Lawn Care Business Forum Lawn Care Business Book Lawn Care Business Blog Lawn Care Software
Home Forum Contract & Flyer Templates Blog Software Videos Podcast Calculators / Estimators Store Mower Review Design It Yourself Lawn Business School

Go Back   GopherHaul Landscaping & Lawn Care Business Marketing Forum > Business > General Business Discussions

General Business Discussions A place to talk about general business discussions.

Gopherhaul 10


General Business Discussions

A place to talk about general business discussions.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 06-05-2007, 09:50 PM
tiedeman
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I really liked the new gopherhaul. That is cool that you put my situations in there. I appreciate it!
Reply With Quote

Stop guess-timating. Learn how to estimate and make money! $$$
Mow Time Estimator Lawn Care Price Estimator Mulch and Topsoil Calculator Snow Plow Estimate Calculator


  #2  
Old 06-05-2007, 10:52 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,835
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
I am glad you liked it! I think your business insights are fantastic and many viewers will benefit from your knowledge and experience.
__________________
- Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-06-2007, 02:48 PM
StartALawnCareBusiness's Avatar
StartALawnCareBusiness StartALawnCareBusiness is offline
Keith
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 731
Rep Power: 0
StartALawnCareBusiness is on a distinguished road
Default

I like the vid too. *I always enjoy your positive presentations.

Can I put my contrarian hat on for a moment?

I am a huge believer in getting the "RIGHT" kind of customers. *I totally agree that you don't want price shoppers and you pretty much want to stay away from a 1 time job unless you can really price it to make it worth your while.

However, I think you are being too restrictive with the contracts and with the non bi-weekly rules.

Here in the South, the grass is dried up so far this summer. *No one is having weekly grass service. *Many summers are similar to this one and a company that limits itself to only taking on weekly customers will have a shortage of clients.

Contracts are good. *They are especially valuable to guard against customers who want you to do major renovation work on their lawn and then drop you in mid summer. *There are also other specific situations where a contract is needed for both you and the customer. * However, once again, I've found that the majority of residential customers really don't want to sign a contract. *Instead, they just want no-hassle dependable lawn care as needed and they're willing to pay for the service when it takes place.

If it ever came down to having a dispute with a residential customer, would you really want to spend the resources to uphold the contract instead of just simply dropping that customer and finding another?

Sell quality and price your work accordingly. *Never underprice your work but also be flexible to the needs of the customer.

Don't take this as an argument...just as a counterpoint.

Your vids rock. *

Keith
__________________
Start a profitable lawn care business.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-06-2007, 04:01 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,835
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Keith,

Good points.

Have you had much of a problem with customers dropping your service mid-season? How do you deal with low bidders and customers who are offered lower prices from non-legit companies? Does this pose much of a problem?

Do you have other suggestions on how to pre-qualify a potential customer when they call you?
__________________
- Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-06-2007, 09:19 PM
StartALawnCareBusiness's Avatar
StartALawnCareBusiness StartALawnCareBusiness is offline
Keith
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 731
Rep Power: 0
StartALawnCareBusiness is on a distinguished road
Default

There will be circumstances where people will have to drop out midseason. *One year, a well paid (and well paying) customer called me in July to drop because he had lost his job. *Even if I had an ironclad contract with that customer, the time spent pursuing enforcement of the contract would have been better spent picking up a new customer instead of dealing with someone who couldn't pay anyway.

I think a good relationship with a customer is a better hedge against lowballers than a contract. *Be familiar with your customers and make sure they know how important their business is to you. *Do a great job and most people won't drop you for someone offering to do their lawn for $5 less / week. *If a customer is going to drop you for a $5 or $10 *undercut, you probably don't need them as a customer anyway.

There are definitely situations where a contract is a good idea. *Clients that hire you for application services or bed maintenance require you to purchase your supplies in advance for the expected work. *Large yards that take hours of your time and would leave a big hole in your schedule if they dropped also warrant a contract. *Also, large work that requires additional equipment or extra employees is a prime candidate for having a written contract.

