Mobile Friendly Websites Predict Business Future

Technology in the hands

Having a website that is mobile friendly is no longer about making a few more sales; it’s become a critical component of creating strong brands.

A study conducted by Google on mobile use in the US found:

96% of consumers have encountered a website that did not have mobile in mind.

75% prefer a mobile site.

67% said that when they visit a mobile friendly site they are more likely to buy a site’s product or service.

50% said that even if they like the business they will use them less often if the website isn’t mobile friendly.

52% said that a bad mobile said made them less likely to engage with the company.

48% said that if a site didn’t work on mobile it made them feel like the company didn’t care about their business.

The numbers are very sobering, and it’s apparent that mobile friendly websites are a necessity to be a successful competitor in the marketplace.

Curious if your brand is meeting this need? An easy way to check if your business website is mobile friendly is to visit the page via your smartphone.

3 key ideas to remember in making a mobile friendly website:

  • Don’t let your customers get lost. Having a place where users can click to call your business and find your address easily is a necessary first step.  If they can’t find you, you’ve lost them. Literally and figuratively.
  • Easily clickable links. Links should be large enough that they can be easily clicked by hand or trackball.
  • Say no to thumb fatigue. Limiting content is helpful as most do not want to read a large block of text on a small screen.  Also, limit the number of times they must input information into a textbox. Nobody wants to spend five minutes filling in multiple text boxes with their thumbs.

With the ever-growing numbers of smartphone users, businesses should consider adapting their websites to mobile friendly versions. This requires an investment of time and money for business owners.

Making your website mobile friendly makes it future friendly. By adapting your website for mobile use you are positioning your business to meet the needs of a base of customers who are already familiar and very comfortable with mobile browsing and emerging technology.

Making a  mobile friendly website requires time and money. But, franchisees that purchase a franchise system from The Dwyer Group ®have someone to help them with this so their time and money can be applied to more important aspects of business.

If you would like to learn more about purchasing a franchise, fill out the contact form and someone will be in contact with you shortly. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog, you don’t want to miss out!

Home Service Industry Booming in Texas Cities

Last week, the Austin American-Statesman newspaper highlighted the growth of several franchise concepts owned by The Dwyer Group® in the Austin area, including Mr. Rooter® Plumbing, Mr. Electric®, and The Grounds Guys® landscape management franchises.

Frequently named one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S., Austin, Texas saw an astounding population growth of 51.1% between 2000-2010. With this population explosion comes new homes and a need for service professionals to maintain those homes. Read more

Will You Be the 100th “Grounds Guy”? A Leading Green Franchise Opportunity

The Grounds Guys® is on the hunt for its 100th franchisee. The Grounds Guys specializes in landscaping and lawn maintenance for residential and commercial customers. A typical “Grounds Guy” loves the outdoors but is also passionate about managing and mentoring people and making a positive impact on the local community.

Aside from having an interest in the green industry, a potential franchisee of The Grounds Guys should have honesty and integrity, a strong work ethic, high achievement drive, be a team player and be willing to learn and apply successful business systems. Read more

New Franchisees Donate Landscaping Labor During Training Week

It was a sunny and mild November day in Temple, Texas. As the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Temple comes into view, bright yellow-and-green “I Care” shirts stand out against the faded autumn leaves.

On November 8, four new The Grounds Guys® franchise owners took a break from their busy training week in Waco, forty miles to the north, to join The Grounds Guys corporate staff and Bell County franchise owner, William Johnson, for Monika Day, a day of giving back to the community. Read more

A Complete Landscape Business Turnaround

“Honey, I quit my job.”

These are the words that every wife dreads to hear, knowing that her family’s financial stability had been thrown into a state of unpredictability. But for Paula Smith, she decided to support her husband Kenny’s decision to start a landscaping business.

Fast forward a little bit, and Kenny and Paula found themselves at another crossroads. Read more

Undercover Boss Appearance Sparks Franchise Growth, Builds Anticipation for Re-Airing

Not many individuals would choose to put their professional—not to mention personal—reputation on the line by appearing on reality TV. Not many individuals, however, are like The Dwyer Group® CEO and Chairwoman Dina Dwyer-Owens.

On January 22, 2012, the United States watched Dwyer-Owens go undercover in the service industry on the three-time Emmy nominated show, “Undercover Boss.” From replacing a broken water heater to repairing kitchen appliances, and driving a riding lawnmower to installing an electrical sign, the boss got an inside look at the frontlines of The Dwyer Group brands. The national response to the episode and the company—particularly its Code of Values®—was poignant. On Friday, August 10 at 7:00 p.m. CT, the episode will re-air on CBS. Read more

Learn About Franchise Opportunities Through a Trade Show

In today’s age of mobile phones, email, and texting, there’s still nothing better than a face-to-face conversation, especially when it could change your life and your business in a huge way. One great way that you can find out more about our concepts is by meeting up with our team at an industry trade show. Most trade shows that we attend will have not only a corporate representative available to talk to you, but current franchise owners much like you who have recently gone through the process of opening one of our franchises. You can arrange a meeting ahead of time by contacting our franchise development team before an event. Here are some upcoming trade shows and special events that you can meet us at. We hope to see you there!

Read more

Special Public Protectors Series: Charles Baldwin

This week, we’ll be focusing on some local heroes and former firefighters and law enforcement officers who are pioneering a second career through the purchase of a franchise. Especially with the outbreak of wildfires across the Western U.S. in recent weeks, communities are looking for a way to thank not only active firefighters, but retired firefighters who have handed in their hoses after decades of loyal service.

Public Protectors Franchise Advantage Award

Charles Baldwin (left) and his son, currently a firefighter, pose in their firefighting gear.

Charles Baldwin is a Franklin, North Carolina native who attended Hiwassee College in Madisonville, Tennessee while simultaneously volunteering at the Franklin Fire Department.  Following graduation, Charles began working for the Franklin Fire Department full-time.  Charles currently serves with the Martinez Columbia Fire Rescue in Georgia and recently converted his business, DesignScape Landscape, into The Grounds Guys® as the first franchisee to utilize the Public Protectors Franchise Advantage (PPFA) program.

How did you learn about the brand?

I found out about The Grounds Guys from the television show Undercover Boss that featured The Dwyer Group, the parent company of The Grounds Guys.

What was appealing to you about joining a franchise system? Read more

Celebrate Earth Day with Environment-Friendly Service Tips from The Dwyer Group®

“Helping customers fulfill their sustainability agenda offers companies an opportunity to build trust and credibility, bringing companies closer to their customers and helping to boost customer loyalty.”

                                                              – Report by consulting firm Accenture

 In the service industry, empowering customers to be environmentally friendly and in turn save money, can help increase customer loyalty. The Dwyer Group and its seven service franchises pride themselves on customer satisfaction and loyalty, providing do-it-yourself home improvement and maintenance tips in blogs and news articles along with quality on-site service.  In fact, “Customer Focus” is one of the four main points of the company Code of Values® that we teach our service professionals.

In honor of Earth Day this Sunday, we’ve compiled a list of environmentally-friendly service tips to help “green” the home environment while conserving the earth’s resources.

Mr. Rooter® Plumbing:
-Look for an environmentally friendly product that reduces drain backups and odors.  A chemical-free product, BioChoiceES® displays the Environmental Protection Agency’s Design for the Environment logo.  It is a microbial drain cleaner that is naturally occurring and biodegradable. 

-Conserve water by maintaining your toilets and checking for leaks.  Replace flappers and fill valves every couple of years to avoid a running toilet.  A new flapper will seal properly, and a new valve will stop overfilling or filling too slowly.

Rainbow International®
-Look under your kitchen sink and remove toxic products.  These household poisonings are one of the highest threats to the health of children.  Replace with non-toxic, eco-friendly products.

-To remove a stain from your carpet, mix a solution of one-part vinegar to two-parts water in a clean spray bottle.  Let the solution sit on the stain for a while and then wipe with paper towels.

Mr. Appliance®
-If you notice your food cooking unevenly or it is taking longer than before, it may be time to replace cracked or torn oven door seals that can allow up to 20% of heat to escape.

-Give your refrigerator some breathing room by keeping the appliance at least two or three inches away from the wall. Place your refrigerator away from direct sunlight and appliances that produce heat to make your refrigerator run more efficiently.

Mr. Electric®
-Solar energy helps the environment because it reduces the need to burn fossil fuels.  That means a correlating drop in air pollution and greenhouse gases.

-Switch from incandescent lights to LED.  By changing one light bulb in your home, you minimize wasteful energy expenditure.  LED lights last 10 times longer than a regular incandescent bulb, which translates to financial savings for you and better energy efficiency.

Glass Doctor®
-Going green is as easy as fixing your windshield chip!  Because auto glass is very difficult to recycle, it’s best to prolong the life of your current windshield. Every time you repair your windshield, you save space in a landfill and reduce your use of plastics.

