The Blood Letting Continues In DFW

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Apr 27, 2005.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 2,116

    Just got a door hanger yesterday with prices for weekly service starting at $16-$18 per cut.

    We are a residential lawn service company specializing in small lawns to help keep your price low.

    I know Justmowit averaged $26 per cut in '04. I have a bad feeling they won't average that much this year.

    I've received five door hangers at my home this spring. Only one was advertising $25 cuts. Everyone else is advertising $20.

    Sixteen bucks. Another new low for the industry. Is there a bottom to the never ending price decay?

    I just don't undersand why everyone thinks they need to advertise price on door hangers. I have had tremendous success this spring with door hangers that have no price on them.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  2. ChadA

    ChadA LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 521

    I have tried both ways and I have to say the door hangers with a price on them have gotten allot better response rate for me. It seems to weed out allot of the PITA's that are just shopping around for the cheapest price. I was wasting allot of gas going all over town doing free estimates. With the price on them, if somebody calls they almost always want the service.
    To respond to the other part of your post. $16 is ridiculous, how can one expect to make a profit charging that much. I have very little overhead and it would be hard for me to turn a profit off of that price. We all know they probably won't be around that long but by them the damage will already be done.
  3. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 2,116

    ++++We all know they probably won't be around that long but by them the damage will already be done++++

    That's what everyone on Lawn Site said the first time we saw Justmowit's $19.95 door hangers...before we knew how successful they were.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  4. grassmanvt

    grassmanvt LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 906

    I guess in Vermont we are lucky in some ways. One being that there really is no such thing as a typical lot size, so very few, if any around here advertise a "one size fits all" price. I also have never seen anyone around here even do a door hanger. Don't feel bad though, we have plenty of other things to contend with like horrible terrain, seems to rain every day till about June, spread out routes due to lack of density in population, etc. Oh well.
  5. Toy2

    Toy2 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,924

    You got the guy in Houston who advertises $18.00, his reason, its only grass!!!! People are jacked, the price of gas went up today, 11 cents......maybe they are using good old push mowers for $16.00///no fuel costs......
  6. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 492

    This is one of the big reasons I am knocking on doors instead of just hanging fliers. I want people to see me; to see that I am clean cut; to see the shirts; to talk with me about my services. Then, I am not just another flier with another price. Maybe they call the $15 guy and when he shows up he comes across as someone they are not comfortable with. Maybe he looks like someone who might do a bad job. Maybe he looks like someone they wouldn't trust on their property unsupervised. Maybe then they remember me and rethink the $30 or whatever.

    Every little bit helps. If you're only competing based on fliers and prices you're not really stacking the deck in your favor.
  7. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,381

    You guys don't have any reason to complain about $16 door hangers. I'm trying to compete with start-up LCO's that are advertising $12 cuts for all lawns under 15k SF. My cost for mowing a 15k SF lawn is close to $12 so these guys advertising $12 cuts are totally in the dark.

    One guy has an ad in the local paper for cuts starting at $10 and shrub trimming at $10 per hour.
  8. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    $10-$12 a cut ;) How in the world can anyone be in business at that price? I don't think even a JR high kid would work that cheap anymore. Yikes.
  9. Steve9

    Steve9 LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 228

    A lot of this is bait and switch. Sure mow for $10..$10 to edge then $10 to weedeat too. So $30...
  10. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 492

    So, if people just want it mowed and want to pay $10, what is the problem? If they don't want that, they'll be pissed about the bait and switch and they won't go with that guy.

    There are companies selling lower quality products for less money in every industry. Do the folks at BMW cringe every time a new Kia turns up? Do the folks at Bose fixate on all of the Emerson and Memorex electronics at Wal-Mart? And these aren't even the really premium brands.

    If you're competing on price alone, you're not going to win. If you're losing based on price alone, either you aren't doing the right things to differentiate yourself or you are doing them but your customers don't know about it.

    I don't know what it is that will tip the balance, but every day I try to think of something the lowballers aren't doing. It's not all about the quality of the cut, either. There can be a lot of value in the quality of the relationship too.

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