7 Ways to Improve Your Estimates with Technology
It’s time to ditch the clipboard and grab your phone/tablet (or laptop if that’s more your style). Gone are the days of pen and paper ruling the estimating process for contractors. Thanks to the breakthrough of tools like the contractor estimate app, everything has gotten a lot more efficient for service contractors.
If you would have so much as mentioned this in the 90s, people would literally think you were insane. Mention it now when Facebook is the norm, and it becomes a contractor’s dream come true. Let’s see how much easier estimates can get.
Recall all your numbers – at all times
Just like how canned messages changed the world of providing support and sales via live chat, pre-populated items have changed the world of estimates. Instead of having to retype everything when you go to bid a job, choose from a database of common items you’ve already put together.
This can also help you drill down into the details as far as how much each piece of material for the job costs. Think about it, instead of telling a customer you’ll get back with them tomorrow, you can tell them the estimate will be done in 20-30 minutes or emailed a little bit later that day. Having this urgency shows your commitment to earning that customer’s business.
Easily set expectations every time
From having a contract ready to attach to a job to including a footer with an overview of terms on the estimate, you can be transparent right out the gate. Save yourself from any legal headaches caused by forgetting to include the terms. And this also helps ensure you and your customer are always on the same page with what’s expected of each party.
While it’s easy to attach terms to an estimate, make sure you don’t saturate the terms with legal jargon. Use straight-forward language that’s easy to understand and to the point. Customers tend to respect the companies who are transparent and don’t try to confuse them or hide important details.
Need to modify the estimate? Regenerate a PDF easily.
An app can do more than help you brand your estimate to fit your company. Is your customer asking for a change on the estimate? No more needing to write it up again. If you need to add items or modify certain parts of the estimate, make changes with just a couple of clicks. As long as you have a contractor estimate app at your disposal, of course.
Instead of filling out the whole bid again which would waste a bunch of time, just edit the invoice previously stored. This also makes upsells easier and quicker, which could lead to a significant increase when it comes to overall revenue. You also can put this part of the operations into the hands of your employees so you can turn your focus to more important things.
Keep customer data at your fingertips
It’s easy to overlook how much the internet has changed the world, but storing information in the cloud can be a game changer. Over time, this has made things a lot more efficient by keeping records and documentation on-demand. By securely storing your data online with a contractor app such as FieldPulse, you’re making sure everything you need is at your fingertips when you need it the most.
Think about what this does for your business. Your customers will be able to access their estimates, invoices, and contracts with ease. Unlike the days of pen and paper, this means no more misplacing estimates or storing them somewhere that’s not easily accessible.
Take it a step further and this gives a great advantage when it comes to targeted marketing. You’ll be able to better personalize your marketing by quickly identifying segments of customers, see their buying patterns, and so much more. It’s the way winning marketing campaigns of the 21st century are crafted.
Quick, secure access to estimates
Don’t you hate it when you spend all that time bidding a job, only to lose the estimate somewhere along the way? Maybe you misplaced it, or maybe they didn’t give the go-ahead for the project immediately and now it’s on the bottom of a paper pile. You aren’t the only one, and using a contractor estimating app is how you can leave that headache in the history books where it belongs.
With technology, you can set an expiration date for the bid. And you can store the bids electronically on a secure server for later retrieval. Not only do you have all of this info in the same app, but you have the ability to accurately track each bid you provide. Easily set up follow up reminders, keep track of progress, and see what estimates are outstanding at any time. Seems to be the more professional way to go about it, doesn’t it?
Sign deals quickly
From email to electronic signatures, it no longer takes hours/days to close a deal or win a new job. Newer laws allowing electronic signatures have really made it easier for contractors to take their business to the next level in the least amount of time possible.
With an estimating app like FieldPulse, you simply put the estimate together, generate a PDF, and either have the customer sign on the spot or email it to them. In your email, ask them to sign the estimate and fill in any remaining details to get the job secured and in the works. In minutes, you could have that lucrative job you need to expand as well as the paperwork that backs every part of the process.
Ready to try a contractor estimating app?
Using technology in the estimating process can be a powerful transformation for your business. Keep track of information, manage contact information, speed up the approval process, and more. Using an app for estimates makes sense in today’s digital world. Even more importantly, though, it makes sense for your bottom line.