Why are you leaving your last service?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Tharrell, Apr 15, 2003.

  1. Tharrell

    Tharrell LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,964

    Anybody ask why your new customers are leaving their last service? Granted, there are some customers that have never had a service before but, most of the time they have and are disatisfied for one reason or another. I'll start it off with 3 of mine. 1) My last guy just hasn't called me yet and I don't have his phone number. 2) The last guy seemed to be in a rush and he left marks (divots) in my yard. 3) I'm overweight and my yard is a little bumpy and my back hurts for hours after I mow it. What are the reasons for your customers coming to you?
  2. Bunton Guy

    Bunton Guy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,755

    It sometimes makes me nervous to ask why they left their old service.....most all of my residentials are first timers that have done it themself for years. Commercial is a different story I try to get the new places. I always wonder when picking up a new residential if they are going to be a PITA.
  3. Tharrell

    Tharrell LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,964

    The reason I posted this question was, the divot lady. I chose not to do any work last friday after several days of torrential rains because of the possiblity of ruts and divots. There was only one day (friday) to get work done and this guy probably was in a hurry and the ground was exceptionally soft and mushy. I just thought about how to keep customers with problems like this. He must not have had a good relationship with her or communicated to her at all about the soft ground. Last week was a total wash except for friday. I just skipped it and got started back on schedule yesterday to avoid any problems. I think we can learn a lot about why people leave their last service (other than price).
  4. KerryB

    KerryB LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 661

    I always ask so I can avoid the mistake the other guy made.
    I dont always get an answer though.
    The last one I took over she said that he had no phone or contact number, showed up when he wanted.
    Seems he has called her more since she fired him than before. lol
  5. DLS1

    DLS1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,619

    I have gotten a few senior citizens who didn't like big ztr's on their yard leaving big tire tracks in the grass. I am using 22" now but I am at a point where I need to get 36" or bigger mower to do more yards per day for part-time mowing.

    Another lady said the last LCO had a big mower going in the back and front at same time and never would do the trim work. It was mow and go. So I told her I always trim and blow grass off sidewalks and driveways.
  6. Gravely_Man

    Gravely_Man LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,076

    This is an excellent thing to ask your new clients tactfully. This will help you find out what they don't like and help you to service their properties in a manner better then the last guy.

  7. ConPro

    ConPro LawnSite Member
    Posts: 116

    The last guy was too expensive! Oh, what was he charging? $75 a cut. Well I'll only charge you $70. Happy customer, 3 minute conversation.
  8. nelbuts

    nelbuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    from SW, FL
    Posts: 1,053

    I ask this instead. "What are you unhappy with your current or past lawn service?"

    Had a guy a week ok wanted to hire me because his lawn service doesn't cut his grass short enough. I looked at it ans said that "you sure don't want me because he is cutting it too short now." That made it easy for the both of us. I tried to educate him but he was one of those know it alls so I told him to have a nice day and went back across the stree to my nice 4" cut client and finished his yard.

    I would ask some leading questions to get info so that you can make you sales pitch. I NEVER ask who is doing their property that way if I want to show where my company is different due to quality of work then I am not bashing.
  9. STAN1366

    STAN1366 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 334

    I've found that most people don't like to say what they've paid the guy before. It indicates what they are willing to pay and they're hoping to get a lower price. If they've paid more than what you would charge, then you're getting over on them. If you quote a price that's higher then what they paid, then they can always say "wow, that's much higher than the last guy." They'd just love you to drop your price to what they'd LIKE to pay.
  10. cajuncutter

    cajuncutter LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 626

    I picked up a new one last week. The customer was paying $50 and after telling me that I told him he was getting a good price. I also told him my charge would be $55 and he said start today. So I did:)

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