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  #21  
Old 04-25-2014, 09:15 AM
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White Gardens White Gardens is offline
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Location: Bloomington IL
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It is a slow start this year.

When you start your business it can either be a feast or famine situation.

When I started ours, I had a part time job for 2 years to pay the bills as business slowly took off, and I mean slowly.

Now we are at 1 full time and 2 part time employees. Things are finally falling into place, gross is up every year, and I feel established.

Either everyone in our area either knows someone that does green work, or thinks they can do it themselves. And the market was already saturated (though work is still out there).

With our niche(s), we've slowly been able to make the business into something profitable. We are a value based, customer service/relation based business and now we are seeing customers from 5 years ago calling us back. So the style of growth we set out is starting to really work.

So, I guess what I'm saying is be patient and make sure you have another source of income to help out for the first few years. The long term advantages of owning a business (10+ years) is where it will pay off.



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  #22  
Old 04-25-2014, 10:45 AM
BossPlowMaster BossPlowMaster is offline
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Wouldn't worry about it. I've had many of years where it didn't look like new customers in the forecast....but once their lawn grows too long and they don't want to mow it, they will be callin
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  #23  
Old 04-28-2014, 04:41 AM
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Vanderhoff Landscaping Vanderhoff Landscaping is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: North Jersey
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I wouldn't worry too much just yet. As another person posted, we had a very brutal winter that hung around a little longer than we would have liked it to. This time last year I was already in full swing. I've only cut one lawn so far (mine) lol. In the mean time I've been busy with landing clean ups from new and all of my existing clients and doing some mulch. I'm starting my first batch of mowing this week. Unfortunately we are supposed to get a lot of rain here in the northeast this week. So that will help shorten the week. Before you know it, probably in a week or two, you will be in full swing.
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  #24  
Old 04-28-2014, 07:55 AM
New2TheGreenIndustry New2TheGreenIndustry is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: GA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygreek View Post
My strong suggestion would be to visit the web sub-forum and read previous site reviews. They'll all apply to your site as you need "the usual" fixes. Things such as basic, on-site search engine optimization (TITLE tags, for example), local keywords (the places you service?), etc.

- Definitely add your service area cities. As it is, if I visit your site, the only way I have any idea where you might be located is via your area code. If I can't tell, the search engines have a problem, as well.

- Round out your content. And by round out, I mean write some. Each of your pages has right around 5% of the total page (code + actual content) as actual content. In the eyes of your visitors, and search engines, that's bordering on nonexistent. What can you expand on? It's pretty easy. It's hard to sell dethatching and aeration to people if they don't know what those words mean or why their lawns need it. I mean, seriously...you spent more time writing fake testimonials than you did any other aspect of your site's content. (Note: Sophia Lorren is spelled with one "r". You got Barry Levinson right. Be careful, though. He's pretty litigious. )

- You'll also want to claim your Google/Bing/Yahoo Local pages. Those are infinitely more valuable than a Facebook Page, especially right now. Be sure to correctly list all of your business info (name/address/phone/web url) or their value will lessen.

- Create a Google Webmaster Tools account

- I'd also highly recommend you read this guide:
http://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo

Make all of those additions and then ask for someone on here to take a look for you.
Take Tony's advice. Having a website set up properly was the smartest advertising dollars I've ever spent.

Other than that it takes time. I was working part time my first season and a half until I could cut loose and go at it full time.
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  #25  
Old 04-28-2014, 09:27 AM
32vld 32vld is offline
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Location: LI NY
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Starting my first week of mowing today.
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  #26  
Old 04-28-2014, 03:58 PM
MDHomeSVCS MDHomeSVCS is offline
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Location: Columbus, OH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygreek View Post
...

- You'll also want to claim your Google/Bing/Yahoo Local pages. Those are infinitely more valuable than a Facebook Page, especially right now. Be sure to correctly list all of your business info (name/address/phone/web url) or their value will lessen....
How do you go about doing this?
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  #27  
Old 04-28-2014, 04:34 PM
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DA Quality Lawn & YS DA Quality Lawn & YS is offline
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Location: Rochester, MN
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You will be nervous first few years. I was.
Get those few valuable customers, and do a GREAT job for them. Over, and over again.
Advertise.
Those customers will talk, and 2-3 seasons in, you will get more calls. After the 3rd or 4th season, look out the phone really rings.

This is all assuming you do a good job. If not, you will be out of business.
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  #28  
Old 04-28-2014, 05:04 PM
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tonygreek tonygreek is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Lancaster, PA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDHomeSVCS View Post
How do you go about doing this?
First, and most important, go to Jeni's Ice Cream and send me a variety pack.

Google
https://www.google.com/local/business/

Yahoo
http://listings.local.yahoo.com/ (bottom right, "Yahoo Local Basic Listing")

Bing
https://www.bingplaces.com/

Two pieces of advice:

1. You really want to make sure your Name/Address/Phone is listed the exact same way, any place you use it.

2. If you have a web site, you also want to make sure your link is correct. WWW.yourlawncompany.com is not the same as yourlawncompany.com
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Last edited by tonygreek; 04-28-2014 at 05:08 PM.
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