While the news media likes to talk about startups that provide new and exciting products and services, they’re few and far between. The majority of companies in the economy provide services that we know we need right now.
Take plumbers and electricians, for instance. Companies and homeowners both need these services to deal with issues in their properties and premises. Without them, they’re up the creek without a paddle.
Fortunately, the logic of setting up a trade business is pretty straightforward. Once you’ve got your plumber’s accreditation or electrical licensing, it’s about providing a great job. If you build a large client base, you can start making a lot of money, especially if you employ others. Over time, you could find your annual income exceeding six-figures, as has happened to numerous other trade business founders in the past.
Build Your Reputation
Trade businesses are different from modern startups. Success comes through building a good reputation, not sexy marketing campaigns. Thus, once you’ve got a handful of customers, the task is to get them to spread the word around about your services and get their friends and family to choose you too.
Usually, you can make this happen by doing great work. Sometimes, though, you may have to encourage them, perhaps by offering a discount on the next job. No matter how you do it, focus on getting word-of-mouth trade, since this reduces your marketing costs and builds trust in your brand.
Make A Point Of Being Fair
Tradespeople have a bit of a bad rap when it comes to pricing. Customers often wind up paying a lot more money than they originally agreed because of project overruns.
The best tradespeople understand that managing customer expectations is essential if they want repeat business in the future. Prices should ideally build a margin of error into the overall figure. If you come in under budget, you can always pay the customer back, helping you exceed their expectations, and encouraging them to use you again.
The opposite of this happy setup is what you want to avoid. You don’t want to put your prices up after a customer has agreed to a quote. That sort of thing doesn’t go down well and can sour relationships.
Charge Your Customers In Proportion To The Value You Offer
Ultimately, tradespeople need to remember why they do their work. It’s not about just finding a way to fill your time. Instead, it’s about making money so you and your family can have a better future. Remembering that you’re a business, therefore, is essential. You want to make sure that you’re getting something out of every client.
Many tradespeople will absorb costs because they’re worried about charging their clients more. If possible, resist this urge. If they want a quality service, they should be willing to pay for it. If they’re not, then it is not worth pursuing their business. You are better off finding people who will pay you adequately for the services you render.