With so many different ways to communicate with customers it can be difficult to juggle them all. The good news is that a recent survey sheds some light on how consumers prefer to be able to contact local businesses. The better news may be that the results of the survey show that you can focus on a smaller number of communication methods, especially if you are in a market with older potential customers.

Leadferno surveyed 1,000 consumers in November 2020 and then again in November 2021. Here are the results of their surveys:

How Consumers Want to Be Able to Contact Local Businesses

As you can see from the image, nearly 50% of those surveyed said they would prefer to be able to contact a business via the phone, making it far and away the number one choice. Website form and email traded spots over the last two years with fairly close numbers for second and third. At just below 11%, text message came in fourth with live chat and Facebook Messenger fairly distant fifth and sixth choices.

Of further interest is what the survey found when they broke out the results by age groups:

Age Matters When it Comes to Communication Methods

Not surprisingly, those 55 and older prefer the phone by an even larger margin than the general population at 58.5%. This group is also much less likely to prefer live chat or Facebook Messenger.

However, the preferred communication method for 25 to 34 year olds is much flatter with phone still leading the way at 26.5% but by a much smaller margin with text message (23.7%) and website form (20.6%) right behind it. Live chat is also significantly higher for this group.

Implications for Painting Contractors

1. The phone is still number one. Make sure that you are available by phone and that you are willing to connect by phone. If you cannot be available by phone, you may want to consider utilizing an answering service so the potential customer gets a warm voice answering the phone.

2. If most of your market is made up of 55+ year olds, you absolutely want to be sure you and/or your business is available via the phone.

3. Don’t feel like you have to be available on every possible communication platform. You will most likely just spread yourself too thin and just increase the likelihood of a bad customer experience. Using the phone, a website form, email and text will work for the vast majority of your customers.

4. Your best bet is to communicate in the way that the customer most prefers. Ask them early on or respond to them in the way they communicate with you. However, serious things should still be communicated in person or on the phone.

5. If your likely customer base is made up of 25 to 34 year olds be prepared to communicate primarily by text. You will likely need to be available via live chat and Facebook Messenger as well.

If you need a website to help pull in potential customers with your website form, please call us at 919-424-6121 or schedule a meeting for a day and time that is convenient for you.