There’s more to running a successful HVAC company than knowing how to repair, install, and maintain heating and cooling equipment. Even if you employ the most talented technicians you can find, failing to make customer service a top priority will hold you back. Because of online reviews, this is an even bigger issue than ever. Unsatisfied customers can instantly broadcast their dissatisfaction to the entire world with a few keystrokes and clicks.

It’s crucial to provide stellar service to your customers. This is made even more difficult by the fact that people are often stressed, upset, and unhappy about having to call for service in the first place. Knowing how to handle complaints and deal with difficult customers helps, but there’s a lot more you can do to enhance your customer service. Taking advantage of modern technology, in particular, can make your company a standout when it comes to serving customers quickly, efficiently, and effectively.

Six Steps to Improve Your HVAC Company’s Customer Service

1. Be There: When it comes to providing first-rate customer service, being there for your customers is half the battle. Put yourself in the typical customer’s shoes — your heating and cooling system is on the fritz. Your home is becoming uncomfortably hot or cold. You want someone to take care of it quickly. If the first company you call doesn’t answer, are you going to wait for a return call? Probably not. Thanks to mobile technology, there’s really no excuse for not being accessible. Be especially careful if you claim to offer 24/7 emergency service. Make sure customers’ calls will be taken regardless of the time, or else you will alienate them and might even end up with a slew of negative online reviews.

2. Respond Promptly: Even if you strive to be as accessible as possible, things happen. This is of particular concern to small HVAC contractors who don’t typically have the manpower that’s needed to field calls as they come in. Assuming that someone leaves a message, however, your second most important priority is to return the call right away. It’s no different with emails, online contact forms, and comments or questions via social media. By responding promptly, you’ll show customers that you care about providing superior service and will be viewed more favorably than the vast majority of contractors.

3. Effectively Manage Your Inventory: One of the best ways to make a customer angry is to promise a fast, efficient repair, only to discover you don’t have the parts you need. With so many high-quality HVAC inventory programs out there, there’s no excuse for not staying on top of your spare parts. Modern inventory software makes it a breeze to track spare parts and to accurately determine reorder points. By embracing such technology, you can drastically reduce the issue of not having what you need when you need it.

4. Empower Your Techs with Mobile Quoting Software: Traditionally, HVAC technicians handled the physical work while salespeople took care of following up and trying to drum up new business. With mobile quoting software, techs can now pull double-duty. Customers are more likely to authorize additional work when it’s presented and quoted to them on the spot. With mobile quotes, techs can also collect important information that can be used to follow up with customers more effectively. After all, most techs have numerous service calls in a day and can easily forget important details, which translates into missed opportunities.

5. Arm Your Techs with Mobile Apps: Mobile quotes are great, but they’re just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the kinds of information your techs could carry around in their pockets. There are HVAC contractor apps that allow techs to access information regarding customers, inventory levels, warranties, and much more. Instead of telling customers that a salesperson will contact them shortly, your techs will be able to handle most of their questions on the spot. Before leaving, they can make absolutely sure that each customer is satisfied.

6. Increase Efficiency and Reduce Overhead with GPS Tracking: When a customer calls with an emergency, do you know how to find the tech that’s closest to their location? GPS tracking software makes this incredibly easy, and it can be used in a number of other ways too. By tracking techs’ vehicles, you can make sure they’re going directly to customers’ locations when sent on calls. This type of software also provides proof of service, which can be priceless in the event of a dispute or disagreement.

Providing exceptional customer service is a critical part of running a successful and profitable HVAC business. Don’t go it alone. By investing in the right software and preventing even the smallest issues from falling through the cracks, your business will quickly earn a reputation for taking care of its customers and will outshine the competition every time.