Home Depot: Difficulty Finding a Good Tradesman? Not Anymore!


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Home Depot: Difficulty Finding a Good Tradesman? Not Anymore! I hate DIY. I don’t have enough time to do it well and the reality is I am not very good at it. On the flip side I also hate being taken for a ride by a Handyman, or professional tradesman. For example; we recently had cause to have some roofing work done on our house in Sarasota, Florida. The prices ranged from $300 to $4000. Which was right? What will they each do differently and how do I even know which is right? It’s a nightmare and I hate it!

It is my wife Lorraine who tends to deal with these people as I’m usually working. I also always end up having conversations with her that usually go like this…. “He seemed trustworthy”, or “I didn’t like the look of him”, or recently she said “I didn’t like them as when they walked into the house, they sat down at our table whilst I was still standing up and proceeded to talk with me and they didn’t even ask me if they could sit down!”. Now let me be clear I am not saying my wife’s decision making abilities are poor, I would never be that brave! I am pointing out that making these decisions are not scientific. Clearly getting a recommendation from a friend or neighbor is the best way but when this fails, you are left in this situation.

Therefore; whenever we get a good professional tradesman we hold onto them. This is why I read with interest the new service from Home Depot that they believe could help the ‘non-DIYers’ like me. This is also a market segment that will undoubtedly bring in lots of new revenue and aim to encourage repeat business.

The service they have acquired is called www.redbeacon.com. Like many sites, contractors are able to register their details, which then in turn enable customers, including myself to go online and put in the job that is required. The results then come back with the details of the people that can carry out the work including the prices and customer feedback.

Click here to see how it works.

When I first read this I thought. Yeah, just another site. Why will this be different? I like the fact they are ‘putting their money where their mouth is’ but offering a guarantee of ‘UP to $ 1,000’ I have to say I would trust it a bit more if they guaranteed the whole amount. But it will be interesting to see how this progresses.

They are building on the back of the fact that 71% of people are more likely to purchase based on social media referrals, as illustrated in this infographic. Research will tell you we trust referrals.

But it does appear from the information sent across to them by prospective customers, like me, that it’s not extensive and they find it difficult to quote. In reading these I can see how that could be the case.

Here is an example:

“I need help in installing the blue box in my ceiling to put the cable in it and then cover the blue box with white blank cover. I also need help in installing a light in the wall on my stairs and change 1 of my gfci. I will provide all the materials.”

What seems to be good is they have some slick technology that allows you to take a video of your issue and forward this to the professional, which must help, but I can also see that a true professional wouldn’t be able to quote some jobs without a visit.

As I pondered this further, I think that you also need to recognize that the very successful professionals won’t need Redbeacon, they already have more than enough Customers and they do good work and spent years building up a reliable customer base. They will work on the old ‘word of mouth’ referrals.

So overall, I think this is a good approach and when it comes to my area I would give it a go, but until such time we will still make judgements on what the person looks like, what phase the moon is in and how many beers I had the night before!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Colin Shaw
Colin is an original pioneer of Customer Experience. LinkedIn has recognized Colin as one of the ‘World's Top 150 Business Influencers’ Colin is an official LinkedIn "Top Voice", with over 280,000 followers & 80,000 subscribed to his newsletter 'Why Customers Buy'. Colin's consulting company Beyond Philosophy, was recognized by the Financial Times as ‘one of the leading consultancies’. Colin is the co-host of the highly successful Intuitive Customer podcast, which is rated in the top 2% of podcasts.


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