-Homemade environmentally-friendly glass cleaner recipe:  Start by squeezing the juice of one lemon in a clean spray bottle, then fill the bottle with water.  Add two drops of natural liquid dish soap or ½ teaspoon of baking soda (this step is to soften the water).  Close the bottle and shake well.  Spray on the glass and wipe with a lint-free cloth.

Aire Serv®
-Use high-efficiency air filters to help your air conditioning system stay cleaner longer and use less energy to keep cool.

-Plant trees or shrubs to shade the air conditioning unit, but not so close that they block airflow.

 Look to The Dwyer Group and its service franchises to provide environmentally friendly homecare tips and make every day “Earth Day.” 

 

 

How to Keep your Customers when you Re-Brand as a Franchise

One of the greatest fears small business owners must overcome when considering joining a franchise is, What if I lose my current customers? Many mom-and-pop business owners are forced to weigh the benefits of buying a franchise against the costs of re-branding and the potential brand confusion and loss of customer loyalty. A name change is a very involved process, from financial and legal documents to letterhead, marketing materials, and uniforms.

With proper and consistent communication to your existing customers, the good news is that you can bring your longstanding clients along with you to the next stage of your business’s journey. Franchisors have a great arsenal of marketing tools that you can use to inform the community and to get them excited about the coming changes: not just a new logo and colors, but a commitment at the core of your business to keep moving forward.

Take Lee Eppley, for example, owner of The Grounds Guys® of Southeast Charlotte in North Carolina. Eppley had been involved in landscaping for 22 years through his previous company, Final Touch Landscaping and Irrigation, Inc. Upon turning 38 last year, he realized that he had hit a glass ceiling in the very competitive Charlotte market, so he turned to The Grounds Guys as a way to drive forward his business with a national brand name.

To ensure the smooth transition for the re-branding, he followed steps laid out by The Grounds Guys corporate office. He sent out an initial letter to customers, telling them that the change was coming and why. Soon afterwards, their branding switched over from red trucks to white with The Grounds Guys logo on the side, and his crew added The Grounds Guys’ bright yellow uniforms. At the three-month mark, he sent out another round of letters to former, current, and potential customers again in what Eppley calls a “half-time show,” announcing the re-branding. When they reach six months, The Grounds Guys of Southeast Charlotte plans to host their public Grand Opening to attract new customers.

“You need to reinvest in yourself, and with a team of people behind you, you can do it,” says Eppley.

Another individual that recently re-branded his business into a The Grounds Guys franchise is Phil Klemme, owner of The Grounds Guys of Union, Mo. Klemme began working at Platt Nursery and Landscaping in 1983 and purchased the landscaping part of the business in 2004, renaming it Platt Landscaping, LLC. After a poorly performing year in 2011, hit hard by the recession in a county with one of the highest unemployment rates in the state, Klemme decided that once again, a monumental change was needed for the business.

“I felt like I wasn’t able to do my job well, and I didn’t have the marketing support I needed,” said Klemme. After officially signing on with The Grounds Guys in late 2011, Platt Landscaping re-wrapped its trucks in December and held its official grand opening on February 1, 2012. He informed his existing customers of the change through direct mail pieces, door hangers, and through partnerships with the local Chamber of Commerce and community organizations.

Klemme also spread the word through public relations efforts, including an article in the local paper and a radio interview about the brand change. Even though the process had a few bumps along the way, including a short gap between when Klemme’s old website went down and his new one went live, Klemme believes that franchising allows him to have to worry less about “management distractions,” with so much operations support provided by the franchisor.

As a franchise owner, promoting your brand to the community is still a very big job. However, the marketing, operations, and public relations franchise support that companies such as The Dwyer Group® provides allows you to focus your energy on other ways to improve your business plan.

Eppley explains, “When you sign the papers, you are driving the change, but it’s the change that ends up driving you, forcing you to change your business for the better and to use difference resources.” Many franchise owners benefit from implementing new processes such as The Dwyer Group’s frontline program and Code of Values. During Eppley’s transition process, he did say goodbye to a few of his Final Touch Landscaping & Irrigation customers. However, he reports that they were quickly replaced by new customers of The Grounds Guys.

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    Why Morning Huddle? Every business owner needs a time to refocus their business goals and stay apprised of new industry trends, a morning huddle. That’s where we come in.

    The Dwyer Group® has led the service industry for 30 years and owns seven top home-service franchises with 1,600 locations worldwide. Our mission is to help everyone we touch lead happier, more successful lives through our principles of personal and business success.

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