Image Credit: @childrennaturenetwork
For anyone with green fingers, gardening is less of a chore and more of a passion. If you have had enough of the corporate hamster wheel and feel ready for a change of pace, now could be a good time to take that leap into the world of the self-employed. But before you do, it is a good idea to be prepared. Becoming self-employed requires a certain amount of preparation. In this article, we go through some of the things you’ll need to get your gardening business off the ground.
Register for Tax
Register for tax as a priority. Don’t miss the tax return deadlines or you could end up being penalised. How you register will depend on the way you set up the business, so if in doubt, speak to HMRC or an accountant.
Invest in a Van
You will need a van to carry your tools and equipment, such as a lawnmower. Think about what type of van you need. Will a flat-bed truck be better than a standard small van? Look at a few different models for clarity. Price check various makes and models and see what local prices are like. It is usually better to buy second-hand, as prices are cheaper, but speak to a local used vans Crewe dealer like Your New Van to see what your options are.
Purchase Tools and Other Equipment
You probably already have most of the tools you need but check to see if there are other items worth buying, such as a heavy-duty petrol mower instead of your current electric one, or a woodchipper. Shop around for the best prices and don’t be afraid to haggle.
Marketing and Brand Building
Since there are probably other gardeners already servicing your area, you must start building a brand early on. Have a logo designed and add this and your name to your work van and the clothing you wear. Branded overalls or t-shirts help clients remember your name if they see you working on a neighbour’s garden.
Set up a simple website and create social media pages for your business. People often Google local businesses when they need a service, so make sure your website is optimised for location keywords, such as ‘gardener in Bolton’ or ‘garden maintenance Nottingham’. Think about what keywords you would use if you searched for a similar service and use these in your content.
Be active on social media and encourage your clients to leave a review if they were happy with the work you did. Lots of people look on sites like Facebook when they need a gardener and word-of-mouth recommendations are useful. The more people who recommend your service, the easier it will be to find new customers.
Another useful way to build a client list is to distribute leaflets in the local area. Ask your local garden centre to carry some leaflets or go door-to-door in streets where homeowners might want a gardener.
Be prepared to put in work initially, to find customers and get your name out there. But in time, as long as you are professional, hard-working, and do a great job, you’ll soon have a list of happy, regular customers.