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Best Pricing Stradegy?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by Brock, Jan 25, 2011.

  1. Brock

    Brock Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    Hey Everyone,

    New member, but I've visited this site many times in the past. Thanks to everyone for all the valuable input.
    I've been plowing for 4 years now and have been using a flat rate per 3 inches of snow for both commercial and residential. Never had any complaints with this method until now, due to the 2 massive storms back to back i'm sure.
    Is this a flawed pricing policy? I've seen other posts with multiple ways of structuring it and would like to know what everyone thinks is the best( for both myself and the customers) way of doing it. Thank you
  2. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    as you know....prices and pricing vary ALOT by area
  3. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    There are two sides to every coin. You want the best pricing structure for you and your business, the customers want the cheapest way out of having to go out in the cold and shovel or blow for themselves. With the size of the last two storms you guys got, and with another on the way, I can't see a win, win situation for both sides at this point. It sucks for the customer, but remember your the one out plowing for 24 + hours per storm, and it's your investment in the equipment. If you wait for 6 inches to fall before you do resi's then it's harder on your equipment, and longer for you to plow. I just simply explain to the customers that although I would like to think that I am god, and can control the weather, I can't. Besides if it were up to me how much snow we get, I would order up 2-3 inches every other day for 5 months a year, so I could take summers off.
  4. dforbes

    dforbes Senior Member
    Messages: 247

    Agreed. Just try to remind them that you have been taking care of them for 4 years and have not had this problem before. More than likely It will be a long time before it happens again. It is a very unusual year and you are not the only person in your area with this problem. Ask them if you were not getting any snow if they would be willing to pay you anyway. (the other side of the coin) I am sure that they understand, but times are tough and people are going to do everything they can to save a few bucks.
  5. 09Busa

    09Busa Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 138

    I charge one price up to 6 inches and then at 6.1-12 inches, I charge additionally. With three storms, one right after the other, I charged everyone under the 6.1, even though we were at 7 inches. just my way of giving everyone a break, Like others have said, times are tough and I try to keep this in mind and be flexible when I can.
  6. 09Busa

    09Busa Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 138

    On the fourth storm I did this. Now having said that, expecting 4-8 inches tonight. No breaks this time around.:redbounce
  7. bristolturf

    bristolturf Senior Member
    Messages: 435

    for residential i usually do 6" pricing. 1-6, 6.1-12, and then add on for anything over 12". Thats per push so a 12" storm where i push 8" in the am would be 1 charge and then 4" in the pm would be another charge.

    Commercial if im doing per push its usually 1-3.9, 4-6.9, 7-9.9, 10-12; then greater than 12 is just hourly. Again its priced based on the amount of snow fall at the time of the push. But we also do keep track of hours on the job. We try to usually give the customer the benefit of the doubt on the lower price. So if we go a 14" storm on a 1 acre lot, at 3x's totaling $500 and the actual time for all three pushes is 5.5hour we probably would bill them just hourly at our rate of $65/hr. Yes thats 142.50 cheaper than the per push rate, but we retain our customers that way. We wont always do that though. We usually look at the month, and see what that site is at for a total. If we have a dry month, we would probably bill them the higher rate, a busy month we will help lower their bill.

    this way the customer is benefitting slightly, and we are still making money, just not as much.