It can be easy as a small business owner to say of course I guarantee my work. It’s an easy message to incorporate into marketing pieces, on your website and to say when you speak to clients.
The reason to offer a guarantee on your products and services is to reduce the amount of risk a customer feels when choosing to do business with you. That’s a good thing for our customers. After all, if we guarantee our work then the customer thinks “I can always return it and get my money back if it’s not what I thought it would be.” That’s exactly how they should feel and how a guarantee should work.
Guarantees are a strong marketing tactic. But they can backfire, too. And when they do, you lose far more in future sales than you could ever gain with the guarantee.
Before you offer a guarantee, consider what it entails. What you are saying is:
- I promise nothing will go wrong. And if it does, I will fix it. (Sometimes you even say in your guarantee how fast you’ll fix it).
- I stand behind my recommendations. I’m an expert and you can trust that what I’m recommending is the right solution for you.
But what happens when something does go wrong?
You damage your credibility – sometimes beyond repair.
As a wedding photographer, if you fail to show up for the big event, or forget your digial card, you just failed your clients and that relationship is likely unrepairable.
Yesterday’s crash of our High School Senior How To event represented an example of a trusted company we worked with failing on a promise (guarantee). Before you offer a guarantee lightly, think about what you’re actually promising your customers and what you’ll do to make it right should something go wrong.