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General Business Discussions

A place to talk about general business discussions.
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  #1  
Old 02-28-2005, 03:36 PM
sharry landscaping
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Review other Head Start Projects here.


Thanks for getting back to me so quick. Here is the info:

Business plan questions can be found here.

Business Description:

Sharry Landscaping is a Merrimack Valley based landscaping business, specializing in lawn and garden maintenance. Building our reputation for high quality and personal attention throughout Merrimack Valley and the surrounding area. We offer service to suit your budget. At Sharry Landscaping we work hard with you to bring your lawn and garden to life with quality service. Our goal is for the homeowner and commercial customer to enjoy every moment they spend in or look at their lawn and garden.


Management:

I have worked in the service field since graduating high school a few years ago. This requires a high level of customer service and quality work to earn a good reputation. I know the quality of our work is determined by the effort and skill I put into it, this is why every job no matter how big or small is a personal challenge. This will all play a big role in the success of Sharry Landscaping.

Business Strategy:

Sharry Landscaping will be targeting Residential homes in mid to low income areas. This is a market that is in need of a quality lawn care provider in this area. We will also target small business accounts that typically consist of banks, gas stations and small office parks. These are customers that are in high demand and require a significant amount of work as well as snow plowing. We will maintain quality work, a professional image, and provide an image that our customers will be proud of. Sharry Landscaping will be starting a full force marketing campaign that will send us flying for spring.

Legal Structure:

The company is currently set up as a sole proprietorship. I will be working this season on forming a Corporation, or an LLC.


Financial:

As of this date I have invested about 46k in the form of a truck and equipment. I consider this price minimal for the amount of opportunity it provides. I will be seeking a small amount of capital from a bank for the advertising campaign. This will be my start up cost.

The monthly operating expenses are are as follows:

Gas: 200.00
Maintenance of equipment 50.00
Regular Advertising: 100.00
Office Supplies: 50

The monthly fixed costs are:

Truck: 570.00
Insurance: 218.00
Bus. Insurance: 96.00
Plow: 120.00
Phone, Internet: 90.00
Cell: 70.00



Mission Statement:

Sharry Landscaping is a full service lawn care company. We strive to keep each and every customer happy. We provide are customers with a beautiful lawn at an affordable price.



Current Slogan:

Quality Work, Affordable Price



Market Analysis:

National:

+ The Internet has become a valuable asset to many of us, as it has been to our industry. With more and more people accessing the Internet are market becomes stronger. This leaves are potential customers some time to easily squeeze in an email at the office, check out are services, and make a decision if they would like to have us come out and speak with them.

- The gas prices have spun out of control and that adds to any business overhead. This in return drives prices up and suddenly we do not sound so affordable. The way we deal with this is to have a specific market that we will do all are advertising in. This will keep all of our customers in one area, which leads to less travel time and keeps our pricing competitive.


Regional:

+ Due to the high rise of home ownership in my area there are more potential customers. These are customers that are new to homeownership and excited about getting their lawn in shape.

- On the other side of the coin the pricing of homeownership is at an all time high. This leaves potential customers on a tighter budget. To deal with this we offer affordable prices and take away the hassle of lawn care after a long day at work. This in return gives are customers a beautiful lawn and more time to enjoy it.

Landscape Industry:

+ More and more people have become interested in having a nicely maintained lawn. This gives us a stronger market.

- There are a lot of people starting a landscape company to make some extra cash. This in return makes it harder for us to stay competitive due to overhead. I do not feel this is a big hurdle if handled correctly. I will take them around there yard and explain what they will receive from Sharry Landscaping for the price quoted. The quality of our work and the personal attention my customers receive will keep them coming.

Customer Analysis:

Are target customers are generally mid to low income homeowners. These would be customers that work a full time job or just have little time for lawn care. We are going to gear our efforts toward target areas that meet these guidelines. The zip codes of these areas are 01824, 01876, 01851 and surrounding towns. At Sharry Landscaping we know that quality is as important as an affordable price, and that’s what we strive for.

Competition Analysis:

There are a few main competitors in my area. They go from a one-crew operation to a multi crew operation and produce numbers from 100k – 500k and upwards per season. They offer Lawn Care, Install, and Chemicals. I have done some research on the quality of work in my area and find in a lot of cases the better the quality gets the less personal attention the customer gets. The price ranges are $35 and up per cut, and $45 and up per fertilizing. Their customers range in all different areas. There main strengths seem to be new equipment and having the capital needed for advertising. There main weakness is there ability to balance quality work and customer relationships. These will be both direct and indirect competitors.

