If you were to ask most business owners in the service industry the question, “ what are you selling? “ you would most likely get a variety of answers. Some say we sell HVAC installations and repairs, appliance repairs, or a plumber may say we sell plumbing services.

In this article, I want to go over some tried and true practices that will help you and your team to provide the customer with a great customer experience. As well as some personalized tips and best practices that I have implemented in my companies to offer my customers a great experience when they call us that keeps them coming back and telling everyone they can about our service.

As an owner or technicians in the service industry, we should all be selling the same thing: customer experience. It is our job as owners and techs to not just sell a product/service to the customer but an outstanding customer experience. We have the rare opportunity to come to the customer’s home and provide them with either an amazing customer experience that they will remember or tell all of their friends and family about.

As a service technician, whether you are in HVAC, Electrical, Plumbing, or Appliance Repair, we all have many things in common. We are all there to get the job done and fix whatever problem the customer may have. Typically in business, a company sells a product or service. The success of that business is directly tied to the need or demand for that product or service. This is true in the service industry, but there is more to it than just offering the service. As technicians or business owners in the service industry, we are selling more than just a service; we are selling a customer experience. This truth isn’t limited to the service industry, but it is something that will set you apart from your competition and grow your business as nothing else can.

Chick-Fil-A vs. Popeyes Customer Experience Examples

Take the model displayed by companies such as Chick-Fil-A. People all over the country love Chick-Fil-A. Not just because they have delicious chicken sandwiches but because they can duplicate an amazing customer experience every time they come.

A few years back, there was the battle of the chicken sandwiches. Popeyes took a shot at Chick-Fil-A to be named the best chicken sandwich. I challenge you today to drive by a Popeyes and a Chick-Fil-A around lunchtime and see which one has a drive-through line out to the street and a packed parking lot. Without a doubt, it will be Chick-Fil-A, and it is not because the Popeyes chicken sandwiches weren’t good. It has everything to do with Popeyes and Chick-Fil-A offering completely different customer experiences. Customers continue to choose Chick-Fil-A because they know they will get an amazing customer experience every time they go there.

When my business partner and I first merged our businesses, one of our goals was to become the “Chick-Fil-A“ of the appliance industry. When we set that goal, we had the customer experience at the forefront of our minds. When someone calls Richmond Appliance Guys to get their appliances fixed, we want them to have a great customer experience that keeps them coming back to us for all their appliance repair needs.

The 1 2 3’s Of Amazing Customer Experience

As business owners, it is our job to create this experience for our customers, but the question is, how do we do it? The answer sounds simple, but it isn’t as easy as it sounds. It starts with figuring out what key practices produce this experience with your customer, from searching Google for your services to finishing the job and getting paid.

I have composed a list of things to consider when creating the ultimate experience for your customer.

1. Your Company Website

Oftentimes, your website is the first impression a customer gets of your company. It is important to ensure your website is professional looking and easy to navigate. Adding online booking and a FAQ section can set you apart from your competitor.

Making your website have a personable feel is also important. Pics of your team, customer testimonials, and even an about us page are all things that accomplish this. I will be the first to admit this is one area my company needs to work on, but my brother from another mother, EJ, from EJ’s Appliance Repair, has an amazing site done by our very own Mike Carson. I encourage you to visit EJ’s Appliance Repair to see his amazing website for some ideas.

If you need a website created for your service company, contact Mike Carson at ITDwebdesign.com, and he will set you up for success.

2. Receiving Calls For Service

When a customer calls in for service, your CSR (customer service representative) is another first or second point of the customer experience they get from your company. They are the first voice they hear, and the customer’s experience during the process sets the tone for the entire customer experience moving forward. Some important things to consider when the customer calls are:

  • Keeping it simple yet effective. No one wants to be on the phone for 30 mins to book their appointment. Make sure your CSR is personable, to the point, and gathers as much information as possible to make the service call experience as amazing as possible.
  • Set expectations for the service call. One of the most important jobs of the CSR is setting expectations. Doing this quickly but effectively is an area in itself and can make the entire customer experience flow better when they know what to expect.
  • Collecting data. Giving the technician the correct information is another important part of the CSR’s job. Make, Model and description of the problem are a few key pieces of information that should be included. A properly trained CSR can play a huge part in the experience by collecting the data needed to send that technician to the customer’s home with the proper parts to fix their issue. I am not saying they need to do a detailed diagnosis over the phone, but if the customer calls and says, “my washer is filling with water when it’s not in use,” your CSR should know to order a water valve for that unit to send with the technician.

3. Train Your Customer Service Reps About The Industry

A properly trained CSR can be a rock star for your business. Remember, they are customers’ first impressions when calling your business. I believe all CSRs should have a basic knowledge of the field they are servicing. So if you own an HVAC company, he/she should have some basic knowledge about air conditioning and the HVAC industry. This is true for every service industry. Having a CSR knowledgeable in that industry will help provide an excellent customer experience when they call to set up an appointment.


Have you ever gone to Lowes or Home Depot and asked an employee for help with something and quickly realized they have no idea how to operate a screwdriver, much less help you with your question about the project you are working on? On the other hand, when you go to Home Depot or Lowes and get that super-knowledgeable employee that knows his stuff, it makes for a much better experience.

