The Top 10 Biggest Pool Service Business Mistakes to Avoid

Published on July 16, 2020

Alone with the hustle of running a business, it's easy for both new and established businesses alike to make a few very common pool service business mistakes.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can:

  • Mitigate liability
  • Maximize profits
  • Keep clients happy
  • Keep your team happy

While these pool service business mistakes can be damaging for your business, they're relatively simple to solve when you know what to avoid.

While you don't want to make any of these pool service business mistakes, this article will give you everything needed to fix the ones you've already made.

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1. Failing to Consistently Increase Prices

Since labor, chemicals, and equipment all play integral roles in your pool service business' profitability, it's vital to consistently reassess profitability and subsequently increase prices.

By increasing prices to maintain the desired profitability, you can:

  • Properly compensate your team
  • Secure your business' future growth
  • Provide technicians with high-quality equipment, trucks, and materials

In order to counteract inevitable inflation and shortages, you'll have to routinely recalculate each client's profitability.

However, instead of manually crunching these numbers for endless hours, you can instantly view client profitability using the #1 pool service software, Service Autopilot.

2. Forgoing the Documentation Process

Due to dangers, such as hazardous chemicals and slip-and-fall risks, it's crucial to maintain detailed documentation of every pool service.

However, with the right documentation and insurance, you can mitigate liability and protect your business from potential lawsuits.

Using the best pool service software, you can easily document your daily operations on-the-go from anywhere:

  • Job notes
  • Job competition times
  • Before and after pictures
  • Chemical and asset tracking
  • Date and weather conditions
  • Pre-existing and new damages
  • Technician job site assignments

3. Skipping Pre-Season Pool Visits

With pre-season pool visits, you can do things like:

  • Boost efficiency
  • Maximize profits
  • Minimize liabilities
  • Ensure no steps are skipped
  • Identify potential hazards and pre-existing damages

By fully evaluating all properties before the start of each new busy season, you can prioritize proper safety precautions as well as protect your business.

In addition, it's important to develop a complete checklist for pre-season visits.

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4. Breaking Contracts

No matter the reason, everything outlined within the contract must be fulfilled. For this reason, any promises made within the contract must be reasonable.

Some essential elements to include within every contract are:

  • Valid contract term dates
  • Include acts of nature and force majeure events
  • Explicit language with manageable job expectations
  • Limit responsibilities by listing what you are/aren't responsible for

Before signing, have a trusted lawyer or legal consultant review the contract to cover all of your legal bases. Then, secure the appropriate signatures between all relevant parties.

As a result, you can mitigate liabilities, and ensure the future, long-term success of your business.

Also, did you know you can use Service Autopilot to secure electronic signatures for contracts?

5. Inadequately Training Your Team on the Software

All of your team should be thoroughly trained in your business' pool service software.

For example, everyone should know how to complete estimates on the app or clock in/out of jobs.

By properly training your team on how to efficiently use your software of choice, you can ensure seamless daily operations and documentation needs are met.

6. Providing Subpar Daily Operations Training

In addition to providing adequate software training, your team should also be trained on your business' everyday operations and procedures.

For instance, all technicians should know how to complete daily tasks, such as:

  • Safe handling of chemicals
  • Proper operations of equipment

With the proper training, you can minimize injuries and ensure safe everyday operations.

7. Equipping Your Team With Faulty Equipment

Every piece of equipment your technicians use should be well-maintained.

For example, you can't have trucks breaking down every day while your technicians are trying to complete their routes.

By simply equipping your team with properly maintained equipment, you can ensure smooth, reliable job completion every day.

8. Creating Inefficient Routes

Efficient route optimization is key in saving time and maximizing profits. After all, you'll cut down on labor costs, drive time, and fuel costs by generating optimized routes.

Plus, optimizing routes doesn't have to be time consuming either. When you choose a pool service software, such as Service Autopilot, you can instantly generate optimized routes.

9. Ignoring Weather Alerts

Especially in an industry like pool service, it's important to pay attention to local weather alerts in order to protect your technicians.

For instance, if there are thunderstorms, then you don't want technicians completing pool services at the risk of lighting.

As always, be prepared to make adjustments for your team at a minute's notice in case of weather interference.

10. Improperly Communicating With Clients

Adequate communication with clients ensures they always know things like:

  • When there's a service delay
  • When the client will be invoiced
  • What services are being performed
  • When the services are being completed
  • Exclusive offers and promotions you're running

In addition, consistent client communication ensure clients feel valued and are always happy with your services.

Plus, when you use Service Autopilot, you can automate most of these client interactions. For example, you can send automated service reminders via email or text using automations.

Automations is the  #1 way to follow up  with clients. If you’re not using it, your business might still be successful - but it won’t grow. 

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In Service Autopilot, our automations send emails and texts to:​

Every lead after an estimate is completed
Clients after their property has been serviced​
Remind leads and clients to send you customer feedback​
Update outdated or declined payment information​
Inform them when a service can’t be completed due to unforeseen circumstances (i.e. weather)​
Remind them of maintenance tips (i.e. putting a cover on the outdoor faucet before the winter)​
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BONUS: Additional Common Pool Service Business Mistakes to Avoid

In addition to the pool service business mistakes we just mentioned, there are a few others your business should avoid, such as:

  • Leaving money on the table during the "off-season."
    • Even though it's common for residential pool owners to cancel services at the end of the pool season, there are plenty of opportunities for your business to continue operations:
      • Schedule weekly services to skim leaves
      • Ensure PVC pipes aren't freezing or splitting during the freezing months
      • Full-year service contract to prevent your business from falling into "seasonality that forces annual layoffs and reduces your off-season income
  • Missing out on BIGGER profits through bulk pricing.
    • Instead of shopping at residential stores, such as Leslie's Pool Supply or Home Depot, try shopping at pool supply warehouses where you can get closer to cost deals when buying in bulk.
      • Quick Sidebar: These are sometimes the best resource for finding great employees too!

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Avoid These Common Pool Service Business Mistakes

By avoiding these common pool service business mistakes, you can do things like:

  • Minimize potential liabilities
  • Hire and keep the best local talent
  • Make the most profit on your services
  • Keep clients happy with your business

Now, you have everything needed to avoid these top pool service business mistakes, fix the mistakes you've already made, and secure your business' future, long-term success!


Related: How to Develop a Robust Pool Checklist


Originally published July 16, 2020 9:04 AM, updated Nov 18, 2022 5:12 PM

Cody Owen

Cody is a copywriter with Service Autopilot. He was writing before he could read, dictating stories to his mom. Of late, he distills business principles and practices learned from his ever-increasing trove of books and his year with SA Support into digestible blog posts designed to provide maximum value to service industry business owners.
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