376 – Driving Success in the Trades Industry: Insights and Strategies

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The trades industry is a dynamic and competitive field, constantly evolving with new technologies, pricing models, and customer expectations. In this blog post, we’ll dive into key insights shared in a recent podcast episode that shed light on the changes in the plumbing industry, conversion rate optimisation, pricing models, AI and automation, coaching, and finding good people. 

In a recent episode of The Site Shed podcast, host Matt Jones sits down with Allan Ferguson, a renowned expert from the Service Success Network. With his wealth of knowledge and experience, Allan shares valuable insights into the evolving landscape of the trades industry. From changes in the plumbing sector to conversion rate optimisation, pricing models, and the impact of AI and automation, this blog post dives into the key topics discussed in the podcast episode.

Changes in the Plumbing Industry: Sydney's Competitive Edge

The plumbing industry has undergone significant changes in recent years, particularly in Sydney. Sydney is viewed as the most competitive place on the planet for plumbing and drain companies. Investing in innovative equipment, such as water jetters, has become crucial to stay ahead. The episode emphasises that if you can succeed in Sydney, you can succeed anywhere in the world, highlighting the intense nature of the trades industry in this bustling city.

Conversion Rate Optimisation: Turning Leads into Customers

Conversion rate optimisation is a vital aspect of growing a tradie or contracting business. The podcast speaker’s company specialises in helping clients nurture contact records and turn them into qualified leads. They emphasise the importance of automations for following up with customers and team members to streamline the sales process. While the length of the sales cycle can vary, the principles of managing leads and converting them into customers remain the same.

Pricing Models in the Industry: Efficiency, Profit, and Customer Options

Pricing plays a crucial role in the trades industry. The podcast speaker, Billy, shares insights into his business’s pricing model, operating at 101% efficiency while maintaining a 25% net profit. Rather than relying on sales staff, Billy’s company follows a process to present options to customers. The episode raises the intriguing concept of pricing models and highlights the importance of adapting to the evolving landscape of the industry.

AI, Advertising, and Automation: Maximising Efficiency and Lead Generation

The impact of AI on the service industry, including plumbing, is a topic discussed in the podcast. The speaker acknowledges the high cost of Google Paid Ads and suggests exploring alternative lead generation methods, such as social media. Automation is highlighted as a powerful tool for communication with existing customers, contributing to business growth while reducing advertising costs. However, the importance of maintaining a website is still recognised as a valuable online presence.

Coaching and Future Plans: Growth Opportunities in the Service Industry

The podcast speaker expresses a passion for coaching within the service industry, particularly in the United States. With growth and development opportunities abound, the speaker is currently based in Houston, working alongside industry professionals like Joe Cunningham. Reflecting on experiences, the speaker acknowledges the early adoption of proactive marketing strategies in Australia, suggesting that there is room for more emphasis on understanding finance models in trade education.

Finding Good People and Pricing Strategies: Overcoming Challenges

Finding skilled professionals within the trades industry can be a daunting task. The speaker highlights the difficulty of sourcing talented individuals. Moreover, pricing strategies for service companies are discussed, offering insights into the overhead costs associated with running a maintenance service company. Understanding these factors is vital for establishing competitive pricing and ensuring sustainable business growth.

Key Takeaways

  1. The trades industry, especially in highly competitive regions like Sydney, requires adaptability and innovative approaches to stay ahead.
  2. Conversion rate optimisation is crucial for turning leads into customers, and automation plays a significant role in streamlining the sales process.
  3. Embrace evolving pricing models, such as offering customer options, to navigate the changing landscape of the trades industry.
  4. Explore alternative lead generation methods, leverage AI, and utilise automation to maximise efficiency and reduce advertising costs.
  5. Coaching within the service industry presents growth opportunities, and there is a need for further emphasis on understanding finance models in trade education.
  6. Overcome challenges in finding good people by implementing effective recruitment strategies, and consider overhead costs when determining pricing strategies for service companies.

In conclusion, the trades industry is continually evolving, presenting both challenges and opportunities. By staying informed, adapting to new technologies and pricing models, and investing in recruitment and marketing strategies, tradies and contractors can navigate the changing landscape and thrive in this dynamic field. Embrace innovation, prioritise customer satisfaction, and stay ahead of the competition for long-term success in the trades industry.

Ready to dive deeper into these topics? Don’t miss out on our full podcast episode with Allan Ferguson. Click the button below to start listening!

Video Discussion Points: 
00:00 – Coming Up!
00:14 – Tradie Web Guys
01:18 – Welcome Allan Ferguson
05:31 – Expertise in profitable drain service business.
07:37 – Evolution on tools that can leverage your business.
12:39 – Difference on training. AU vs US
15:06 – TAFE is for apprenticeships and practical learning.
21:01 – Skilled trade shortage causes system pivot.
21:32 – Good people hard to find, GFC impact.
25:49 – Efficient business model with no salespeople.
30:37 – Costs, pricing, and margins explained briefly.
35:40 – Finance training lacking, technology changing quickly.
40:06 – AI will impact service industry, advertising costs.
45:37 – Conversion optimisation, lead nurturing, sales cycle management.
51:47 – The Foundations Program

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The Site Shed | Listen Notes


The Site Shed is one of the best online communities and podcasts for tradies out there. The free content provided to members is unbelievable - offering invaluable advice to run a successful business, and the community of tradies is truly awesome. Do yourself a favour and check it out.

Peter Cox Business Man

Great work Matt with all the podcasts and the site shed facebook community group. The amount of information that you can learn for free in this space is unbelieveable. It's great to see like minded contractors and trades trying to improve their businesses and also share ideas and help others. Highly recommend. Thanks!

Ben Hern Business Owner

I have been listening to the pod casts for a few months now, I can't get enough of all the awesome content that you guys provide. Especially when you guys deliver it from a trade perspective which helps out a lot. Keep up the good work and hopefully one day I can afford one of the trade training trips.

Ché Henton Customer

I own a construction company,and i love learning how to make my bussiness more competitive,profitable and how to better serve my clients. The site shed is a wonderful place to get invaluable knowledge no matter your trade .

Michael Mullinax Construction Company Owner

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