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close the sale on the spot or call back?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by jmartmel, Mar 3, 2001.

  1. jmartmel

    jmartmel LawnSite Member
    Messages: 41

    Just wondering how many try and close the sale of a potential property on the spot while giving estimate or do you give the estimate and leave a proposal form for the services included and call back in a day or two and ask if they are interested in having you work for them?

  2. JVS

    JVS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 132

    I always ask for the sale before I leave. If they need time to think about it, I will explain to them I will call them in 2 or 3 days to bring closure to their request. I do not pressure sell. Typically if I get the I need a week or so to think about it- I know they are most likely "shopping" for the chapest price. I try not to leave a service agreemnt in a mailbox. I know of several competitors who will review your agreement in the mailbox and lower their prices just to get the job- but thats for another thread.
    If I do leave it in the box I still ask for the sale when I
    speak with them.

  3. mowing king

    mowing king LawnSite Member
    from ct
    Messages: 85

    I teach my sales staff to always close onthe first visit,if at all possible. Except for larger landscape projects,we have a sales system with pricing charts and fill in the blank estimating forms. We can give a price during the first visit and run check closes along the way and finish with the order form close then get the 50% deposit,thank them and get going to the next appt.

    someone always makes a sale. Either they sold you on why thay can't or won't buy from you OR you sold them that your their new landscaper.
  4. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,662

    Jim Lewis has a great idea about when you have to leave a service agreement at the door. You can put it in a company envelope leave it on the door, and then its protected from the competitons eyes.

    I also think that Joes got it just about right for dealing with the potential clients.

    Hope this helps.
  5. I do my site visits on Tuesday PM and Saturday only. No exceptions. I prefer Saturday cuz you can get walk up estimates from other home owners (who happen to be home on Sat.).

    I leave a tri fold flyer and a business card on a magnet.
    I just take measurements and make notes on a in house site visit form I developed years ago. I have all my services list on this from and I just fill the the sq footage.

    Then I do the estimate at home and transpose a proposal on MS Word. Then I send a personalize thank you letter with two copies of my proposal with a small S.A.S.E.

    PS I also request a check for the first months services.
    This gets them in the habit of paying you.

    [Edited by lawrence stone on 03-03-2001 at 03:03 PM]
  6. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,662

    Stone thats some great ideas. I hadnt thought about asking them to send in a check for the first months services at the time of proposal. I usually waited til after the second mowing and then got them on track that way.

    Things for me to weigh as far as options go. I thought it would be better to show them what we can do if its a new client before I presented them with a bill.

    However, we have more often than not cut the first two times with a grimaced face and fingers crossed. I think I will try your methodology if we feel a little incertain as we do at times.

  7. syzer

    syzer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,272

    You dont ahve any trouble collecting the first month pay from them without having provided any services? This seems to me that the customers would raise an eyebrow if I proposed this method.

  8. GrassMaster

    GrassMaster Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    Hello Everybody:

    I learned after a period of time that it was best to close the sale on the Spot on the first visit!

    It wasn't quite as professional bid, I just filled in the blanks & presented it on the spot, butt back then nobody did that anyway, so they were still impressed. No I didn't push it, I just let them know that the sooner a decision was made the sooner I could fit them in my schedule & I could get started to work.:) I also put a time limit of 30 days on there or I would have to rebid.

    Things are different now with Technology these days, now you can carry laptop & printer on the job.

    I would have a presentation burned on a cd & would let that occupy their time, while I'm out taking measurements. I would try to have the presentation long enough that they would be just finishing up as I come back with raw figures.

    Like I said in another post I would go to great lengths with the presentation on the CD have all kinds of Mumbo Jumbo on it. Before & After Pictures, LOL I would even put Recipes on there & anything else I could think of to give it percieved value & to make them want to keep it.

    Why so if they have a puter with Cd or they had a friend that did I would leave them the Cd Presentation. I would have the cover & lable done up real nice in full color with my Company Name, Logo & Phone numbers on their TOO! All it is, is just a Great Silent Salesman that could be working for you later.

    Then I would talk a few minutes with potential customer, then I would input figures into my program on my laptop & give them the estimate & tell them that I got to goto my truck for a minute, this gives them time to think about it or talk it over.

    Then when I'm at my truck I would print out my bid proposal & go back presenting it to them.

    Then the rest is left up to them! What if car salesmen told you that they get back with you later about price on car?

    Stone is right about Saturdays, I with Potential Residential Customers did most my bids in the late afternoons. That way both Spouses would be home & that just speeded up the whole process. I also tried to make sure they were home to, because not near as good of results if they not home?

    Due to my JawJa RedNeck Religion (Beer Drinking) I reserved Saturdays for working on Equipment, Drinking Beer, Smoking Cigarettes & Catching up on all the Cursing that I couldn't do during the week! :)

    With todays technology you can really KICK ARSE & take names. You be the Competition & let the others try to follow & keep Up.
  9. At my first visit I dethatch, aerate, apply seed, and fertilizer. I have too much time and materials invested in the first visit if they forget to pay me. Also there is a $100 early cancellation penalty in my contract.

    It's my way or the highway.
  10. jmartmel

    jmartmel LawnSite Member
    Messages: 41

    All great answers, the cd sounds like a good way to go! I have been thinking of making up a presentation package with all the info about starting times, how not bagging can be beneficial for the lawn, equipment used, explain a little bit about the company, courteous, uniformed all that, types of fertilizer used, different packages offered, ect, ect. Can hand this to them while I go take measurements even though you already got the price figured out by looking at the property. I just want to kill time while they go over the info pack and consider the benefits. This just helps take the presure off everyone and then its as easy as coming back and writing the estimate and asking if they have any questions. If all the info is in pack it should be pretty much spelled out. Also like to add at the end that we are only taking on xxx amount of customers this season to keep our quality up to our high standards so the sooner they sign on the better. Just like to see how everyone else is doing it and what they think of this way. Just seems easier then showing up at the door with piece of paper in hand and getting bombarded with questions. Thanks All.


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