For the most part I’d say people are over complicating it. I put a pretty concise specific point about how we bid jobs per/pane. I don’t care how many windows you have but you’re gonna have a set number of panes regardless.
Whether they’re really dirty requiring a deep clean, really high, hard to reach or very large there’s a set price for each of those up-charges in addition to the per pane formula.
So basically lets say you have 15 windows that are all double paned that’s 30 panes for the exterior 30 panes for the interior. We have a set bundle price for that which is discounted for doing both interior and exterior. Also we charge a little more if they require an initial deep clean, if there’s any latter work, extra-large windows or hard water removal etcetera.
In the rare cases in my area (even though they are several homes, it’s still rare) that have french panes like six-by-six, or less than 1’ by 1’, and under 6’ tall, they get a discount per pane. This is very easily conveyed over the phone!
The formula is very very simple, it’s not confusing, it doesn’t change, it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks and it’s per/pane and per side. Most customers that are in a hurry that just want the job done right, they care about reputation. We tell them, “Our prices are set per/pane per-side. We have x00 number of customers that happily pay. If this is cool, then it should be cool with you cause its cool with the rest of them.”
Now here is the best part of being a business owner, if it is not cool well then they really aren’t the type of customer we want to build around. It’s hard to find good help, so its very very difficult to grow large window company in a small market. Can’t speak for larger markets and all small markets. If prosoects try to nit pick over every window pane count, after we do the job if they still want to nitpick they don’t have to use us again.
The clients that want more time can ask all the questions they want over the phone after we have all their information. This way they are slightly invested in the deal. It takes time do develop an office assistant in how this is done, but that way you build a solid foundation of clients that appreciate what we do.
If they agree over the phone in earnest to the per pane and then receive an email with the breakdown, it’s up to them to cancel, we have prequalified properly then cancellations become rare. This saves 1-2hrs for each residential bid, then it’s time to set up recurring service at time of service (after they are happy).
I’m wanting to implement a credit card deposit for new clients with a 48hr cancellation to avoid flaky people, that commit and we schedule, then they cancel last minute. With our prequalification however, this is minimal occurrence at most, but it still happens occasionally. But we, by this method, have accumulated great clients and reputation and price increases haven’t cost us anyone not worth losing.