Lawn Care Customer Retention. Why are your customers leaving you?

There are lawn care businesses that like to market their cheap price as their greatest strength. This tends to happen with newer businesses than those who have been around for a while. Being the cheapest lawn care service around is one of the fastest ways to go out of business and we will see why here. A big problem with cheap customers is a lack of customer retention. Why? Because they are always looking for the next cheapest deal.

Greg: “I am always getting new customers, but then I lose 1. There seems to be a big turnover all the time. Is this how it is in the lawn biz? Just wondering if this is normal or am i doing something wrong.”

Steve: “Are these weekly service customers you are talking about or are you referring to one time jobs like clean ups etc?”

Greg: “These are not cleanups, they are weekly customers.”

Steve: “There could be many factors involved with this customer churn. Is it possible other lawn care businesses are coming in and under bidding you? Could the customer be upset with the service?
When your customers leave, do you ask them why? If so what are they saying?

Also do you use yearly maintenance agreements? If not, have you considered using them in the future?”

Chestin “It could be your customers are leaving because they’re having a hard time equating the cost you’re charging with the value they’re receiving. As a result, when someone else comes along with a cheaper price (and lesser service), they drop you like an old boyfriend.

The key is to make sure they understand the VALUE they’re receiving as a result of your service. It could be the extra attention you pay their yard, or the years of experience you have in the industry, or the fact that you’re licensed and insured. Each of these facts translates into some benefit for your customer and it’s your job to make sure they understand what that benefit is.

Also, even though this may cause some debate among LCO’s, I firmly believe it’s vital that you establish a relationship with your customers. Get to know them beyond the services you provide and take an interest in their lives. That doesn’t mean invite yourself over for dinner, but consider sending a monthly newsletter, birthday or holiday cards, calling periodically to check on things, etc.

Go that extra step to make them feel important and the next time a cheaper offer comes along, they’ll think long and hard about dropping you.”

Steve: “Chestin, if a lawn care business owner goes about asking customers who are leaving why they are leaving, should they ask if it is because of a lack of value?

How would you suggest an lco ask that question? Should it just be simply, do you not feel you are getting enough value? And then should there be any follow ups to that like maybe so they can find out in what area they don’t feel they are receiving value?”

Chestin: “You probably wouldn’t need to ask if they’re getting enough ‘value’, but simply asking them why they’re leaving should give plenty of insight. If they say they’re leaving because they found someone cheaper, that basically means they didn’t feel as if they were getting enough value.

Value can be defined as what your customer gets for the price they pay. So it stands to reason that if they’re leaving for someone that offers it cheaper, they’re not getting enough value.

If that is indeed the case, it’s time to examine the way you’re positioning your service. It might also indicate a need to better educate your customers on your services and why you are a better choice than the neighborhood low ball scrub.

But again, you’ll never know why they’re leaving unless you ask the question.”

Greg: “I think that I’m offering my service to cheap for the amount of work that I’m doing for all my clients. If I’m there I doing a extra small job for every client to improve the yard. And nine out of ten time I’m not charging anything. I was talking to another lawn care business owner, and he was telling me that I’m charging way too low. He would charge a lot more then what I’m changing for the average lawn.”

Troy: “Perhaps you just have the wrong type of customers and it has nothing to do with you. Perhaps because of how low your price is you are attracting the price shoppers.

Raise up your price and don’t be disappointed that when customers tell you that you’re too much. Don’t expect to land every single account. If you do land every account, then “yes” your prices are definitely too low.”

Greg: “Thanks for the info it will help me I will try to raise my price.”

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Lawn Care Business Books And Software.
How To Get Lawn Care Customers Vol. 2
The landscaping and lawn care business plan startup guide
A rebellious teenagers guide to starting a landscaping & lawn care business
The GopherHaul Lawn Care Business Show Episode Guide.
Stop Lowballing! A Lawn Care Business Owner\'s Guide To Success