As per the recent survey, it has been found that the snow plowing industry collected on an average $20.5 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a CAGR rate of 2.1% in the upcoming five years.
With such a high growth rate, you must have set your mind to become the boss of your own snow plow business. Right?
Starting a snow plow business may be the right choice for you if you live in a snowy area. But there are many barriers that you need to undertake, like equipment maintenance, startup costs, performing legal procedures, and even building marketing strategies.
Compared to other field service industries, the snow industry is entirely different as it is seasonal work. However, being an entrepreneur, if you have planned to invest your money, but don’t know how to start a snow removal business, then you are at the right place.
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Basics of Snow Removal Business
Snow removal business or snow plow business offers services to remove snow from the front of the residence, lawn, or commercial buildings. Snow Plowing business is a boon for someone, primarily, outdoor contractors that provide the best solution to the customers by removing the snow from their local areas.
7 Steps Guide to Starting a Snow Plowing Business
Below is the list of steps to make it easy for you to start your own snow plow business from scratch.
Make a Cost Prediction
The first step in starting a snow removal business is to predict overall startup costs. You need to spend many upfront costs just before starting it.
So, you need to make sure that your budget is well-maintained and then anticipate all the costs mentioned below:
- Snow removal equipment: For the snow removal business, the biggest constraint is purchasing equipment. The equipment is very costly, and you need to buy it as per your business needs. For example, a snow plow, snow blower, salt, and salt sprayer are the most expensive equipment.
- Transportation: Unless you decide to offer door-to-door services, transportation and gas become mandatory for your business. You need to consider the cost of vehicle maintenance and fuel.
- Insurance: Buying an insurance policy is mandatory for business owners. Generally, it is for liability purposes, but you can also opt for your equipment and operating vehicles’ policy.
- Job Scheduling Software: You need to consider the cost of purchasing the best software solutions that can easily create and manage the job schedule for your cleaners. Different software solutions possess other pricing plans.
- Personal weather gear: To perform the job, your snow plow driver needs to dress for the job. You need to consider a reliable uniform like a pair of boots, gloves, and a coat. For additional body protection, warm-weather gear is a must while performing the job.
Apart from these costs, you need to decide on the service charges you will take from customers.
Select For an Appropriate Business Type
Generally, you will come across multiple business types to choose from. However, some common business structure types can help you select the best one based on your business requirements.
- Sole Proprietorship: There is only one business operator in this business type, and that is you. You have complete responsibility to make small and large decisions on your business assets, liabilities, and other management.
- Limited Liability Company (LLC): You can quickly grab the benefit of limited liability. It means that you get some tax benefits and exemptions in your snow plow business areas.
- Corporation: This type is specifically for someone who has large-scale and more established industries. Even this business structure involves taxable employees.
Nowadays, many organizations are adopting either LLC or a Corporation business structure. However, the most exciting part is that you can even navigate LLC to a Corporation if you are willing to do that.
Make a List of Services You’ll Offer
Once your legal formalities are completed, you need to select services that you will offer to the customers. If you are unaware of the services, you can do market research to identify the top benefits the competitors run in your local area.
You need to find out the approximate amount of snowfall and ice you get every year and about your area distance. If you know about these, it becomes easy for you to include the services that can remove snow or ice in that specific area.
Moreover, you need to decide on whether you are going to provide residential or commercial properties. Do not make a mistake to cover both of them in the initial stage; instead, select only one that suits you the best.
Once everything goes okay, enhance the services and expand your business. Remember that residential and commercial snow accounts require different equipment types, so if you opt for both services together, then your costs may increase.
Name Your Business and Apply for Business Registration
The next essential step is to give a business name. Unfortunately, searching for the name is one of the most tedious tasks as it affects your business performance.
When you are planning to give a name to your business, keep in mind the following points:
- Your audience and target market
- Buyers’ appeal
- Innovative qualities
- SEO and branding awareness
- The permanence of the name
- Clear representation
In short, whatever name you select, it must be such that every time the customer thinks of snow removal, they should contact you on priority.
