my invisible text
Categories
  • TIMELINE

how do i resolve the time waster??

<<

Soyeb Ravat

User avatar

2 Star Contributor

Posts: 146

Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:17 pm





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:24 pm

how do i resolve the time waster??

I tend to get customers who want signs doing for there shop and i design the work and email them. I then have the hassle of chasing them up without them bothering to get back to me. This is very time consuming and puts me in an awkward position as i might have told another customer the day before to hold horses on an order for a couple of days until i get the current customer done and dusted. sometime they tend to get back to me after 1-2 weeks which means alot of waiting about!!

I would also like to know what people do as the nature of our business is signs you tend to get customers who will waste your time while they are with another customer regardless if you have made an appointment. for example a barber may be cutting hair and you will have to wait until he finishes which means about half an out of your time. you made an appointment to be there at 2.00 but you end up seeing the customer at 2.30. :(

I've had quite a few of these experiences so hope you could help.

thanx
<<

John Childs

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 6591

Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2002 11:19 pm





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:41 pm

The first one is easy Soyeb.

You do sixteen jobs at once, don't worry about the slow decider, and when he eventually does get back with an order then YOU tell HIM when you can do it. That will be straight away if you're not busy, and sometime next week, or later, if you are. Vans are a bit different but, with signs, whoever places the order first gets their work done first.

Your second question is a bit more problematic. My inclination would be to wait for ten minutes, then say that you have other things to do and that they can come round to your premises when they have the time to spend with you. Anything more than that ten minutes will depend on how desperate you are for the job.
<<

John Singh

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 3923

Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2003 2:16 am





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:53 pm

As John says:

Don't wait around for the undecided
(Personally I've never chased)
If someone wants to order then get cracking with his order
That's what will put bread on the table
<<
User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 8054

Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2003 1:22 am





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:02 pm

I hope you mean you are not designing and emailing a customer who has not deposited upon your services.

Now that that's out of the way, sometimes it takes awhile for clients to make up their minds. I one had a guy wait A YEAR before replying to a paid-in-full logo job because he couldn't make up his mind.
You've taken the deposit.
You've given an idea.
They will eventually get back to you.
In the meantime, wait on the customer in front of you.
Everyone takes a turn.
(of course the first customer finally makes up their mind when you are knee-deep in the other customer's job)

In the second example, you have made an appointment with that barber about his sign. You show up at the scheduled time only to find him waiting on a customer. It was probably one of those last-minute types on his end.
That is his customer in front of him, and he is making money which will in turn pay you.
Go grab a coffee then come back in 10 minutes.

What really cheeses me off is when I have a scheduled appointment or a pickup and the person does not show, nor have the common courtesy to give me a call. Or the person who comes into the shop and then gets a call on their cell phone and yakks away while I stand there with my thumb up my butt waiting.

I guess it all boils down to being polite, waiting your turn, letting the customer know that they are not your only client and that all of them are on a schedule.
Love....Jill
<<

Peter Dee

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 1328

Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 11:40 am





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:33 pm

Barbers are the worst offenders.

I add on to the quote if they keep me waiting.
<<

Martin Pearson

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 8341

Joined: Sun Mar 31, 2002 1:00 am





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 4:52 pm

Like others have said you do as many jobs at a time as you can manage and still provide a good service. I tend not to email a lot of designs but normally get the customer to come and see me at the unit. That way you can answer any questions they may have but most importantly get the order and any money required upfront sorted there and then. I tend not to spend time chasing customers because like you say it takes up a lot of time and also I think it can make you seem desperate for work.

Can't think of many occasions where I have been kept waiting more than a few minutes when I have gone to see a customer with an appointment but what you could do is use the time to go into the surrounding shops, introduce yourself and leave them a business card. The time isn't wasted if you are out doing a bit of marketing or your business.
<<

John Singh

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 3923

Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2003 2:16 am





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:03 pm

Martin wrote:but what you could do is use the time to go into the surrounding shops, introduce yourself and leave them a business card. The time isn't wasted if you are out doing a bit of marketing or your business.


and what I do is get the tape measure out and start measuring up if you know its the windows or fascia. Takes some photos too.

