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 > Just starting your lawn care or landscaping business? > Starting a lawn care business.

Starting a lawn care business. How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.

Higher prices for better quality.


Starting a lawn care business.

How to start a lawn mowing business, lawn care business, or landscaping business. If you are starting a lawn care business, ask your questions here.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #1  
Old 10-02-2007, 09:51 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 has been great discussion on the board lately concerning value over price.

This evening, I needed a snack (along with some mellow yello). So, I took a quick run by Chik-fil-a. As I walked into the resturant, greeted by smiling faces, it struck me that I rarely have to wait in line at Chik-fil-a.

It's not that they are not busy. There are always tons of customers in the resturant. The difference is that they always have loads of employees behind the counter. The clerks that wait on me always have good attitudes and they seem to genuinely care about their work. The chicken sandwiches are always hot as are the fries. And, when I ask them to go lite on the ice so I can get more mellow yello in my cup, they do as I request. It's the small things that keep me going back.

Chik-fil-a seems to be about 50 cents higher for their combo meals than other resturants. However, I am very willing to pay extra.

Do you have any resturants or stores you will go out of your way to visit because of excellent service?

What small amenities do you offer your lawn care customers to make sure you keep them as long term customers?

Keith
__________________
Start a profitable lawn care business.
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 10-02-2007, 10:39 PM
SerranoLandscaping
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Lawn care business tipsLawn Care Business Book
Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]Do you have any resturants or stores you will go out of your way to visit because of excellent service?
Yes i rather shop at Giant or wegmans than go to food depot or any low price supermarket. I like quality and better taste. So i pay more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]What small amenities do you offer your lawn care customers to make sure you keep them as long term?
I tell my customers that i will make sure they get a greener and healthier lawn than their next door neighbors. And I do give them nice green, stripe, healthy lawns.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-03-2007, 08:38 AM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,343
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

That is a good point.

It's like when I go to Walmart. I know the support won't be as good as other grocery stores but when I do go there, I realize this and I figure it's worth it.

On the flip side, there is another grocery store I visit once in a while and their prices are higher. They have a staff that pushes your cart to the car. Now for me, this is an entire waste. I feel stupid actually walking along side one of the employees as they push my cart. Sometimes, I think this kinda thing can go a little over board.

I know they are just doing their job, but I almost feel they should apply that service to someone who needs it more. I mean why push my cart and then make the older person standing behind me, wait for help? You know?

I don't need that over the top service and I don't even want it. Sure others could really use it, but to me it's annoying.

I think this is a matter of applying such service where it's needed.
__________________
- 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
  #4  
Old 10-05-2007, 10:54 PM
pmblair
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Personally, I have always been taught the "Give 'em the pickle" method. One of my old supervisors used to preach to us that when a customer asks for something, give them that little bit extra that makes them smile. "Give 'em the pickle" just means give them a little bit more that they weren't expecting to make the service that much better. I was in the quick lube industry for a few years. I applied that "pickle" method there. Every person who got an oil change also got a free air freshener as well just for giving us their business. It didn't cost the company much and all the customers loved it.

I LOVE Chick-Fil-A for the same reason. The food is ALWAYS good (and hot)... there are ALWAYS smiling faces... and even though the price is a little bit more, it's not putting a hole in your pocket, either. Truitt Cathy is a VERY smart business man. I admire him a lot for his policies. That's why they get so much business... because they "give us the pickle".

Now, about the cart pushing thing. I agree and disagree. I'm a 34 year old man, perfectly capable of pushing my own cart and loading my own vehicle. There are those who need the assistance much more than I do. So when I go to a store where they offer this service, I step in front of the young man offering the service, hand him a dollar and tell him "see that older gentleman/lady over there? give them a hand. I'll be alright, but thank you anyway." (There are ALWAYS older people in the store when I'm there for some reason) A quick smile to the clerk, and I'm out the door. Everyone's happy.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-09-2007, 09:51 AM
LawncareMarketingMagic LawncareMarketingMagic is offline
Lawn Care Business Consultant
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Rock Hill, SC
Age: 40
Posts: 132
Rep Power: 0
LawncareMarketingMagic is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Keith, Chic-Fil-A is a great example of 'price vs value' and I love the 'give 'em the pickle' idea. I may actually steal that one.

