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Need Help With Customer

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by smcturner, Nov 20, 2014.

  1. smcturner

    smcturner Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Here is the scenario:
    There is a customer that is almost out of our service area that has signed a contract and paid for the season. The day after I received the contract, I received an email saying that there is another company that will service their house for $175 less than our season price, they are right down the street from them. The customer that we are servicing is about 20-25 miles from our shop location, we also have about 15 other customers in that area. We service mostly in our area, within a 10-15 mile radius. We also take care of 13 Commercial properties, this one is a residential customer.
    The customer expects us to service them as our top priority, which we try to with all of our customers. I told the customer that if they would like, I can take them off of the list and refund the money before my crews went out to do the routes if they would like to go with the other company. Our company has been in business for over 10 years and is insured.

    I guess what I am trying to get at is how do I respond to the customer??

    Please help me
  2. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,123

    I would give them there money back and tell them to use the cheaper company. They will never be happy. Not a good way to start the winter, with them crying about money already. Run the other way.
  3. Wilnip

    Wilnip Senior Member
    Messages: 592

    Yep. exactly what I would say
  4. smcturner

    smcturner Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Thanks guys! I tried that and they were shocked that I had told them that we would refund their money, they said they never wanted to bail out, just wanted to make sure we will give them top service because they are paying us 50% more than the other contractor.
  5. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,415

    Here's your money back. Bye! :waving:
  6. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,392

    But is the other contractor supplying 50% less service? But yea I'd run away now
  7. MK97

    MK97 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,057

    Cancel their service and refund. Either the other company never existed and they were trying to get a better deal, or they found a cheaper one to use to get you to drop your price. Result is the same either way, they want to pay less, don't buy into the whole "oh we were just casually mentioning we're paying you more" excuse.

    I bet the will drag their feet on payment as well if this is how they act already. This is exactly why I refuse to do residential, too many potential headaches on every block.
  8. smcturner

    smcturner Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I totally agree, residential customers 75% of the time are a headache. I have been dealing with residential and commercial for serveral years as being an office manager for a few different companies. My dad is a gravel hauler truck driver and that is one thing he has always said, what you exactly said. I have been his office manager for about 16 years. ahhh. They paid for the whole season up front tho xysport
  9. MK97

    MK97 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,057

    Good they paid upfront, however you should still drop them. Going to have to decide if this customer is worth getting calls every storm. I can almost guarantee they will call every time if they aren't serviced right away. It will be the same thing every time "we're paying you more than the other company, we expect priority service".

    Residential is a complete headache (as you know), so I give credit to those guys who do lots of driveways, no way I could.
  10. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,092

    My resi's are great, per push, 1" triggers and I'm paid within 3-5days of them being invoiced. I will say I've also had some real D-Bags too years ago and exercised the right terminated their contract.
    I've also had some real D-Bag commercial accounts too and either declined the opportunity or after trying to set them straight terminated their contracts too.
  11. MK97

    MK97 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,057

    Agreed, D-bags come in all forms. I'd rather run the risk of encountering a random business D-bag than potentially multiple residential ones. Just figure statistically the chances are higher with residential. Perhaps a study is needed to see if those commercial jerks are also the homeowner ones, lol.

    I've only dealt with one D-bag business, and cut ties before any service. One of those where I had a bad feeling the whole time. Pretty sure I dodged a big bullet on that one.
  12. cwby_ram

    cwby_ram Senior Member
    Messages: 907

    I'll throw my 2 cents in. I didn't really pick up any D-bagginess in the original post. What it sounded like to me was a customer wanting to make sure he was getting what he paid for. As far as they are concerned, they have you at $X and company 2 at $Y. At this point, you're just two companies with plows and a 50% price difference. So my advice would be to educate the client on why you're price is higher (insurance, experience, service, etc. etc).

    Maybe there is more than I read into it, but I've run into plenty of PITA customers, especially residential. Once they got comfortable with me, and I with them, some of them have become my best clients (not easiest). Remember we're a service industry. If you go to two dealerships and they have the same snow plow listed for two different prices, wouldn't you want to know why?
  13. smcturner

    smcturner Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    You are right, thank you for giving me some professional advice on how to answer them without sounding rude, I wish I could say what some others have giving me advice on, but it has to be worded right ya know. Thank you everyone for the quick responses I really appreciate it. This is my first year doing snow on the admin side and it is very hard to word/deal with some customers...thanks again I really appreciate it
  14. cwby_ram

    cwby_ram Senior Member
    Messages: 907

    Glad to be of help. Thumbs Up
    Good luck this year. Just keep a cool head and a slow mouth. You'll do just fine!