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Old 03-31-2012, 01:25 AM
lawnsaspire lawnsaspire is online now
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how to drop customers nicely-& improve your business

I was hoping that this year would be a transition year- one where I could get enough new customers to drop the ones that aren't as profitable or are a pain. Well I've added about 10 mowing accts from the flyers I passed out and refferals. I bid high on all of my estimates and only had about 5 that didn't want my price. Now I'm up to 54 regular weekly accts solo and need to shed some of them to be able to keep up and it makes sense as I have some (3-5) that aren't very profitable, nice people that pay, but just still w a lowball price from when I first started out. Even though I've already started mowing for them, how do I let them go easily and politely?
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:36 AM
bocas bocas is offline
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No appreciation for the people that helped you when you needed it most?
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:41 AM
lawnsaspire lawnsaspire is online now
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Yeah there's appreciation, but I can only take care of so many lawns, and their hedge trimming/ cleanup etc.. so there's a few that I'm not getting the right price on and I though of letting them go. I don't know who would take them either.
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1995 Ford F-150
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48 inch Scag V-Ride
Quick 36 Ninja WB
21" Honda HRX
Husqvarna 223L trimmer!
Echo Blowers
Kawasaki BP Blower
Toro & Ariens snowblowers

"I mow alone, with nobody else. Yes you know when I mow alone, I prefer to be by myself." Matt Thorogood

"All those in the memorial tombs will come out" -John 5:28

"The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them"- Revelation 20:13
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:42 AM
lawnsaspire lawnsaspire is online now
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Plus raising their price isn't really an option with these people.
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Echo Blowers
Kawasaki BP Blower
Toro & Ariens snowblowers

"I mow alone, with nobody else. Yes you know when I mow alone, I prefer to be by myself." Matt Thorogood

"All those in the memorial tombs will come out" -John 5:28

"The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them"- Revelation 20:13
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:43 AM
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BOSS LAWN 2343 BOSS LAWN 2343 is offline
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I'm just straight forward with them, I had a commercial customer call today and ask if they were on the mowing list for the season... I told them (very firm) since you were 35 days late on your last invoice, no. But it was a recurring problem, all last mowing season too.
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:49 AM
hi_speedreed hi_speedreed is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lawnsaspire View Post
Plus raising their price isn't really an option with these people.
Raising the price is always an option, why do you think it's not?
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Old 03-31-2012, 02:16 AM
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headz77 headz77 is offline
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I have done this by explaining that I was changing my pricing structure and/or scheduling and I knew I was no longer a good fit for them. I referred them to someone good who was happy to take care of them. People aren't stupid, they know when they are getting a good deal and understand why you can't do it anymore. That was my experience anyway...
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Old 03-31-2012, 06:49 AM
yardguy28 yardguy28 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lawnsaspire View Post
Plus raising their price isn't really an option with these people.
in my opinion there's your way out. raise there price and they will leave.

but in my true opinion and with my own way of doing business I wouldn't haven't taken on so much that I have to now drop people to begin with.

the only clients I drop are the ones that don't pay. once you are a client your stuck with me until you fire me or you die.
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:55 AM
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chipk1 chipk1 is offline
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Just tell them that the economy requires you to significantly raise your prices. Give them a take or leave it price. Prices for everything have gone up.You are in business to FIRST make a respectable profit. Sometimes you just have to leave the touchy feeling stuff at home.
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:19 AM
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MOturkey MOturkey is offline
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I'm a bit surprised by some of the responses to this post. I think all solo operators, if they are successful, eventually find themselves in a position where something has to give. Age, changing family structure, health, the economy, are all factors that can, over time, change not only your need for accounts, but also your ability to maintain quality service for all your customers. Logic dictates that the first accounts to go should be the least profitable, and/or, most physically demanding. That is pretty much a no-brainer.

Just be honest. Tell them your business has grown to the point where you can no longer service all your properties and maintain the level of excellence you demand of yourself, so you must reluctantly drop some accounts from your schedule. Thank them profusely for their business and support, and, if you can, refer them to someone else.
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