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How To Stop A Marketing Wipeout

Generating new leads, driving new business opportunities is what marketing is all about, but it remains a mystery for most business owners. They spend a lot of money on campaigns or tactics and end up with nothing to show for it – often it’s a complete wipeout! That’s not to say that marketing doesn’t work…clearly […]

Generation Me – Taking Over In Many Ways!

Cover Photo Crop From Jean Twenge’s book, Generation Me Which generation is projected to be the largest at the end of the year (numbering just over 75 million)? Which generation makes up more than a third of the homebuyers (and is the youngest generation of buyers)? Which generation makes up more than 1 in 3 […]

Home Equity & The Existing Residential Market – A $6 Trillion Improvement

  Home equity in the U.S. has improved $6 trillion since the recession and 61 million people now have 25% or more in home equity.  Compare that to where we were a few years ago and we have come light years! Those are huge and impressive numbers but what does that mean to the landscaping […]

Your Business Benefits In More Than One Way From Recurring Revenue

As everyone knows, repeat customers are fabulous in any business…especially the landscape business! They give us predictability and peace of mind by providing recurring revenue and a steady cash flow. In fact, this is why so many of you zero in on customers like builders, property managers and real estate professionals and why you offer services like maintenance […]

A Study of 14,000 Businesses Reveals How You Should Not Be Spending Your Time

In an analysis of more than 14,000 businesses, a new study finds the most valuable companies take a contrarian approach to the boss doing the selling. Who does the selling in your business? My guess is that when you’re personally involved in doing the selling, your business is a whole lot more profitable than the […]

The Hidden Goal of a Smart Landscaper – Building A Valuable & Sellable Landscape Business

    What are your business goals for the year? If you’re like most owners, you have a profit goal you want to hit. You may also have a top line revenue number that’s important to you. While those goals are important, there is another objective that may have an even bigger payoff, building a […]

The Hidden Goal of a Smart Landscaper – Building A Valuable & Sellable Landscape Business

    What are your business goals for the year? If you’re like most owners, you have a profit goal you want to hit. You may also have a top line revenue number that’s important to you. While those goals are important, there is another objective that may have an even bigger payoff, building a […]

How to Attract Quality Customers With Your Landscape Business Website

To attract quality customers who are ready to buy, have reasonable expectations, and who pay on time, you need a website that conveys your authority, trustworthiness, and quality of work. Here’s how …

Does Search Engine Optimization Still Work?

You may have heard that “SEO is dead.” Don’t believe it. Although the latest search algorithms have reduced the impact of “old fashioned” search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, like using keywords and link exchanges, good SEO still makes a huge difference. We cut through the hype and give you the straight story.

Hardscape Rammer Tool for Landscape Professionals

For many parts of the country landscape professionals are working on their business plans to improve their sales and more importantly their profits for next year. That often means considering new lines of services that can add more revenue to each project. This new light weight rammer video from Weber MT video caught our eye […]


Operate

Understanding Gross Margin

Ignoring your financial statement is like ignoring the health of your business. Startups and new business owners often overlook understanding gross margin. This can have a direct impact on your ability to effectively manage a growing business, price your products, and most importantly, make a profit. Gross Margin Overview The gross margin represents the percent […]

Your Business Benefits In More Than One Way From Recurring Revenue

As everyone knows, repeat customers are fabulous in any business…especially the landscape business! They give us predictability and peace of mind by providing recurring revenue and a steady cash flow. In fact, this is why so many of you zero in on customers like builders, property managers and real estate professionals and why you offer services like maintenance […]

Tip To Improve Cash Flow & Company Value

You already know that your company’s revenue and profits play a big role in the value of your landscape business but do you know the impact of cash flow and your landscape business valuation? Cash flow is different than profits in that it measures the cash coming in and out of your landscape business rather than […]

Tip To Improve Cash Flow & Company Value

You already know that your company’s revenue and profits play a big role in the value of your landscape business but do you know the impact of cash flow and your landscape business valuation? Cash flow is different than profits in that it measures the cash coming in and out of your landscape business rather than […]

The Hidden Goal of a Smart Landscaper – Building A Valuable & Sellable Landscape Business

    What are your business goals for the year? If you’re like most owners, you have a profit goal you want to hit. You may also have a top line revenue number that’s important to you. While those goals are important, there is another objective that may have an even bigger payoff, building a […]

The Hidden Goal of a Smart Landscaper – Building A Valuable & Sellable Landscape Business

    What are your business goals for the year? If you’re like most owners, you have a profit goal you want to hit. You may also have a top line revenue number that’s important to you. While those goals are important, there is another objective that may have an even bigger payoff, building a […]

Landscape Contractor Safety Resources

Landscape Contractor Safety Resources | Picture by Pixabay Landscape Contractor Safety Resources There is a lot of great information on the internet for landscape professionals to use, the problem is it takes some digging around to find great resources. Landscape Today strives to find and consolidate industry links that would benefit landscape professionals. While this […]

Detroit Area Landscape Professional Gains ISO 9001/SN9001 Certification

Troy Clogg Landscape Associates Certified in ISO 9001/SN9001 Wixom, MI—November 24, 2015—Troy Clogg Landscape Associates, a renowned metro Detroit snow removal and landscaping company, announced today it has been certified in the ISO 9001/SN9001 standard from the Smithers Quality Assessment for superior quality management services in the snow and ice management industry. The certification is […]

Worker’s Compensation Audits…Avoiding Unpleasant Surprises

This time of year I often get calls from my clients wondering why they are getting huge bills from their insurance carrier….turns out most times it is the result of the annual audit. There are a couple ways to prevent this. One is to use the “Pay as you Go” option that some carriers offer. You […]

Safety Tips On PVC Pipe Systems

While safety is an area we all focus on in the landscape and irrigation industry, some areas need an occasional reminder. PVC piping systems and the solvent weld process fit into this category. Weld-On, a leader in the irrigation glue and accessory market, offers some great safety resources and tips (see below). For more information […]


Weekly Landscape Weather Outlook


Supply Cost Information


Market Gas Prices

$2.03 vs. $2.77

Source: GasBuddy.com


News

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Products

Hardscape Rammer Tool for Landscape Professionals

For many parts of the country landscape professionals are working on their business plans to improve their sales and more importantly their profits for next year. That often means considering new lines of services that can add more revenue to each project. This new light weight rammer video from Weber MT video caught our eye […]

Christmas – A Great Time To Remind People of LED Virtues

The green industry has worked hard the past few years to promote LED lighting installs and retrofits over older lighting technologies.  Why?  Because as an industry, we know the economic and environmental advantages of LED lighting…and it is the right thing to do. Guess what other industry is sharing in our mission?  Yep, Christmas lighting! […]

Turf Care Supply Announces New Product – AMP-XC

Turf Care Supply, a green industry leader in fertilizers and control products since 1974, has just announced its latest product AMP-XC, a bio-stimulant with extreme plant health benefits. The three primary components in the product are GABA RX, humic and iron and the list of agronomic benefits is impressive. Maintains / adjusts soil PH levels […]

Hardscape Tracing Tool for Landscape Professionals

Working just like a compass this Quick-E-Tracer from Connecticut based Pave Tool Innovators is designed to help landscape professionals measure serpentine patterns and ovals. The tool is designed to save labor time for your crews and covers a radius of 69 inches. Pave Tool Innovators is a company created by four brothers who had 30 […]

Landscape Professionals Promoting El Niño Gets Easier For Drainage Sales

Landscape professionals promoting El Niño gets easier for drainage sales with new NDS web page and infographics showing the benefits of drainage.

Field Mapping Technology Can Benefit Your Business

Landscape irrigation and snow removal companies can benefit from using landscape and irrigation mapping software to build their business through better documentation and communication tools with property managers.

Cold Weather Precautions Needed With Your PVC Glue

As cold weather approaches, most things need a little extra time to warm up, including solvent weld joints.  Weld-On, a leader in quality glue and irrigation accessory products, offers the below cold weather tips. Weld-On’s complete video library is available 24 7 on its new website.  Use this as an in house training resource for your irrigation […]

Choosing and Using Soil Amendments Wisely

March 2009 Extension Solutions for Homes and Gardens by Paul J. Pugliese “Choosing and Using Soil Amendments Wisely” A soil amendment, sometimes called a soil conditioner, is any material added to a soil to improve its physical properties, such as water retention, permeability, water infiltration, drainage, aeration and structure. The goal is to provide a […]

Mulch – An Ongrowing Service

It is no secret that mulching as a gardening practice is more popular than ever. Cars with trunks open and full of bags, bulk piles in the driveway, wheelbarrows, pitchforks, and people laboring in the yard. All followed by the neighborhood spring get together with people griping about aching backs and spreading mulch all weekend. […]

Irrigation as a Service Offering

As landscape professionals continue to look for ways to keep their revenue stream consistent throughout the year, irrigation service work can be very profitable, but like any other service offering, there is more to it than you might consider.

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Accounting and Finance

Understanding Gross Margin

Ignoring your financial statement is like ignoring the health of your business. Startups and new business owners often overlook understanding gross margin. This can have a direct impact on your ability to effectively manage a growing business, price your products, and most importantly, make a profit. Gross Margin Overview The gross margin represents the percent […]

Your Business Benefits In More Than One Way From Recurring Revenue

As everyone knows, repeat customers are fabulous in any business…especially the landscape business! They give us predictability and peace of mind by providing recurring revenue and a steady cash flow. In fact, this is why so many of you zero in on customers like builders, property managers and real estate professionals and why you offer services like maintenance […]

Tip To Improve Cash Flow & Company Value

You already know that your company’s revenue and profits play a big role in the value of your landscape business but do you know the impact of cash flow and your landscape business valuation? Cash flow is different than profits in that it measures the cash coming in and out of your landscape business rather than […]

Tip To Improve Cash Flow & Company Value

You already know that your company’s revenue and profits play a big role in the value of your landscape business but do you know the impact of cash flow and your landscape business valuation? Cash flow is different than profits in that it measures the cash coming in and out of your landscape business rather than […]

Worker’s Compensation Audits…Avoiding Unpleasant Surprises

This time of year I often get calls from my clients wondering why they are getting huge bills from their insurance carrier….turns out most times it is the result of the annual audit. There are a couple ways to prevent this. One is to use the “Pay as you Go” option that some carriers offer. You […]

Cash Flow Overview

Perhaps the single most challenging issue for small businesses today is the ability to generate a positive cash flow. A business’ ability to bring in more money that it spends in delivering its goods and/or services to the market on an on-going basis seems simple enough but yet in reality, we all know better. It […]

Financing Your Business and Growth

It’s only fitting this section comes after cash flow because cash flow helps you really understand the context of financing needs for a business. For example, is it just a seasonal shortfall or are there other factors driving it such as growth? According to the SBA Office of Advocacy FAQ’s, dated February 2014, small business […]

Risk Management – Introduction and Overview

Many of us in small business today, and landscaping specifically, equate risk management with insuring everything you should [and can afford to] but we all know in reality it can be a lot more. In fact, the topic can be overwhelming, but a basic framework such as the one below can help begin to think […]

Small Business Accounting

Of all the systems a small business needs, the accounting system is arguably the most important.  Yes, you need marketing, yes sales, yes operations, HR, and lots more.  But how do you know what you can afford, what you can and should pay, and most important, what you can cash flow?  The accounting system is […]

Finance Your Business – A Thorough Explanation from the SBA

The following article is an excellent and thorough explanation on financing your business.  It is from the Small Business Administration’s website section entitled Finance Your Business, under the borrowing money subsection.  It also contains links back to specific topics that may warrant further exploration.  Dig in and enjoy! After you have developed a cash flow analysis and determined […]


Marketing

Generation Me – Taking Over In Many Ways!

Cover Photo Crop From Jean Twenge’s book, Generation Me Which generation is projected to be the largest at the end of the year (numbering just over 75 million)? Which generation makes up more than a third of the homebuyers (and is the youngest generation of buyers)? Which generation makes up more than 1 in 3 […]

How to Attract Quality Customers With Your Landscape Business Website

To attract quality customers who are ready to buy, have reasonable expectations, and who pay on time, you need a website that conveys your authority, trustworthiness, and quality of work. Here’s how …

Does Search Engine Optimization Still Work?

You may have heard that “SEO is dead.” Don’t believe it. Although the latest search algorithms have reduced the impact of “old fashioned” search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, like using keywords and link exchanges, good SEO still makes a huge difference. We cut through the hype and give you the straight story.

Focus On Your Business – Not Social Media

Focus On Your Business – Not Social Media Why are you using social media? If you’re like most landscape business owners, it’s probably because “everyone else is using social media” or “we need more followers online”. But think a little more. What you’re really answering is the wrong question. A better question is why you want […]

Landscape Professionals Promoting El Niño Gets Easier For Drainage Sales

Landscape professionals promoting El Niño gets easier for drainage sales with new NDS web page and infographics showing the benefits of drainage.

Outdoor Advertising Media Planning

Some of the most effective advertising your landscape business engages in involves the outdoor advertising you accomplish with your truck fleet, yard signs and more. Putting together your business plan and advertising budget, it can be helpful to have some data points to aid in making decisions about how much money you want to invest in out […]

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) & Local SEO – Don’t Forget Local!

  In a very simple explanation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is about making sure your web content is indexed and understood by search engines.  Then, as queries are made, the search engines will deliver your web content on the results page when it meets the searcher’s query. Bottom line, SEO helps increase the likelihood that a search is […]

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) & Local SEO – Don't Forget Local!

  In a very simple explanation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is about making sure your web content is indexed and understood by search engines.  Then, as queries are made, the search engines will deliver your web content on the results page when it meets the searcher’s query. Bottom line, SEO helps increase the likelihood that a search is […]

Truck Advertising & Job Site Signage…Great Advertising Opportunities!

Photo courtesy of krankensigns.com – some rights reserved Of all the marketing investments you can and should make, truck branding and advertising and job site signage are two of the best. Let’s start with the truck.  Your truck is a rolling and stationary sign. Not only is your truck in the area and market where you […]

Truck Advertising & Job Site Signage…Great Advertising Opportunities!

Of all the marketing investments you can and should make, truck branding and advertising and job site signage are two of the best. Let’s start with the truck.  Your truck is a rolling and stationary sign. Not only is your truck in the area and market where you do your work, your target market, but it […]


Sales

Generation Me – Taking Over In Many Ways!

Cover Photo Crop From Jean Twenge’s book, Generation Me Which generation is projected to be the largest at the end of the year (numbering just over 75 million)? Which generation makes up more than a third of the homebuyers (and is the youngest generation of buyers)? Which generation makes up more than 1 in 3 […]

Home Equity & The Existing Residential Market – A $6 Trillion Improvement

  Home equity in the U.S. has improved $6 trillion since the recession and 61 million people now have 25% or more in home equity.  Compare that to where we were a few years ago and we have come light years! Those are huge and impressive numbers but what does that mean to the landscaping […]

A Study of 14,000 Businesses Reveals How You Should Not Be Spending Your Time

In an analysis of more than 14,000 businesses, a new study finds the most valuable companies take a contrarian approach to the boss doing the selling. Who does the selling in your business? My guess is that when you’re personally involved in doing the selling, your business is a whole lot more profitable than the […]

Hardscape Rammer Tool for Landscape Professionals

For many parts of the country landscape professionals are working on their business plans to improve their sales and more importantly their profits for next year. That often means considering new lines of services that can add more revenue to each project. This new light weight rammer video from Weber MT video caught our eye […]

Detroit Area Landscape Professional Gains ISO 9001/SN9001 Certification

Troy Clogg Landscape Associates Certified in ISO 9001/SN9001 Wixom, MI—November 24, 2015—Troy Clogg Landscape Associates, a renowned metro Detroit snow removal and landscaping company, announced today it has been certified in the ISO 9001/SN9001 standard from the Smithers Quality Assessment for superior quality management services in the snow and ice management industry. The certification is […]

Field Mapping Technology Can Benefit Your Business

Landscape irrigation and snow removal companies can benefit from using landscape and irrigation mapping software to build their business through better documentation and communication tools with property managers.

Understanding Your Sales Pipeline

  Your sales pipeline is made of each and every sales opportunity you are pursuing.  Think of it as a visual depiction of the business you are trying to win over time. The more opportunities you put in the pipeline, the more sales you will eventually realize.  In the above funnel illustration, you see it takes […]

Landscape Networking Opportunities

  In a business driven by referrals, you need to develop a list of every group or organization you might be able to participate in to build your professional network. Here is a list of different groups to consider getting involved in: Trade Associations – The landscape industry has a lot of local and national […]

Sales Processes and Management

As a green industry contractor, you must have an adequate revenue stream to survive long term. How you build this revenue stream will largely be driven by your decisions on what products and services to offer combined with the market – or markets –  you choose to target.  Some contractors zero in on just residential […]

Getting Started With Presentations

Presentations & Proposals, in landscaping?  Yes because you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression and in this industry, this is an area we don’t spend a lot of time on.  Maybe it is because we view our end product or service as the ultimate presentation or presentation enough.  Who knows, but […]


Human Resources

Landscape Contractor Safety Resources

Landscape Contractor Safety Resources | Picture by Pixabay Landscape Contractor Safety Resources There is a lot of great information on the internet for landscape professionals to use, the problem is it takes some digging around to find great resources. Landscape Today strives to find and consolidate industry links that would benefit landscape professionals. While this […]

Safety Tips On PVC Pipe Systems

While safety is an area we all focus on in the landscape and irrigation industry, some areas need an occasional reminder. PVC piping systems and the solvent weld process fit into this category. Weld-On, a leader in the irrigation glue and accessory market, offers some great safety resources and tips (see below). For more information […]

6 Ways to Avoid the Dreaded Bad Hire

Here is a really good quick read from Entrepreneur magazine as it relates to on boarding new employees to your business. Turnover and poor performers can suck your business dry fast! Even though there is a lot of seasonal turn over in the landscape industry the six factors the author covers in this article are […]

It All Starts with Training

Well-trained employees are the backbone of any good business, and as an industry loaded with owner operators, this includes owners. As an industry going through a lot of changes in products and practices, training is more important today than ever. Topics like drought tolerant, indigenous, sustainability, smart irrigation, low impact, permeable pavers, and more, dominate the […]

Getting Started with Compliance and Safety

As a small business, these are areas you think about from time to time but might not have done a lot to mitigate. While that seems like life as small business, it is important to understand there are risks not to be taken lightly. There are some resources and avenues to explore if you are […]

Getting Started with Compensation and Benefits

This is one of those topics that is part philosophy, part market and part legal.  As always, the legal parameters will set the minimums for what you must offer, for example minimum wage and minimum benefits.  The market will define how far you might need to deviate from the law to be successful [in your market], […]

Employee Relations Start with Leadership

“Employee Relations involves the body of work concerned with maintaining employer-employee relationships that contribute to satisfactory productivity, motivation, and morale.   Essentially, employee relations is concerned with preventing and resolving problems involving individuals which arise out of or affect work situations.” – from NASA’s Goodard Space Flight Center, Office of Human Capital Management There are quite a […]

Recruiting Ideas and Resources

You not only survived the recession but business is rocking! You knew staffing would be a challenge but you had no idea it would be this tough. Between people leaving the industry (especially during the recession) and the immigration reform backlashes, i.e. H2B, it is the top challenge for many in the green industry today […]

Benchmark Your Company’s Average Annual Salary, Health Care Cost, and More with SizeUp

If you missed the feature article on SizeUp, you missed a great tool for benchmarking and comparing your business to others in the industry. While people love to use SizeUp to benchmark sales and identify competitors and suppliers, it is also a very useful tool for benchmarking areas such as salaries, health care cost, and cost effectiveness. These areas […]

Small Business Advantages and Challenges When Recruiting

Small business has always had its advantages and challenges in the never ending battle for talent and labor. Add to that the current labor shortage in our industry and it’s tough. The recent ramp up in activity has made things even tougher. While the labor markets won’t be fixed overnight, a refresher on the challenges of […]


Advertising

Generation Me – Taking Over In Many Ways!

Cover Photo Crop From Jean Twenge’s book, Generation Me Which generation is projected to be the largest at the end of the year (numbering just over 75 million)? Which generation makes up more than a third of the homebuyers (and is the youngest generation of buyers)? Which generation makes up more than 1 in 3 […]

How to Attract Quality Customers With Your Landscape Business Website

To attract quality customers who are ready to buy, have reasonable expectations, and who pay on time, you need a website that conveys your authority, trustworthiness, and quality of work. Here’s how …

Does Search Engine Optimization Still Work?

You may have heard that “SEO is dead.” Don’t believe it. Although the latest search algorithms have reduced the impact of “old fashioned” search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, like using keywords and link exchanges, good SEO still makes a huge difference. We cut through the hype and give you the straight story.

Focus On Your Business – Not Social Media

Focus On Your Business – Not Social Media Why are you using social media? If you’re like most landscape business owners, it’s probably because “everyone else is using social media” or “we need more followers online”. But think a little more. What you’re really answering is the wrong question. A better question is why you want […]

Landscape Professionals Promoting El Niño Gets Easier For Drainage Sales

Landscape professionals promoting El Niño gets easier for drainage sales with new NDS web page and infographics showing the benefits of drainage.

Outdoor Advertising Media Planning

Some of the most effective advertising your landscape business engages in involves the outdoor advertising you accomplish with your truck fleet, yard signs and more. Putting together your business plan and advertising budget, it can be helpful to have some data points to aid in making decisions about how much money you want to invest in out […]

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) & Local SEO – Don’t Forget Local!

  In a very simple explanation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is about making sure your web content is indexed and understood by search engines.  Then, as queries are made, the search engines will deliver your web content on the results page when it meets the searcher’s query. Bottom line, SEO helps increase the likelihood that a search is […]

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) & Local SEO – Don't Forget Local!

  In a very simple explanation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is about making sure your web content is indexed and understood by search engines.  Then, as queries are made, the search engines will deliver your web content on the results page when it meets the searcher’s query. Bottom line, SEO helps increase the likelihood that a search is […]

Truck Advertising & Job Site Signage…Great Advertising Opportunities!

Photo courtesy of krankensigns.com – some rights reserved Of all the marketing investments you can and should make, truck branding and advertising and job site signage are two of the best. Let’s start with the truck.  Your truck is a rolling and stationary sign. Not only is your truck in the area and market where you […]

Truck Advertising & Job Site Signage…Great Advertising Opportunities!

Of all the marketing investments you can and should make, truck branding and advertising and job site signage are two of the best. Let’s start with the truck.  Your truck is a rolling and stationary sign. Not only is your truck in the area and market where you do your work, your target market, but it […]


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Housing Starts


Housing Starts

Year-to-Date Total 1 unit 2 units 3 and 4 Units 5 units or More
September 2014 795.9 493.2 11.7 11.1 279.8
September 2015 889.3 530.0 12.5 12.6 334.2
Percent Change 12% 7% 7% 14% 19%
South West
Year-to-Date Total 1 unit 2 units Total 1 unit 2 units
September 2014 396.2 267.7 128.5 181.9 105.9 76.0
September 2015 427.6 288.0 139.5 209.3 122.9 86.4
Percent Change 8% 8% 9% 15% 16% 14%
Northeast Midwest
Year-to-Date Total 1 unit 2 units Total 1 unit 2 units
September 2014 90.2 41.2 48.9 127.6 78.4 49.2
September 2015 124.9 38.1 86.8 127.6 81.0 46.6
Percent Change 38% -8% 77% 0% 3% -5%


New residential construction - Started - Seasonally adjusted


Building and Construction