10X in 10 Years: How Turf Pride Used RealGreen to Increase Revenue
Family-owned and operated Turf Pride has been providing lawn care, pest control and tree and shrub services to homeowners in Northeast Ohio since 2002. They have been a RealGreen customer since 2013.
Turf Pride was ready to grow, and they were looking for software that would help them do so. President Dave Petti ran a solo operation for a decade until his wife Jamie, Office Manager, joined the company in 2011. Over that time, they used Quickbooks and QL Express but found those programs lacked the functionality they were looking for, even as a very lean, two-person business. After researching a few different options, they went with RealGreen in 2013. By 2015 they had hired their first employee, and they never looked back.
Implementing RealGreen was a game-changer for Turf Pride, but not immediately – Dave and Jamie agree that they weren’t using the program to its full potential right away. “It took a learning curve to figure out how to utilize everything to its proper potential,” says Dave. They started with Service Assistant, eventually adding Mobile Live, Customer Assistant Websites and Automated Marketing Assistant, and additional solutions, including Routing Assistant and RealGreen Payments.
The Pettis says that Mobile Live, in particular, has been a catalyst for growth in their company. “Communication is really important to us, and we strive to have great communication with our customers and our employees,” says Dave. “Mobile Live has really helped us with that communication. We have all that information right at our fingertips. We’re able to see what’s going on with this lawn, what’s going on with that lawn – it’s all right there in the call log. I’ve talked to people that don’t even use the call log, and it surprises me because that tool is amazing for us.”
“Once you get to a certain size, it’s hard to remember everything and keep on top of all that communication,” Dave continues, noting that with RealGreen, they have a complete picture of everything that’s happening in the business, making running the day-to-day smoother and more manageable. “We’re not flying blind.”
After they started diving into RealGreen’s integrated solutions, Turf Pride started to grow, even acquiring a solo-operator company in 2019, which added more customers, improved route density, and brought an additional technician to the crew. Dave says growth was slow and steady for years, and then the company really started taking off in 2020. Over the next two years, the company more than doubled its revenue. “When we started with RealGreen in 2013, we were at $150,000 in revenue. We were looking at around $880,000 in 2020. In 2021, we were at $1 million. We hit $1.5 million in 2022. And for 2023, we are on pace to do $2 million.” From one man and a truck in 2002, Turf Pride now has 17 employees and eight routes in 2023 – and they’ve increased their revenue tenfold.
The Pettis agree that RealGreen has been integral to their business growth – not just from a revenue and size perspective but also in creating a company where community and values are essential. “It’s difficult to think that someone could match what RealGreen has put together,” according to Dave. “It’s like they thought of everything.”
Jamie notes that one of the most significant benefits of RealGreen is its ability to scale with your business and to help companies to scale effectively and successfully. “I think it’s really good for one person, and it’s good for someone with 300 employees,” she says. “When you’re a solo operator – it helps you collect payments, it sends your after-service emails – it’s like giving you another office person you didn’t actually have to hire.”
Dave continues, “Especially once you get larger – instead of having to do all of this yourself, it takes things off your plate. You can fly blind without it, but you’re going to be inefficient; wasting money, basically.”
Teaching others in the company to use RealGreen has also freed up more time for the Pettis to focus on other aspects of their business. For example, Dave recently handed off routing responsibilities to another team member – something he was initially reluctant to delegate. With others working on the day-to-day tasks, he says, “I can focus more on improving our company culture, concentrate my attention more on how we’re doing overall as a company – are we moving in the right direction? Let me come up with some ideas about how to move forward. It frees up your mind to be able to do those things.”
“If you’re looking to grow and looking to hire, moving to RealGreen will get you there,” says Jamie. “It will handle a lot of the things that you might think are out of your control and give you insight into your business. RealGreen really gives you that opportunity to be a solo operator until you decide you don’t want to do it by yourself anymore. Because it gives you a front desk person, it gives you HR; it gives you accounts receivable and bill collection – it gives you a lot of freedom.”
“We went with RealGreen, and I can’t see going anywhere else.”