How are things? This is a common question we ask family and friends when meeting up or talking on the phone, but have you ever thought to ask this question regarding your business? Well, we’re here to help you do just that as we dive into how things are going in the pest and lawn care industries.
2020 and on into 2021 continues to be a time of adjusting to the world’s new normal. Companies have had to make changes. Routines have been turned upside-down. Making successful transitions in this difficult time period could determine whether a field service business sinks or swims. Making changes that meet your customers' needs may require you to implement new safety procedures, be more flexible with scheduling, and be open to new ways to stay in communication with your customers. Businesses that have leveraged their creativity to be more productive and maintain a safe environment for employees and customers continue to power through to success.
The U.S. pest control industry is expected to experience growth over the next five years to 2026, according to IBISWorld. The same research forecasts that revenue will increase at an annualized rate of 2.4% to $19 billion during this time span. Industry growth will occur partly due to increased housing sales and residential construction, as well as high levels of bedbug infestations that will most likely persist over the next five years.
And while COVID-19 has had a negative effect on many industries, the pest control vertical has managed to successfully pivot and capitalize on its ability to serve the community where they are. With so many people being at home, they’ve had an opportunity to take notice of their space. People are concerned about cleanliness and hygiene at higher levels than ever before, and pest control businesses are set to meet their needs in that area. Also, temperatures are expected to increase over the next five years, a phenomenon that brings pests indoors and increases populations, driving demand for industry services.
Commercial pest control is making its own rebound. It is a bit slower as a result of the slowdown in the hospitality and restaurant industries. However, now that travel has increased, and more people are back to dining in restaurants, pest control is needed to ensure their locations provide a comfortable environment for their patrons. Restaurants and hotels provide strong demand for pest control operators, as they are strictly regulated by health and safety codes and must maintain pest-free environments. Additionally, the commercial market will regularly need industry services after the pandemic to protect from future issues. As a result, the number of companies in the industry is expected to increase at an annualized rate of 2.9% to 32,666 enterprises over the five years to 2026.
Overall, pest control business owners are optimistic about what the future holds. The hot housing market is driving things in a positive direction as well. When people want to sell, they know they need to make sure things are in order. This includes home improvements and making sure their home is pest-free. And many people who are staying in their homes who had paused or canceled service during the height of COVID are now resuming services, with additional people adding service for the first time.
On a whole, growth has slowed, but it has not stopped. And slow growth is still growth. Here are the numbers according to the 2021 PMP State of the Industry report.
33% surveyed project their 2021 revenue to be between $1 million and 9,999,999.
35% surveyed project revenue to increase between 10% to 25%.
33% surveyed project profit to increase between 10% to 25%.
When things get particularly challenging, sometimes you just have to stay the course. This is the topic of discussion in the Lawn & Landscape Industry Report. The goal is to get to the other side with your business still intact and in position to make gains. That is what lawn companies across the country are working to do – get to the other side of COVID.
There have been financial changes all around. Some customers have lost jobs. Prices for everyday goods, gas, and tools have risen. Nevertheless, lawn care business owners can still be cautiously optimistic. There is still work out there that can help you to create sustainable and recurring revenue.
Commercial shopping centers and retail stores were hard-hit by COVID, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other possible revenue streams. Just like renovations are taking place inside the home, people desire to upgrade their lawns as well. For this reason, irrigation repair and landscape construction are seeing increased interest. Over the five years leading up to and including 2021, IBISWorld estimates housing construction to grow at a robust annualized rate of 4.5%. Growth in residential construction, particularly for single-family units, has underpinned industry growth over the past five years. Similarly, according to 2020 data from Landscape Management, 90.0% of the respondents describe the Landscape Services industry as very or relatively healthy, and 53.0% of respondents shared that they were very optimistic about their business outlook.
One issue, in particular, that has shown itself across field service industries and the country, in general, is recruiting and retaining quality talent. A Lawn & Landscape survey lists it as respondents’ number one concern. In order for a business to continue to move forward, this must be addressed. Job seekers and current employees alike want to know the company values them as a person. This may involve paying competitive and higher salaries, offering benefits, and providing training that helps people advance in their careers and offers job security. Sometimes you’re going to have to think outside of the box and hire someone outside of the lawn industry to get the job done. Skills from the previous positions are transferrable, and you have the ability to train them to do what your company needs.
As the tides turn and the world continues to open up, hope and optimism shine through in the field service industries. Times have been challenging for the people you service, so making sure your business is on a solid foundation is one of the best ways to make sure you are ready to grow, scale, and serve. Increase your efficiencies with automation so that you can save time and money and better communicate with your customers. Are you set up to easily take payments from your customers? Investing in an integrated payment system that leverages automation can help. And as you take care of current payments, it’s important to bring in new ones too by putting your brand in front of the right people.
FieldRoutes is here to support your field service business. Whether it’s pest or lawn, we have an end-to-end solution that will ensure your business is on a firm foundation no matter what’s going on in the world. Contact us today to learn more about the easy-to-use software that will help your business grow and scale effectively.
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