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How to sell battery-powered services

April 25, 2022 -  By

For Michael Reed, owner of Quiet Lawn in Little River, S.C., starting a battery-powered lawn maintenance company five years ago was a way to set his business apart in the competitive Myrtle Beach area.

Quiet Lawn offers residential mowing, fertilization, weed control, shrub trimming and holiday lighting.

Stephen Gault, owner of EcoMow, says his employees enjoy using battery-powered equipment because of the low noise emitted. (Photo: EcoMow)

Stephen Gault, owner of EcoMow, says his employees enjoy using battery-powered equipment because of the low noise emitted. (Photo: EcoMow)

Reed emphasizes the client experience when selling battery-powered equipment. He intentionally stayed away from selling the eco-friendly component of battery-powered maintenance, instead, he highlights how his equipment makes less noise and won’t wake up the neighborhood in the morning.

“Most people when they hear eco-friendly and stuff like that, they see dollar signs,” he says. “I didn’t want to lead with that as my main marketing tactic.”

Reed, along with Stephen Gault, owner of EcoMow in Dallas, Texas, and Denny Rochford, owner of a Clean Air Lawn Care franchise in Seattle, share approaches to selling battery-powered services.

Better experience

Gault, too, highlights the experience when selling services to new clients. EcoMow offers battery-powered residential and commercial lawn care, landscape design/build, pest control and holiday lighting. Gault estimates only around 30 or 35 percent of his clients reach out to his business because of his zero-emission equipment. Most come to his business because of its reputation.

“The vast majority of these clients said, ‘Eco-friendly is a plus, but reliability and dependability are most important when choosing a lawn care company,’” he says.

The pandemic helped fuel interest in EcoMow, Gault says.

“On the Nextdoor app, everybody was always complaining about the noise outside their window,” he says. “So the phone just started blowing up.”

Being in the Seattle area, Rochford says the ecological impact was a major driver in his purchase of the business.

“My favorite statement when talking to my customers is every time we take on a new yard or a new property, we improve the ecology of the Seattle area,” he says.

Getting leaner

Before the start of this season, Reed reconfigured his setups and crew. Instead of a two-person crew and a big box truck, he now uses one-person crews in a Prius with Ego handheld equipment and a Greenworks 25-inch push mower on a custom carrier.

While this change means crews use a push mower to service lawns, there’s less training for new employees, he says. Each vehicle covers around 10 to 15 lawns a day. Reed passes the savings on to his employees with higher hourly rates.

“We pay them a percentage of the revenue they produce,” he says. “They might have been making $13, $14 or $15 an hour before, and now they are averaging $20 or sometimes higher.”

Gault says he’s focusing on the need for on-the-go charging for his Ego equipment, including Ego zero-turn mowers. Although he’s had growing pains, he’s happy with his setup now.

“We have solar panels on all of our vans and trailers,” he says. “On those trailers, we have big lithium batteries, with power inverters.”

Less maintenance

Gault says his employees are happier at the end of the day, thanks to the low noise of the equipment.

“They don’t have to wear giant earphones all day long when the equipment is running,” he says. “There’s less vibration in the equipment because it’s all used with brushless motors. The overall quality of life for our employees is greater than our counterparts using gas.”

Rochford says he’s had employees come to work for him from landscape companies that use gas-powered equipment because of a better experience.

“They’re lighter,” he says. “At the end of the day, you don’t have to breathe those fumes.”

Another bonus: Reed says his battery-powered equipment needs about 10 percent of the maintenance that traditional gas-powered equipment would.

“You don’t have any belts, any pulleys, any filters, any gas, any oil,” he says. “You just pop a battery in and pull the trigger and it goes. You don’t have these cold starts. You don’t have all these issues that you have with gas equipment.”

This article is tagged with and posted in 0422, Featured, From the Magazine, Mowing+Maintenance
Christina Herrick

About the Author:

Christina Herrick is the editor of Landscape Management magazine. Known for her immersive approach to travel from coast to coast in her previous stint as senior editor of American Fruit Grower Magazine, she uses social media (Twitter/Instagram @EditorHerrick) to share her experiences on the road with her audience. Herrick has a degree in journalism from Ohio Northern University and has been in B2B publishing for seven years. She can be reached at cherrick@northcoastmedia.net.

1 Comment on "How to sell battery-powered services"

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  1. Andrew says:

    This article is terrific. We are an all electric lawn care in Poquoson Virginia and love how much the EV movement has taken off over the last few years. The electric mowers are able to last with a charge for a full day and there are also many choices for battery powered trimmers and blowers. The experience is so much better for the residential and commercial customer since the noise is greatly reduced. No bothering customers or waking up baby. The environmentally friendly aspect is a plus.