You're ready to purchase your first sealcoating equipment and you want to get started as soon as possible. You've talked to some of your neighbors so you can start offering your services as soon as your sealcoating spray system and sealer arrive.
But wait. You still need a very important document before you take the plunge, and that's a business plan.
If you're unfamiliar with what a business plan is, what it entails, and how to write one, then don't fret. In this blog, you'll learn how to write a sealcoating business plan that you can use as your guide in launching a successful business and wow future investors. Let's get started.
How to Create a Sealcoating Business Plan
Want to create your own sealcoating business plan? Check out our handy guide below.
Section 1: Executive Summary
In a nutshell, the executive summary introduces who you are to the reader and the services that you offer to your customers.
It also includes a brief introduction about your target demographic, as well as your plans on how to offer asphalt maintenance your services to your market.
It includes the number of employees you're planning to bring in once you go into operation and your expansion plans in the succeeding years. This section can include the number of employees you're planning to hire and any equipment or vehicle you're planning to purchase in your second year.
Lastly, the executive summary includes a brief forecast of when your sealcoating company is expected to turn in a profit. It may also include your projected profits by a certain year, as well as when your revenue activity is going to peak.
Your sealcoating business plan's executive summary has two other components: your business objectives and your mission. Let's talk about them below.
When crafting your sealcoating business objectives, think about the goals and milestones you want to achieve within a given period. Keep in mind that your goals and the timeline for your sealcoating business should be specific.
Take a look at the examples of sealcoating business objectives below:
- Provide sealcoating services to at least 15 customers per week
- Increase your customer base to 50% by the end of the first season
- Expand your list of services by your second season
- Increase your revenue by 30% by the end of your first season as a sealcoater
This section of your business plan explains your company's main purpose, why you are offering sealcoating to your target market, and where you are headed business-wise.
Your company's mission is not just for you and your employees. You will also need to write them with your customers and investors in mind.
Section 2: Company Description
In this section, you'll go into greater detail in explaining what your company is about and what you can offer to your customers. When describing your company, we recommend that you mention your legal business structure, the nature of your business, and the industry to which sealcoating belongs to.
It's a good idea to mention your company history and who owns the business if it falls under sole proprietorship.
If it's categorized as a partnership or an LLC, then make sure to mention the names of your partners or the company's members.
Give as much background information as you can, but be concise. Last but not least, provide a quick summary of your sealcoating company's target market, your location, and your facilities.
Section 3: Services
This section provides in-depth detail to the services you're going to offer to your customers. Sealcoating is your bread and butter, but don't forget to mention crack filling, line striping, and pothole patching if you're planning to offer them, too.
Planning to offer other property maintenance services apart from asphalt maintenance, as well? Then mention them here, too.
Section 4: Market Analysis
Provide a summary of your target market, as well as the state of the supply and demand in the sealcoating industry. Analyze and explain the trends in the asphalt maintenance industry, as well as how competitive the industry is.
The Market Analysis has three components, and these include:
- Industry analysis
- Market segmentation
- Target market segmentation strategy
Let's take a brief look at each section.
4.1 Industry Analysis
In this section, you'll provide information on the type of industry you're going to be working in (i.e. the asphalt maintenance industry) and whether it caters to residential properties, or commercial properties, or both.
Do larger and more established asphalt maintenance providers acquire larger commercial jobs, or are there opportunities for smaller players? What kind of sealcoating company services residential clients?
Is the asphalt maintenance industry a competitive one? If so, why? Is it crisis-proof, or is it vulnerable to economic downturns? Is it seasonal, or are there opportunities to make money in the winter?
These are just some of the questions you need to answer when you write your industry analysis. You can also include a section on industry competition, as well as your target market's buying patterns in your industry analysis.
4.2 Target market segmentation strategy
This section allows you to explain to your readers how you are going to classify potential customers into different segments. Some of the things you need to consider include your potential customer's behavior, demographics, and location.
4.3 Market segmentation
In this section, you'll explain in depth the group of customers you'll be targeting. If you're starting small, then your target customers are ideally residential property owners in suburban areas.
What about the demographic of your target market?
Aim for middle-aged or older property owners as they usually have the money for this kind of service. They are also less inclined to fix cracks and seal their driveways than younger property owners because of physical or schedule constraints.
White-collar families are more likely to have set aside a budget for driveway maintenance service. In addition, target homes with longer or larger driveways for higher profit margins.
