When it comes to growing your home services business, it pays to be sticky. What are sticky services, you ask? Sticky services are services that your client will want or need repeatedly over time, such as scheduled maintenance or preventative care. As a part of an effective annual plan, these services help build lasting relationships with your customers that benefit both customers and service providers.
How to Create Sticky Annual Services
As a home services business, the goal is to focus on selling annual plans with value-added services rather than just occasional seasonal appointments. Sticky annual services can include:
- Proactive wellness checks. Before service and maintenance, wellness checks or inspections can save your customers from pain or inconvenience during your busiest seasons. Offer free inspections or provide them as a part of annual subscriptions to encourage year-round engagement.
- Preventative maintenance during the slower months. During your respective offseason, encourage customers to schedule preventative sessions by educating them about the importance of proactive care.
- Pricing or bundling strategies that encourage year-round adoption. Create competitive subscriptions, offer discounts, or run seasonal promotions to build positive long-term relationships with your clients.
To create an effective annual service plan that inspires your customers to book with you year-round, consider the following tips:
Create a Commodity
First things first, it’s essential to create a service that your clients want — and want more than your competitor’s services! While your relationship with your clients often starts with an emergency or major project, you can develop a consistent schedule with them by demonstrating your value year-round.
For example, if you are an HVAC service provider, your relationship with a client might start with a repair on a malfunctioning air conditioning unit during a summer heatwave, but you can establish your value by offering value-added services like preventative checks, scheduled maintenance, or free filter replacements. By offering a mix of free and paid services, you can continue to nurture your connection with your clients and prove your value year-round.
Become a Part of Their Annual Schedule
One way to form a sticky connection with your customer is to become a routine part of their annual maintenance schedule. When a customer is pleased with the result of a major landscaping or yard cleanup, recommend that they schedule minor monthly maintenance rather than one annual overhaul.
A great strategy for selling annual services is to develop home maintenance subscription services. Subscription services lock your customers in and give you the opportunity to demonstrate the value of your regularly scheduled service. Once a customer has established a subscription with you, they are much less likely to switch providers if you are offering reliable service.
Take the time to create a marketable subscription plan. Focus on developing services and bundles that are an effective solution for your customers. Mention this option in every customer interaction.
You know that the home service industry is deeply rooted in trust. Clients want to trust that their home is in good hands when you are providing service. They also want to feel safe letting your service team into their home. Finally, they want to be confident that they can count on you for effective and prompt service — even in emergency situations. Because of the personal element of home service, once clients form a trusting connection with you, they are more likely to establish a long-term relationship with your business.
You can build trust by training your staff to provide excellent service, building a powerful customer service model, and encouraging happy customers to provide reviews and referrals.
Examples of Sticky Annual Services
The home services industry is a diverse collection of businesses, but the goal is universal — to help your clients make their home a great place to live. Examples of sticky annual services in the home service industry include:
Year-Round Lawn Care
More than likely, your clients don’t want to spend time researching the types of lawn care they need throughout the year. Instead, be a resource for them! Educate them on the services they need to keep their lawn green and healthy based on location, weather, and pet traffic. Examples of year-round sticky services you might offer a client include:
- Weekly or bi-weekly landscaping
- Seasonal pruning of trees and shrubs
- Seasonal fertilization
- Season aeration and seeding
- Routine weed maintenance
- Sprinkler system consultations
Annual Pest Management
Relationships with your pest management clients almost always begin with some sort of pest fiasco. This provides you with an important opportunity to prove your worth and offer essential services year-round with a comprehensive pest care marketing strategy.
Pest management is all about prevention. During the slow season, encourage customers to continue your services with add-value plans. Remind them that your subscription services can help save them a major headache when pest season comes back around! When developing your subscription or annual service packages, consider including services like:
- Tick control
- Perimeter pest control services
- Mosquito prevention plans
- Off-season yard checks
- Seasonal attic and basement checks
- Termite consultations
HVAC Services for All Seasons
Chances are that you gain clients as the result of a broken air-conditioning or heater unit. As such, your HVAC services with these clients might remain seasonal. However, you can create a stronger connection by establishing your value in every season. If you originally started working with a customer due to an AC issue in the summer, market your heater services and AC checks in the winter months. If you met your client in the winter, remind them that now is the time to make sure their AC is in working order before the weather heats up again.
Preventative Plumbing Services
Clients only really need plumbing services when something is flooding, right? As a plumbing service provider, you know this is incorrect. Take the time to educate your clients on the preventative services they can schedule with you year-round, such as:
- Drain maintenance
- Plumbing inspections
- Water heater safety checks
Ultimately, building a great home services business is all about establishing perennial connections. You can achieve these relationships by:
- Establishing trust with your customer base
- Positioning your services as a must-have commodity
- Sweetening the deal with free or discounted add-value services
Your sticky services should be a part of every customer interaction. If they haven’t already established a subscription with your business, provide consistent reminders of why they should, how your services can benefit them, and how they can save money in the long run with preventative plans.