Maximize Your Maid Service Schedule

Maximize Your Maid Service Schedule

Maximize you Maid Service Schedule with these 4 easy steps! Scheduling your maid services is not difficult, you just need to keep a few things in mind when doing so. So, with proper scheduling you can save time and clean more houses in a day.

Mistakes to avoid with your Maid Service Schedule

There are a few things you want to avoid when filling your Maid Service Appointments.

  • Avoid Gaps in the schedule
  • Limit driving long distances between appointments
  • Avoid cleaning many small homes in one day

These mistakes with your maid service schedule will cost you un-paid time. Time spent not cleaning, is time that you are not getting paid for. The goal of scheduling your clients is to maximize the number of cleaning hours.

Checkout other resources on my Blog

 

6 Steps to Maximize Your Maid Service Schedule

 

Maximize your maid service schedule with these 6 steps.

#1. Have Pre-defined Hours of Operation

You have to have a clear set hours of operation before you can start building your maid service schedule. Set a pre-defined hours of operation window you are able to work.

Quick Note: These hours of operations should also be in your Client Procedures.

A good schedule to start with would be 8am – 4pm, you can change it as you go if you notice more clients can be serviced earlier or later. But these times give you a base of the time frames you want to schedule your services. The goal is to fill this time mostly with cleaning and as little travel time as possible.

Another thing to consider when setting your hours of operations is when do your clients usually want you to clean. The majority of clients who hire a maid service are not home during the day. And therefore, will not be home for the cleaning service and would prefer you clean during their working hours. 

For most companies a start time of 8 am should be good, and you usually want to aim to be done by 4 pm, possibly 5 pm. This will vary by geographic location. You know your areas best

 

 

#2. Schedule in geographic clusters

Schedule in similar geographic areas. The more clients you have the easier this will be. If you are just starting out this will not be as easy.

As you begin marketing your cleaning business, target a smaller geographic area. As you grow, you can expand your service area. Try to stick to less than 20 minute travel times each day. Depending on where you live this can vary greatly if you live in a rural area versus a more densely populated city.

Schedule homes in the same or neighboring communities on the same day. The less travel time you have, the more time you will have to clean homes. Which means more Revenue…WooHoo!

 

#3. Only offer Weekly, Bi-Weekly and 4-Week services

Schedule clients on a weekly, every other week or every 4 week basis. This will keep clients on a consistent cleaning rotation through out the year.

You will also want to spread out your 4 week clients. For example, if you have 4 clients who signed up for cleanings every 4 weeks, you would not want to schedule them all on the same day and week. The optimal scheduling would be to put them on the same day and time each on a different week. This way you have a time slot that will be full, meaning ever Tuesday from 8 – 10 is full.

When a client asks for a monthly cleaning, put them on the 4 week cleaning plan. Do not schedule them the 1st of each month, or 2nd Tuesday. What will happen is they will inevitably fall on an off week and through off your entire schedule. It will become impossible to keep a schedule.

 

#4. Mix your days with both large and small homes

Schedule larger homes with smaller homes, if you can. You will be able to schedule in smaller homes in between larger homes to help fill up your day to maximize your revenue.  This will also save you some energy by not having to clean several large homes in one day.

It takes a lot of effort to clean large homes, breaking up the cleaning with a small condo will help keep your energy levels up.  I tried to limit our schedule to 1 large home a day and then mid to smaller homes for the remainder of the day. This worked really well for us.

 

#5. Get a scheduling software that works for your cleaning business

A few things to keep in mind when choosing a scheduling product is you want it to be easy to use, make your life more organized and fall within your budget.

There are some really fancy tools out there that not only offer scheduling, but they keep your clients info, offer communication reminders, and also online bookkeeping forms. But as a new maid service owner there are plenty of things to spend your hard earned cash on! There are some note worthy FREE variations that you can use to help organize your schedule.

FREE Options

Google Suit & Calendar

Google has come a long way. They have really developed many FREE tools for small business owners. updated lately to be more visually easy to manage. 

