5 Ways You Can Make Your Business 'Easy To Do Business With'

Have you ever been keen to buy something or hire someone, but have been put off before you EVEN had a chance to give them money?

Maybe you were left on read when trying to reach through insta… or perhaps you were trying to book a service, but when you clicked on that ‘book now’ button - you got sent to a contact form - a CONTACT FORM!?  (ughh that’s the WORST)

When someone promises something now, that fundamentally means I don’t expect to have to wait for it! Worse still, when you never even hear back - you have to start the search all over again!

Aint no one got time for that nonesense! 

Since you’re a business owner yourself, it’s even more aggravating because you know how important first impressions can be to the success of a business.

But have you really ever stopped to consider whether your pet business is easy to do business with? 

'Uh, Yeah, of course!’

But have you REALLY?

The last thing you want is to offer a kick-ass service and then fall short on the things that will get clients coming through the door, telling their friends about you, and booking you again.

Did you know that it costs an average of 5 TIMES MORE to go out and get a new customer than it does to keep an existing one? If you can increase your customer retention by 5% you can increase profits by 25-95%

PLUS it’s WAY easier to get a ‘yes’ from someone who has said yes to you and purchased before (60-70% success rate) than someone new (5-20% success rate) 

That doesn’t even take into consideration what a happy customer can mean for you in referrals and word-of-mouth (which is THE MOST valuable marketing EVER because it’s free AND the most effective because 92% of consumers believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of advertising” 

Exciting stuff, right?

Exciting but also maybe a bit overwhelming when you’re already busy running your business and trying to have life. But fear not, I’ve got you! 

Today I’m going to share the 5 fundamental concepts of being ‘Easy to Do Business With’ (ETDBW) that, if you manage to adhere to, will turn your current pet business into an absolute delight for your customers. 

Get these right (or at least START looking at them and improve them over time) and watch as you find yourself fully booked with happy clients.

(then we’ll have to talk about making your business easier to RUN when you’re fully booked and building your team – coming soon!) 

1. Be Available

Let’s start with availability. What platforms do you have available for your clients to contact you on? There is a general consensus that having multiple means of contact is best, but which ones are right for your business – and most importantly for this conversation – for your customers.

Your Contact Info

While most people will want to be able to book you instantly through a button your website or social profile – when it comes to questions, customer care or problem solving they may have different needs.

A Statista research report found that 42% of consumers ages 18 and up listed phone calls as their preferred channel for customer service communication (Statista, 2020). 

38% preferred digital channels such as live chat or social media and 20% preferred email (Note that’s 58% of people who >prefer NOT to get on the phone

Take your customer base into consideration when deciding what channels to offer. Who is your demographic? If millennials are your target audience, you may want to invest in chat features. According to a 2020 survey, 88% of millennials would rather text than speak to someone on the phone. 

In fact, 52% of millennials surveyed reported that phone calls make them anxious (Tal, 2021). Providing channels that give potential customers a comfortable way to communicate with you is key. Are you offering text-based platforms where your clients can get in touch with you?

Your Hours

What about your hours of operation? Have you asked yourself whether your business hours are working for your intended clientele? To help you determine what times you should be available, start by looking at your local competition. What hours are other pet businesses in your field keeping? Are there any gaps in their hours that perhaps you could fill?

Hours of operation are of course going to vary from pet business to pet business. For example, if you are a dog walker, you will want to be available during hours that your clients are at work and unable to walk their pooch themselves. If you’re a pet sitter, holidays, weekends and overnights will likely be your busiest times. Do your own research on your particular pet service to determine ideal business hours that work for your clients… and then get creative about how you can make them work for you.

Keep in mind you can charge a premium for hours that are convenient for your customers that other people don’t offer. 


2 .Be Responsive

This might seem obvious, but when a client requests information via email or a social media platform, make sure toactually answer

According to Forbes, about 70% of emails sent to businesses are never answered and approximately 46% of direct messages on social media platforms are left on read (Hyken, 2021).

Wild right?

Those are often your warmest leads – people who are SUPER keen to chat and potentially book you – if this is you it’s time to plug that leak of potential revenue!!

Not answering messages from potential customers will cost you their business – and even if they do actually hire you – it’s definitely given them a sour taste in their mouth. If you’re ignoring potential customers, you are essentially disrespecting their time and nobody likes feeling ignored.

Maybe you have been very diligent about replying to all inquiries that come your way. Great! But there is something else you need to consider— the time in which it takes you to respond.

According to the 2022 Sprout Social Index, 13% of customers expect businesses to respond on social media within the first hour. 76% of users feel that they deserve a response within 24 hours of when they sent a direct message. 

