We’ve all experienced it. Either on the customer side or the business owner side, at some point, there’s going to be an issue regarding pricing. Maybe it even happens frequently for you. There isn’t one “right” way to deal with this sort of situation. However, sharing each other's experiences can at least give us all some guidance on how best to handle a pricing objection from a customer. Thank you to Russell, a pressure washing business owner from Tennessee, who has graciously let us use his story for this post.
What follows is a slightly edited version of Russell’s original Facebook post:
“Below is an email exchange I had yesterday with a client. We cleaned his neighbor's roof, he hired us, and then this happened:
Customer: "Russell, thank you for taking the time to explain the details of the cleaning process. Is there a particular reason the cost is so high? Based on some online research it seems the cost should be around $500 to get the roof done. Thanks again for your prompt response and understanding."
I understand the desire to save money on work around your home.
While I can't speak to pricing charged by other companies, I will attempt to explain our pricing to you.
Roof cleaning is dangerous work. Any time we get on a ladder we risk injury and even death. Additionally, it takes great expertise to ensure that the cleaning chemicals are mixed and applied properly. Improper mixture and/or application can be dangerous and potentially damaging. We have been through extensive training and also have almost 10 years of cleaning experience.
Another consideration is your roof. If you owned a single story, 1000 square foot home, with a basic roof and a mild pitch, your suggested price of $500 might be more reasonable. Although I can say that, personally, we have never cleaned a roof of any size for that price.
There is a saying, 'cheap labor isn't skilled and skilled labor isn't cheap.' I realize that our price isn't 'cheap', but it is fair. More often than not, the cheapest price will end up costing you the most in the long run. This is a situation where you have to consider cost VERSUS price. Your home is most likely your most valuable investment. I can assure you that we will apply our years of knowledge and experience to take the best possible care of your investment. Check out our reviews. We have never received less than 5 stars.
One last thing to consider... Because you agreed to a roof cleaning, my brother knocked $100 off of your gutter/soffit cleaning.
I hope this adequately answers your question. We look forward to the opportunity to serve you.”
Customer: "Russell, I appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions. Well written response. What date are you guys scheduled to be here?"
Look at that response from the customer! Russell responded in a professional and informative manner and was able to completely satisfy his customer's objections. There's not much else that can be said about this. If you're in a situation with a difficult customer who does not like your pricing, consider saying something along the lines of what Russell said.
Have a unique customer experience that you would like to share with us? Send an email with your story to email@example.com.