3 Huge Mistakes for Business Owners to Avoid

It’s time to begin preparing for colder weather with these winter junk removal tips from JRA. The chilly months are coming, and you know what that means. People are going to stay indoors. The holidays will fast approach, and folks all over will be spending their money on presents and Christmas preparations.

For all of these reasons, winter has a reputation for being a slow and brutal time for the junk removal industry. In fact, many junk removal businesses don’t survive their first winter. So how can you rise above and use the slow season for growth? Avoid these mistakes that we see too many junk removal businesses make.

Mistake #1: Turning Away Business Before Winter Starts

It may sound ridiculous, but every year we see junk removal businesses make this mistake. In the late summer and fall when business is booming, many business owners will decide not to hire more people or get more trucks because they’re worried about the winter slow season ahead. This creates a self-fulfilling prophecy! By saying you’re going to be slow by wintertime, you WILL slow down during winter. 

When you don’t hire more people or get adequate trucks during the busy season, you will fill your schedule and have to turn jobs away. The problem is, those jobs that you turned away are costing you repeat business, referrals, and reviews. You never know when one of those jobs could lead to consistent work during the winter or a BIG job down the road. By cutting business in the fall in preparation for winter, YOU are the one slowing down your business. Allow yourself to grow!

Tightening your budget in preparation for winter is not a bad idea, but always ask yourself these two questions: does it increase sales, and does it decrease expenses? Only when your answer to both of these questions is no, should you slash it from your monthly budget. 

Mistake #2: Not Staying Busy (Even When You Don’t Have Jobs)

The junk removal business owners that do the best in this industry are the ones that work all year long. How big your business is going to get will be determined by what you do when things are slow. This is the perfect time to participate in networking events and get your name and business out there in the community. 

When your crews aren’t busy doing junk removal jobs, get them out on the road to do truck-based marketing. They can pass out flyers and put up yard signs. Or, they can volunteer at a local charity or donation drop-off, helping haul items inside while passing out business cards for future pick-ups. These tasks are effective marketing techniques and can help you retain your crew members through the winter months. 

Don’t be afraid to chase after potential customers yourself, too. Have a realtor luncheon and make friends with property managers. Head over to your local storage facilities and offer cleanout services for abandoned units. Meet with professional organizers and tell them more about what you can do. Strike now while your competitors are playing it super safe, and you might be surprised by the potential customers you can find out there!

Winter is also an ideal time to do staff training and vehicle maintenance. Use the extra time to get your trucks serviced and team running well so you can avoid breakdowns during the busy spring and summer months. 

Mistake #3: Reducing Marketing Spend

Reducing your advertising during winter because business is slow is kind of like trying to launch a rocket ship with no fuel. It’s not going to get you very far! Marketing IS the rocket fuel for your junk removal business. That’s why we recommend you keep up your advertising efforts throughout the winter. 

If, for example, you decide to cut Google Ads for the winter in order to save $3,000, you will be costing yourself both short and long-term business. That $3,000 might have brought in $15,000 in jobs, and that’s just in the short term! When you start looking at the repeat business, referrals, and online reviews that those ads could bring in, the long-term impact is even greater. By not spending now, you have not only lost out on jobs this season, but you’ve had an adverse impact on your future busy and slow seasons. 

When you cut marketing spending going into winter, you cut off your top-line revenue because you’ve taken the fuel out. You no longer have the rocket fuel to help propel your business.

This is one of the largest and most common mistakes we see people make and it’s often because business owners don’t have a clear understanding of how much return they are getting from their marketing spend. Make sure you are tracking just how much business those dollars are bringing in for your company. And, if you work with JRA, that’s something we can help you track.

Don’t create a self-fulfilling prophecy! By following our winter junk removal tips and avoiding common pitfalls, you can stop your business from shrinking this winter and may even outgrow the slowdown. To learn more tips, watch “Junk Removal Business Owners!! Don’t Make These 3 HUGE WINTER MISTAKES” by our founder Lee Godbold. Or, contact us today to become a client and gain personalized advice from our team of experts.