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What are your thoughts on limited service customers?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Pilgrims' Pride, Feb 18, 2004.

  1. Pilgrims' Pride

    Pilgrims' Pride LawnSite Senior Member
    from MA.
    Messages: 481

    I'm just weeding out those last you PITA customers.

    Anyway, It has for the most part always been my policy to not take on accounts who ask for less than a "full" lawn care program.

    I have never been shy in explaining to a potential customer that my reasoning is simple.

    "Mrs Jones, I will not just do a spring feeding (fert/pre-emerge/broadleaf weed control) because your neighbor will see me parked here now. Then in July when your lwan is looking shabby, she will remember me and think, Boy, those guys are no good!"

    I have noticed also that people who want "just a few" always want the most costly treatments and they only want to pay a minimum price for them.

    What do you all do?


  2. Rob Spread & Spray

    Rob Spread & Spray LawnSite Member
    Messages: 205

    I would agree as far as the average homeowner goes, but I do make exceptions for Large, acre plus resi's and commercial sites. Then I always tr to upsell them.
  3. MWHC

    MWHC LawnSite Member
    from Wyoming
    Messages: 213

    I usually don't turn the one time apps down, I just mark the price way up. (High Profit) Each of our applications has a different cost per 1k. I use averages to figure my pricing for full service customers. For those that only wan't one application make it well worth your time. I try to sell them on our program; and thats what it is, a program. It works if you follow it, kinda like a diet and exercise program. You are still gonna be out of shape if you go and work out once a year.

    As far as the neighbor thinking your work is bad I don't know. Most of the people that only want one app rely on luck instead of skill to make the lawn look nice. Remember most people have a real limited understanding of how turf should be taken care of.
  4. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    I would not take a client who just wanted a spring feeding. But if you educate the client, you can sell any number of applications. I have some that are only 2, and others up to 5. I make a higher hourly rate for fewer the appl clients.

    If they only want one app, you must educate them that a fall app is best for the grass. In cool season grasses, 2/3 of actual N should be applied in the fall. You could probably also sell a light spring appl with pre-em, when you explain grassy weed control to them.

    And in time, you get to be known as one who can improve lawns with any number of applications. I have had minimal service clients upgrade over the years, too. All or nothing is a shoot-your-foot approach.
  5. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Messages: 1,557

    Its really up to you if you want to do these 1 time apps. If you think there is a chance for your reputation to be damaged by what other people see, then i would say its a no brainer.
  6. TSM

    TSM LawnSite Senior Member
    from MA
    Messages: 707

    one timers are a good marketing source. You know, if they only want a spring app, when summer comes along send them a post card or if you have the time give them a phone call.

    thing is, if you refuse, someboby else will be marketing them.

    we do add 15% to the cost if they take less apps than what we recommend.

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