Group Discounts

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Expert Lawns, Feb 24, 2004.

  1. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,660

    How many of you use group discounts? I would like to include it at the bottom of my estimate sheet, along with my referral incentive program. How do you word it? Do you give discounts for someone with 2 lawns or 3 lawns? I personally do two lawns. I have a few customers that have me mowing their businesses too. I need to put this in writing and let all customers (current and potential) know about it.
  2. MacLawnCo

    MacLawnCo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,847

    Why? 85% of my stops are at least 2 houses... are you suggesting that i discount both since i got friendly with the neighbors? I have 1 stop that is 5 houses, and another in the works for 04... that reaks of profit, im not about to give that up since i siezed opportunity.
  3. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,547

    so lets say they are a $30 per cut lawn. But they have 5 properties. So you bid them at $27. Now you have 10 properties that you make less than you should. Most times, stress MOST, if you do their home, they want you to do the business because you do a good job, not because your cheap.
  4. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,660

    mac, I don't think you understood the post. I have 11 accounts in one neighborhood. I spefically targeted that area and it worked. They are all charged full price.

    LawnmanScott, I was thinking of just giving a small discount on their monthly bill. Not discounting each individual property. OR I was thinking of just giving them a gift certificate to use towards any of our other services. I'm not sure which way I'm going to go yet. I'm just toying with the idea and trying to get some input.
  5. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,915

    NO discounts!!

    There is no reason to discount multiple properties owned by the same person. After a few years in business you will, you should, acquire many customers like this. All of a sudden you have more work than you can handle, only problem is their loss run jobs. You only have so many hours in a day. You surely have figured your hourly costs to operate and turn a profit. I don't understand how these numbers would decrease because someone wants multiple properties maintained by you. I fully understand a small amount will be saved with marketing and bookkeeping. Not enough to discount if you ask me. Surely you have done something right to gain this customers confidence. You deserve to reap the benefits of what you have accomplished. reward yourself for what you have done, not punish yourself by making less money. Sounds foolish to do that to yourself, doesn't it?

    Again, there are not HUGE profit margins in mowing, yet that's where everyone want's to bend over to get more work. It's crazy.

    Would you rather mow ten lawns a day at $60 that are individual properties? Or would you rather do ten a day at $50 that are multiple properties of a few owners.

    That answer is pretty simple for me. I would have ten separate owners in the course of the day.

    I'm certainly not saying I will pass on multiple properties of individual owners, because we service as many as four for one owner & their family, I may even goes as far as letting them believe they are getting a discount, but trust me, they aren't.

    There's all there is to do to clear decent money mowing lawns with all the monkeys running around, no way in h e l l I'm giving any discounts. Their discount is the reassurance we are doing their properties and doing them to their satisfaction. They are welcome to gamble that with a cheaper company if they desire to do so.
  6. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,660

    Randy Scott said "Sounds foolish to do that to yourself, doesn't it?"

    I'm gonna disagree. If I decide to give out gift certificates to those who want to take advantage of our group discounts, then I think it's a great way to get them into our other services. They can use a $10 gift certificate for hedge trimming. On a hedge trimming job, that's not too much taken off the top. While I have them on the phone, I can then introduce our other services that they can refer to in the service guide I gave them at the begining of the year.

    People run their businesses differently, that why people bring in different revenue. That's why people fail and why people succeed. This is the way I choose to run my business. The decisions I have made in the past have been profitable. I hope this is too. Sometimes people just have to agree to disagree, which I do with Randy Scott. I do appreciate your opinion and the post, it was quite informative.

    Randy, you don't believe in Referral discounts either? Referral are and alway have been great ways to bring in business. Other than word of mouth, I believe it is the most satisfying too. Maybe I could take the chance that people will refer me without the discount. They see my great work, they appreciate it; thus, they pass my name on. That would be great. BUT, why not give them the incentive to do so? I don't think talking about their lawn guy is at the top of their list on their day-to-day activities.

    Anyone that uses these discounts, feel free to chime in. I know you're out there, I have read your posts.
  7. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,915

    You specifically stated group discounts. That's what I disagree with. You never said anything about a $10 gift certificate for referrals. A group discount implies to me a cheaper weekly mowing price. Thus, amounting in more than just a $10 gift certificate. As I stated with my little 10 customer mowing point.

    I guess you should have clarified your question. Not a big deal though.
    I appreciate you agreeing to disagree, that is why it's a free country.

    I think some type of "gift certificate" would be a better way to go. I have given many good customers gift certificates, but more as a thanks, rather than an incentive. I just feel, and maybe I'm wrong, that a satisfied customer doesn't need an incentive to refer you. Personally, the lawn guy IS talk among people. They like to boast about how well their property looks and that's where the referral comes up. The problem I have with people really pushing your business with referrals is that if they are so set to get a discount or gift of some type for the referral, are they going to be a good customer, or will they be a penny pincher instead, and that may be an obstacle for you in the future with other services for them. It'll be hard to measure this fact to any degree. What really matters is, do any and all you can to promote business. :)
  8. ronslawncare

    ronslawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 540

    i totaly agree with u expert lawns,were is the incentive to get refered to someone else.i believe a referal is like a guarenteed customer try it u will c .
  9. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,660

    Randy Scott- yea, i forgot to include the gift certificate part in my first post. my bad. but hey, kinda glad i didn't. your post was informative. i know that a few of my customers talk to their familes, neighbors about me, but not many really act on it. i'd just like to give them a little push in that direction. you're right though, i don't want penny pinchers. i have learned that they are NOT good customers. i have plenty of good customers i can rely on.

    ron, t hanks for the encouraging words. i'll let ya know how it goes.
  10. Team Gopher

    Team Gopher LawnSite Platinum Member
    from -
    Messages: 4,040

    Hi Expert Lawns,

    I like the idea of a gift certificate for a service because it is a one time thing that could get you more business.

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