How to 3X Your Contractor Lead Closing Rate

Ben Levesque • May 15, 2019

 

 

Most times, the answer to home improvement business growth isn’t more leads.

It’s a better sales process.

If you can learn how to turn a higher percentage of leads into new customers, it can have a drastic impact on your bottom line.

Unfortunately, many contractors struggle when it comes to sales.

In fact, while some of our customers turn leads into sales at a rate of 30+%, others struggle to hit just 10%.

So what makes one contractor, with arguably the same time, money, and resources as another contractor similar in size, close 3X more business from the same amount of leads?

get more home improvement leads

We took a hard look at the home improvement businesses on our client roster that have mastered the sales game and did some of our own research to figure out exactly what it takes to become a master closer.

As it turns out, there are really just 3 things the best closers do which separates them from the rest, and none of these things are anywhere near “rocket science” status.

So if you’re struggling to turn leads into booked jobs for your business, or if you just feel like your sales process could use a refresh, then give this article a read.

By the end, you’ll know the 3 rules you need to stick to in order to start booking more jobs and boosting your business’s bottom line.

Rule #1: Speed is everything.

I’m sure you’ve already heard how important it is to get in touch with new leads as quickly as possible.

But I don’t think you realize how important speed really is, so let me make this crystal clear:

A study by Insidesales.com showed that you’re 21X more likely to convert a new lead if you respond within 30 minutes.

Twenty-one times. Let that sink in.

When we took a look at our top home improvement customers, we noticed a similar trend. Those with the highest closing rates usually got in touch with new leads we send their way within the first 5 minutes.

No, that’s not a typo. Speed is everything when it comes to converting leads, and the faster, the better.

A study from the real estate industry (where brokers, much like contractors, are trying to reach homeowners) showed that if businesses do not respond to leads within 5 minutes, their chances of converting that lead decrease by a whopping 400%!

source: insidesales.com

If that’s not convincing enough, then consider this…

Thanks to the internet, your “new lead” has all the information they need right at their fingertips, which means they aren’t going to wait around for you to get in touch.

If you reach them within the first 5 minutes, you’re safe.

If you reach then within 30 minutes, there’s a chance you might still catch them.

But if you reach them later than that, odds are they’ve moved onto your competition, found another solution to their problem, or changed their mind altogether.

The PLACE IT Contractor Marketing System - Book a Demo!

“But we’re so busy! There’s no way we can reach out to new leads within 5 minutes!”

There’s an easy fix for that: leverage technology.

As part of our PLACE IT Contractor Marketing System, we get our contractors set up with managed live chat and SMS texting services so that appointments can be booked with new leads on the spot.

No more phone tag. No more losing leads to competitors. No more sub-10% closing rates.

It works like crazy, and it has helped our customers significantly improve their sales process.

That said, speed alone isn’t enough…

Rule #2: When you think you’ve followed up enough, follow up again

The follow up.

A crucial step in the sales process that, like speed, is known to be important but is equally neglected.

Statistics show that 80% of sales require at least 5 follow-up calls to convert, whereas 44% of all salespeople give up after just one call!

Those numbers are definitely alarming, but there’s a simple solution…

When you think you’ve followed up enough and are ready to burn the lead, follow up again!

Your chances of making contact increases to 90% on the sixth call, so don’t give up until you’ve made at least 6 attempts.

Not only will this level of persistence allow you to close more business, but it’ll also give you an edge over your competition who likely gives up after just one call.

That used to be you, but not anymore right?

Rule #3: Create a system for following up with leads

Last but not least, contractors that crush the sales game have an effective lead follow-up system in place.

Our customers that spend six-figures each month across Google & Facebook to generate hundreds of leads have very sophisticated sales processes in place, but that doesn’t mean that it’s only for the big players.

Whether you generate 300 leads per month or 30, you still need a system that you can rely on to maximize the rate at which you turn leads into sales.

The key is to setup a system that allows you to do the following:

  • follow up with new leads as soon as possible (ideally within the first 5 minutes, at worst within the first hour)
  • follow up often (at least 5-6 times)
  • follow up in various ways (phone, email, text message, etc.)

If you can manage to set up a system that allows you to tick all three of those boxes, you’ll be well on your way to booking more jobs from your existing leads.

Not sure what your sales follow up process should look like?

Here’s an example from LeadSimple that you can put into place fairly quickly in order to start reaping big rewards:

source: LeadSimple

In total, this setup has you making 10 touch points in just under 3 weeks.

Keep in mind that not all touchpoints are done by phone, so you don’t have to worry about coming off as pushy or annoying.

Tip: Not sure what time is best to call at? Statistics show that the best times to call prospects are between 4-6PM and at or around 8AM. Aside from day one, try to place your calls around these times.

With our customers, we also throw SMS messaging into the follow-up mix using a platform like SimpleTexting because the contact rates are insane at the moment:

98% of text messages get opened! source: LeadSimple

To put it bluntly, nearly every single text you send gets opened, which basically eliminates the hassle that comes with trying to reach new website leads.

And when you use SMS messaging in tandem with a scheduling app like Calendly, that’s when things really start to get interesting.

For one of our roofing contractors, we were able to get 56% of all new leads to book their roof inspection within 10 minutes of submitting their information, thanks to a simple SMS sequence integrated with Calendly.

Not only does this tactic eliminate a lot of follow up work for you, but it also lets your new leads book appointments at a time that suits them.

It’s a win-win for both you and your new lead.

Conclusion

You’re already spending a good chunk of change on contractor marketing.

Why not squeeze as much as you can out of the leads you get each month?

All it takes is speed, persistence, and a follow-up process to make sure your sales team makes the most out of every opportunity.

To recap:

  • Make contact with new leads as soon as possible, ideally within 1-5 minutes. After 60 minutes, your chances of closing a lead drop off significantly
  • 80% of sales require at least 5 follow-up calls/touchpoints. Aim for 6+ touchpoints with every new lead that enters your CRM.
  • Create a follow-up process that your sales team can use and execute it without fail. If you don’t have one, use the one shared above. Mix in technology like SMS texting & scheduling to significantly increase boost your results.

If you execute on those three points, you’ll be well on your way to closing more business from the leads you already have.

And that, my friend, is a beautiful thing.

The PLACE IT Contractor Marketing System - Book a Demo!