How Do I Start My Own Commercial Roofing Company?

Working as an employee can be great if you’re in the field you enjoy most. But starting your own roofing business produces a whole other level of gratification. Check out these suggestions for how to start your own commercial roofing company and generate commercial roofing leads. Whether you are a residential roofer looking to get into commercial, or just an employee looking to start his own business, these tips should help:

Conduct Market Research

Google has given the world an abundance of free information at its fingertips. It would help if you took advantage of researching the commercial roofing industry. So much quality information is available that can be accessed from any device. At the same time, be wary of misinformation that could lead you down the path of most resistance. Results on Google page one are likely to be reputable, but always consider the source and how trustworthy a website and its content seem to you at first glance. Here are some search queries you’ll want to look at:

  • Equipment needed to start a roofing company
  • Starting a roofing business tips
  • How much do roofing company owners make
  • Roofing business plan
  • Cost to start a roofing company
  • How to start a roofing company in (your city, state)

Write a Business Plan

Before you can start a company of any kind, you need to write a business plan. For someone without formal business training, the task can seem daunting and overwhelming from the jump. Luckily, the World Wide Web provides roofers with resources at their fingertips to help streamline the process. For example, the United States Small Business Administration has public documentation available to those looking to start their plan now. They suggest the following hierarchy:

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Company Description
  3. Market Analysis
  4. Organization & Management
  5. Service or Product
  6. Marketing & Sales
  7. Funding Request
  8. Financial Projections
  9. Appendix
Commercial Roofing Business Plan Checklist

Select a Name

Don’t overthink the name. Please keep it simple and representative of your industry. Sometimes you can tie in your geographic location with the name, but it is not a requirement. Also, try to frame your name in the context of a memorable domain name. That means it shouldn’t be too long. When you cite your URL on business cards and digital citations, you want the consumer to be able to recall it on demand. It also helps if it looks appealing on a truck wrap and other commercial roofing marketing materials. Consider these aspects of a name:

  • Length: Keep it as short as possible
  • Memorability: Choose a name that consumers can easily recall
  • Relevance: Associate it with your industry, location, or a combination of both

Talk to an Attorney

Starting your own business is going to create extra-legal issues that you hadn’t considered. For this reason, you must talk to an attorney to hash out the legalities of owning and operating a business. Much of it has to do with property and work-site regulations, but you should also consider worker safety. The last thing you want is to get sued for one of your employees slipping on an iced-filled roof during a restoration project. Be aware of these potential legal issues:

  • Permits
  • Lawsuits
  • Regulations

Understand Your Tax Obligations

Now might be a good time to start your company because of tax breaks for commercial building owners. Still, you’ll want to consult with a business accountant to ensure your model is aligned with IRS standards. For those of us who aren’t the strongest at mathematics, having a contact to handle your taxes can alleviate a great deal of stress that comes with running a new business. The good news is that as your taxes get more complicated, it indicates success for your business. Consider these ideas:

  • Commercial Tax Breaks
  • IRS Regulations
  • Tax Windows (of Opportunity)

Anticipate Down Seasons

Depending on your region, you may have a significant down season as a roofing company owner. You should have a plan in place to supplement your income during that time, at least until you are successful enough to where you don’t necessarily need it. Residential roofers who are getting into commercial projects may have an easier time. For a new commercial roofing business, this can be one of the most challenging hurdles to jump over in the process. It can sometimes be discouraging enough to make you quit, but here’s why you shouldn’t:

  • Longevity: A temporary down season won’t threaten your long-term prospects
  • Perseverance: Because many quit for this very reason, sustaining yourself makes you rare
  • Supplementation: There are other areas you can supplement income during your initial years

Learn Salesmanship

As an employee, you’ve probably never had to make a roofing sale yourself. As an owner, you will have to become excellent at doing so. In 2021, consumers can detect BS better than ever before. For that reason, getting to the point is your best course of action. Another piece of advice is to listen to the prospective client and get a concrete idea of their needs so that you can explain precisely how you’ll meet them and why your company is capable of doing so. Focus on the following concepts:

  • Cut the BS: The modern consumer is too intelligent for snake oil salesmen
  • Listen to the Client: Consumers want to feel heard, and value reciprocated concerns
  • Make a Final Impression: Consumers most remember the latter part of the interaction
  • Invest in Self Care: Keep a positive attitude since you will be rejected regularly

Hire a Marketing Company

Before you can sell, however, you need leads in the form of phone calls, contact form submissions, and emails. The best way to get each of these is by investing in a marketing company for roofers, like Roofing Webmasters. Services that digital marketers should cover include SEO, Web Design, PPC, Social Media, and Content Marketing, among others. For more details on the most effective marketing tactics, see below:

  • Content Marketing: The promotion of branded content on your blog and social profiles
  • PPC: The investment of paid advertising on Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and elsewhere
  • SEO: The process of earning higher rankings on Google
  • Social Media: The syndication of content on Facebook, Twitter, etc. & a presence on Instagram
  • Web Design: The creation of a custom branded website for engagement and conversion