I know what you’re probably thinking— >ok, but how am I supposed to run my service-based business AND stay on top of responding to my customers in a timely manner? There are only so many hours in the day!

We totally hear you!

One option is to delegate these tasks to an employee or a virtual assistant to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. If you’re not quite ready for team, an easier option is automation.  Did you know exchanges between customers and automated bots surged to 81% in 2020 (Mazzetti, 2022)? Using automated bots is perfect for simple tasks like answering frequently asked questions or checking on the status of an appointment. This digital ally is available 24/7 so your customer feels attended to, even if a live person is unavailable.

This is SO important that we’ve built our Book Your Pet software around making this timely communication easy for you - with several automated features, templated communications and alerts sent straight to your phone so you can answer on the go If you want to take a peek you can check out a demo here.

3. Be Consistent

Your clients should have a clear idea of what kind of experience they can expect when seeking out your services. Ask yourself—Do I have a definitive service promise?

If you don’t, now is the time to draw one out. A service promise is like a companion to your mission statement. The key distinction is that a service promise is customer-centric. It focuses on what the customer experience is going to be like when doing business with your brand (David, 2021).

Having a service promise is only one half of staying consistent in your business.

The other half? Keeping that promise.

Unmet expectations can wipe out your business in the blink of an eye. Your client came to you because what you are promising to deliver fits their needs. If you under deliver, they will have no problem finding another company that will provide what they’re looking for. Don’t give your clients any reason to go elsewhere. Fulfill your service promise, exceed expectations and make sure to take a human-centered approach.

What is a human-centered approach?

In brief, taking a human-centered approach means putting helpfulness and friendliness first. An article by MIT Sloan Management Review notes that businesses that are human-centered tend to be more successful and are more accomplished (Bitnner & Lau, 2021).

Here at Book Your Pet, we call this ‘building a brand instead of just a business’.


4. Be Accessible

Does your business have an online presence? Being online is a MUST nowadays and if your business is disconnected from the world wide web, you are seriously missing out. Being online increases the chances and makes it <easier for customers to find you.

We’re trying to make it as easy as possible here, aren’t we?

Not only does having a digital presence help people find you, but it also helps showcase the services you offer.

As of January of 2022, Google processes 8.5 billion searches every day (Internet Live Stats, 2022).

A survey conducted by BrightLocal found that a staggering 99% of consumers use the internet to find local businesses (BrightLocal, 2022). Now why wouldn't you want your business to have a piece of that action?

Bottom line, having a website is an investment worth making.

Something else to consider is how your potential clients will be viewing your website. Is your website mobile friendly? Given that over 51% of total online traffic comes from mobile devices, it is imperative that your website be functional on mobile (Statista, 2022).

Curious to know if your current website is mobile-friendly? Luckily, Google has a Mobile-Friendly Test (https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly) that you can use to determine that! Pretty nifty, huh?


5. Be Friction-Free

Want to grow your customer base and save time? You simply MUST streamline your booking process.

Having an online booking software like Book Your Pet makes it super easy for YOU to make it easy for your customers to know your availability and conveniently book an appointment with you.  They don’t have to call, wait, or wonder.

For you there is no more double-booking, overthinking or having to constantly obsess over your calendar trying to find available times… and definitely no more keeping everything on paper!

You can also reduce the number of no-shows by sending automatic appointment reminders to your clients through the booking system (FS Code, 2021). Your customers will also appreciate the time they saved booking online instead of having to go through traditional means. It’s a win-win!

Another benefit of an online booking app is ease of payment. 

A study done in 2019 revealed that when an online scheduling system was introduced, small businesses experienced up to a 120% increase in revenue (Forbes Councils, 2020).

120%!! Stop for a minute and do the math – times your current revenue by 2.2! And that’s just for making booking EASIER and friction-free for the people who are already out there trying to book-in.

When your customer makes an appointment, they can be prompted to pay for the service in advance. This takes the hassle out of you having to receive payment the day of the service or asking for it after services have been completed. No more people bailing to run to an ATM because they forgot to bring cash!

If clients wish to pay after their appointment (and you allow it) a booking software like Book Your Pet can send payment reminders automatically so collecting money is one less thing you have to worry about. Who wants to spend their valuable time hounding their clients for money?

No. One.

This frees you up to continue focusing on serving the pets and their people, growing your business and doing the bits you love.

Armed with this information, how will you make your small business easier to do business with?


Start Here

You can start by checking outBook Your Pet demo to learn more about how we work and how we can transform your business into the ‘ETDBW’ kind.

We offer instant booking, appointment reminders, follow-ups, payment reminders, payment integration and more! Have client and appointment information all in one place so you can relax and focus on taking care of your pet people and their owners.

Why wait? Want to dive straight in? Book a free call with our team who will get you rolling.