Software for landscape contractors has come on leaps and bounds in the past few years. A once pencil-and-paper-based industry has blossomed into a high-tech, streamlined one, boasting more choices than ever before in terms of professional design software. Technology has not only slashed the number of man-hours needed to conduct surveys and create impressive takeoffs, but it has also improved the quality of work landscape contractors can now produce.
In this post, we’re going to walk you through the creme de la creme of landscape software and help you to understand how to use this wealth of tools to your advantage. We’ll run through the different types of software on the market, the key features you should look out for, and how much you should expect to pay for licenses.
What to Look For
With so many options out there, it can be overwhelming trying to find the right software for your landscaping business. To help get you started, here’s an overview of the key features you should be looking out for on your search.
Secondary Materials Calculator
As well as calculating material costs, you should look for software that can determine secondary costs like labor hours, masonry sand, and compost. The best programs will allow you to customize the ratios on these materials for each project for the most accurate estimates.
As well as having the capacity to support uploaded PDF plans, look for software with built-in drone support. This clever feature allows you to access aerial images of the site, which not only saves time but gives your takeoff a professional edge over your competitors.
If protractors give you a headache then you are not alone. Whatever landscaping software you go for, make sure it offers intuitive scaling.
The ability to easily add annotations to takeoffs can make a huge difference to the user experience of software, so you might be surprised that this tool is not included with all programs. Check before purchasing that your chosen software offers live annotations.
Cloud storage is an essential tool for those who work in multiple locations, across devices, or those working as part of a team. It allows you to access your files anywhere, anytime, and to share with colleagues and clients without the need to download them. It also means that if your device is lost or stolen, your work will remain safe on the cloud.
LandOne Takeoff software allows users to create accurate landscape and irrigation estimates from an uploaded PDF design or aerial image, via an easy-to-use cloud-based interface. Users can perform takeoffs on a computer or tablet, using a mouse, stylus, or even fingertip to segment mulch areas, sod areas, or plant beds. As well as its excellent design features, LandOne Takeoff automatically measures and calculates the material quantities of a given project, including all secondary costs.
If you’re looking for all-in-one landscape estimating software then LandOne ticks all the right boxes.
- Robust measurement and material cost calculation tools
- Secondary Materials Cost
- Customize materials to match your company’s guidelines
- Drone Compatibility
- Integrated vendor material quoting
- Instant Scaling
- Cloud Storage
- Training/onboarding included
LandOne offers three pricing tiers, depending on the size of your team. Monthly costs range from $79 – $299, with unlimited project capacity and access to the full range of LandOne tools. Those who want to pay annually also qualify for a 10% discount.
Start your Free Trial today to see firsthand how LandOne Takeoff can help transform your landscaping business.
Dynascape: Design Only
DynaScape Design is a CAD design software that allows users to either enter property surveys or use preloaded templates. The software features a library of more than 1,000 to-scale symbols, including a selection of professional botanical symbols.
- Start designs from property surveys or templates,
- Select from 9,000 plants in Horticopia and over 1,200 symbols by DynaScape
- Render your designs from 2D to 3D
- Mobile Crew Tracking App
Dynascape has a $2,995 design bundle, + $189/mo for its sales and estimating add-on. Yearly updates are additional.
PlanSwift: Takeoff Only
PlanSwift is a basic but efficient program that can measure the square footage, volumes, and linear dimensions of various materials in a takeoff. The point, click-drag, and drop tool is easy to use and can be used to create simple takeoffs.
- Measures square footage, volumes, and linear dimensions
- Measures area dimensions for sod, mulch, gravel, and other products
- Has a point, drag, and drop interface
For PlanSwift’s takeoff only package, users pay a one-off fee of $1895 for a one-user account. This includes three hours of training. Updates $300/year/user thereafter.
Additional Tools for Landscapers
While these options aren’t designed specifically for landscapers, they are valuable business tools for any industry – particularly for companies with an increasing need to work remotely.
This email marketing platform will help you to master your email communications at an affordable or even free price tag. Create newsletters and ad campaigns, and keep track of how well they do via the site’s analytics page.
According to their website, Trello is like a whiteboard covered in sticky notes. Its simple design allows you to see at a glance who is working on what projects as well as what’s coming up in their pipeline.
Copper integrates seamlessly into your G-Suite and stores customer information and email history automatically. You can also categorize each lead and decide what relationship they have with your company, as well as customize sales pipelines.
Find Software that works for the Landscape Industry
Some people believe that since landscaping is done outdoors, computers are of little use to our work. The reality is that innovation is necessary to keep businesses competitive, and various tools make this possible. Using the latest technology, we can simplify processes, while improving efficiency and accuracy.