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View Full Version : new to the bizz i need help


boog
01-10-2011, 11:04 PM
hello
i am new to the bizz I am finding it hard to get started i have all the eqipment i need i bought a business that was already in service but i did not get any of the clients . I offer more services then what they did and also offer snow removal i have handed out a lot of cards and flyers and emailed many people i realy need some help any advice is helpfull thank you

jymie
01-10-2011, 11:33 PM
hello
i am new to the bizz I am finding it hard to get started i have all the eqipment i need i bought a business that was already in service but i did not get any of the clients . I offer more services then what they did and also offer snow removal i have handed out a lot of cards and flyers and emailed many people i realy need some help any advice is helpfull thank you

Thats strange, you bought a business but got none of the clients?

Steve
01-11-2011, 02:46 AM
i bought a business that was already in service but i did not get any of the clients

Welcome to our forum!

Can you tell us a little more about your situation? Did you intend to buy the customers along with the business too or no?

aduttonater
01-11-2011, 08:05 AM
hello
i am new to the bizz I am finding it hard to get started i have all the eqipment i need i bought a business that was already in service but i did not get any of the clients . I offer more services then what they did and also offer snow removal i have handed out a lot of cards and flyers and emailed many people i realy need some help any advice is helpfull thank you

How much did you buy the business for? Do you know if the seller kept the contacts, to continue building another business?

boog
01-11-2011, 11:29 PM
no i bought all the equipment at a steal !! he dose not have the money to rebuild

boog
01-11-2011, 11:32 PM
i was told upon purchase of the business that i would receive the rights to the clients i have not received any of the clients info i have tried contact the person i bought the company from no answer. No i did not have the clients drawn up in the contract i did not expect any of this because i bought the business from a family friend and also he can not preform the services for them he dos not have the equipment to do it i bought it all at a steal i know for a fact he has no $ to rebuild . im not sure of what to do

any helpful hints on advertising or on this matter is appreciated

jasonw
01-11-2011, 11:53 PM
Sorry but you got screwed by a friend. Put an add in the paper, that's the first thing I would do. Try Craigs List in your area as well. When you get a free moment call your friend and tell him what a douchebag he is.

Steve
01-12-2011, 02:21 AM
How many customers were you told would be included? Did this effect your purchase decision?

Are you going to pursue this or have you decided to cut your losses and move forwards and get new customers?

picframer
01-12-2011, 05:46 AM
When buying any company, there is an onus on the buyer to perform due diligence, part of this is to review income generated and a list of the clients/receivable etc. If you only purchased the equipment I guess I would ask what is in the purchase and sale agreement.

If you have not been supplied with the customer list, who did you hand your marketing material to?

bruces
01-12-2011, 09:34 AM
It might actually be a good thing that you didnt get his old customers in the package ,as its quite possible the guy was having financial difficulties due to his rates being too low ,or customers not paying ,or maybey he didnt do a good enough job .Its often next to impossible to raise your rates without losing customers in this business ,as there is always a kid with a lawnmower willing to do it cheaper .If you got some good equipment for a great price,thats a large part of the battle won ,you then just need to concentrate on doing the work and finding your own customers who you can decide what your willing to charge them ,not having to worry about any old contracts or history .

jymie
01-12-2011, 11:54 AM
i was told upon purchase of the business that i would receive the rights to the clients i have not received any of the clients info i have tried contact the person i bought the company from no answer. No i did not have the clients drawn up in the contract i did not expect any of this because i bought the business from a family friend and also he can not preform the services for them he dos not have the equipment to do it i bought it all at a steal i know for a fact he has no $ to rebuild . im not sure of what to do

any helpful hints on advertising or on this matter is appreciated

boog, I started a new thread here with what I did when I started and a few other tips you can try:

http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?p=82419#post82419

TheGoat
01-12-2011, 09:53 PM
Find the least expensive advertising method you can find and make it look as nice as you can. pennies per contact. At first you migh be around .60 cents per contact because lower volume costs more, but as you build your advertising volume you can contact more people for less.

every dollar you make. Put aside 20% of it for generating new business.

always.

As your cash flow improves upgrade your advertising.

It's what I have been doing for my lawn service (http://www.hungrygoatlawns.com) and it has been working out very well so far.

drudy5
01-13-2011, 01:16 AM
looking to get into the lawncare business this spring and had a few questions to ask.....

Ideas for advertising?

How many residental lawns can you cut in one day working with one other person?

What size mower to start with?

What to charge per cut?