Prescreening customers. *In my business package, I speak heavily about prescreening customers. *Prescreening should actually begin as you work on your business plan...very early days of your business. *Know who your customer is going to be. *Do you want to do large yards because those are the primary yards in your area of service? *Then you have to buy large equipment to handle the large mowing areas. *After that, you prescreen customers with your advertisements. *"Professional Lawn Services - Large Yards are our Specialty" *This, effectively, screens out small yards before they even call. *That's just one example. *There are many other examples of prescreening even before the customer calls.

I do have a couple of questions that I recommend asking once you get a call:

1) "Are you getting quite a few estimates?" * This gives you an idea if the customer is only going for price and calling everyone in town that does lawns or if your ad was specifically appealing. *Answer: *"No, I called you because your ad said that you have new equipment and I want someone dependable." *That's a great answer. *Go give that estimate immediately.

2) "Who was doing your yard in the past and why are they not doing it any longer." *In my experience, this is the most important question you can ask. *I remember one potential customer said "Oh, I've had a bunch of people but none of them were any good." *That was an immediate red flag. *You can gain great information with this question and you can often tell if this is a sincerely good client by their answer.

My initial critique of your questions was simply because I think we all have to be flexible to the needs of the customers. *If a customer does not want to sign a contract but they will be a great customer otherwise, why not bend your rules instead of just hanging up on them.

OH, BTW, I loved the computer generated "customer's" voice in the vid...cracked me up.

Keith
__________________
Start a profitable lawn care business.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-07-2007, 03:01 PM
tiedeman
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] (StartALawnCareBusiness @ June 06 2007,2:48)]I like the vid too. *I always enjoy your positive presentations.

Can I put my contrarian hat on for a moment?

I am a huge believer in getting the "RIGHT" kind of customers. *I totally agree that you don't want price shoppers and you pretty much want to stay away from a 1 time job unless you can really price it to make it worth your while.

However, I think you are being too restrictive with the contracts and with the non bi-weekly rules.

Here in the South, the grass is dried up so far this summer. *No one is having weekly grass service. *Many summers are similar to this one and a company that limits itself to only taking on weekly customers will have a shortage of clients.

Contracts are good. *They are especially valuable to guard against customers who want you to do major renovation work on their lawn and then drop you in mid summer. *There are also other specific situations where a contract is needed for both you and the customer. * However, once again, I've found that the majority of residential customers really don't want to sign a contract. *Instead, they just want no-hassle dependable lawn care as needed and they're willing to pay for the service when it takes place.

If it ever came down to having a dispute with a residential customer, would you really want to spend the resources to uphold the contract instead of just simply dropping that customer and finding another?

Sell quality and price your work accordingly. *Never underprice your work but also be flexible to the needs of the customer.

Don't take this as an argument...just as a counterpoint.

Your vids rock. *

Keith
I have been in business now going on 11 years, and have been in the green industry going on 15 years and have lots of experience trying out different things with the business. * I tried out the whole no contract thing and bi-weekly customers before and it was nothing but a hassle. *Sure, if I show up at a customers property and its dry as heck, I am not going to mow it.

Once you find the right type of customers that you want, with YOUR requirements, then you will start to love your work and love your customers more. *Too many times in the past I was burnt on taking on everybody. *You need to figure out what works best. *Nothing is worse then having to send a customer to a collections agency, or trying to get paid on a past due account.

By having a contract in place it not only spells out payment policies, but what your specific services are as well. *Nothing would be worse than a customer withholding money from you because you didn't perform the services like you said you would. *Instead, you can pull out the contract and show them what the details of each service is. *It also covers yourself from possible lawsuits from property damage or personal injuiry.

The weekly mowing customers are customers that you WANT to have. *Nothing is worse then showing up to a bi-weekly customers property that has a foot of growth. *If not only makes your customers property look bad, but you as well. *Someone driving by might not know that they are on a bi-weekly schedule, but when they see you maintaining it they will think to themselves "What a horrible lawn service company, they can't even keep up with the lawn. *Forget about hiring them"

Like said though, after some years of experience and feeling out the customers and your business, you will know exactly what type of customers that you want and you need based on your specifications.



Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-07-2007, 07:02 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 36,835
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]My initial critique of your questions was simply because I think we all have to be flexible to the needs of the customers. If a customer does not want to sign a contract but they will be a great customer otherwise, why not bend your rules instead of just hanging up on them.

OH, BTW, I loved the computer generated "customer's" voice in the vid...cracked me up.
What works for some businesses won't work for others. There are many factors to consider and I am glad you did bring them up for our forum members to read.

Yea the computer voice was funny too I thought.
__________________
- Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
Looking for advice on...
berryjam
01-21-2015 07:37 PM
Today 09:53 AM
by jrs.landscaping
14 384
Contact last years...
googus
Yesterday 09:13 AM
Today 09:22 AM
by ringahding1
2 69
New to the forum
LCRobert
01-26-2015 10:21 PM
Today 09:11 AM
by ringahding1
7 150
adding something new...
veteranslawncaresystems
Yesterday 12:13 AM
Today 01:57 AM
by veteranslawncaresystems
2 78
Government contracts
avetslawncare
11-15-2014 08:50 AM
Yesterday 04:27 PM
by Chilehead
7 789
What happened to Better...
Steve
01-27-2014 04:07 PM
Yesterday 12:26 PM
by Steve
21 3,148
Lawn care truck
Steve
10-10-2009 03:40 AM
Yesterday 12:23 PM
by Steve
44 16,004
Bidding to get other work
Rodriguez11
07-21-2011 11:52 PM
Yesterday 12:08 PM
by Steve
29 9,398
How many contracts...
5StarLawnscaping
01-12-2015 03:51 PM
Yesterday 11:04 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
10 554
"Part Timers", "Low...
doug1980
06-10-2009 12:55 PM
01-27-2015 09:01 PM
by jrs.landscaping
43 10,272
Is anyone doing mosquito...
BWild
01-27-2015 12:30 PM
01-27-2015 07:24 PM
by avetslawncare
4 107
TaskEasy & Plowz & Mowz...
jrwalker333
01-25-2015 01:02 PM
01-27-2015 02:14 PM
by Steve
5 178
New to group
ron@alpine
01-27-2015 08:45 AM
01-27-2015 01:29 PM
by Steve
1 76
please Help with none...
Lawnboyman1170
01-09-2015 09:46 AM
01-27-2015 01:27 PM
by Steve
13 602
does this sound good or...
Bradcook21
01-22-2015 09:24 AM
01-27-2015 07:42 AM
by ringahding1
9 308
second year advise
cmdlawncare
01-23-2015 06:22 PM
01-27-2015 07:31 AM
by ringahding1
6 262
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
01-11-2015 11:41 AM
01-25-2015 09:34 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
9 550
need advise
rawssrob
02-23-2010 02:45 PM
01-23-2015 06:40 PM
by cmdlawncare
7 2,576
New to forum
ROB N
01-23-2015 08:35 AM
01-23-2015 01:53 PM
by Steve
1 134
Extending the life of...
rmccutchan
01-17-2015 12:37 AM
01-23-2015 01:43 PM
by Steve
8 372
osceola lawn service
jasa@wildblue.net
01-22-2015 03:23 PM
01-23-2015 01:38 PM
by Steve
1 153
Tax Question
Wolf4dk
01-20-2015 01:11 AM
01-22-2015 02:28 PM
by Steve
4 279
Billy Goat Vac
Mr. Mow
01-19-2015 07:42 AM
01-22-2015 02:18 PM
by Steve
6 270
Property Pricing
GVL
01-19-2015 02:46 PM
01-21-2015 02:18 PM
by Steve
5 327
Landscapers Source For...
breadcrumb
01-16-2015 02:44 PM
01-21-2015 05:55 AM
by breadcrumb
14 493
Hoa advice
Bradcook21
01-16-2015 09:36 PM
