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View Full Version : Let's make a plan for the next 1-2 years


fool32696
10-09-2008, 05:05 PM
I've noticed that in the last 6 months, it's gotten harder and harder to sell a job over $1k. I have the feeling that people are going to hoard any cash that they have for 2009 and into 2010. What are some ways that we can grow significantly in a down economy?

Options for companies with good cash positions:

Buy accounts from people going out of business (making sure that the accounts are profitable and you pay a fair price).

Set up some low overhead rigs and drop prices some (add lots of volume, but on lower margins).

Advertise, Advertise, Advertise and don't change anything about current business model.

If you're in debt:

Try to keep your head above water an pay your obligations.

Sell to me.

These are just some things that I've been thinking about. Please add to the list and criticize what I posted. If you don't agree with something, please state why.

fool32696
10-09-2008, 09:36 PM
I guess I'm the only one who doesn't have it all figured out.

ed2hess
10-10-2008, 07:44 PM
Our strategy is to get two big landscape jobs mainly in the winter to make a significant amount. Then in the spring we are going to go route of lowing the prices to increase the number of mowing customers. More customers drives the extra business opportunities. Today we had a mulch job requiring 3 pallets of mulch...these are nice in winter. In a couple weeks we are going to do an irrigation job, we normally don't do but a couple of those a year. In our area there seems to be a lot of $50K size jobs that the big guys don't want to do. Nice to do them when it is cool in the winter.

Genlandscape
10-10-2008, 08:00 PM
Whatever you do, don't lower your prices, if you can't continue to grow at your exsisting prices you are doing something wrong. Decreasing prices will hurt us all in the long run. Comodities prices may fall as a result of the slow global economy, but if we maintain our prices, we will make out in the long run. This plan may work for short term, but if you deliver the greatest quality in your area you will still be competetive even with higher prices.

djchiodo3
10-10-2008, 08:11 PM
(South Florida) Look at it like this, people can cancel their TV, newspapers, having their roof cleaned, detailing their cars, going out to dinner, having their house painted, etc.....ect..... When you live in a gated community and are 65 and older you are not going to mow your own lawn or do any lawn service on your property. As long as the grass keeps growing people will pay to have it mowed. Gated communities have associations to make sure everyone maintains their lawns. In Sarasota county if your lawn is past a certain height, it is a zoning violation, and you can be fined. If the county comes out and mows the property they will bill you. Best lawns to get are always behind a gate.

procut
10-10-2008, 08:19 PM
I second not lowering prices, that would be suicide.

TNT LawnCare Inc.
10-10-2008, 10:12 PM
Ed why lower Your prices, why not maybe a discount on multiple clients on a block. I can understand the more customers you have will open doors to other types of work .

But Ed dont you think if your customers see you being low on the cutting side will want the same low prices for other work ? Just a thaught...

topsites
10-10-2008, 10:19 PM
Cost reduction :p

TNT LawnCare Inc.
10-10-2008, 10:46 PM
Cost reduction :p

Cost reduction with very little profits and maybe a medium to high overhead does not sound smart to me. Working for what ? To tear up equipment ?:hammerhead::p:p

Grits
10-11-2008, 02:40 PM
Cost reduction with very little profits and maybe a medium to high overhead does not sound smart to me. Working for what ? To tear up equipment ?:hammerhead::p:p

I think he means expense reduction.

ed2hess
10-11-2008, 05:49 PM
Ed why lower Your prices, why not maybe a discount on multiple clients on a block. I can understand the more customers you have will open doors to other types of work .

But Ed dont you think if your customers see you being low on the cutting side will want the same low prices for other work ? Just a thaught...

Unfortunately we are faced with the "mowit" look-a-like guys in our main areas. We were sitting at around $30 and they came in at $27 - $29. This year they probably picked off maybe 10 (not none of ours) in our area. But they mail out advertisement monthly and this visability and lower prices has slowed our sales. In our core areas and in the area where I live I want to drive them all OUT. I know we can make good money at their prices or lower when we capture over 50 or more in a subdivision. We handle the customers that are paying more by increasing the level of service using bush trimming, aeration, and fertilze and that keeps them happy. Price is getting to be everything. And since we do landscaping and irrigation that gives us a wider opportunity for extra stuff where most of the money is made any way.
I would say there are 40 different solo guys that have maybe 1 or 2 jobs in these areas of about 500 homes. And none have had their customers more than a couple years so they could be easily picked off by mow-it next year and we don't want that to happen. People usually change at the start of the year in our area. Well just my thoughts.