in the office, what eats away at your time? For many contractors who are running an HVAC business, it’s the little things — trying to find that one email, digging through six month’s-worth of estimates and running down that overdue payment — just to name a few.
In the early days of your business, you were able to keep everything organized in your head. But these days, it’s too much to juggle. So, the days get longer and run into your evenings while you handle all the paperwork once the field work is done.
How Tech Can Help Run Your HVAC Business
What if there was a way to centralize all of the customer interactions, communication, estimates, payment requests, follow up and more in one place? Think about the time you would save from simply not having to log into 10 different apps every day.
Not to mention having all of the documents and conversations at your fingertips.
With do-it-all business management software, you can centralize everything from customer contact information to payment requests to service reminders. This not only shaves hours off of your work day, but also creates life-long, loyal customers.
Here are three ways technology can help shorten your work days:
1. Organize Customer History and Communication
Raise your hand if you’ve ever spent an hour trying to track down that one email with that one phone number for a customer referral that was sent six months ago. Was it in your Gmail? Maybe it was over Facebook Messenger. Wait … it was a text message, wasn’t it?
If you can relate, it’s time to consider a centralized customer relationship management (CRM) tool.
While running an HVAC business in today’s market, you need a fast and easy way to keep track of your customers. They’re moving at the speed of light, and expect you to have details at the ready at all times.
Your CRM will house customer’s data, along with every estimate, payment and message — no matter where it originated.
A CRM with a centralized inbox will grab messages from social media apps, text messages, Gmail, Google’s Business Messages and more. Then, it dumps them all into one inbox, so you never have to go searching again.
Because that inbox is connected to your CRM, you’ll also have the customer’s history, contact information, documents and any other details you’d like to save.
2. Make Follow-up Automatic
Whether you want to send a reminder for upcoming maintenance or close a sale with a customer who wasn’t quite ready a few months, follow-up communication can also eat away at the clock.
Now that you’ve got your CRM and centralized inbox set up, this just got a whole lot easier. Setting your follow-up to automatic can ensure you’ll never miss an opportunity again.
This can include interactions such as:
- Upcoming appointment reminders
- Requesting a review after a service has been complete
- Following up and requesting signatures on an estimate
- Sending happy birthday wishes
- An alert for an upcoming promotion
- Requesting payments
- Sending receipts
How you communicate should be tailored to your customers’ preferences. Give them the option to sign up for text messages or opt in for email. Chances are, they prefer one of those over a disruptive phone call any day.
60% of customers in the U.S. want businesses to communicate with them via text and direct messages.—VentureBeat
3. Streamline Payments
Is there any other activity that sucks more time out of your day than running down payments? Didn’t think so.
If you’re still printing out estimates, signing invoices in triplicate and collecting hand-written checks, it’s time to modernize. In fact, did you know that 64% of customers prefer digital payments including bank drafts or credit cards when paying for larger services, like home repairs?
With digital payments come faster payments, and who doesn’t want that?
With Thryv’s HVAC business invoicing software, you can send estimates and know when they’ve been received and read. Clients can approve them electronically and communicate back to you immediately, so you can get to work. You can ask for payment at time of booking, upon invoicing or on the spot with their smartphone. Check out these tips:
A do-it-all HVAC business software tool like Thryv will help keep all of your customer data in one place and save every interaction from estimate to final payment and follow-up. Learn more about how Thryv makes running an HVAC business easier so you can shorten your work day — every day.