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Tim Higham makes some eminently sensible points and ‘Anonymous’ 21st February at 00.09 makes the point most succinctly.
Prospective clients ask about price as they do not know what else to ask. To use ‘Anonymous’ above analogy about asking a builder how much it would cost to build a wall without asking about the quality of the brick, the length, the height, the finish required or the timing then it is not possible to provide a quote meaningful to the enquirer.
And yet the majority of firms quote their price, sometimes whilst on the phone, but mostly by way of subsequent email based on asking just 4 or 5 basic questions, without seeking to fully understand the transaction or the client’s specific needs.
As an adviser and trainer to law firms in how to deal with incoming enquiries across all departments but especially conveyancing, we have ‘mystery shopped’ dozens of firms over the past 24 months. It is no exaggeration to say that just about every firm could win more of the instructions they really want and at a price that is more profitable if they trained appropriate staff to handle these enquiries differently.
No firm ever talks about the quality of their service or asks the customer what it is they are wanting eg. timing of completion, frequency of updates etc. Enquiries are dealt with solely on the basis of price and whilst price is a factor to most people, surveys continue to find price is not the only deciding factor: experience, service, timing, communication are all factors also relevant to the prospective client.
It may just be that Licensed Conveyancers are gaining market share as they are more entrepreneurial and accessible than the average law firm and have better trained their staff in how to handle the initial enquiry and win the instruction. It is quite possible for law firms to at least halt the trend, it is up to them to seek appropriate training for their staff too.
Winning just a few more instructions each month could transform the profitability of many a law firm and its owners.
Get trained before it is too late.

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