The combination of using Contacts and the Calendar would suite any small Cleaning Business with one or two cleaners.  You can build your client list in contacts and make recurring appointments The best part is, it’s FREE!!

The down side to Google Calendar is it does not have the bells and whistles that paid for programs offer. But as you continue to grow that is something that you can strive for!

 

PickTime

PickTime is the most sophisticated free scheduling and booking tool out there right now. It is a newly developed web based software that is currently being offered for FREE. But this will not last for long. It is a newer program and they are enlisting users to try it out and spread the word! Those that sign up now will get the software FREE for life…not a bad gig!

I have been testing and using the product and I highly recommend signing up for this software while it is still FREE.  I love the sleek look and ease of use with the program. It is very versatile and can work great for your cleaning business with a little set up.

Here is a Sneak Peak into the Program, and all of it is FREE for now.

 

 

Here is a list of what is included in the program
  • Customer Profile
  • Allows you to build in your services and customize for time and cost
  • Color Coded calendar with Daily, Weekly, or Monthly views.
  • Home Page that shows projected revenue and total appointments. You can watch your revenue grow as your business does!
  • Online booking forms you can integrate with your Face Book page or your Website. Allows clients to book right on your website or Face Book.
  • Integrates with Google Calendar so that you can view on your phone
  • Automatic emails when you book an appointment

To find out more about the program, click here ——–> PickTime Software

 

#6. Send appointment reminders to your clients the day before the appointment

Send your clients a reminder message the day before each appointment! This little trick will help you to avoid no shows or lock outs, get a heads up if your client will want an extra task, and improve customer service.

In my Client Email packet I have created simple reminder emails for you to use. Just copy and paste them into your email client or scheduling software.

No show and lock out’s are when you arrive to your clients home, only to find you are not able to get into the home because your client forgot it was cleaning day. When that happens you don’t get paid!

Following up the day before every cleaning gives your client that friendly reminder that you will be there the next day. They are way less likely forget and leave you locked out with no house to clean.

Ever get to a home only to find out they wanted their oven cleaned, but you did not bring the proper cleaning supplies? In your email reminder, ask you client if there are any extras they would want you to do the next day. You will be prepared and is a nice shuttle way to up charge and make a little extra money.

 

If you skipped down to the bottom. Here is what you need to be doing to maximize your maid service schedule!

  • Set your defined hours of operation.
  • Schedule in geographic clusters
  • Only schedule weekly, bi-weekly, and every 4 week cleaning services.
  • Schedule both large and small homes in a day.
  • Get a scheduling software that works for your business.
  • Send appointment reminders to your clients the day before the appointment.

 

 

A free planner to maximize your maid service schedule

 

I made you a printable planner you can use to keep your schedule mobile. Print it out and put on your fridge, in your car, post it by the front door, or keep a copy on your desk! To download the planner, sign up for access to the FREE Resource Library.

I hope this blog post was super helpful for you! If you liked this post please share the pretty picture at the top of the form, I’d really appreciate it!

Speed Cleaning Tools for Professionals

Speed Cleaning Tools for Professionals

Tools for Speed Cleaning

Cut cleaning times in half with out compromising quality by using the tools the Pro’s do.  Speed cleaning is about eliminating steps, using the right tool for the job, and cleaning in a continuous motion without cleaning an area twice.  To do this it takes tools to clean tough jobs and tools to clean lighter jobs.  Spending time trying to get grime off a surface will only cost you money and energy. Having to walk back and forth to a cleaning caddy will cost you LOTS of time. And in the cleaning business TIME is MONEY.

It is not always easy to raise prices in the cleaning industry to increase profits.  But what we can control, is the time we spend in homes.  Speed Cleaning allows for house cleaning business owners to clean faster without compromising quality. In turn you can increase profits with out raising rates.  This keeps customers happy and your wallet happy.

Related Resources: How to Give a House Cleaning Quote and What to Charge for House Cleaning Services

Below is a list of tools Professional Cleaners use every time they clean.  These tools help them to work smarter not harder!

