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The Importance of Managing Client Expectations


You can buy the best products, the most expensive tools and practice your technique for hours on end, but managing your client’s expectations is, arguably, the most important.

When working on a clients vehicle you have to remember that, for the most part, they are not as educated on every aspect of detailing as you are and may know mixed information they heard online. So it is important for you to inform then upfront what exactly the result they will be getting for the exact service provided.

A common issue I find is when a new client wants a “Full Detail”. This term can be very subjective and if you charge a few hundred bucks, when they are expecting paint correction, they are going to be quite upset when they see their car still covered in swirls. If upfront, you let them know that your “Full Detail” only includes; Wash, Clay, Wax/Sealant, Interior Vacuum Shampoo, and that the swirls they have will not be removed and in order to do so they would need to step up to a paint correction package. This is not, necessarily, to up-sell them as not every client’s needs or even would want to pay for the paint correction. Be upfront, walk through each detailing process/package with the customer and explain exactly what each includes and does not include. Be patient and work to come up with something that suits exactly what they are looking for.

This also goes for selling any sort of protection package, whether it be wax, sealant, ceramic coating, clear bra, etc. To be upfront on what that protection package will protect against and how long they can expect it to last. A simple re-wording of your selling point can make a huge difference. Instead of saying, “This sealant will last 6 months” say “Up to 6 months”. The lifespan a manufacturer states is normally under ideal conditions. So if the car is in parked outside in the hot sun it will degrade much quicker. Your client will be much less disappointed if it fails early and will know exactly how the product will perform for them.

From the most basic detail to full wet sand paint correction jobs, make sure you and your client are on the same page on what the result will be for the agreed-upon service!

Ian Martinez
Gloss Angeles
Irvine, CA
Instagram | YouTube

3 comments on The Importance of Managing Client Expectations

  1. Rodney Tatum says:

    There is a lot great informative content here in this article. I hope anyone who is starting out reads this and takes this to heart.

  2. Robson Protásio says:

    Great post; Customer sincerity is essential and true for mutual trust on both sides! Only by being true and honest will we exist in the detail we offer our clients and friends!

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