As it relates to your business, here are some ideas for 'giving 'em the pickle':

- Give them a service 'summary' after every visit. This would be something like the printout they give you after getting your oil change. It basically lists everything that was done, mentions when the next visit should be, and offers suggestions for improving the lawn/landscape.
- Put stripes in the lawn. Sure it takes a little extra time, but it's a value add that does more in terms of 'giving 'em the pickle' than it costs you in real dollars.
- Before you leave a job, make sure everything is in it's proper place. For example, down here in the South they use pine straw in flower/shrub beds. The stuffs great, but if there's no border, it can get 'sloppy' after the mowing and trimming. So before you leave the property you would simply go around and make sure there's a nice 'border' between the grass and pine straw.
- Offer automated billing. In other words, make it super easy for them to pay their bill. Instead of them having to write a check each month, setup up an autodraft or auto-credit card billing system. Now, there are some customers that this won't be much of a pickle for, but for others it will be a huge time saver and they'll greatly appreciate it.
- Perform an in-person checkup monthly/quarterly. Instead of just showing up and performing the service, setup an appointment periodically in order to meet with them, walk the property to discuss any issues or concerns they might have, or to simply offer suggestions on how to improve things. Not only will this help you develop a good relationship with your customers, but it will also open the door to upsell/cross sell your other services.

Now, I imagine there are quite a few more that I've missed, but it should give you some things to think about. Differentiating yourself on value instead of price is something ANY business can do and the sooner you start doing it, the better off your business will be in the long run.
__________________
Chestin
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-09-2007, 09:56 AM
pmblair
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

You're more than welcome to steal...err borrow the pickle idea.... cause I'm taking all of your's! lol

Seriously, though... VERY well thought-out ideas. I like them all!!

I have NO clue how to do striping, though.... a little help, here?
...and I LOVE the summary idea and the quarterly inspection with the homeowner. NICE!
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-09-2007, 10:09 AM
pnplawn
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] (LawncareMarketingMagic @ Oct. 09 2007,10:51)]- Offer automated billing. In other words, make it super easy for them to pay their bill. Instead of them having to write a check each month, setup up an autodraft or auto-credit card billing system. Now, there are some customers that this won't be much of a pickle for, but for others it will be a huge time saver and they'll greatly appreciate it.
I have done that and I will tell you its les stress on me and my customers. I even have it where customers can pay online. Go check it let me know what you think.

Lawn Billing
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-12-2007, 12:06 AM
Clean Lawn Clean Lawn is offline
Members
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 124
Rep Power: 8
Clean Lawn
Default