01-20-2015 04:30 PM
by Steve
4 304
My Invention
biglee
01-11-2015 07:51 PM
01-20-2015 10:16 AM
by biglee
16 652
How to beat the pre pay...
stansg1fresh
01-13-2015 04:33 PM
01-19-2015 03:38 PM
by ringahding1
3 384
Hello from Md
homey
12-17-2014 06:55 PM
01-19-2015 01:37 PM
by Steve
12 1,162
Hi from Illinois
burtle
01-02-2015 09:46 PM
01-19-2015 01:22 PM
by Steve
3 549
Hello from SW FL!!
5StarLawnscaping
12-05-2014 02:35 PM
01-19-2015 01:20 PM
by Steve
14 1,480
Lost my @#$ blower
stevef1201
01-11-2015 08:31 AM
01-17-2015 02:21 PM
by lxarth
2 403
Another Illinoisan.....
barhopper
01-11-2015 05:38 PM
01-16-2015 04:29 PM
by Steve
10 465
marketing with pizza...
apmAkron
01-15-2015 09:57 AM
01-15-2015 06:29 PM
by Steve
4 293
CRM and Quickbooks?
5StarLawnscaping
01-15-2015 08:06 AM
01-15-2015 08:06 AM
by 5StarLawnscaping
0 220
New Member, Indiana Iraq...
Timbo
07-14-2011 09:44 AM
01-14-2015 06:14 PM
by Steve
10 3,818
check this box truck out!
BLAZIER-1991
01-07-2015 07:40 PM
01-13-2015 03:06 PM
by biglee
8 670
My community only ad...
googus
01-12-2015 09:55 AM
01-13-2015 02:44 PM
by Steve
5 351
12 Years in Business!
Chilehead
10-23-2014 09:07 AM
01-13-2015 09:37 AM
by Chilehead
18 1,848
use a small business...
BLAZIER-1991
12-25-2014 12:21 AM
01-12-2015 06:32 PM
by BLAZIER-1991
30 1,614
tips on creating a...
BLAZIER-1991
01-08-2015 07:22 PM
01-12-2015 06:19 PM
by BLAZIER-1991
4 496
During Your Down Time
achri12
12-24-2014 03:03 PM
01-12-2015 03:54 PM
by Steve
10 1,127
Leaf cleanup
Bradcook21
01-09-2015 02:21 PM
01-12-2015 12:22 PM
by Jamesw86
4 482
Has Anyone Used Plowz ?
dpld
01-08-2014 12:14 PM
01-11-2015 02:17 PM
by burtle
20 3,462
What to pay help
Bradcook21
01-07-2015 01:32 PM
01-08-2015 07:01 PM
by Steve
1 502
Need a trailer
googus
01-07-2015 09:40 AM
01-08-2015 10:24 AM
by Upscale2
7 616
Do you guys charge buy...
burtle
01-02-2015 09:58 PM
01-07-2015 08:37 PM
by Shark1611
14 987
Organic Lawn Care...
NHray
10-17-2014 07:05 PM
01-07-2015 07:05 PM
by greyhound
18 2,214
Need advice please
CHenricks
01-06-2015 01:17 AM
01-07-2015 03:34 PM
by Steve
4 580
Mowing 2 acres
Bradcook21
01-05-2015 03:13 PM
01-07-2015 03:32 PM
by Steve
9 723
» Popular Tags
4wd 4x4 apartment complex apartment lawn care estimate applying bark bob villa care collections commercial demonstration ditches door hangers edging employee problems estimate ferris flyers four wheel drive google gopherhaul hardscapes hills how to hydraulic introduction jobs landscape services lawn lawn aeration lawn care lawn care busines plan lawn care business lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care seo lawn care website lawn care website seo managing a lawn care business marketing new mower ordinance past due patio install per hour charge podcast profit on employee push versus ride reo running a business scag v-ride scripts seo shreaded snow plowing sq ft starting a lawn care business steve sulky toro tractor auger trailer mate pro truck new used landscape walk behind web design won't return wood wright stander rh
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:00 AM.


(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:00 AM.

(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy