The customer is always right.

Sound familiar? It’s the most used customer service phrase and more than likely, you’ve said it a few times yourself over your career. But is it true? When you think about what the phrase is saying, it’s pretty vague, especially when you apply it to the landscaping industry. That’s because there is a time and place when the customer is right, and a time and place when you’re right. And that’s centered around the customer’s education in the landscape design, build and maintenance industry.

The two types of education we are going to look at are:

  1. The customer’s education in the industry and their expectations
  2. The customer’s knowledge of lawn care maintenance, design, and landscaping advice

Let’s dig into this a little more.

Customers are becoming more educated

As the landscape industry continues to grow, so too does the consumer’s knowledge of the industry. Many people are taking advantage of the services of lawn care maintenance specialists and landscape designers. And they are becoming more knowledgeable about how the process works, who is all involved and what they can get for their money.

The customer is always right.

Sound familiar? It’s the most used customer service phrase and more than likely, you’ve said it a few times yourself over your career. But is it true? When you think about what the phrase is saying, it’s pretty vague, especially when you apply it to the landscaping industry. That’s because there is a time and place when the customer is right, and a time and place when you’re right. And that’s centered around the customer’s education in the landscape design, build and maintenance industry.

The two types of education we are going to look at are:

  1. The customer’s education in the industry and their expectations
  2. The customer’s knowledge of lawn care maintenance, design, and landscaping advice

Let’s dig into this a little more.

Customers are becoming more educated

As the landscape industry continues to grow, so too does the consumer’s knowledge of the industry. Many people are taking advantage of the services of lawn care maintenance specialists and landscape designers. And they are becoming more knowledgeable about how the process works, who is all involved and what they can get for their money.

It also means their expectations of what they get out of your services is going to grow. And when customers become educated in the services and have higher expectations, gimmicks aren’t going to win you long-term business or be a sustainable source of revenue for the foreseeable future.

Customers are starting to look beyond the flashy gimmicks, the cheap sales and the deep discounts landscape designers and maintenance professionals are offering because value now plays an important part in consumer decision making. Consumers are more willing to pay a higher price for better service than go with a cheaper option that might not get them what they want, or that comes with a risk of a lack of professional service. And if you are cutting costs on your deals and not offering great service, a customer has no reason to stay with you and can quickly take their business elsewhere.

What are customers looking for?

With customer expectations growing, what they are looking for now is professionalism from their landscape providers. More than ever, people are using online reviews and websites as ways of deciding who they will select to handle their landscaping needs. So a professional-looking website with positive online reviews will do more for your business than cheap flashy flyers in the mail.

It’s also important to be as professional as possible in your design and quotes. Having a presentation ready for your customers will do a lot more to win a job than just sending a .pdf file to them. That’s where landscape software helps to put together a tight presentation. That includes having a colorful design and concept art, possibly with 3D renderings and video presentations. As well as a fully costed out quote that details everything involved in their project.

Professionalism sells well, so take a look at your branding and customer service practices, because that is what customers are looking at. Even the simple things like answering emails and phone calls, showing up exactly when you say you will, and being clear about your expectations for the job, so that you can meet the customers.

Dive into customer education

The customer is always right, except when they are wrong. And it happens. Customers are not experts in all things landscaping. That is where you come in. Plenty of homeowners have never received any sort of advice on lawn care maintenance before. And that is a great way to earn yourself an in into their maintenance needs.

There is a significant gap in how customers are learning about lawn care needs. Some get it from reading online, others from television shows and gardening specific television. But directly from someone, directed at them specifically, will get them listening far more than any television spot will. It can be how you gain the trust of your customers but providing them with the advice and expertise they are searching for. And if you are working with them on their landscape design, you become a partner in their projects, which gets them more invested in what you have to say.

When you have completed a quote from your landscape software, you don’t just walk in, hand it to them and let them figure it out. You become their partner in the project and walk them through each step of the journey. It takes away some of that sticker shock if your price is higher than they expected. You have the chance to explain why things cost as much as they do, which is a lot better than having them go find information on their own, which may be wrong, and then expecting you to come down in price.

Become the authority in landscaping

What landscape software has helped many professionals in the industry become is the authority. It gives them greater confidence going into a presentation that the numbers are right, the design is flawless and their company image is professional. That confidence isn’t something that can be measured, but you will start to see greater numbers of quotes coming back as victories because you became the confident authority on landscaping.

The customer is right in what they want and you should try and accommodate them as much as possible. But you are the authority in the industry with the knowledge and knowhow and the expert. And a confident owner who has answers to questions will definitely succeed more than the owner who is trying to slip deals through by shaving off the sticker price until the customer says yes.

Think long-term and use education as a sales tool and a way to bring confidence and assurance to your customers. That will bring in more business, help you scale your operation, and keep you busy all season long.

Let us know if you’re ready to learn more about how you can use DynaSCAPE’s leading landscaping software to help your customers better understand their landscaping projects. Contact us today.