Please note, this article may include affiliate links. You can read the full disclosure at the bottom of the page.

 

Tools for Speed Cleaning

 

Apron

House Cleaning ApronAprons are a MUST for speed cleaning.  Aprons allow you carry your tools and supplies with you as you clean. This limits your steps by having all of your tools in reach when you need them.

Supply Maid offers an outstanding Apron.  The Apron was designed by Maid Service Owners for Maid Services. You can purchase the apron here —-> Supply Maid Apron

I highly recommend you carry clean microfiber towels, your cleaners, razor blade, scrapers, small tile brush and other tools needed to get the job done. As your moving around a room whether dusting,  cleaning a bathroom or kitchen, you will not need to take unnecessary steps to get a tool to tackle a task.

Here is the idea of how an apron helps with speed cleaning

When dusting a living room moving in a continuous motion starting from the left of the room.  With your hand duster, you dust a table with frames, move to a couch place hand duster in back pocket, grab whisk broom and quickly brush off pet hair and food crumbs.

Moving your way to the other end of the couch to a glass table with a lamp, use the whisk broom to brush off the lamp shade. Put the whisk broom back into the apron, grab hand duster to dust remaining parts of lamp and table contents. Place hand duster in back pocket grab glass cleaner and microfiber, spray glass, place cleaner back on apron wipe down table. Place microfiber back into apron.

Continue around the room until you are done.  Using the apron you can have the living room cleaned and dusted in 5 minutes tops. Couches and chairs are straightened, lamp shades are dusted, all glass is wiped down and all surfaces are dust free.

What kind of Apron do you need?

When buying an apron for cleaning, you will want to make sure it has loops on both sides and has several pockets for all of your gadgets.  You can find full length aprons or those you just tie around your waste. Either works great, the full size will protect your clothes but are more costly and not necessary. My recommendation is the apron over at Supply Maid. This apron was designed by maid service owners. It has pockets for all the needed gadgets, loops for spray bottles and additional attachments for other tools.

 

Long Duster

Dusting in high and low areas can take up time when having to climb a ladder and bend over.  You don’t have time to spend bending over to clean baseboards. Cleaning a ceiling fan requires a ladder so most cleaning businesses just don’t clean them in a normal cleaning visit. Using a long duster will allow you to clean these areas quickly and safely.

I recommend this Long Duster from Microfiber Wholesale. You can purchase the duster here —> Chenille Microfiber Duster

What kink of Long Duster to buy?

When buying a long duster make sure to get one that is retractable.  Not all houses will have the same ceiling height.  You want to make sure your long duster will reach vaulted ceilings.  But you also want it to quickly retract to dust base boards efficiently.

Another thing to keep in mind is a removable dusting cloth.  Make sure to use one dusting cloth per house.  You do not want to cross contaminate between houses.  Choose a duster which has removable microfiber dust clothes that can be washed with each use and purchase enough to clean multiple houses in a day.

We found these chenille microfiber dusters at Microfiber Wholesale.  They are good quality and hold up over time.

Hand Held Duster

Hand held duster for speed cleaningA hand duster will allow you to quickly dust objects and surfaces in area’s like the living room and bedrooms.  These are used for dry dusting.  If you have to use a cleaner, you will want to use a separate cloth.

I recommend these Hand Held Dusters by Microfiber Wholesale you can purchase them here —->  Small Microfiber Duster

When looking for a hand duster make sure it can easily fit into a back pocket.  This will make it easier to carry around with you when cleaning. I am not a huge fan of feather dusters, though there some cleaning companies and business coaches will recommend them.  I don’t like that they can not be washed from house to house.

Feather Duster or Microfiber Duster?

When I first started out, my cleaners wanted to try them.  I gave them a go ahead for a few months and finally said no.  They  potential to start loosing feathers. You don’t want clients to find feathers around their house after you have cleaned.  So we switched to a reusable and washable microfiber duster.

