In a world full of service providers and people who provide tailor-made offerings and bespoke solutions, it can be difficult for many customers to enter into a buying discussion.
If you provide a service, as opposed to a range of products, it’s likely that you suffer from this dynamic. As service providers, we have to start thinking like retailers. If you owned a shop and forgot to put price tags on your items, a browsing customer might assume that everything in the shop was expensive. You’d also run the risk that they wouldn’t ask for help for fear of embarrassment.
As service providers, we have to do all we can to make it easy for our potential customers to engage in a conversation with us. Imagine yourself again as a retailer. Your aim is to encourage people into your store and increase footfall. Service-based industries have the same goal and can achieve it using the following three techniques:
1. Price Primers
Provide examples of a service that clarifies your total pricing strategy for customers. Major supermarket chains use value products to do this, and the automotive industry may use a range of cars. The process simply involves taking a snapshot of one service and putting a price on it, which will educate your audience on your overall pricing strategy.
For example, I recently assisted an accounting practice in placing fixed prices for their services and helped a cleaning company charge a fixed fee for a three-room package. These uncomplicated, one-price offers allow people to decide whether or not they can afford you.
2. Bundled Offers
I often work with clients to create collections of products and services that demonstrate great value. What can you bundle?
The idea of this process is to increase your average order value and introduce your clients to services that they wouldn’t normally choose.
When putting your bundle together, consider everything you could include — not only the tangible services or products, but also those that add extra value and substance, such as customer care, service guarantees, or telephone and email support. An example I recently influenced was a “business in a box” concept for a local design business. This package included the design and production of a full set of stationery and a basic website and brand guidelines package aimed at new start-ups.
Most people are concerned less with the overall cost and more about how much something will cost each month. As such, we can often align our offerings with this way of thinking by using this buying pattern.
Typically, if you can turn a large “pay in arrears” product or service into a sustainable “pay monthly” option, the result will be increased profit, improved cash flow, and maximum customer retention. If you’re not offering your clients a packaged “pay monthly” service, you may be missing out on a massive opportunity.
Try packaging up your services and imagine crafting a display of products in a major retail store with your offering. You may just be overwhelmed by the results!