How You Can Add Revenue to Your
Existing Landscape Company
1. Appeal to a New Client Base
If you have been serving the residential clients of your community but limited your commercial clients, this is a great time to expand your client base without extending beyond your local service areas. There are benefits to each type of client, be it residential or commercial and by limiting yourself to one or the other during your first few years of your company you have provided yourself a manageable list with similar expectations.
Residential client lists tend to come with the general desire to maintain their landscape appearance on a routine basis. You can get comfortable with a repeating schedule with a list of locations to service at particular times. Happy customers will suggest your services to their friends and neighbors and you can build relationships throughout your community that will offer you the opportunity to grow at an even pace, controlling your time and schedule.
Commercial clients can often offer much larger grounds to maintain but there will often be more maintenance than upgrading going on. Businesses tend to keep a uniform look to their business exteriors keeping creativity to a minimum but ensuring a constant stream of revenue on a scheduled time frame. By cultivating the right commercial relationships you can offer a land developer perks to bringing your company to the table when their projects are underway.
Crossing the line from one to the other may seem a bit intimidating at first but can be the boost your business has been waiting for. However, if you are moving into the realm of commercial properties you may need to consider a few things.
- Commercial Grade Equipment might be a necessary purchase for your business. For large blocks of property a Zero Turn Mowers and Wide-Area Mowers can minimize the time to get the job done. While the initial cost can be high, ranging from $3,000 and $10,000, there are both benefits in taxes and financial growth.
- Insurance Requirements can vary from state to state and most certainly from the target of your business. If you have been focused on residential properties, you may need to add additional insurance before taking on commercial clients. Always check small business insurance requirements before adding commercial clients to your portfolio, including General Liability Insurance and Small Business Insurance are always required.
- Professional Contract Implementation is a must-have for any commercial contractor. While many residential clients can be maintained with a verbal agreement and job well done, all commercial clients will require a legally-binding, professional contract before any work is complete. You can often find contract templates online that can assist in creating your businesses contracts in minutes.
2. Expand Your Borders with Curbing
There has been a boom in the popularity of Professional Concrete Landscape Curbing throughout Northern America in recent years. Gone are the days of tacky plastic border that break overtime and leave a once beautiful garden, a now pile of broken, discolored plastic. With the costs of curbing installations ranging from $7 to $18 per foot, and with most installations securing a minimum of 50ft, it’s easy to see why so many landscape companies are getting into the curbing business as well.
With the technology over the past decade, concrete borders can now come in a wide variety of colors and shapes, offering each home owner a unique look to their specific taste. The most popular styles available are the Moroccan Natural Stone Collection offered exclusively from the innovators of curbing trends, Lil’ Bubba® Curb System of Orlando, Florida. These bold and beautiful designs offer the appearance of naturally sculpted stones with the durability of traditional concrete curbing.
For many years concrete landscape curbing has been viewed as a business venture all to itself, drawing distinct lines between landscapers and curbers, each in a business of their own, but with advances in curbing machines, such as the elliptical plunger assembly of the Lil’ Bubba® brand curbing machine, many landscapers are realizing the profitability of adding curbing to their list of services available to their clients.
3. Host Seminars on Landscaping
By hosting a seminar on basic landscaping topics and techniques, you can attract a wider audience. Beginners in the field would be a likely pool of potential clients for the future of your business. By leaving the more advanced topics out of your conversation you will be less likely to attract of industry professionals while protecting your proprietary secrets from the public.
An attendees level of interest in the topics you cover throughout your seminar can help you to target them later for specific of services that may turn them to clients. Offering refreshments at the end of your presentation can give you time to work the room efficiently for those you targeted for the solid pitch of your detailed services.
If the idea of hosting your own seminar brings dread as you feel unprepared with how to even begin, rest assured there are plenty of online services, such as Turf Teacher, that can not only prepare you better but also give you ideas on subjects you may have not initially perceived.
4. Maintaining Existing Client Relationships
Much thought, planning and spending of money can go into expanding your business to new clients. Between running ads, sending out brochures or any of the many things we all do to attract a new client, there is always more money to spend. Once you have their attention though, turning them into a client is above all else. This level of dedication is often times spent on the potential new clients, where as the existing clients are ignored as they are considered conquered ground.
Complacency is never good in any relationship and that goes for your existing clients as well. Never forget that while you are working for them, they still have a choice to make and that choice could be to find someone new if they feel they aren’t getting the service they expect. Cultivating the relationship with existing clients can be many different things but should always be your priority.
While these are not all that you can do, here are a few examples of things you can do to nurture your existing clients and let them know you appreciate them as well
- Offer rewards programs that can provide discounts and perks to your most reliable clients.
- Periodically request feedback after completing a job. This will ensure you are maintaining the expectations of your clients.
