“What do I charge for lawn maintenance?” This is something that you may ask yourself. However, selling is definitely an art, and I believe several factors are important when it comes to the sales process:
The Sales Process: First Impressions
When meeting anyone for the first time in any situation, first impressions are always important. This means showing up on time to the client’s house, being well dressed, and being well-spoken.
It is definitely worth spending $20 to get and wear a clean shirt with your company logo embroidered on it and buy a few business cards. I get mine from vistaprint.com ($10 for 500, they are the same quality as the ones I paid $35 for 100 through QuickBooks.) It helps to have a decent-looking, clean vehicle (logoed if possible). If you don’t have a nice vehicle, just park it somewhere where the customer can’t see it. I send my estimates through email so I don’t bring them with me. But if you do handwritten estimates then it is probably a good idea to bring them with you. Lastly, carrying a pen and pad or PDA looks good, even if you don’t use it. After all, if you’re holding a PDA, you must know what you’re doing, right? I currently simply carry a clipboard and a blank piece of paper. This way when you establish the lawn care prices, you can just jot them down.
Out of respect, I generally park on the street rather than the driveway. And if they have a walkway, I use it. It’s probably not the best idea to carelessly cut across their lawn or trample their flowers if you are supposedly going to be their lawn service provider.
The Sales Process: Making Observations
When you first show up to a property where you intend to make an estimate, observe your surroundings. A person’s house, cars, lawn, etc can tell a lot about them and assist you with the sale if you have something to work off of. It will also give you something to talk to them about. Basic and essential information can be discovered just by being observant. Take this for example:
You show up to a customer’s house and it is obviously not cared for; the house is in bad shape, there is trash in the yard, and they drive a car that looks like it’s seen better days.
In this example, I would guess the person is looking for the cheapest guy they can find. And they are probably not going to want the lawn cut very often, and you can probably forget about any additional services. However, they most likely won’t expect a great job either, so you could be in and out of the property pretty quickly. If you were scrapping for work, you could probably get this job. To win this bid I would price this job accordingly; I would give them the low price they were looking for and not spend much time there to make it worth my time.
However, in another example, you show up to an estimate and the lawn is immaculate, there’s a Mercedes parked in the driveway, and it’s obviously a well cared for property.
This type of person will probably be willing to pay extra money to have a nice job done by someone they believe to be the right person to do it. I would price this job high, try to sell them on extra services, as well as focus on the quality of the job we will do while trying to make the sale.
The Sales Process – Meeting & Greeting:
After you get a mental idea of this person’s expectations, proceed to the door and greet them. Try to judge their character and make them like you; if they seem to joke a lot, try to joke with them. If they seem straight to the facts, give them the facts. Remember, people like to hire people who they like. Have confidence!
After establishing some rapport, inquire about what services they are looking for. Listen carefully to their specific needs so later on you can address what they are looking for and specify what your company can offer them that meets or exceeds their needs. Even if they don’t directly mention something, take note of things they emphasize so you can capitalize on this information.
Describe to them a little about your company, the areas you service, and the services you offer.
Inform them that you will now take a look at their property and will be back in a few minutes.
The Sales Process – Establish Lawn Care Prices
Since you now know what work the customer wants to be done, proceed to make an estimate. Although the person only makes certain requests, perform estimates on all services that you think their lawn needs. Maybe they will go for it!
The Sales Process – Closing the Sale:
After making the estimate, go back to speak with the customer again to make a sales pitch. Describe to them what problems that you discovered on their lawn and what you would recommend to fix them. Answer any questions they may have.
There is no way you are going to have the answer to every question when you first start. Let me emphasize that you should never not know something. If you don’t know an answer, instead answer around the question, or make up the answer, or answer vaguely. This will buy you the time to research the question later on so you can give them a correct
If a customer senses that you don’t know what you’re doing, they aren’t going to give you the sale. After all, that is why they are hiring you because they don’t know what they are doing. They don’t need another bumbling idiot blindly applying fertilizer to their lawn, they can do that themselves. answer. In the meantime, you can still appear like a confident professional Welcome to the art of Bullshitting.
People want to hire someone who is confident and appears to be an expert in their field. You are already well on your way with your shiny truck, embroidered shirt, and business cards. Now you just gotta walk the walk and talk the talk! Don’t worry, in time you will figure it out but everyone has to start somewhere.
After everything is said and done, tell the customer that you will email them that evening with a detailed estimate and call them the following day to follow up. Give them a business card or brochure and tell them to have a nice rest of the day.
The Sales Process – Following Up
If you tell the customer that you will follow up with them in a couple of days, you should probably actually try to follow up in a couple of days. Part of the reason for following up is so that you can show your potential customer that you are reliable.
Ask them if they got the estimate and if they had any questions.
Ask them if they would like to go forward with the sale. Remember, if you want something (a sale) make sure you ask for it.