As we celebrate National Apprenticeship Week 2020, electrical wholesaler TradeSparky offers some top tips for those just starting out as a newly-qualified electrician.
If you have yet to build up a reputation in the business, it is imperative that you take photographs of your work and encourage customers to provide you with testimonials. Having photos of your work on your website, social media and/or ‘Find a tradesperson’ website page is something a lot of established electricians neglect to do.
This is an area where you can stand out from the crowd and provide evidence of the standard of your work. As they say, a picture paints a thousand words!
Also, if you have done a decent job, customers should be happy to provide a testimonial. This is important as anyone can say they are good electrician, whether it is true or not, so proof from third parties is vital. Ideally, the more information you can include alongside the quotes the better. An anonymous quote is fine, but if you can also include a first name, location and maybe even a photograph, it suddenly becomes a lot more credible that the testimonial is from a real person.
Using communication channels such as Facebook, Google Ads and ‘Find a Tradesperson’ websites to their full capacity will allow you to interact with a local audience in a way that more experienced electricians may not be taking advantage of.
There are also plenty of specialist apps that can help you with the day job of being an electrician and as an independent tradeperson. The electrical calculator app gives you access to 50 calculators and 16 electrical convertors and accounting apps, calendars and emails, helping improve efficiency by allowing you to manage your business while in the field.
Word of mouth
Referrals are probably the easiest and best way to generate work for all independent electricians, but it is even more crucial to encourage these when you are first starting out. If you have a satisfied customer, don’t be afraid to provide them with a handful of business cards to distribute to other people as relatives and friends often ask for recommendations for reliable tradesperson.
You can even provide incentives to encourage customers to share your details or take the time to provide a testimonial until your appointment book is a little fuller. For example, offering a 10% discount off the next job you carry out for the referrer if you receive a referral.
Service level agreements
One of the biggest bugbears that you hear about tradesperson is them not turning up or being late for appointments. Of course, only a small percentage of tradespeople are unreliable, but if you can offer ‘reliability’ as a selling point then this is a definite advantage.
For example, if you can guarantee to attend home visits for quotations within 48 hours then include this in your promotional material. However, be realistic and don’t over-promise. It is better to not include service level agreements rather than not live up to them. The more work you have, the more difficult this will become, so take advantage of this capability while you can.
Qualifications and associations
By including your qualifications in adverts and on your website, you will reassure customers of your reliability. It’s also worthwhile to continue to invest in further education and to be part of an electrician association, such as the NICEIC, as this will increase opportunities and improve trust within the marketplace.
TradeSparky is a UK online electrical wholesaler that specialises in providing a comprehensive collection of high quality, branded products from top manufacturers to contractors, electricians, tradesmen and DIY consumers.