The environment is a hot-button topic these days, and roofers more than most contractors know how the weather can impact the bottom line of a business. As the ideology and demands of homeowners shift towards environmentally sustainable materials and practices, “going green” can give you a competitive edge within your target market, not only as a marketing angle, but from a financial standpoint as well.
According to the United States Green Building Council (USGBC),
“…the green building sector is outpacing overall construction growth in the United States and will continue to rise. Moreover, it’s estimated that green construction will directly contribute 1.1 million jobs and $75.6 billion in wages by 2018 in the U.S.”
You’ve likely already considered personal or office green policies – Should I plant recycling bins around the office? Buy a fuel-efficient truck? But how can this apply directly to your business practices? To become an eco-friendly roofer, consider the following practices and benefits of being environmentally responsible.
Reduce Paper Usage & Costs By Implementing Business Management Software
One of the best ways to cut costs and become more environmentally conscious is by dramatically reducing the amount of paper products your sales and office teams need by investing in business management software. Implementing a CRM (customer relationship management) software has the potential to completely eliminate the paper and storage costs that you spend money on every month. One study suggests that on average,
“Organizations spent $80 per employee on paper annually, and 50 to 70 percent of office space was devoted to filing and storing documentation.”
For many years, you probably kept all your customer information in either a Rolodex or a filing cabinet. After jotting down your prospect’s information with your handy pen or pencil, you might have passed those on to your office staff, or into your own personal filing system in your truck. But when you can’t find those notes, or when your office staff can’t read your handwriting and make mistakes, your business suffers a loss of time, and money that could be avoided.
By electronically storing all your customer’s information and correspondence securely in the cloud, your company saves money on supplies and storage costs, and you save time excavating your entire filing cabinet. And on an even greener note, you have reduced the amount of paper wasted, making your roofing business more environmentally friendly.
Offering Green Products to Your Customers
Continuing the trend of eco-friendly business practices, consider upgrading your material supplies by offering a line of environmentally sustainable or recycled products to your customers as an up-sell option. Many material suppliers have green options, and as a trusted and skilled contractor, providing this information to homeowners on the difference between a metal or asphalt shingle, in addition to the longevity and quality of those products versus traditional ones, can help you earn their trust, their referrals, and their continued business. Along the same line, offering eco-friendly upgrades, such as skylights, or even solar panels can take a project to a new level.
Understandably, offering the installation of specialized products requires that your teams are properly certified and that the quality of their work reflects positively on your business. Certification training programs can be costly upfront, but retaining specialized, skilled contractors can be an added bonus to both your overall business production.
When you finish tearing off the old shingles from your roofing renovation, you probably debate how to dispose of the shingles. Should you bring them to the landfill, which is typically the cheaper, more efficient option, or bring them to a shingle recycling plant, where the shingles can be converted into asphalt pavement for roads? Many roofers will choose the cheaper option, because it will save money that can be used elsewhere in the business. However, you should consider the environmental and monetary benefits of electing to recycle your shingles.
Bringing your shingles to a specified recycling plant can be more costly, but will pay off in the long run. The benefits of recycling can be two-fold. Marketing your eco-friendly practices helps your business attract “like-minded individuals” who also put an emphasis on the environment. Attracting more customers will lead to more sales, higher revenues, and greater profits. Your small action of taking the turn into the recycling plant instead of the landfill now not only helped pave more roads, but also attracted those customers you’ve been trying so hard to connect with.
Going green has two main benefits: saving the environment and boosting sales. By killing two birds with one stone, you can more efficiently expand your roofing business. While making the initial investments in going green may seem costly and time consuming at first, it can pay off greatly and benefit you in the long-run. By planning for the future, you can grow your roofing business faster than the competition.
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