Once I just disappeared - took a walk - did some window shopping
Not long after I got a phone call!
<<

James Sahota

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 884

Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 11:23 pm





Post Tue Jan 05, 2010 10:21 pm

You need to have a set of qualifying questions....This should help you work out the time waster from the people that are really interested.

Not sure what these qualifying questions might be....LOL
<<

Phill Fenton

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 11094

Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2002 11:04 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:17 am

Jillbeans wrote: Or the person who comes into the shop and then gets a call on their cell phone and yakks away while I stand there


That's one that really annoys me. :yes1:

But I've had even worse...someone has phoned me then during the conversation their other phone has rung in the background and they have put me on hold while they answered the other call... Needless to say I hung up :-?

My philosophy is to treat others as I would expect to be treated myself. But if someone is rude and disrespectful - I tend to be rude and disrespectful back :lol1:
<<

Colin Bland

User avatar

4 Star Contributor

Posts: 321

Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:46 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:41 am

My biggest bug is when someone calls you about a job discusses it with you over the phone everything seems great and then says ok I will come and see you this afternoon or whatever and doesn't turn up. This most often happens on a saturday where I don't particularly want to be tied to the unit.

Colin
<<
User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 8054

Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2003 1:22 am





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:58 am

A little bit off the subject but twice in two weeks I have had two clients all fired up needing something ASAP, clients for whom I have done one job each in years past, I make arrangements and even bought in a specific substrate and they do not show up for their scheduled appointments after it was such a dire hurry. After making time in my busy schedule just for them. Any further jobs like that will incur a 50% rush fee.
<<

Shane Drew

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 11424

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 12:22 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:17 am

All the advice here is good. John Childs hits the nail on the head though.

I don't get a lot of passing trade, and all my customers are people I've dealt with for years, but I do get the odd job that a new employee rings through and its been a stuff up and needs to be out in a couple of days. Then the job sits there for weeks.

Had a call on my mobile the day I closed last year (23rd) looking for two urgent jobs from a really good client. He needed it by December 30. Told him I'd do it if he got me the artwork asap.

I got the artwork on the 28th. Got the job done, and it sat here until January the 4th. :evil: But, he is a really really good customer so I take it on the chin, but I've had people I've never done work for leave jobs here for two weeks after the 'must be done by' date. That really steams me!!!
<<

Justin Williams

Trade Supplier
Trade Supplier

Posts: 109

Joined: Thu Feb 08, 2007 12:04 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:40 am

We all ways charge deposits for all work, and its amazing how the customer keeps to there word and picks up on time once they have parted with 50% of there hard eared cash, instead of you wasting your time and money for it to sit there for weeks on end.

Jus
<<

Robert Lambie

User avatar

*****
*****

Posts: 27278

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2001 1:00 am

Country: United Kingdom (uk)




Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 4:54 pm

Phill wrote:But I've had even worse...someone has phoned me then during the conversation their other phone has rung in the background and they have put me on hold while they answered the other call... Needless to say I hung up :-?


I was sitting reading this thread, the phone goes and its a guy coming back to me with a quote for a new roller shutter door. his mobile went and he puts me on hold, so i hung up.... really does do my head in. whats up with him cutting their ringing off, it just goes to answer machine anyway? :roll:
<<

David Rowland

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 9788

Joined: Wed Nov 19, 2003 5:58 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 5:13 pm

well originally there was one main phone number, which got answered...
then as business grows we employed a secretary
then mobile phones came all the rage, so you end up with two numbers
then due to a business change we ended up with more lines, staff and extension numbers
now we have more calls on mobile numbers then the main phone system which doesn't manage the mobiles.

