Sealing the deal everytime? Is it always worth it?

Here is a great question that came up on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. Should you be looking to seal the deal everytime you go out for an estimate? One lawn care business owner initially seemed to be so focused on doing this at all costs, including his profits.

He wrote “I am going to give an estimate to a new lawn care customer that was referred to me from a current customer. I heard he is also going to get an estimate from from one of the big nationwide franchise lawn fertilization companies.


Currently right now what I have been doing, is offering a 15% off any deal a potential customer presents me from their current provider. How I am doing this is in my spare time I drive around, find houses with the lawn treatment signs, and then send them marketing material.

Would it be wise to present this gentleman my flyer with my estimate stating, “Here is my price of the estimate, but if another comes in lower, I will offer 15% off of what they charge.” Sure, yes there might be sometimes of where another company can offer their service price where it is actually lower than mine, which would be like maybe 1% of the time, but you are almost guaranteed the sale every time. Wouldn’t you basically close the sale then every time?

I am just trying to think outside the box. If I am wasting my valuable time giving an estimate, and not closing each sale, why not price it to where I can close it everytime. Can you imagine being able to close an estimate 75 to 80% of the time?”

One lawn care business owner shared his experience when he wrote “here’s the problem as I see it. You need to make money for you, not your competitors. So,you need to base your prices on what you need to make a living. I’ve seen too many people lose their business because they were trying to meet or beat the competitions prices. I used to work for a company that was utilizing this strategy and they stated they were going to run another competitor out of business. We were losing money on every service we offered in order to beat the competitor’s price. Well, the other company is still making modems when the one I worked for isn’t. I don’t work for them anymore.”

A second lawn care business owner said “here is my point of view. With a price there comes value.
With value there comes a price.

I am the most expensive guy on the block and I have a 95% client retention rate year after year. What I offer my clients is what they pay for and more.

In the past, I had another competing lawn care company go to every one of my clients with an ad stating that they would offer a quote 10% lower then their current provider. I had clients calling me telling me that this company was doing this cutthroat approach. So I asked them why they called and why they would not switch? They said that they expect to pay more for the level of service I provide.

In my opinion you cannot beat your competition on price (most of the time). There needs to be more;

- Quality of work (100%, 100% of the time)
- Value for their money
- On time all of the time
- Trust
- Need to look and act professional

Clients will pay more (and expect to pay more) for higher levels of service.”

So before you decide to get in a price war with a lawn care business competitor, remember you need to make a profit. With no profit, in a short time there will be no business. If you think you can be the lowest price in the area, trust me when I say, there will always be someone out there willing to go lower than you.

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