Why You Should Make House Calls

In the good old days, the family doctor would happily swing by your home whenever you needed a checkup. Nowadays, it seems like the only people ringing your doorbell are local political wannabes and religious proselytizers. Although house calls are no longer the norm for many businesses, it’s a tradition well worth practicing. Here’s why.

People don’t get out as much as they used to. Online shopping is growing in popularity by leaps and bounds, up 14 percent from last year. More and more consumers are clicking their mice to make purchases instead of driving to the shops, which means they’re increasingly less likely to discover your business when they’re out and about. To catch their attention, a house call might be just what the doctor ordered.

A smile can help you nab a sale. Everyone hates getting telemarketing calls, but people don’t mind physical house calls nearly as much. After all, you made the effort to visit them in person. Although some people will hang up on an unknown caller, very few will slam the door in a visitor’s face. Disarm your potential customers with a genuine smile, and chances are, they’ll listen to what you have to say.

It’s an opportunity to hand out samples and coupons. Passing out samples offers potential customers a little taste of what you’re about — and will make them more open to your sales pitch. If your business provides a service instead of a product, give away a special discount coupon instead.

Personal visits show that you’re local. Many customers would prefer to spend money with independent merchants in their neighborhood than at big-box stores. If you both live and operate a business in the area, making a house call serves as a friendly introduction to your neighbors and shows them that you’re one of them.

It proves that you’re focused on excellent customer service. In the days of anonymous purchases through online shopping portals, it can be refreshing to speak with a vendor face-to-face. When you talk with potential customers, you can discuss your hands-on approach to customer service as a selling point of your business. Making the effort to go door-to-door to meet potential customers is proof that you care.

Door-to-door sales has a bad rap, but if you’re unfailingly polite, genuine, and come bearing gifts, you might find that house calls are the secret to closing sales.

About Kathryn Hawkins

Kathryn Hawkins is a principal at the content marketing agency Eucalypt Media. She's written about business, marketing, and entrepreneurship for publications including BNET, TheAtlantic.com, Inc.com, and owns and operates the positive news site Gimundo. Follow her on Twitter at @kathrynhawkins.
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