So a chain repair shop is opening up next door? A local competitor is trying to price you out of the market, or offering repairs so low you can’t see how you can possibly compete? No amount of money, tact, or repair shop software will help!
This is it! Endgame, you’re sure of it.
But competition sprouting up here and there is guaranteed to happen (and not just once!), so stressing over it won’t help. A great thing you can do is meet the competition head-on with superior customer service, great reviews, and loyal customers. The BEST thing you can do is already be prepared with those tools in your toolbox, today.
So, what can you do today to be prepared for the inevitable?
You don’t need to tattoo that on your knuckles (but mad respect if you do). Don’t panic. You can certainly review your prices, but don’t JUST compare them to the new guy. Make sure you do full market research of the prices of successful competitors in your area, your city, and your province/state.
It is important you only consider successful repair shops in your area and not just any shop.
Personally, I never budge on my prices, unless I like the customer and when they don’t ask for it. If the customer is asking for a deal, they’re not going to be a great long-term customer. I don’t waste time on those.
Solid reviews and lots of reviews are worth more than gold. What are you doing now to get them? Don’t be afraid to ask your customers straight up when they pick up their repair. You can easily get 100 reviews in 6 months.
Setup RepairDesk repair shop software to ask for reviews. Use the “Ask for Review via Email/SMS” function after checkout. Post signs and QR codes in the store. Bribe them if you have to (not literally, but do what it takes!)
Offer More Services
What can you do that your competition can’t? Do you microsolder? If not, learn. Can you offer training classes for seniors? Can you be an Amazon or Wish pickup spot? Think as inside or outside the box as you want. Just offer something that the competition doesn’t. There are multiple streams of repair income that you can get your hands on.
Offer Specialty Services
This is more than what you can offer that the competition doesn’t… what can you DO that no one else can? This might not be a quick answer, but it could become a year(s) long goal. For me, it’s liquid damage & logic board repair for MacBooks. No one else in my area offers this type of service (or at least advertises it well).
So, take your time and discover your specialty. Trust the process. You will figure it out!
Offer The Best Warranty
Use a vendor (like MobileSentrix) that has a lifetime warranty to manage your inventory. I offer the same lifetime warranty on my iPhone & iPad screen repairs. Other shops in my area? 30-90 days max.
How often do you think I actually need to do a warranty repair? …. Not often.
If you’re apprehensive about warranty claims, RepairDesk repair shop software makes it really simple for your customers to claim it.
Offer Perks (coffee, donuts, etc)
There is a local industrial supply distributor that includes a little box of donuts with every order. You bet the local shops will find any excuse to “need” parts that only they carry. Find some perks, make deals with a local bakery, set up a Keurig or an espresso machine if you’re feeling ambitious.
Offer Incentives (free screen protector, charging cable, etc)
I include a free screen protector with every iPhone repair. I used to try and upsell for $10… but now I just add $8 to the cost of my repairs and include it. Customers don’t seem to mind the price, but they are always happy and impressed to see a new screen protector when they get their phone back.
Hand Written Thank You Notes
There is something about a handwritten “Thanks” that means a lot. I write “Thank you!” and sign my name on every invoice.
Give Discount Coupons
Bring coupons to other businesses to pass out to their staff. Get to know your neighbors. Give the business owners coupons made just for them to pass out to their staff. They’ll do it! They want to support other small businesses as much as they want the support themselves.
Bring coupons to local schools to hand out to their teachers. The same concept applies, give back to your teachers and offer them discounted rates on their tech repairs.
Find a local small coffee shop and pay for xx number of coffees… in return ask that they include your business card with the coffees going out.
Offer a loyalty program if your repair shop software offers it. Give out gift cards if you feel that will help retain your customers.
Stellar Customer Services
Always, always provide the very best customer service you can. If you’re ever dealing with an upset customer, repeat issue, screen broken that was just fixed yesterday, etc, stop and think.
Put yourself in the customer’s shoes. If you were that customer, what sort of results would make you instantly give a 5-star review, and share the story with your friends and family? What sort of results would leave a sour taste in their mouth… potential for never coming back, or worse, a 1-star review?
When that customer who just paid for a screen repair yesterday comes back in tears because they dropped their phone again, think about what is more “valuable”. Is it the cost of an extra screen written off? Or is it the solid review, and lifetime customer gained if you just say “I gotchu fam” and replace that screen again, no questions asked?
Turn every potentially negative opportunity into an investment into that lifetime customer.
You’ve got this!