The lawn care business, like most field service businesses, is evergreen. Demand for lawn care services will exist as long as lawns exist. Almost all construction projects, be it houses, offices, shops, and schools, have landscaped areas. The demand for landscaping services equals the increase in new construction projects. Plus, all these new projects will have recurring maintenance needs, making the industry high-growth.
But the industry is going through a churn. Customers and employees prefer to engage digitally. New technology adoption also boosts efficiency and saves operating costs. Companies can pass on some gains to their customers and improve their competitiveness. Upgrading to the latest field service software, for instance, improves accuracy, speeds up processes, and makes the business more resilient. Key metrics such as first-time fix rates, customer satisfaction, and employee commitment all increase.
The 2021 IBIS world landscaping services industry report estimates the worth of the US landscaping industry at $115.6 billion.
The industry grew by 5.1% per annum between 2016 and 2021. The estimated CAGR for the landscaping and gardening service market is 4.2% between 2022 and 2027.
In market size rankings, landscaping services rank as the 106th largest industry in the United States.
Each US household spends $503 on lawn care and gardening. The average spending on lawn care was only $317 in 2014.
At last count, about 600,000 companies offer various lawn care services in the USA. Many active landscape companies and a level playing field mean a low market share concentration. No company in the US has over 5% of the market. The 50 biggest lawn care maintenance companies in the US generate about 15% of the entire industry’s revenue.
Also, the concentration of lawn care providers varies depending on location. For example, only 29% of landscaping companies in the US operate in the western half of the United States. The low number of lawn care companies in states such as California leads to higher median revenue.
Notwithstanding the tempting macro-level outlook and prospects, lawn care is a complex business. Businesses embracing the latest technology can have a clear advantage over their competitors.
Tech adoption makes the lawn care business future-proof and more competitive. A case in point is the Terra robot lawn mower, launched by IRobot in 2019. This robotic lawn mower cuts grass by relying on sensors. Human intervention is only for supervision through a smartphone app. The considerable savings in labor costs make the robots attractive financially.
Technology has permeated lawn care design and planning as well. Full-color renderings and 3-D sketches, and of late Augmented Reality visualizations, offer customers a realistic view of plans.
Service providers seek machine versatility to cope with increased workloads and workforce shortages. Machines such as stand-on skid steers can take on multiple tasks. Such versatile machines improve ROI, reduce transportation costs and decrease clutter. Standard attachments such as forks, trenches, and buckets remain popular. In 2022, new extensions such as tree grapples and backhoes will make work easier.
Lawn care businesses have also started adopting field management software. The best field service software automates scheduling and dispatching, ensures seamless workflows, enables structured inspections, and auto-generates invoices. Automated software enables field services to embrace the latest tech easily, without capital investments or the workforce going through substantial learning curves.
The lawn care industry employs over 1.2 million people in the USA, spread across a wide range of professionals. The industry is male-dominated, with only 10.2% of landscaping employees being women.
The industry is not immune to the talent crunch facing most industries. Demand for a skilled workforce is high. The young millennials and Gen Z are not too keen to take up field jobs, especially menial jobs that involve working in the fields. Many businesses struggle to find adequate base-level staff. The salary for top-end jobs such as landscape architects has increased.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports wages for common lawn care services-related professions in 2021.
An increase in seasonal workers will mitigate the workforce crunch.
Returning customers accounted for 74% of a company’s base, while new customers accounted for 26% in the United States. This shows market growth.
The lawn care business enjoyed consistent growth, even during the dark days of the pandemic. After the pandemic-related lockdowns, people reconnect to the outdoors with greater vigor. They invest in landscapes as safe spaces.
Most homes and establishments maintain their landscapes to generate a good first impression. Perfectly manicured properties increase the resale value of homes.
Demographic shifts and lifestyle changes create new opportunities in the landscaping business. Increased urbanization prompts more people to take up gardening in their homes. 67% of US adults grow or plan to grow edible plants and maintain sustainable gardens at home, furthering the demand for landscape services. Such sustainable gardens need considerable effort. It offers good scope for differentiation for landscaping providers operating in competitive markets.
The rebounding economy and the rise of non-residential construction will increase landscaping. Environmental restoration projects, such as soil-fortifications works during winter, offer other growth areas.
About 40% of all Americans avail of the services of lawn care service providers. This leaves considerable room for growth.
Landscaping is an evergreen business, but also very competitive. Margins are low, with little scope to increase service prices. 62% of Americans who do not hire a professional landscaping company do not do so because they consider the costs too high. The low entry barrier attracts new players to the field. They offer low rates to garner market share, putting pressure on margins for everybody. Lawn care businesses also face threats from continuing supply chain disruptions.
Landscape providers must understand these trends and offer differentiated services for their customers. They seek efficiency improvements through field service management software.
The constant shifts in the market make it challenging for lawn care companies to stay efficient and competitive. However, improved capabilities and efficiency in the field can easily be achieved if implemented the right technology. An FSM software is one such solution, and a robust one like ReachOut Suite can keep your lawn care and landscaping business running smoothly under all circumstances.
How? Here’s a look at ReachOut’s top capabilities:
With automation, complete digitization on the field, and task optimization features, ReachOut Suite helps manage all aspects of field management, including work orders, inspections, audits, scheduling, and dispatching, seamlessly! Connect with us now to learn more about ReachOut, or Sign Up for a free trial now!