Customer Experience Trends in Home Services to Watch for 2023 & Beyond
Whether you’re in the world of plumbing, electrical work, pest control, home renovations, cleaning or any other home services industry – you’ll know that the landscape of home services is changing. No longer is it about providing a service and calling it a day – customers expect an experience that is convenient, timely, personal and of course done to the highest standard. If it’s anything less, they’ll simply switch to another provider. If you want to stay ahead of competitors and build a loyal customer base, staying on top of customer experience trends and meeting emerging expectations is critical. Here are seven to watch for 2023 and beyond.
The home services industry is undergoing a digital transformation, with technology playing a pivotal role in improving customer experience. Homeowners now expect to be able to book services online, track the progress of their service requests, and receive updates in real-time. Home service providers need to invest in user-friendly websites and mobile apps to offer seamless digital experiences to their customers. Plus, digital tools such as virtual consultations, augmented reality, and virtual reality are gaining traction, allowing homeowners to visualize their home improvement projects.
Handy, a popular home services platform that connects customers with professional service providers for various tasks such as cleaning, handyman services, plumbing, and more, is an example of a brand who leverage technology to up their customer experience game. The Handy app allows customers to book and manage services on the go, provides real-time updates including the estimated time of arrival of the service provider, and allows customers to communicate with their service providers directly through the app. The app also reminds customers of upcoming appointments, with the ability to reschedule and chat with customer-facing teams all from a few taps on their phone.
Like our Netflix recommendations list, our Starbucks coffee order, and our Spotify Discover Weekly, the home services industry is catching on to the world of personalization. Customers want an experience that is tailored to their unique needs and preferences.
To do this, brands can:
- Customize Service Packages: Offer different service packages that cater to different customer needs. For example, instead of offering a standard cleaning package, provide options for deep cleaning, eco-friendly cleaning, or pet-friendly cleaning. Allow customers to choose the services they want based on their preferences and requirements.
- Seek Feedback and Act on It: Regularly seek feedback from customers and use it to improve your service. Ask for their opinions, suggestions, and feedback, and make specific adjustments and personal touches to deliver on what matters most to your customers.
- Keep Track of Customer Preferences: Utilize customer relationship management (CRM) tools to track customer preferences, service history, and feedback, and use this data to provide personalized recommendations and offers.
Personalization makes customers feel special. And a special experience is one that creates repeat customers and referrals.
Clean & Green
Environmental consciousness is on the rise, and homeowners are increasingly looking for home service providers who embrace clean, green practices, not only for the environment, but for their health too. Globally, sustainability is rated as an important purchase criterion for 60% of consumers. In the US, this number is just over the global average at 61% percent.
Home service providers should adopt eco-friendly materials, technologies, and practices to meet the growing demand for sustainable solutions. This could include using energy-efficient appliances, promoting water conservation, offering eco-friendly pest control solutions, and using sustainable construction materials. Incorporating sustainable practices can attract environmentally-conscious customers and differentiate home service providers in a competitive market.
Customer Reliance on Online Reviews
What's the first thing you do when you’ve found a cockroach infestation in your home? Scream. The second thing? Turn to Google. Homeowners increasingly rely on online reviews and ratings to make decisions about home service providers. A whopping 94% of consumers have avoided a company because of its negative reviews. So do you get more positive online reviews?
- Invest in the customer experience: Positive reviews are the result of positive experiences! One can’t happen without the other. The most effective way to get positive online reviews is to consistently provide awesome experiences. How? Here are 5 Quick Improvements That Make for a More Consistently Awesome Customer Experience.
- Follow up with happy customers: Don't be afraid to ask your satisfied customers to hype you up! Ask your biggest brand advocates (e.g customers who leave positive feedback or high NPS scores) to leave a review on platforms like Google, Yelp, or other relevant review sites.
- Collect feedback internally first: Don’t rely on public review sites to improve the customer experience. Ask your customers for feedback using an internal real-time feedback system, so that average or negative feedback can be addressed, acted upon and fixed before your customers take to Google.
Home service providers should actively manage their online reputation by monitoring and responding to customer reviews, requesting reviews from satisfied customers, and addressing any negative feedback promptly.
Communication is Key
Communication is key. Home service providers should invest in technologies that enable easy communication with customers, such as chatbots, customer portals, and automated notifications. Clear, easy and accessible communication ensures customer needs and expectations are understood, and the customer and the service provider are on the same page around costsings, timings, preferences, and scheduling. If your customers are on hold for 30 minutes listening to “uplifting” instrumental piano music, you’re doing it wrong.
Transparent pricing, detailed service estimates, and regular updates on service progress can also help build trust and confidence among homeowners.
The landscape of home services is evolving, and staying ahead of customer experience trends is crucial for home service providers to succeed in 2023 and beyond. Embracing digital transformation, personalization, sustainability, online reputation management and transparency are key strategies that can enhance customer satisfaction, loyalty, and trust.