Section 5: Strategy and Implementation
In this section, you'll go into detail about your sealcoating company's strategy to acquire your first and succeeding customers, as well as how you're going to implement these strategies.
It starts with a brief summary, and it is followed by more detailed subsections on your sealcoating company's...
- Competitive edge
- Sales strategy and forecast
Section 6: Management
This section contains all the information about who owns and runs the sealcoating company. Feel free to write about any relevant background information in the summary, including why you wanted to get into sealcoating and how you got started in the industry.
At the onset, your sealcoating is most likely going to be a one-man show. But if you want to grow your business, hiring someone else to help you is going to be only a matter of time. Provide details about your plans for hiring your crew in this subsection.
Section 7: Financial Plan
At last, you’ve reached the home stretch!
This is where you will outline your sealcoating company's financial information. Keep in mind that this is the most important section of your sealcoating business plan. This is divided into 5 subsections, all of which are in table format.
This section includes your:
- Key financial assumptions
- Break-even analysis
- Projected profit and loss
- Projected cash flow
- Projected balance sheet
Why Start a Sealcoating Business?
You probably saw a video of someone apply sealer to an asphalt driveway before. Or maybe you had someone else seal your driveway. Whatever the case, you find the entire sealcoating application process oddly satisfying, and you have plenty of questions about this business.
How does one start a sealcoating business? How much capital do you need to launch one? Is the work seasonal, or can you make money sealcoating all year long? How many years does it take until a sealcoating business becomes profitable?
But most of all, why start a sealcoating business? Check out some of the reasons below.
1. Sealcoating is lucrative when done right
Of course, the first thing you want to know when considering a business venture to start is whether it's lucrative or not. Lucky for you, sealcoating is one of the most profitable property maintenance businesses in the country.
Sealcoating a driveway typically costs anywhere between $1.25 and $1.50 per sq ft. A single driveway sealcoating job typically costs between $250 and $770. Now, imagine working on multiple driveways in one day or sealing a massive mall or hospital parking lot. You can easily earn more than $1,000 on a busy day or simply by sealcoating a large property.
Read this Asphalt Kingdom blog to learn how much you can make working as a professional sealcoater, the factors affecting your earnings, as well as strategies to boost your profits.
Video: How much money can you make sealcoating?
2. You can choose your own work hours
Some people thrive working a regular 9 to 5 shift, but not you. The schedule's just too rigid and leaves you with fewer hours to spend time with your family.
Sealcoating is different. It allow you to choose your own work hours and call it a day whenever you want.
You can start as early as 6 in the morning, and you have the option to sealcoat as late as night (as long as you use sealer additives to speed up the drying process).
Or you can work as few as four hours a day so you can devote more time to your family or hobbies.
3. Starting small is possible with sealcoating
Unfortunately, many businesses require entrepreneurs to shell out an inordinate amount of money for seed capital.
Sealcoating is different. You can start with less than $5,000 in seed money and you're all set to launch your own business. You can start out with just a drum or tote sealcoating spray system and apply the sealer using a squeegee.
Once you've made and saved enough money, you can upgrade and swap your drum or tote sealcoating spray system with a bigger sealcoating spray system with a steel tank.
4. There's a lot of opportunity to diversify and scale your business
Sealcoating is not the only service you can offer to your customers. There's also crack filling and line striping – both of which you can do to boost your existing revenue stream.
One of the downsides of sealcoating as a business is that it is seasonal. And even in the spring and summer, your work can be greatly affected by the weather.
But the good news is asphalt maintenance is not limited in the spring and summer only. One way to make money all year long is to patch potholes.
As we all know, potholes can appear at any time, even during winter. Unlike sealcoating, you can fix potholes whether the sun's out or when there's a little bit of snow outside.
5. Sealcoating is easy to learn
One of the best things about sealcoating is that it has a low barrier to entry and it is easy to learn. Just learn how to prep the driveway or parking lot, apply asphalt emulsion sealer, and let the area dry before letting your customer use it.
You'll find plenty of schools offering asphalt maintenance and rehabilitation courses online. But there's no need to go back to school just to become a professional sealcoater.
You can, instead, enroll in Asphalt Kingdom's Asphalt Contractor’s Course and Start Your Own Asphalt Business Course. We also have a Driveway Sealcoating Kickstart Course if you want to focus on sealcoating for now.
A sealcoating business plan is more than just a few pages of paper you keep in your bottom desk drawer at the office. It is your compass to building a successful sealcoating business and a key to scaling it later on.
So open your computer and start writing that winning sealcoating business plan now.