- Always maintain a tight schedule with your appointments. This lets people know you value their time as well.
- See where you can offer specialty services that your client may not even think about. (i.e. Trimming Branches from Telephone Wires)
- Educate your customers to your services with printed guides or hosted seminars.
- Never forget to thank your customers and show appreciation for their business whenever the opportunity may appear.
Remember that nothing is guaranteed and that you have to continue to earn the business of your existing clients as well. Everyone wants to feel appreciated and without your clients, you would have no business. Craft a system personal to your business that will become second nature to you throughout your interactions with clients and your consistency will never fail you.
5. Grow Your Service Area
Growing your service area can be a scary thought but as your company grows, its only natural to expand your horizons as well. Never expand beyond your means, and always evaluate the risks to rewards. If the costs to serve a location is higher than profit, then of course the expansion is not worth it, but if you are able to book multiple clients at a particular location beyond your usual routes than this could be your answer to growing with profit in mind.
Seek out the most ideal areas beyond your own to target first. Expand into a particular area at a time as opposed to merely broadening your mile radius. You may find that spending an entire days work in a new area will reward you with a newer client pool. The name of the game is keeping your appointment book filled and that may become easier as you target particular locations for certain days.
As you expand your service area, don’t ignore the obvious. Adding additional crews may be your next step. If the business is available, do what you can to garnish more of it for yourself. Adding more employees to service more clients can be your most profitable solution and the strongest way to cover a wider service area.
6. Create Services for the Off-Season
Many landscape companies fall victim of the “feast-or-famine” mentality throughout the seasons. While spring and summer offer plenty of opportunities to keep your business busy, the cooler times of year bring a sudden chill to the work load. Rather than get icy in the winter months, pivot your business model to accommodate the needs of your community. Each community is different and will have its own specific needs throughout the colder seasons and each of these needs can be met by you with a little preparation prior to the big chill.
Snow removal can be a very lucrative endeavor as well as providing additional safety and mobility to your clients. Armed with a strong Snow Blower, you can keep clients on a seasonal schedule of service, as well as open yourself to a new customer list that could potentially become warmer weather clients as well.
Seasonal Holiday Exterior Decorating has in the past several years become a fast growing, off-season alternative for landscapers with a keen eye for details, translating to beautifully lit homes filled with holiday cheer. While every one loves the look of holiday decorations adjourned on the eaves of homes lining the neighborhood, not every one likes hanging those lights themselves. This particular service has become so popular that Home Depot has created a directory to assist families in hiring local independent holiday lighting installers in communities coast to coast.
Create Deliverable Products such as mailboxes, benches, stone signage and so much more, from the comfort of your home. With a cement mixer and other tools, pre-packaged in the Artisan Stone Creations created by Lil’ Bubba®, you can assemble a line of custom products that can be delivered right to your clients home and installed by you. Custom Mailboxes with a natural stone look at beautiful and sturdy while still adhering to road safety laws are just the tip of what you can create with this package. These products can be made year-round and can keep you busy throughout the colder months on the calendar.
7. Develop Service Packages
Whenever we shop, we all look for the best deal. It’s natural to compare your options and look for the most bang for your buck. This mentality is not lost when seeking out local landscaping options. The service itself should be the attraction but until the first job is done, that may remain a mystery to your new client. It is often times a task in and of itself to educate clients on particular services that you offer.
Creating a series of packages comprised of your different services can many times lead to an up-sell where a client may have only requested a basic lawn maintenance. This structuring of services can also create an efficient model for tackling your jobs by offering both you and your client a checklist of expectations that will provide confirmation in a job well done.
It may seem difficult at first to assemble the packages in the perfect way, but there are On-Line Guides that can assist you in creating the best options for your audience. Allow seasons to be a factor in particular offerings and you will find that some higher priced packages may become even more appealing to your clients as they see the immediate value from additional items that may not be necessary on a regular basis.
8. Offer Gift Cards
Gift giving a great part of the human experience as well as gift receiving. Many times finding that perfect gift for someone can lead that someone into the discovery of a new product or service they quickly learn they can not live without. A referral from a client can be a great suggestion that sometimes may go unnoticed, but when that referral comes with a gift card, to give a little push, that referral can take on a life all its own.
Many businesses have been enjoying the benefits of offering gift cards for years and the landscape business is no different. By offering gift cards to your clients you can collect payments in advance for services to come at a later date. Those gifts to loved ones can introduce you to potentially new, life-long clients that may have never experienced your services without their gift.
With so many options available online, such as Square Gift Cards, you can create your very own branded gift cards with your logo imprinted on them, giving your cards a unique look all your own and providing professional looking gift cards anyone would be proud to give to their friends and family.