Your cleaning business can be insanely profitable, but it can also be a major flop unless you’re managing it strategically. That’s why it’s essential to learn how to run your business effectively and tactfully.
We say tactfully because there are challenges when you first start a cleaning business. One way to make sure that you aren’t overwhelmed by these obstacles is to familiarise yourself with the top challenges faced by other people who run cleaning businesses.
If you understand common industry issues — and are ready for them — you’ll be better equipped to turn those issues into growth opportunities. Here’s a preview of what you should prepare for when learning how to run a cleaning business effectively.
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Time management challenges
You know that starting a business requires a significant amount of work, but you may not realise just how much time goes into the daily operations and administrative duties once your cleaning business is up and running. To save time, you need to make strategic decisions when it comes to learning how to run a cleaning business.
One of the best ways to best manage your time is to invest in technology that helps you save time. A POS for professional services, for instance, allows you to track and complete day-to-day operations all in one place instead of jumping around from system to system (a big waste of time).
Here are some other technologies that can be integrated into a POS for professional services:
- Online invoices. As soon as you send an invoice, clients receive an email from where they can securely pay for cleaning services with a few simple clicks. You can track invoices on your computer or phone using the [invoicing app] (https://squareup.com/au/en/app/invoices).
- Employee management. If you start a cleaning business and hire multiple employees, you need employee management software that keeps track of employee hours with built-in time cards and breaks down sales by employee.
- Scheduling software. Clients can set up appointments online from your website at any time, which creates efficiency for your cleaning business.
- Business performance tracking. Integrated business analytics software allows you to track sales data in real time. You can see which cleaning services are most popular, how much revenue each service generates, and other sales data that can help you make strategic business decisions to help your business grow.
Traditional cold-calling methods are inefficient, and simple marketing tactics like handing out your business card may only have a minimal impact on your business. When you’re learning how to run a cleaning business, you have to develop creative strategies to market your cleaning business. These need to be effective, efficient, and help you stay ahead of competitors in the neighbourhood.
Because so many people turn to the internet to search for cleaning services, you need to have a website for your cleaning business. On your website, be sure to include general business information, a description of your services, and your cleaning rates. You can also display previous customer testimonials and reviews to showcase your work.
Email marketing is another great strategy for running a cleaning business. With email marketing software, you can send custom marketing campaigns that include exclusive offers and discounts to promote your business. And the more personalised the better — according to a study done about email marketing, short, personalised emails (like birthday wishes) are opened 2.5 times more than any other promotional email. Sending out monthly newsletters is another great way to keep customers up to speed with your business.
Before you start sending, take a look at the best practices for email marketing. It can help you determine the types of emails that best fit your business.
Customer Retention Challenges
Cleaning businesses are always looking for ways to acquire new customers, yet most forget to think about how to keep those customers coming back. With so many cleaning companies to compete with, how can you retain customers and ensure repeat business?
One way to minimise one-time customers is by getting cleaning contracts. Cleaning contracts guarantee work for your cleaning business, create a steady flow of revenue, and are a great way to build and maintain a customer relationship. Square offers free contract templates you can use to easily create cleaning contracts for your clients.
Another way to improve customer retention when you’re learning how to run a cleaning business is to focus on loyalty building strategies. Customer loyalty programs are a great way to incentivise customers to use your cleaning services. Many cleaning businesses offer discounts—or even give out a free specialty cleaning—after a certain number of services are purchased. This encourages a client to spend on your services and not jump around from one competitor to another.