Starting a plumbing business may be an exciting venture for a seasoned plumber who wants to advance his or her career. However, you’ll quickly discover that running the marketing and business portions of things takes a lot of effort and demands a significant learning curve. Before you start, it’s essential to conduct your own research and prepare everything ahead of time.
This post will walk you through the steps to set up and market your business. We’ll go through everything from calculating your start-up expenses to marketing your company successfully. If you’re just getting started, or if you’ve been working in the industry for a while, this guide will help you take your company to the next level!
Estimate Startup Outlay
Calculating how much money you’ll need is the first step in how to launch a plumbing business. This will be determined by your situation and the scale of the business you want to start, but there are some common expenses that every new plumbing firm must meet:
- Truck or van
- Office space/warehouse
- Legal (attorney, licenses, registration)
- Salaries (include yours) for the first few months
- A cushion to cover your first few months’ expenses until you build a clientele
Begin by making a best guess for the overall cost of your company. You can have an accountant assist you in determining those figures later on.
Meet with an attorney
An attorney can assist you in selecting and establishing the legal structure for your new company, advising you on whether to go with a sole proprietorship, limited liability company (LLC), or corporation.
You should also hire a lawyer to examine any contracts or agreements you’ll be using with employees, contractors, partners, vendors, and customers. It’s critical that these documents safeguard your rights as well as those of anybody else who works for the firm.
Call an Accountant
Your accountant can assist you in verifying your startup expenditures and projecting how much profit and loss your company will have over the first few years. They may also provide you with financial management advice once your firm is established.
A bookkeeping system that tracks your profits and expenses is vital for taxes. But it will also help you track which jobs and activities are covering their share of your monthly expenses.
Create a Brand Identity for Your Business
How many plumbing companies are available in your region? Unless you’re the only one, you’ll want to establish yourself as a specialist.
You can specialize in a certain area, depending on your interests and the demands of the market. For example, you might specialize in maintenance calls, new construction, or commercial work. Alternatively, you may specialize in high-end homes and charge premium prices for their bespoke plumbing requirements.
Once you’ve decided how to position yourself in the market, design a brand identity that will appeal to your target audience. Choose colors, typefaces, a logo, and a few stock images that set you apart from the competition.
Make a Marketing Plan
Your marketing plan is just your ideas for how to reach your audience with a convincing message. You might use both online and offline marketing tactics:
- Facebook ads
- Google My Business (a free business listing)
- Yelp, Angi, Thumbtack, and other home improvement listing sites
- Newspaper or magazine ads
- Google or Facebook advertising
- Radio or TV commercials
- Door hangers
- Yard Signs
- Social media
- Home shows and other local events
Consider the people you want to reach, whether they’re consumers or other construction professionals. Why should they choose your company and not someone else? Choose a medium and a message that will connect with your target audience.
How to Find Money for Your Business
Finding enough cash is one of the most difficult tasks for any startup. Many entrepreneurs begin their businesses with their own funds or seek loans from friends and family.
If you’re looking for more substantial funding, talk to your banker about small business loans. They may be able to offer you a loan or line of credit that can help get your business off the ground.
Set Up Your Systems
Plumbing is a service industry, so how you deal with your clients will determine whether they come back and give you good reviews. Customers want timely communication, rapid response times, and high-quality work done safely and effectively by trained experts.
Are you prepared to fulfill these expectations? You’ll need good systems to make your business smoothly and efficiently.
How will you handle things like scheduling calls, sending technicians to job sites, collecting payments from customers, placing orders for parts or supplies for current jobs, dispatching services when crises occur?
Hiring office staff to perform all these functions would be expensive. A better option is to sign up for ServiceWorks, an app designed to run field service businesses. ServiceWorks manages the back end of your business so you can focus on pipes and customers. It’s affordable enough for a one-person company, yet it can also be expanded as your company grows — and you can sign up for a free two-week trial without a credit card.
Putting It All Together
There are several things to think about while launching a new plumbing business. You’ll be well on your way to success if you follow the steps we’ve laid out here. Start by figuring out how much money you’ll need. Then work your way through the items, and you’ll be ready to sign your first client.