Focused on boiler installations? It still makes sense to keep a service database

Cristina Maria
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Service reminders provide a fantastic way for plumbing, heating and gas/oil businesses to keep in touch with customers. They provide steady, reliable income and, if managed well, can cost next to nothing to send out. But some people have pointed out that your business model is different: you are focused on higher value installation work and you are good at it. You don’t really want to be doing service jobs. 

Fair enough! Not all plumbing and heating businesses are the same. However, even if servicing is not your focus, there are good reasons for keeping a database of customers where you have done installations, and who will require service work.

Let’s say your core business is installing boilers. You’re great at it. You and your colleague can install five boilers a week. Here are a few things you might want to consider:

1. Installing five boilers a week means 260 boilers a year

That is potentially 260 services. Even at a measly £50 per service that amounts to £13,000 a year in extra revenue. Of course, after two years, you can add another £13,000, making £26,000, and so on and so forth. Simply servicing the boilers that you have installed yourself is easy money following what is your “bread and butter” type of work.

Readings glasses and coins on a service reminder


2. Services might be low margin, but look at the bigger picture

They are also a marketing tool bringing in more work at a lower cost. How often do customers change their boiler? Perhaps once every ten years. By the time they are ready to get a replacement, they have probably forgotten about you.
That means the customer’s lifetime value (LTV) is just one job for which the cost of sale is very high (advertising, providing the quote etc.). On the other hand, services allow you to stay in touch and keep the relationship going. The customer is more likely to appoint you to install the replacement and you don't need to invest more than the amount of time it takes to send some emails. 

Drawing of a balance between the price of having a service based database and the value of a service database


3. If you build these relationships, you’ll also get opportunities to cross-sell and 
up-sell

In other words, you do one initial job, such as installing a boiler, and on the back of this you get asked to do other complementary services (e.g. under-floor heating or renewables) that could be higher margin. If these services are beyond your focus, you can sell the job on to a reliable partner in return for a finder’s commission – money for doing nothing!

Related Reading: How to integrate your data to create a single customer view ?

Two man shaking hands over a successful service partnership

4. Build partnerships and sell the work onto them

If you are still not convinced that you should service the boilers you install, you could also partner with a nearby company and sell the work onto them. Not only do you save money and effort but you get to take 10% and earn £1,300 for doing nothing!

Well … almost nothing. Why should a partner company pay you a commission if they go out and get the work done themselves? It's because, even in the last two examples, a simple communication by post or by email is required to point the customer to your trusted partner and you're the one who provides an opportunity to both parties: the customer gets their service done and the partner earns an extra job, all thanks to you. 

With a customer service database and a standard letter template this is easy and does not add to your admin overhead.

We've seen over the years dozens of companies who just refuse to get involved in creating a service database.  Often it's because they've always just focused on installation and never bothered with service jobs.  

They either didn't want to bother sending out service reminders or didn't have the capacity to complete the work (usually due to not having a spare engineer). But all these tasks can be easily automated, saving you the trouble and earning money while you tend to your other work by using a job management software with a service based database already integrated. 

Still not convinced? The only thing left to do is try it then and see for yourself. At the end of the day, we're only talking about a few emails to some older customers. This way you can see for yourself the power of a good service reminder. 

 

Interested in learning how to write a powerful service reminder? Just click below to download a free template with your kit. If you think we missed out on any information or have a question, don't hesitate to use the social media buttons under it to let us know. 

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If you want to learn more about Commusoft's field service software, please see our product blog.