Running a business is hard work. Doing everything you need to do to succeed takes time and planning. While people often say that over half of new businesses fail during their first year, it’s not entirely true. However, the reality isn’t all that much better.
In fact, studies from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that about 20% of new businesses go under during the first two years of being open, 45% during the first five years, and 65% during the first 10 years. Furthermore, only a quarter of new businesses stays in operation for 15 years or more.
Since so many businesses don’t survive in the long run, people must be making many of the same mistakes. If you own a construction or general contracting business or you are looking to start one, there are a lot of things you need to figure out to be successful. For this reason, we’ve outlined some tasks to help your business to survive and thrive.
You Need the Right Team Behind You
General contractors and home remodelers need to adhere to an 80/20 rule of their own. In other words, they should spend about 80% of their time talking with new clients, visiting potential job sites, and selling their services. They should devote the other 20% to management and operations.
Essentially, every residential and commercial construction company needs a competent team to perform the different jobs that enable their businesses to run smoothly. For instance, you need someone to supervise the field staff for multiple projects, which can include everything from construction to maintenance of existing buildings.
You will also need someone to look after the financial information. These numbers will be crucial for making important business decisions.
Furthermore, you will need someone to work with vendors or suppliers to find high-quality materials at the right prices. This person or team will be responsible for price negotiations, contracts, and examining specifications for raw materials.
While some employees will be able to do more than one activity, the key is to delegate important aspects of your business, so they don’t monopolize your time. As a result, you will be able to dedicate more of your efforts to sales and marketing, which is the bedrock of any company.
Concentrate on Lead Generation
You can’t keep a business going without revenue. And revenue comes from sales that originate from leads.
But How Do You Get Your Leads?
Many home renovation companies say that their business is nearly all word-of-mouth. There is nothing wrong with generating leads this way. But there are things you can do to enhance your word-of-mouth reputation.
For instance, you should get some of your satisfied customers to spread the word around about you by writing online reviews or testimonials. Oftentimes, when people search online for a general contractor, they check out your reviews to see what type of experience clients had with your company. Therefore, you want to manage your reviews in a way that generates strong leads for your company.
Sign Up for Lead Generation Services
If you’re a commercial contractor, a good way to get leads is to sign up for lead generation services such as Building Connected or iSqft or The Blue Book. These services can put you in the mix for plenty of opportunities in your local area that you wouldn’t normally be exposed to.
On the other hand, if you’re a residential contractor, you should register with Home Advisor among other sites. Home Advisor is helpful because it provides direct contact to homeowners seeking your services. You should also try other sites like Thumbtack and NextDoor to reach more of your target audience. NextDoor takes a slightly different approach in that it is more like a social media site than an actual job board. Nevertheless, many people post here when they need to hire a home renovation company or general contractor.
Don’t Neglect Google Ads
Google Ads is a platform that every contractor should take advantage of. Because both residential and commercial clients use Google to find quality contractors, you want to use PPC ads to try and meet them where they are. The big advantage here is that clients researching contractors on Google are already in purchasing mode. If you can get in front of them, they will be great leads for your business.
Expand Your Online Presence
Every business needs a robust online presence these days; it’s no longer an option. Having a website that accurately represents your business enables prospective clients to research your company. For instance, if your home renovation business has a gallery page on your website, clients can get a feel for the type of work you do based on past projects.
If you have a professional website, you can take your content marketing to new heights by adding landing pages for areas you want to target. You can also improve your search engine results by writing regular blog posts that include helpful information for both current and potential clients. In this way, you will bolster your website’s authority while providing material to link to in your emails and post on social media accounts. All of these efforts will really help your search engine optimization. Consequently, you should see much more organic traffic to your site.
Running a contracting business is tough work and involves many moving parts. For this reason, even the most experienced contractors can stumble out of the gate if they don’t have the right team in place to support their business. Try some of these tips for growing and marketing your contracting business, so it runs smoothly and continues to grow year after year.