Once your name is ready and available to use, it’s time to register your business with the government or secretary of state. It is also essential as you need to file for taxes and the legal process.
- Filing a “Doing Business As” (DBA) name is the first and foremost metric you need to perform. Once everything is fine, it’s okay; otherwise, you need to do the paperwork again if your business’s name is different from your legal name.
- The next thing is to do the filing for business structure so that the government can verify that your business name is legal, unique, and no one else can use it.
- Finally, you can also apply for trademarking your businesses from the government’s business agency to grab complete protection.
Obtain a Business License and Essential Permits
As a part of legal formalities, you need to obtain the necessary license requirements based on your state or country. In addition, you need to check and verify with the local government about the legal laws related to starting a snow plow business.
For taking the permits from legal authorities, you need to consider the following aspects:
- First, you need to do market research to identify the work location and type of vehicle, whether a three-wheeler or a four-wheel drive will be required for plowing or shovelling
- You can even search for the local neighbourhood to check whether no one is disturbed by plowing or shovelling. If such constraints are taken care of, then it’s the right place for you to start.
By considering the metrics mentioned above, business owners can easily opt for applying for business permits.
Construct Your Client Base
Having a strong client base is the primary motto of any business. So, you need to offer the best snow removal services to your customers.
As a business owner, you must know how much snow removal work your service team can accommodate in a day. It can be calculated based on the following parameters:
- You need to define the approximate amount of available time, specifically in hours per week, to perform the jobs.
- As per your working job time, you must have high-quality equipment to provide the best services to customers.
- The total number of staff available to solve a lot of issues arises on the job site.
With such parameters to be taken into account, you can easily enhance customer satisfaction to a great extent.
Market and Launch Your Snow Removal Business
Now, you are ready to showcase your business and services to the world. One of the most incredible places where you can advertise your business is getting online.
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps you get more customers by using the unique website of your business. In addition, by having a Facebook and Instagram account, you can do marketing on your website.
Word-of-mouth is another way of marketing to enhance your brand awareness among the customers in the local area. You can talk with your friends, neighbours, and even perform door-to-door advertisements for your services.
You can even make professional business cards, flyers, signs, or newspaper advertisements by including your service areas, business location, and even contact information.
Using such advertisement and marketing strategies, you can quickly catch the eye of residents. The critical thing to note is that your information should be more concise and easy to read for any customer.
Finally, you can now introduce your business to your customers by sending an open invitation. During your business’s inauguration, you can offer some discount coupons on snow removal services during the winter season and even off-season.
These are the leading steps that can help you to start your snow plowing business from scratch. However, many questions will still arise in your mind, so we have introduced frequently asked questions in the next section.
Streamline Your Snow Removal Business Operations With FieldCamp
FieldCamp is a premier field service management software that helps you approximately sily create, manage, and track the job schedule for your workers, fast.FAQs
Your business’s average cost typically depends on your business requirements, tools, and equipment to be used. However, if you consider a plow, a simple snowblower, and salt, it may cost around $3000-$10000 approximately.
After adequately analyzing the competitors and other factors, the business owners need to make an active decision on charging the customers. Typically, for residential snow removal, it costs $38-$53 for one visit and for snow blowing, you can charge $40-$75.
One of the most well-maintained ways to generate revenue in the initial stage is to use a single person and a plow truck. Often, multiple methods are available to make money, but the best one is to use Residential Snow Removal Contracts.
Starting a snow plow business is a tedious and time-consuming task, but no one can stop you from making it with ease if applied with proper management.
Take your valuable time to view every step and tip mentioned in the blog. However, the most important thing that you need to make sure of is maintaining your business productivity and efficiency. So, the best option is to adopt FieldCamp, a field service management software in your business, and automate your entire business operations with ease.