It’s All in the Mix: The Recipe for Success in the Landscape Contract Business

Patios. Retaining walls. Flower beds. Stone walkways. Irrigation systems. Swimming pools. Outdoor kitchens. Projects have been the bread and butter of landscape contracting and design/build firms the world over for as long as people have been enlisting their services. There’s no denying project work has an invaluable and indispensable place in the green industry. But as consumers become increasingly demanding about the scope, features and quality of the solutions they seek, project work alone is no longer enough to catch the eye of the discriminating buyer and ensure the longevity and financial health of the landscape contracting business. There is a better way, and that way is the revenue mix.

Adding maintenance services to the operational pie helps to mitigate much of the financial uncertainty inherent in project work. Additionally, a healthy maintenance base opens up a wealth of options for the business looking to expand and increase its visibility in new markets and its attractiveness to lenders and potential buyers. Here are four benefits of adding maintenance services to the operational mix.

Recurring Revenue
Cell phone, Internet and home security providers know the fiscal value of building a subscriber base, and that value is increasingly making itself known in the green industry. Implementing a monthly subscription service — even for maintenance services only rendered during certain months of the year — is one of the easiest and most effective ways to ensure cash comes into the business on a steady, predictable basis.

Customer Confidence
Landscape contracting businesses rely on customer testimonials and referrals to build their books of business and increase their visibility and competitive edge in a heavily saturated market. Project work can serve as the foot in the door that allows customers to truly realize the value of the both the business and the provided solution. Often, this is enough to entice buyers to stay with firms for the long haul by signing up for services that keep their design installs looking their best.

Selling Incentives
Because the overall ticket value of maintenance services is often greater than that of one-time project work, it is to your sales team’s benefit to pursue recurring sales. Weighting commission commensurate with the value of maintenance services can be all the motivation your sales professionals need to make them a priority. Recurring sales are also perfect opportunities to forge strong, lasting relationships with customers.

Market Differentiation
In an industry filled with project-based firms, offering maintenance solutions alongside traditional project services demonstrates that a business is serious about providing long-term solutions and unique value to customers. It also helps to increase the attractiveness of landscape contracting businesses for job seekers and to lessen the industry stigma that these businesses are little more than pass-through or seasonal employers.

Projects will always hold a prominent and necessary place in the landscape contracting business. Adding recurring maintenance solutions alongside and in conjunction with project offerings only serves to enhance the business’ appeal in the marketplace and provides predictable sources of revenue through all twelve months of the calendar year that can be used to fund operations, pay vendors and suppliers and reinvest in the business. A healthy revenue mix, no matter how you choose to configure it, is truly a recipe for success.

Could your business benefit from a mix of project and recurring revenue?

• Do you need a better way to ensure you can comfortably sustain operations for the next twelve calendar months while making a significant profit?
• Do you hope to build stronger, longer-lasting relationships with your current, prospective and future customers?
• Do you want to incentivize your sales team to pursue bigger ticket jobs that bring a higher return on investment?
• Do you strive to stand apart from other businesses like yours in the industry?
• Do you want to make your business more attractive to lenders and potential buyers?

If you answered yes to most of these questions, it might be time to consider how maintenance services and recurring revenue can benefit your business. Visit www.landopt.com to discover how LandOpt can help you diversify your portfolio and increase the value of your business.

 

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Alison Blobner
Alison Blobner
alison.blobner@landopt.com

As the Director of Marketing & Sales, Alison is directly responsible for adding new Licensees by both qualifying and educating landscape contractors on the benefits of the LandOpt Network. Her focus includes regional growth within our existing Licensee base, with an eye toward ultimately expanding the Network throughout the United States. Alison’s background includes regional sales experience and management responsibility for large, global organizations where was tasked with generating new business and achieving targeted growth plans using a consultative sales approach. She was also responsible for the training and management of local and regional sales teams. A Pittsburgh native, Alison attended Robert Morris University.

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