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Selling your estimate

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Edgewater, Feb 25, 2005.

  1. Edgewater

    Edgewater LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 457

    When you meet with someone for a quote, how do you sell your self above the rest. I know all the dress neat, be on time part. What I mean is if you show up and say,

    Hi, I'm joe from xyz inc, what do you need.

    thay reply, I need service 1, 2 and 3.

    You great, that will be $xxx.xx/ month.

    What elas do you do, do you tell them a bit about your company before giving a price, add something in as you hand them the quote.

    Just looking for what you do to close a deal and differentiate yourselves.


  2. KINGjosh

    KINGjosh LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 531

    I usually "small talk" with them about their lawn, or landscape, before and after i give them the estimate. I just to try to get a feel for thier personality, it makes for a better sale i think. Check your local library for books on closing a sale and salemanship.
  3. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,995

    first off after you introduce yourself, ask them to take you on a tour of their lawn. Then get them talking about what they want done.
    Point out things that you think are wrong and ask how they want the item addressed. DO NOT say that looks like crap this is how I would fix it. But when and if they say, yeah that needs some work, explain how you would like to fix it.

    Keep notes on each item you discuss.

    When you are done discussing, tell them you would like to walk the property again to firm up your ideas and you will ring the bell in a few minutes with the estimate.

    Then go over the estimate with them.

    If they say they don't want any of the items fixed, give a quickie and get out of dodge. Cheapskates quickly become PITA'S.

    Hope that helped. Also Like All Lawns said, get a book or 4 on salesmanship.
  4. slow release

    slow release LawnSite Member
    Posts: 94

    yes, a little small talk goes a long way. Also, include some site specific info like " turf under trees is thinning out due to lack of sunlight, try trimming some branches to allow more light penetration". Comments like that let the customer know you actually looked at the property. The last thing you want is an estimate that looks like it could be left at any house on the street.
  5. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,846

    :cool: What I do, and I will admit I have only been doing this for three years, but it is working like a charm.
    1. You get the specs, and bid.
    2. You clue them into the fact that it is your reputation on the line, not theirs. Because they always ask "will you be here every 7 days like you say you will?" YES mame or sir - it is my reputation that is at stake.
    3. Give them a lot of options as to how good they can make the property look, and how many years. ____ ie. first year - fertilize spring and fall and mow 3". That allows the blue grass to develope, crowd out weeds, Lawn looks pretty good (better than nothing)
    4. Second year - fert. spring, mow, fert. fall, if there are lots of broadleafs (rare) sell the spray program and aeration. - It you have not landed them by now, either you are charging too much or not doing the job.______ :blob3: :sleeping: :angry:
  6. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,846

    You people may want to note that in the post above I did not talk about charging billions. I talked about service.
  7. newbomb

    newbomb LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 391

    First I have found being a little older now (40) helps to sell my work. When I am talking to a customer and I say I started this business in 1987 they immeadiately know I have experience and I will be around.

    If you are talking to older people 65+ be extra polite and don't hurry them. If you can do their work and your price is reasonable YOU will get the job.

    Allow the customer to talk. They may very well know what they want. If they don't have a clue they will ask your opinion and then your free to dazzle them with brilliance or something like that. Also refer to them and other customers as clients. A client is defined as someone that is under your protection. A customer just buys stuff from you.

    One of the best things I have done and started recently is:
    I will look over what is to be done make notes and return a written estimate. Software generated estimates look professional and make you look more legitimate. This may not be practical if all they want is a town house lawn mowed.

    Lastly when I take on a new mowing client I insist that the first four weeks mowing is Paid in advance. This does 2 things. 1 it weeds out the cheapskates and the guys moving in 3 weeks. and 2 it makes you look more professional and established, just like a real business.

    Good luck

  8. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    Try something new...........Let your client provide you the bid, I'll explain:
    Instead of giving a potential client a standard bid like everyone else is going to do, ask them: "what is your ideal price".

    You'll be surprised how many of them have a price in mind that is higher than what you were going to quote. If you were going to bid the property at $30 a week and the client says their ideal price would be $35 a week it gives you some play to say:
    "No, thats a bit to high, how about I save you some money and do it for $32".

    You come out making more money than you expected and your client thinks your a saint by coming in less than they expected.

    The down side is you always have someone that thinks you should be doing it for $15 but this also can benifit you by telling the client that you cannot do it for that price and then go on to explain that you are licensed, insured, have the knowlege, experience and equipment to make sure the job is done professionally every time. You get the opportunity to sell yourself more to a potential client without having to work it into the general bid talk.

    You also generally walk away knowing if you landed the client rather then waiting for them to call you back.
  9. KINGjosh

    KINGjosh LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 531

    Wells, have you tried this mehtod? I don't know about that one! Youd probably get to much cheapskates.
  10. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    I started doing it towards the end of season last year and I plan on using this method on most of my potential clients this season. I'll keep you advised as to the success rate of this method.

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