I'd like to know the stripping thing also. Are ya'll using paypal or something like that? I was talking about that with my husband the other day so our clients could pay by credit card if they wanted too since we only do cash and check at the moment. Don't yell at me guys I am still wet behind the ears in the lawn care business.
I love when I go into Chic-fil-a and the employees always say to me "my pleasure" and they sell it too. They are so polite and I am always trying to treat my customers how I would want to be treated if I were in their shoes. I go to a more select grocery store. The prices might be a bit more here or there but I love their quality. I love the give them the pickle thing too and Chestin thank you so much for posting those great idea! wow!
One of my first jobs we went to a womans house to mow her lawn and trim the hedges. Now she is a renter but when she moved in the hedges had gotten out of control. Now she asked us to trim them and when I asked how much she said for us to just eyeball it and take a little off. Well her "little bit" and my "little bit" were very different in the amount she actually wanted taken off. She expressed that she wanted more taken off and even went ahead and signed a year long contract when she was not happy. I thought this odd but who am I to say no but I did tell her that we would gladly take off more each time we came until she told me she was happy. Because I cannot feel we did our job for her if she is not pleased with our work. She was pleased with what I said and now she is 150% happy with the hedges. I cannot sell someone my business if when I leave their property they have a bad taste in their mouth about my work and business. She did and I was so happy she gave us the opportunity to remedy this.
Recently I had a couple of e-mail conversations with a gentleman who wanted a lawn company to lay SOD in his lawn. He was killing what he had and that was the route he wanted to go. I suggested some things to him and a great company that lays SOD. He had someone come out and give him a free estimate (not the company I suggested) and they left him with that bad taste in his mouth. I e-mail everyone back. It does not matter if I end up doing work for them or not because you never know when that person might need your services. He expressed to me what happened and what he was planning on doing, what I had suggested. He told me how great my customer service was and he wished he had asked my company to come out and do the work. Well he was almost finished with everything and offered it to me. I told him I would gladly finish it but there really wasn't anything left I should take his money for but if he ever needed my companies services again to please let me know. I felt really good to get that compliment about our customer service.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-12-2007, 09:08 PM
Steve's Avatar
Steve Steve is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 37,343
Rep Power: 10
Steve has disabled reputation
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ]I e-mail everyone back. It does not matter if I end up doing work for them or not because you never know when that person might need your services.
That is a really good idea because you just never know if there was just one more little thing that you could have done which would have made all the difference to the customer.
__________________
- 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
More Rain or Less?
Steve
05-20-2015 12:06 PM
Today 01:04 PM
by mattthelawnguy
8 146
Equipment dealers
mattthelawnguy
05-21-2015 04:33 PM
Today 01:01 PM
by mattthelawnguy
2 65
Irrigation
pboy8634
02-21-2010 12:46 PM
Yesterday 10:05 PM
by biglee
25 8,388
Beginner Mistakes:...
Steve
01-31-2007 11:45 AM
Yesterday 09:58 PM
by biglee
37 9,042
What's your next...
Steve
05-15-2015 11:54 AM
05-21-2015 11:23 PM
by biglee
13 322
Peace garden ideas
SGL1
05-13-2015 03:15 PM
05-21-2015 07:51 PM
by avetslawncare
16 455
Show us your stripes
Just for Cuts
05-21-2015 03:07 PM
05-21-2015 03:07 PM
by Just for Cuts
0 65
problems with a customer
LawnCareMan280
05-19-2015 06:28 PM
05-21-2015 02:58 PM
by Just for Cuts
4 139
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
01-11-2015 10:41 AM
05-20-2015 09:18 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
84 6,725
Total yard rehab
SGL1
04-23-2015 03:59 PM
05-19-2015 08:22 PM
by SGL1
15 770
Say Hello !!!
Steve
03-19-2007 11:18 AM
05-19-2015 04:12 PM
by NinaMarie86
1,223 389,005
New Lawn Service
carmelitaslawnservice