4. Communication Is Key

I cannot stress this one enough. Communication is the KEY to providing an awesome customer experience. I don’t know how often I have gone out to a customer’s house and heard them say, “ well, the last company I called never called back,” or “ they came out and diagnosed the issue, then never came back. “ The list of complaints about other companies goes on and on. Many of our customers are amazed we show up on time and let them know when we are on our way via our scheduling software.

Customers love good communication, whether scheduling the job, updating them on back-ordered parts, or a simple follow-up after the service call. It is an absolute must to provide a great customer experience from start to finish. If you drop the ball in one aspect of communicating properly with the customer, it can turn a pleasant experience into a bad experience quickly.

5. Appearance

Your company is your brand, and how that brand is portrayed daily matters. Everything from how your service vehicles look to company uniforms to how your technician’s appearance looks plays an important part in the customer experience of your business and your brand. If your tech pulls up in a dirty van with trash all over the dashboard and comes in wreaking of cigarette smoke and cheeseburgers, it’s probably not going to add to the customer experience.

Another big one on the topic of appearance is showing the customer you care about their home. When you offer to wear foot covers, it shows the customer that you care and adds to that experience. Putting that floor protection down before pulling their fridge out on those hardwood floors shows them that you care about them and their home and just adds to the customer experience. Even the way your tool bag looks matters when providing an excellent customer experience.

6. Customer Soft Skills

Soft skills is a topic I will most likely write an entire blog post about, but for the sake of this one, I am going to keep it short and sweet. Remember, all customers are not created equal. There are some customers you can laugh and joke around with, and some customers just need to be as professional as possible. The key is telling them apart and catering to their customer experience accordingly. If you have been in the service industry for a while, you have probably encountered many different types of customers in the field and experienced many customer interactions. From the super friendly customer to the seemingly nice, but I don’t want to piss them off, to the Lord, please let this job go smoothly type of customer. All of these customers deserve and should get an amazing customer service experience from your company, and it is our job as technicians to discern the type of customer we are dealing with and then adjust our soft skills accordingly. I believe this is truly an art in and of itself and that many people don’t naturally have. Some key things to consider when dealing with different types of customers:

  • Listen to them. How customers talk to and interact with you can tell much about their personality. Customers will show you what type of customer they are within the first few minutes of the service call. Be sure to pay attention to their demeanor and mannerisms; you will get clues on how to interact with them.
  • Always be honest. This tip goes for all customers; it doesn’t matter what type. Honesty is always the best policy. Always be honest whether they are someone who will appreciate your honesty or not. However, I have learned over the years that most customers truly appreciate honesty regardless of their personality type. If you go out on a unit and have never worked on that particular model or seen that particular situation before, be honest while reassuring them that you still have the knowledge, experience, and confidence to get the job done. When it comes to the repair, be honest with the customer about the details of the repair. Don’t lie or even sugarcoat things. Honesty is the best policy in all facets of business and life. This is even more true when dealing with customers in their homes because your honesty with the customer will add to the overall customer experience.
  • Put yourself in their shoes. Remember, people don’t typically call us out because everything is good. Usually, they call because they are experiencing some kind of problem and need our help to fix it. Sympathy and understanding go a long way when adding to the customer experience. If you show the customer you truly care about their situation, they will feel better about the service and want to call your company back when their next problem arises. It’s important to remember that we don’t know what else might be happening behind the scenes in that customer’s life. Always treat every customer in such a way that makes them feel important and that resolving their issue is your number one priority. I will often say to the customer, “ Maam/Sir, my number one priority right now is resolving this situation for you. “ Sometimes, when you let them know your intentions and where your heart is, it makes them understand and feel more comfortable with you in their home. Unfortunately, many people worldwide have had horrible experiences with service people in their homes. Our job is to make them feel comfortable, cared for, and prioritized.

How To Start Providing The Best Customer Experience

If you are a business owner, my suggestion would be to do a written evaluation of the things listed above and score yourself in each category. This will give you a good idea of what areas you are doing well and what areas you need to improve. I do extremely well in the soft skills category and the calling for service category, but I think my company can improve our website and appearance.

Remember to listen to your customer service team and hear what they say. After you have conquered one area, move to the next weakest area. After you feel you have improved your customer experience, allow your customers to give feedback. You can do this by having your CSR do follow-up calls. Ask for customer reviews, or create a customer survey they can take.


Nobody sets out to get unhappy customers on purpose. Customer expectations can sometimes set the path for the customer journeys we must follow. Providing positive customer service begins with a positive attitude since a positive attitude changes negative experiences into positive ones.

If you want to grow your business and keep your customers happy, start by providing an exceptional customer experience. This leads to a happy customer that becomes a loyal customer. Each company is going to be different, so don’t beat yourself up, and remember that simply realizing that these things need improving and beginning to take action is a huge step. After you do the written evaluation of your company, I suggest you sit down with your team and plan to attack the area you were weakest in first and strategize a plan to improve on that area.

Customer satisfaction leads to customer loyalty. Active listening to customer feedback can allow you to provide a personalized experience that leads to excellent customer service.

Let me know in the comments below what you are doing to improve the customer experience in your service company.