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  #11  
Old 07-21-2014, 11:47 PM
echo echo is online now
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[QUOTE=Florida Gardener;5080026]Serious responses please.

I'm finding myself recently giving bids to people that aren't going to hire me mainly cause they are cheap. What are some professional ways to weed people out over the phone?
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Do you have a minimum price? If so, tell them it will be at least $xx. If they say that's too high, no problem. They've been weeded. If they are still interested after you tell them its going to be at least $xx, then go and give them a bid. Some you get and some you don't.
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  #12  
Old 07-21-2014, 11:52 PM
SaberLawnCare SaberLawnCare is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Florida Gardener View Post
Serious responses please.

I'm finding myself recently giving bids to people that aren't going to hire me mainly cause they are cheap. What are some professional ways to weed people out over the phone?
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"Thanks for calling XYZ lawn, I would be happy to bid your property. If you can give me your address I can stop by..." ..................either.........

"today since I'm in the area and give you a price."

"Tomorrow since I"m in the area tomorrow."

At that point 99% of the people that call me are fine with when I stop by, if they want a price NOW NOW NOW!....I apologize and let them know I can try to stop by on my way home today, but if I can't...it will have to be tomorrow......

If I"m home and have the computer handy I ask them for their address, and look it up on Bing maps which has the bird's eye view and give them a ROUGH price based on the map, and tell them it may go up or down based on when I actually see it.

Others I let them know my minimum price and they hang up.........others may go further because my minimum isn't that bad and they want to know more....so I visit the property and let them know.

You're not going to win every bid, if you do you're not charging enough, if you don't get any you're charging too much...........but since this is about weeding out phone calls and saving gas and time, you just have to let them know yuor minimum charge. If it goes further you have a good chance of winning it if you present yourself well.
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  #13  
Old 07-22-2014, 12:03 AM
Brules Brules is offline
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In the sales world it is called "qualifying"......developse some basic budget numbers for sizes of yards/lots/services and when talking to them use statements like:

"For a 1/2 acre yard, edged, trimmed (explain these if needed) and blown off - I usually charge X-Y, is that in the range you would be willing to pay?".

Be straight up honest yet respectful and they will usually be truthful with you.

Explain what makes you different or better than the cheaper guys (fully insured - if you are - cite your limits). Explain how the $15 guy hauling his push mower in his truck, probably doesnt have insurance to cover X Y and Z (rock through your window etc).

In my business, when I am qualifying and I hear someone say "do you sell used stuff", thats my instant = not gonna be my customer. I sell 1.5-2m a year and I don't get bogged down with silly, picky or cheap customers. People I sell to know I have the best solutions and products and they will get what they pay for. If they cant grasp that, I dont want to deal with them.

Screen, qualify and profile. Will save yourself a lot of time AND hassle in the long run.
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  #14  
Old 07-22-2014, 01:23 AM
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Jcl4slc Jcl4slc is offline
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First, I would ask them where their home is located? ( this will give you a idea if it's in a nice or bad area). Next I would ask if they were using a professional company. ( this will give you a idea if they were paying a professional or little Johnny down the street). Last I would ask them what they are looking for. ( listen,listen,listen) those 3 questions you can profile a potential client.
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  #15  
Old 07-22-2014, 10:51 AM
Caddyshack Lawn Care Caddyshack Lawn Care is offline
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I'm just trying to wrap my head around why someone would want to weed people out over the phone. We either want more business or we don't, and this isn't a cold call you're making - the customer is coming to you, so you have the advantage. A golden opportunity to make the sale.

The number of times I was sure I had a sale, but didn't is about the same as the number of times I thought I was wasting my time and ended up landing the account.

I don't know about the rest of you, but things are starting to heat up/dry up a little around here now. I'd love the opportunity to land a few more sales.

1. Never, ever give a price over the phone.
2. Don't try to sell on price. Sell on price/service. Heavy emphasis on the service part.
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  #16  
Old 07-22-2014, 11:11 AM
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Ditta&Sons Ditta&Sons is offline
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I believe he only wants to weed out the cheap people or price shoppers who will most likely cost him money on just for going to see the property and talk with the customer. If he can weed out the ones that only want to spend $15 every two weeks, hes already saved himself money and time. Why waste your time driving half an hour just to have the customer say "oh wow, I didnt think it would be that much, ok thanks I guess Ill keep doing it myself"
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  #17  
Old 07-22-2014, 11:38 AM
yardsmowed yardsmowed is offline
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After driving to look at yards and wasting my time when thy here my rates...this is now my method. I explain my rates to them. That I do not have a minimum, they only pay for what they get. If they do not like my rates I move on. My rates are fair and competitive and something included in my rates others have difficulty in delivering in my area is dependability & reliability. I have only lost 3 potential clients in 20 yards. Not too bad I think.
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  #18  
Old 07-22-2014, 12:37 PM
Dr. Cornwallis Dr. Cornwallis is offline
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I ask them their address and look it up on google earth. If it looks like a dump I kindly tell them I can't help them, if its in a nice area I start qualifying them.
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  #19  
Old 07-22-2014, 12:44 PM
ztman ztman is offline
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Good suggestions, but I think the first question should be "How did you hear about us." If its a referral, chances are good you will get the account. Last thing you want is to get a referral from a good customer and then give them a lower or even a higher unrealistic price.
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  #20  
Old 07-22-2014, 03:26 PM
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Ditta&Sons Ditta&Sons is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ztman View Post
Good suggestions, but I think the first question should be "How did you hear about us." If its a referral, chances are good you will get the account. Last thing you want is to get a referral from a good customer and then give them a lower or even a higher unrealistic price.

Great idea asking how they heard of us. I keep forgetting to ask this. They usually say how when we meet in person but its an excellent qualifier.
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