As any professional landscaper knows, landscaping is far more than mowing lawns and planting flowers. Landscaping is similar to interior design and even fashion design, as you need to have a deep understanding of what the clients are going to want and be ready to offer it to them, or they will find someone else to care for their lawn if you cannot provide what they want. Landscaping requires a deep understanding of plants, flowers, and grasses native to the area where you work. It also requires a deep understanding of business and how to run a business. Growing up with a love for gardening does not mean you’ll be able to grow a successful lawn business.
Here are three reasons it is essential to keep abreast of trends within the industry.
Landscaping trends change, product offerings change, and materials change. Landscaping often includes outdoor living areas, outdoor kitchens, pool areas, front of the house, and driveways. You can utilize a business intelligence process to better understand what your target customers are looking for. Business intelligence processes can pull data from various sources as part of the data mining process. The business user can utilize business intelligence tools like data visualization and analytics to understand the changing industry better. With the right algorithm, predictive analytics can determine what is most likely to happen in the near future.
Further, trends will change based on where you are located. Landscaping in Dallas, TX, will not be the same as landscaping in Cleveland, OH. Landscape installation, sprinkler installation, landscape construction of hardscapes, and ongoing lawn maintenance will vary based on the climate. The changes of the seasons and the severity of the seasons are critical when doing landscape, so it is essential for a landscaper to stay on top of all changing trends for their area. For example, artificial turf or sod is widely used in hotter climates. If you are in a region with harsh winters, you need to keep that in mind when making professional recommendations when they ask for something that isn’t going to hold up well in their region. While you want to make the client happy, you also have to be honest with them about what grows in their area and what won’t grow in their area. For example, palm trees won’t fare well in Minnesota, and cacti won’t survive the heavy rains in Alabama. Working with the natural environment is the best approach.
The functionality of the outdoor space is critical so homeowners can feel comfortable using the space and don’t need to perform extensive daily care that will make it feel like a chore. Fertilizing, irrigation, water management, tree pruning, mulch, and weed control are all things that need to be taken into consideration. Fire pits, playgrounds, lush gardens, and erosion control may be included in your clients’ needs, so as a landscaper, it is critical to stay on top of what is trending and what everything costs within the industry for your region. Having a solid understanding of costs will allow you to move forward in offering your clients new products and services they may enjoy based on their past decisions or stated interests.
Using analytics will allow you to compile data and identify trends that may directly impact your business. You can help your business move forward based on solid information instead of best guesses. You can talk to other people and business owners in the industry to get their take on the growing trends and information. Working with a mentor can also help if you are just starting out with your own business.