05-19-2015 10:02 AM
05-19-2015 02:51 PM
by Steve
1 88
Landscaper Jailed After...
SGL1
05-18-2015 08:15 AM
05-19-2015 02:37 PM
by Steve
5 186
Pictures of commercial...
avetslawncare
04-01-2015 09:47 PM
05-19-2015 02:29 PM
by Steve
38 1,954
feeling like im being...
Bradcook21
05-17-2015 07:33 AM
05-19-2015 02:11 PM
by Steve
6 196
good news yesterday
Bradcook21
05-17-2015 07:08 AM
05-19-2015 06:16 AM
by Bradcook21
3 128
ignition coil
jasonw
05-12-2015 05:31 PM
05-18-2015 12:07 PM
by Steve
3 247
Anyone need help? I have...
biglee
05-06-2015 12:22 PM
05-18-2015 12:06 PM
by Steve
13 653
Big (to me) mulch job
tl757
04-23-2015 05:32 PM
05-15-2015 08:46 PM
by biglee
22 1,461
big dog mowers?
Bradcook21
05-13-2015 04:03 PM
05-14-2015 10:55 AM
by Steve
4 276
Small HOA Bid
lxarth
05-06-2015 10:37 PM
05-13-2015 11:55 AM
by Steve
9 490
New company in Michigan
SEM
04-24-2015 09:27 PM
05-13-2015 11:51 AM
by Steve
11 620
Fired for refusing to...
Mr. Mow
05-09-2015 06:15 AM
05-12-2015 01:36 PM
by Steve
6 486
What a JERK!
Chilehead
05-06-2015 08:13 AM
05-12-2015 01:14 PM
by Steve
9 561
I have ZERO confidence...
Just for Cuts
05-01-2015 04:24 PM
05-12-2015 03:53 AM
by jrs.landscaping
31 1,049
landscape insurance
clarkslawn
03-30-2015 10:14 PM
05-11-2015 01:15 PM
by Steve
6 1,006
String trim BEFORE mow...
Mr. Mow
04-12-2015 08:13 AM
05-10-2015 07:50 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
9 1,031
Bought my first STIHL...
Mr. Mow
05-09-2015 06:29 AM
05-10-2015 08:36 AM
by Mr. Mow
9 396
advice wanted please and...
CHenricks
05-07-2015 08:40 PM
05-08-2015 04:20 PM
by CHenricks
7 417
Hello
SallyBorowicz
05-06-2015 11:14 AM
05-08-2015 02:21 PM
by Steve
3 329
Mower Advice
tl757
05-06-2015 02:31 PM
05-08-2015 01:45 PM
by Steve
6 451
Home today...Still...
biglee
05-06-2015 11:59 AM
05-07-2015 12:06 PM
by biglee
2 330
I'm Back With The Best...
aduttonater
02-21-2015 12:41 AM
05-07-2015 11:17 AM
by Steve
79 3,910
color fliers?
holymoly
04-18-2015 02:32 PM
05-07-2015 10:57 AM
by Steve
16 1,014
Looking good
mrsmichigan
05-06-2015 09:47 AM
05-07-2015 10:53 AM
by Steve
1 283
What are your biggest...
Steve
05-05-2015 01:24 PM
05-07-2015 10:52 AM
by Steve
2 326
is craiglist good to...
JBENI
04-16-2015 11:11 AM
05-06-2015 07:15 PM
by TheYardGuy
12 1,084
Go daddy web site and...
jcurr33
05-04-2015 06:00 PM
05-05-2015 11:57 AM
by Steve
2 356
How busy are you now?
Steve
05-04-2015 01:10 PM
05-05-2015 11:47 AM
by Steve
4 393
mowfinder
scaypa
04-27-2015 05:44 PM
05-04-2015 01:14 PM
by Steve
1 423
Latest video, Facebook...
Sprinkler Buddy
05-01-2015 06:54 AM
05-04-2015 01:09 PM
by Steve
3 390
weed
avetslawncare
04-16-2015 07:56 PM
05-01-2015 11:38 AM
by Steve
8 805
so i need somehelp with...
dalvan0
04-28-2015 07:43 PM
04-30-2015 10:55 PM
by avetslawncare
3 701
Anyone have a Lawn Care...
nishirandall
04-28-2015 08:45 PM
04-30-2015 12:00 AM
by Steve
1 465
mowing pic
joshlawncare
04-25-2015 12:34 PM
04-29-2015 10:55 PM
by Steve
5 565
Help with a truck
bdodson89
04-27-2015 08:15 PM
04-29-2015 10:47 PM
by Steve
4 462
Ford F250 Wheel loaders...
jrs.landscaping
04-28-2015 05:34 AM
04-29-2015 07:47 AM
by jrs.landscaping
2 425
Correct me if I'm wrong...
SGL1
04-26-2015 02:41 PM
04-28-2015 06:57 AM
by SGL1
12 590
equipment marketplace?
jrs.landscaping
04-27-2015 04:49 PM
04-27-2015 06:09 PM
by jrs.landscaping
2 398
Buying contracts /...
greenscaper123
04-26-2015 04:46 PM
04-27-2015 05:59 PM
by Steve
2 474
» Popular Tags
ad landscaping aerocore apartment complex auger bark billy goat brushcutter blades blowout bob villa collections commercial contract help curb appeal services demonstration design edging employee problems equipment dealer equipment rental facebook ferris flyers foreman grass growing a lawn care business hardscapes hills hiring husqvarna hydraulic john deere quik trac landscape landscape services lawn aeration lawn care lawn mowing marketing marketing secrets more customers business mr dave mulch ordinance past due patio install per hour charge pricing profit on employee pto push versus ride running a business scag v-ride scripts secrets to landscaping seo shell small engine repair square foot steep lawns sulky swzt toro grand stand trailer tree trimmer rack truck new used landscape up sell employee web design website won't return www.greenturion.co.za
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:46 PM.


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

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:46 PM.

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