Labor:

I will be doing this full time and have people ready to work once I am ready for them. I am hoping to have work for 2 employees this season. The hourly wage will be based on experience and job description. The amount of man hours will be determined by the level of business I attract.


Equipment:

I have all equipment needed right now. Other equipment purchases will be minor until company expansion. All equipment will be stored in a garage at my residence.

* new 03 f350 dump truck
* new trailer
* used 52" ferris walk behind
* used 16hp gaint Vac
* new trimmers and blowers

Advertising:

We will be promoting are business through mailings, fliers, door hangers, business cards, and customer referrals. Amount spent will be determined by are success.


Thanks,
Scott Sharry
Sharry Landscaping
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  #2  
Old 02-28-2005, 04:41 PM
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Hi sharry landscaping,

Great work! Let us create a marketing plan and set some goals. What is your current client base?

I would also like to see. Three projections:

1. A total number of new customers you feel you can easily attract this season.

2. A total number of new customers you feel will be moderately difficult to attract this season.

3. A total number of new customers you feel will be extremely tough to attract this season.

4. What date do you want these total customers by?

When we set up your projections in a chart, you can then post weekly how many new customers you were able to get that week. This should help inspire and motivate you to reach your goals.
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Old 02-28-2005, 04:42 PM
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I checked out your site. Do you have a logo?

What are your plans for vehicle signage?
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  #4  
Old 02-28-2005, 05:18 PM
sharry landscaping
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Hi Team Gopher,

When I started I was working for a contractor that was doing general maintenance on 28 housing units for a company. They needed a Landscaper so I bid on it and landed it. Bought my equipment and never looked back. I worked full time as a contractor then part time on the landscaping. I was very busy and did not attack new work (big mistake). Now I am left with only 7 accounts because the contractor lost the acount with the company. Which means I lost the account with him. I tried to get it from the company direct but my old contract would not allow this. So all my eggs where in one basket. Now I am working to build it back up this year.
Here are the three projections:

1. A total number of new customers you feel you can easily attract this season. *

I would say 20-30

2. A total number of new customers you feel will be moderately difficult to attract this season.

I would say 30- 40

3. A total number of new customers you feel will be extremely tough to attract this season.

I would say 40+

4. What date do you want these total customers by?

I would like the total cusomer base by the end of september..
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  #5  
Old 02-28-2005, 05:26 PM
sharry landscaping
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I have not come up with a logo as of yet, and I also need to figure out what to put on the truck/trailer. I was using a sign i had made last year that was screwed to the build ups on the truck but it didnt look to great and it read Sharry Contracting so i removed it.

Thanks,
Scott
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  #6  
Old 03-01-2005, 08:31 AM
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Hi sharry landscaping,

Here is our customer goal chart for this year ending in August to help motivate you. Now that we have these goals, we will be able to chart your progress throughout the season.

Each month you should report back here and let us know your latest customer count to see where you are at in your goal. You might want to print out this chart and put it somewhere where you will see it each day to inspire you.

Let us know if anything needs to be changed.
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Old 03-01-2005, 09:10 AM
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Hi sharry landscaping,

Have you looked through the artist gallery here yet? Have you found any logo concepts that we could use to create a logo for you?
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Old 03-01-2005, 09:44 AM
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Here is a chart showing your monthly expenses. Let us know if we need to correct this. As of this date $46,000.00 has been invested into the company in the form of a truck and equipment.

Break even point. None of this includes a salary to you.
$1564.00 / 21 = $74.47 This is your monthly expenses divided by the average number of workdays per month whcih we have figured to be 21. This brings us to $74.47 per day in expenses.

$74.47 / 8 = $9.30 per hour expenses.

The next thing you should consider is how much do you want to pay yourself per hour. Then we can factor in a salary. What will your expenses be per hour for your salary in the form of taxes?

Let us know if any of this needs to be corrected. We will then create a report based on your updated salary information.
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Old 03-01-2005, 11:06 AM
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Customer analysis based on zip codes provided by Sharry Landscaping of service areas and data provided by ESRI Business Solutions.

Census data provided by census.gov

The yellow highlights point out the zip code with the highest average home value and median household income. You will notice in the 01824 zip code that 44% of the households have income over $100,000.00 a year vs. 01851 which has only 16% of the households making over $100,000.00 a year. Will this data help you determine who you will market more heavily to over others?
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  #10  
Old 03-01-2005, 03:35 PM
sharry landscaping
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Here is our customer goal chart for this year ending in August to help motivate you...

That is Great!! I will use this as my guide...
Thanks
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