What I want is to allow are secretary to manage mobile calls as well, so they get passed back to her when that person doesn't answer and the if person is on either mobile or phone then they dont get interrupted.
<<

Nigel Hindley

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 1284

Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2003 4:30 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 5:44 pm

Dave Rowland wrote:well originally there was one main phone number, which got answered...
then as business grows we employed a secretary
then mobile phones came all the rage, so you end up with two numbers
then due to a business change we ended up with more lines, staff and extension numbers
now we have more calls on mobile numbers then the main phone system which doesn't manage the mobiles.

What I want is to allow are secretary to manage mobile calls as well, so they get passed back to her when that person doesn't answer and the if person is on either mobile or phone then they dont get interrupted.


why dont you just divert the mobile calls from your mobile Dave you can set it to divert after any specified amount of unanswered ringss?
<<

David Rowland

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 9788

Joined: Wed Nov 19, 2003 5:58 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 6:25 pm

would mean we pay for all the calls... cost a lot of money
<<

John Singh

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 3923

Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2003 2:16 am





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:01 pm

Jillbeans wrote:A little bit off the subject but twice in two weeks I have had two clients all fired up needing something ASAP, clients for whom I have done one job each in years past, I make arrangements and even bought in a specific substrate and they do not show up for their scheduled appointments after it was such a dire hurry. After making time in my busy schedule just for them. Any further jobs like that will incur a 50% rush fee.


Yep! Done that before
<<

Soyeb Ravat

User avatar

2 Star Contributor

Posts: 146

Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:17 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:10 pm

wow!! alot of sound advice there. Reminds me of my business link course. If you don't control the customer the customer will control you! I guess it just makes sense taking a deposit as an initial first step before any action is taken and made clear about my time your money. I guess once thats out the way it would be much more efficient!!
<<
User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 14363

Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 2:36 pm





Post Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:26 pm

unfortunately many customers are classed as time wasters, the truth is they are shopping around, we all do the same.
the secret is to persuade them you can give them a better product,
at a price that is competitive. Any business has to spend some time to sell their product, and doing a few ideas, or showing examples, to me is part of the process, (dont give them any hard copy though)


If you wanted a new kitchen, would you expect to pay for the layout plan before they designed it?

you need to apply some common sense, and to a certain amount be able to realise the potential of the customer before spending more time on them than is necessary.

Peter
<<

John Singh

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 3923

Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2003 2:16 am





Post Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:02 am

Peter Normington wrote:unfortunately many customers are classed as time wasters, the truth is they are shopping around, we all do the same.
the secret is to persuade them you can give them a better product,
at a price that is competitive. Any business has to spend some time to sell their product, and doing a few ideas, or showing examples, to me is part of the process, (dont give them any hard copy though)


If you wanted a new kitchen, would you expect to pay for the layout plan before they designed it?

you need to apply some common sense, and to a certain amount be able to realise the potential of the customer before spending more time on them than is necessary.

Peter


Very true Peter
<<

John Childs

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 6591

Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2002 11:19 pm





Post Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:02 am

Peter Normington wrote:If you wanted a new kitchen, would you expect to pay for the layout plan before they designed it?

Peter, maybe not an exact comparison.

With a kitchen, I would expect to know what layout I wanted before I went anywhere near a kitchen shop.

And no, I wouldn't expect to pay for the plan. But that's something the kitchen industry have brought upon themselves by actively advertising that service. It's like us advertising free artwork.

Having said that, I believe that they suffer from the same problems as ourselves in that they will do a plan and the customer, given half a chance, will then hawk it around.
<<

Martin Pearson

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 8341

Joined: Sun Mar 31, 2002 1:00 am





Post Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:33 am

The other thing that John C left out was that a new kitchen doesn't cost a few hundred pounds, if it did I doubt if many if any kitchen companies would provide that sort of service.
<<
User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 14363

Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2004 2:36 pm





Post Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:56 am

John Childs wrote:
Peter Normington wrote:If you wanted a new kitchen, would you expect to pay for the layout plan before they designed it?

Peter, maybe not an exact comparison.

With a kitchen, I would expect to know what layout I wanted before I went anywhere near a kitchen shop.

And no, I wouldn't expect to pay for the plan. But that's something the kitchen industry have brought upon themselves by actively advertising that service. It's like us advertising free artwork.

Having said that, I believe that they suffer from the same problems as ourselves in that they will do a plan and the customer, given half a chance, will then hawk it around.


John,
dont you find a lot of people "know what they want" regarding a van layout before they go near a sign maker?

either way its the same thing, and will be debated ad infinitum.

My point is, any industry has to provide some form of proforma of what it will provide to the customer, the best we can do is try and win as many jobs as we can, but it is part of the game to show the client what he is going to get for his money, be it a kitchen, a house extension, or a designer frock!

Peter

Peter
<<

John Childs

User avatar

Premium Member
Premium Member

Posts: 6591

Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2002 11:19 pm





Post Thu Jan 07, 2010 10:06 am

Morning Peter.

Yes, I do find that most people know what they want, but they are easy and quick to deal with, and rarely fall into the "time-waster" category. It's the ones that don't know that can cause problems - if you let them.

My procedure for a sort of pro-forma (although I'd never thought of it in those terms) is by showing a prospective new client photos of previous work, along the lines of, "£150 will buy you something like this, or £300 will get you that, and so on". That is a quick and easy time-waster filter and immediately gets rid of the people who think they are going to get a wrap for £50 and, for the rest, gives them a realistic idea of what they can expect for their budget.

It's a good system because it stops them from specifying a whizz-bang job, and then appearing stupid when they are told that their dreams are beyond their pocket and having to cut it back drastically. A lot of them, to avoid that embarrassment, will just thank me and tell me they'll think about it, then immediately go to a competitor with a downwardly revised spec. That's no good because I've lost them then.

You're right though, this could be discussed ad infinitum, but the thing is that nobody will be right or wrong. As I intimated in my first reply on this thread, it will depend on how desperate we are for the business and indeed, the amount of time I am prepared to spend on someone who appears to be a time-waster may vary from day to day, and will depend on how busy we are, and therefore if we have the time to humour them.
<<

Nigel Hindley

User avatar

5 Star Contributor

Posts: 1284

Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2003 4:30 pm





Post Fri Jan 08, 2010 12:15 am

Dave Rowland wrote:would mean we pay for all the calls... cost a lot of money


eh pay for what calls? if you are worried about mobile call costs id change your mobile contract - most business mobiles include unlimited free calls to specified numbers or same network numbers or its easy to find hundreds or thousands of minutes free a month on a reasonably price contract?

I thought the reason was to free up your time? suppose its all down to how much own value your own time. £20 - £30 a month aint much to free up your time but suppose it depends how you value yourself and your time if you want to spend the time answering calls and save £20 then answering the calls youself is the best option - I thought the gripe was you wanted someone else to do it I would have thought 20-30 was a great deal to get this facility?

Return to General Sign Topics



Who is online

Registered users:
Jamie Wood, NeilRoss

 

About
Contact
Board Rules
Membership
Terms & Conditions

 

Signapp - iPhone & iPad
Signapp - Android
Vehicle Wrap Training
Vinyl Application Training
Vehicle Wrap Accreditation
UK Sign Group
Site Membership
Advertising
Videos
British Signs & Graphics Assoc.

 

 Facebook
 Twitter
 Youtube
 Linkedin

 

Who is Online

In total there are 73 users online ::
4 registered, 0 hidden and 69 guests
[based on past 5 minutes]

Most users ever online was
370 on Tue Aug 28, 2018 5:02 pm

Registered users:
Jamie Wood, NeilRoss

Copyright © 2000 - 2019 Robert Lambie