Now we’ve entered the first quarter of 2018, it’s clear that remote video surveying is becoming more popular than ever in the moving and relocation industry.
The important point to remember is this: video surveying is not about reinventing the industry. It’s about helping you close more sales while also working more efficiently.
Think of it this way, there are two main options to convert an inquiry prior to video surveying…
Option 1: a face-to-face survey. Great for building rapport. Usually pretty high conversion rates – typically around 40%. But what if your customer is too far to drive out to? Or you don’t have time to go and see them?
Then there’s option 2: calling them on the phone. You get as many details as you can by asking pertinent questions, then you email over an inventory. From that, you might convert about 20% of your prospects.
And that’s not to mention the risk of inaccurate information. Your customer has probably underestimated the volume of stuff they need to move. Or they try to add something at the last minute. Bang goes your cubing estimate, your pricing and your margin.
Winning more customers
Video surveys can change all that. Take the example of TLC Movers, a relocation firm based in Cardiff, UK, that specialises in European moves.
Video allows TLC to win more jobs from further afield. They can now carry out surveys for customers in mainland Europe that would have been impossible for them to do personally before – enabling them to win the “backload” jobs that are so crucial to making a profit each time they do a relocation.
“We won a couple of people already on backloads,” says Thomas Long, Transport Manager at TLC Movers. The company can also survey all of the UK from outside their local Cardiff area, enabling them to access more prospective customers than ever before.
“When you add up all the costs, it could be £120 just to go and carry out a face-to-face survey. And even then you’re not guaranteed to win the job,” Thomas explains, adding: “With video surveys, we’ve been able to survey people as far away as Sheffield and even Aberdeen, accurately price the move and then win the job without even having to travel there until move day.”
50% conversion rate from video to paid job
High conversion rates are another clear benefit for TLC. “We won 90% of people who did video surveys over Christmas,” Thomas adds. “That’s partly the nature of people moving at that time of year – they’re just more likely to convert, to be honest.
“At the moment we’ve got lots of people who’ve done video surveys who aren’t moving until March or April, but looking at the number so far, I’d say we’re averaging almost 50% conversion from video to a job.”
Simpsons International Movers, based in Kent, UK, also saw the potential for video surveys to grow their sales by improving the convenience for the customer:
“We perceived the potential for an out of office hours and out of area surveying system that was relatively cheap and cost effective to use as an added string to our bow,” says Kirk Dugard, Project Manager at Simpsons.
For Simpsons, being able to outsource surveys for out of hours and international clients to industry-experienced and professional surveyors was a key benefit. And not all video surveying services are created equal.
“We trialled a video survey service just over a year ago and found the quality of the surveys suspect, so much so that we discontinued offering the service to clients following surveys that produced volumes wildly different to our own surveyors and the inevitable problems associated to this. We have so far found the quality of Buzzmove’s surveying staff to be far superior to our previous experience,” Kirk adds.
Thomas at TLC Movers also values the outsourcing aspect of video surveys: “It’s good because we can re-watch the videos and see exactly what to expect before sending our staff out on the job,” Thomas says. “And your cubing is accurate. Plus it’s good to be able to rely on surveyors with BAR training in practical estimating. I can always be confident of them doing a good job for us.”