Steve
01-13-2011, 02:12 AM
Ideas for advertising?

I'd suggest looking at the flyers and door hangers (http://www.gopherforum.com/forumdisplay.php?f=34) here. Also hand out business cards to everyone you know.

How many residental lawns can you cut in one day working with one other person?
That would depend on your equipment and the size of the lawns cut. Compare how long it takes you to cut your lawn and compare that time with it's size. Then use that as a standard as you estimate other properties in your area.

What size mower to start with?

Why not start off with what you have or something small just to get your feet wet and see if you will want to do this.

What to charge per cut?

We have seen a national average of around $45 per hour. So you could use that as a rough estimate to compare your lawns too. What you charge will also depend on your expenses and your market. Play around with the lawn care calculators (http://www.gopherforum.com/showthread.php?p=43299#post43299) here. They will help you get the hang of bidding properties.

KTcutabove
02-01-2011, 08:34 AM
Boog-

I'm not sure how large a community you live in but I started a lawn and landscape company, from scratch, last may. Our starting customer base was almost zero. We ended the season with over 150 customers (about 50 weekly) from basically two sources. #1. Get as high on google as fast as humanly possible. A very helpful website is www.merchantcircle.com. Go create a page for your and this should instantly help you with search engine placement. (in my city it made me number two on google when you searched Lawncare.) Next create a google maps account and set up your "trigger words" so that when someone searches "Your City Lawncare" or something like it your business comes up as an option.

#2. Doorhangers. They generated about 20% of our business.

Good luck!

Steve
02-02-2011, 06:06 AM
WOW! So did that other 80% of business come from the internet or were you doing other things as well to get customers?

KTcutabove
02-02-2011, 06:34 PM
From Steve

WOW! So did that other 80% of business come from the internet or were you doing other things as well to get customers?



Yep!
Of the 150+ clients we aquired last year, 15-25 came from door to door(hanger) marketing and maybe 10 came from referral or previous contacts. In June and July the internet was providing around 1 new client a day and the way we set it up cost us only about 100 dollars. Can't beat it!

Steve
02-03-2011, 04:21 AM
That is fantastic! Do you also utilize sites like craigslist too or is this all traffic from search engines?

KTcutabove
02-04-2011, 11:02 AM
That is fantastic! Do you also utilize sites like craigslist too or is this all traffic from search engines?


Tried craigslist once and it yeilded nothing. This is all google traffic!

boog
02-04-2011, 11:22 PM
"ktc"
thanks for the info i now have a acont for M.C and set up a acount with google maps but how do you rank so high on google ? im on the 30th page when i try to search lawn care in my area

boog
02-04-2011, 11:25 PM
what all have you tied that works ? i need as much help with this as i can get i have way to much money tied up not to get the customers to compensate for it

boog
02-04-2011, 11:31 PM
now i have a new problem i think i am pissing off the other contractors in my area i had signs made lawn care / snow removal phone ##### they was out for 3 days got a call from the police "yes it was a cop " he told me that they had received complaints about my signs and they needed to be removed asap or charges would be filed that was a waste of money and time

Steve
02-05-2011, 06:15 AM
I'd suggest just keep at it. The more people you meet and the more cards you hand out, the more business you will get.

Are your friends and family helping you get the word out too? Are you marketing to the neighbors of your current customers?

KTcutabove
02-05-2011, 11:49 PM
"ktc"
thanks for the info i now have a acont for M.C and set up a acount with google maps but how do you rank so high on google ? im on the 30th page when i try to search lawn care in my area



Give it some time. It took us a good week or so to see any decent placement at all. A Good question is, how big is your City? My service area is only 25 to 50 thousand so competition in my city was much less. This made it much easier to get higher placement quicker. With merchant circle, your legitimacy is often tied to how much activity you have with your account. Connect with as many other merchants as you possibly can, comment on other businesses, ad links to credible websites. These things have seemed to help ours. If your in a city with a couple million people, you will probably have to aquire the help of an SEO (Seach Engine Optimization) company or consultant

One last tip, if you are in a large city try attaching yourself to key words of distinguishable area's that are near you. (Neighborhoods...Parks?.) Anything that people near you would use to find a lawncare service that they percieved as "closer" to them than just the name of the big City.

Good luck, I know the feeling of having lots of capital tied up...
I launched into snow removal this year as well and after all the investment. We still have yet to receive a snowfall of over 4 inches. VERY unusual for our area.

kdvandco
02-06-2011, 12:57 AM
have you tried knocking on doors and talking to people?