I'm in the international shipping service, so at the end of the day potential customers usually are looking for the "lowest shipping rates", and I'm sure they view my services just as a "commodity" because if they don't like my "shipping rate prices" they can just go to one of my competitors. I don't want to play the "lower my prices" game to beat my competitor's pricing because that will just end up thinning my margins and putting me out of business. I've read some competitor customer reviews online, and I see people had bad experiences with customer service, their items handled poorly, shipping delays, lost packages, etc. So I try to increase my perceived value by stating how we do all these things better and customers won't have these same issues with my services, but maybe it's still not enough because all potential customers care about is the "lowest shipping rates".
This is a fantastic question! I love it! I have had similiar experiences. The most important thing is NOT to sell off of just rate. This is because then you submit yourself to economic contraction or expansion. Your income will be unpredictable. The ANSWER: Sales Training. We as sales owners have to find the "PAIN POINTS." Sounds like you have done a fantastic job doing that. NOW, you need to sell it or be sold. EVERY product and business I have had has ALWAYS been higher then competition and never has stopped me from thriving. Sales is vital, you need a team of sales folks hitting the phones, door knocking, marketing, offering so much value that you are no longer competing, but you are dominating. I"m doing this NOW in my business!