Customer service. It’s the frontline of any business and sometimes, it’s what makes or breaks a company. So when you’re designing an awning for a large project, you want to be able to count on your supplier and know that you won’t have to wait to hear from them. So what does that mean?
You might think that having a good relationship with your awning fabric supplier should be enough. But, in reality, being able to count on your awning fabric supplier involves a lot more:
- Dependability: Your supplier should never make you wait when it comes to returning an inquiry or a call. If you’re waiting more than a week or even three business days to hear back from your supplier, that’s a sign the company isn’t as dependable as you might want. In an urgent matter, especially when it comes to hitting deadlines and orders, you should be able to talk to someone that same day for at least a brief consultation. While they might not immediately solve your problem or find what you need, you know they can at least get the ball rolling toward a solution.
- Communication: Being able to call, email, and meet your awning fabric supplier is essential. If you can’t talk to your supplier, how can you get the fabrics you need for your project? If you can’t ask your supplier questions, or worse yet, if they can’t answer your questions, this is a problem. Communicating your needs, ideas, and issues shouldn’t be difficult. You want to know that your supplier is going to answer the good and bad questions in a timely, knowledgeable manner.
- Quality & Innovation: Your supplier should also be innovative and provide quality products and services. This goes hand-in-hand with dependability. If you can’t depend on your supplier for quality and innovative fabrics, then how can you design and create a quality awning?
- Knowledge: Awnings come in a variety of styles and colors and it’s important that your supplier is knowledgeable and able to explain the different nuances of the fabrics on the market. For example, you want to be able to depend on your supplier to know about the different coatings, laminates, and topcoats available. You also want to know that your supplier is keeping up to date with the latest developments and advances in the specialty fabric and textile industries.
- Care Instructions for your Fabric: Your supplier should be able to provide you with a guide or manual on how to best take care of the fabric you’re purchasing for your awning. You want to be able to pass this information along to the end-user.
There are various aspects to consider when thinking about a good and dependable awning fabric supplier. The above list provides a good starting point. Remember, customer service is an essential part of business-to-business relationships and communication is the key to a good partnership.
There's a lot to consider when choosing an awning supplier. Now that you know a little more about the importance of dependability in your awning fabric supplier, download our free guide, "Five Factors to Consider when Determining Awning Quality".