How To Start A Landscaping Business – 7 Tips To Success
Should you start a landscaping business?
American homes are BIG, if not the biggest in the world, by average. And a crucial part of these homes is the open areas – the lawn and backyard for most homes.
A landscaper works with their clients to make their gardens look unique, to stand out from the rest. They also offer services to make gardens and open areas more useful and practical in their purposes.
If these roles interest you and you want to start a landscaping business, this article will list out seven things you’ll need to do to get started.
1. Educate Yourself On Gardening
You may want to start a landscaping business as the person in the office as opposed to the field. However, learning the tricks of the trade is a necessity.
Learning the ins and outs of landscape gardening will:
- Help you hire efficiently
- Help you set timelines for the client
- Influence how you price certain deliverables and activities
- Put you in sync with the industry supply chain, at least when it comes to communicating with them.
These are just a few advantages of having industry and execution know-how.
2. Take Advantage of the Gig Economy
One of the first steps for any business is to set up an organizational structure. When you’ll start a landscaping business, you’ll have to do the same.
However, the low barrier to entry in this industry means that there are naturally a lot more solopreneurs/ freelancers. After all, even the everyday folk garden to some extent.
Therefore, it works best if you adopt the role of the aggregator, rather than a traditional contractor.
Why start a landscaping business as an aggregator?
- As an aggregator, you can constantly maintain quality with the help of customer ratings.
- Hiring enthusiasts and freelancers will help you get a constant influx of talent.
- You’ll be able to focus on administrative and business tasks instead of managing your landscaping employees.
3. Learn About The Trends Of The Landscaping Business
Deciding to start a landscaping business also entails learning about its industry, first. This is true for every business.
- Sustainability has come into the picture with landscape gardening. Over 72.4% of clients want their gardens structured in a way that saves water.
- Similarly (from the same report as above), over 70% of homeowners want to grow their own vegetables in their gardens.
As an entrepreneur, you will have to take a look and evolve your business model accordingly. The landscaping business isn’t just decoratives and faux grass anymore.
You’re catering to a new generation of homeowners who care about the environment, for starters.
4. Upskill Your Employees/ Contractors
According to a recent report by PR Newswire, 82% of landscaping company leaders believe that there is a dearth of skilled labor in the industry. This is a problem that needs solving. If you’ve decided to start a landscaping business, you can make solving this problem a part of your agenda.
Upskilling your employees or contractors will not only lead to better results on the field but also an increased sense of loyalty amongst your workers.
Group classes, orientations with tips, and availing online courses are just three of the many ways to get this underway.
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5. Build Your Brand
After you’ve finalized your services, your business model, and your organizational structure, you’ll have to focus on making your business more presentable. To the end consumer, of course.
Building a brand requires you to:
- Name your business: Your business name is the first thing stakeholders look at. It helps form your social media handles, is on all your listings, etc. Keep a name that is unique but easy to remember.
- Create a brand personality: If you’re a sustainable brand, for example, how do you highlight that?
- Put yourself out there: A website, social media, Google My Business Page are just a few examples. You can also opt for specialized routes such as advertising in landscaping magazines.
- Create promotions: For new homeowners to take up. Sales, value adds and referrals are a good way to start.
- Create shoulder content: Content that both support your brand image and gets word of your company out there. Blogs, vlogs, tutorials, etc, are just a few options.
These are just a few ways to build your brand. Before you start a landscaping business, look at your competitors and the big players.
See what they’ve done right and wrong, and build atop their decisions.
6. Look Into Good Insurance
Your employees/ contractors will be handling equipment, machinery, and their work will involve a certain amount of heavy labor.
Getting a good insurance plan for your workers in such a situation is only beneficial. It is a great way to tell them that you care.
Additionally, more skilled people are likely to hop on over to your company if they know they’re being taken care of well.
7. Build Relationships And Trust
Landscaping isn’t a one-time job. Gardens often require maintenance, assistance, and constant upgrading.
This is where your post-sales comes in. Even after you’ve completed a service, make sure you get in touch with your clients.
- Ask them to review your services: Reviews help current customers voice the pros and cons that they normally would have not bothered talking about. Plus, they help with prospective customers also.
- Provide them with future sales: Let them know that they’re valued and because they’ve already used your services, they’re eligible for exclusive sales in the future.
- Give them access to a complaints/ FAQS number or portal: While this should be visible to everyone concerned, being proactive about it helps. Also, if you’re a small enough company, you can also give them direct contacts of managers and people who can help customers quickly.
- Give them a free maintenance coupon for future services: Many service businesses do this and this allows customers to experience your work for a second time.
- Talk to them about any referral programs you’re running: If you’ve done a good job, customers are likely to provide good word of mouth for you anyway. However, an added incentive always helps with motivation.
Keeping in touch with your clients is one of the best ways to get retainers. This builds relationships and even if your service isn’t the cheapest, clients will look at it as a serious option.
At the end of the day, most customers shop with logic and emotion. It’s best you cater to both.
‘Scape Your Path To Success
There are a few things you’ll have to look at in order to start a landscaping business in the 2020s. The customers, the trends, the business models, and organizational structures have all evolved for various industries.
By doing a lot of research and pre-work related to these things, you can start your unique rendition of a landscaping business. Creating that niche that your business can do best will allow you to forge a place in consumers’ minds.
At the same time, it will give your business the unique selling point it’ll need to weather market changes and uncertainties.
Additionally, keeping in touch with customers and building routes & relationships will make your business a mainstay in many neighborhoods and homes.
So, get researching and mind-mapping! Like with every industry, staying ahead of the game requires work, work, and more work! All the best for your new journey!