I highly recommend using a microfiber removable cloth which can be removed with each house and be washed. Microfiber Wholesale has an great and affordable small microfiber duster. It is small enough to fit in your back pocket. Similar to the Swiffer hand held dusters except the microfiber covers are washable and reusable.  It makes your pocket happy and the planet happy!

 

Speed Cleaning Tools for professionals

 

Razor Blade

Razor blade for speed cleaningThis tool has multiple uses and is a must have in every cleaning apron or caddy.  It helps to remove tough spots and goo on surfaces without scratching quickly saving you elbow grease and time!  When using, make sure your blade is not compromised with rust and not dull, as these can scratch surfaces.  I recommend a small pocket sized retractable razor blade. These carry easily in your apron, are easy to use for quick use and are an inexpensive tool.

We purchased ours in bulk at Amazon —-> Hyde Tools 13050 Delta Heavy Duty Glass Scraper

 
Razor blades are very versatile and can be used for many different jobs.  Here is an idea of what we used them for in our house cleaning services:

Showers and Soap Scum

This is extremely helpful on first cleans or move in/out cleans.  Using a razor blade in conjunction with your all purpose cleaner, you will be able to remove soap scum instantly in a shower.  Don’t spend extra time and energy trying to remove heavy stuck on soap scum with a scrub brush.  You will waste time and tire out quickly.

Glass stove tops

Razor blade work wonders on a glass top stove.  Avoid buying expensive cleaner marketed for glass stove tops.  The less cleaning chemicals you use the more efficient and cost effective your cleanings will be.  Using your all purpose cleaner spray it on the stove and scrap off spots with your razor blade. Tip: Using the blade on a dry surface can cause scratching, so make sure you spray enough cleaner down before using the razor blade.

Glass and Mirrors

Razor blades are a must when cleaning windows and glass.  Hard to remove stickers or gunk can be quickly removed with a razor blade. Just spray your All Purpose cleaning on the spot and remove with the blade. You will save lots of time and not scratch the glass.  Again, you want to make sure you are spraying your All Purpose cleaning on the window first to avoid scratching.

Floors

Don’t spend a lot of time mopping over a spot that is hard to remove. You can use a razor blade to quickly get up gunk, old food or even gum.

 

Small Tile Brush

Small tile brush for speed cleaningThe small tile brush is a small nylon brush that can get into crevasses and detail grout between tiles.  This little guy is a must for speed cleaning while maintaining a high level of detail in the kitchen and bathrooms.

Use the small tile brush around sinks, drains and faucets.  You will be able to clean into the crevasses round these areas very quickly.  It is a huge pet peeve of mine when a cleaning company cleans a house and just wipes over these surfaces without clean around a faucet.

I recommend purchasing 2 different colors, 1 for kitchens and 1 for bathrooms. This way you won’t bring the bathroom yuck out into a customers kitchen.

 

 

Small Whisk Broom

Whisk broom for speed cleaningWhisk brooms are great for dusting fabrics.  Fabrics collect lots of dust and crumbs, dusting with a cloth does little to remove either and vacuuming can be very time consuming.  A whisk broom is tough enough to remove pet hair and dust and easy to carry around in your apron.  It will save you lots of time while helping you to provide a more detailed cleaning.  Just another way for you to provide an excellent service!

Where to use your Whisk Broom

Couches

Use the whisk broom to brush off any crumbs, pet hair or dust.  For our biweekly and weekly cleaning clients we provided rotational services which included vacuuming living/family room furniture.  Using the whisk broom in between vacuuming, helps to keep down the pet hair and debris.  Clients really appreciate this as most cleaning companies do not vacuum furniture.

Dinning Room chairs

Dinning chairs almost always have food crumbs on them.  Use the whisk broom to quickly remove the crumbs to the floor for easy vacuuming.

Lamp Shades

Lamp shades are like dust and animal hair magnets.  Using a whisk broom to quickly dust them will help you provide an excellent service in

 

Incorporating these cleaning tools into your cleaning routine will help to improve your cleaning time significantly, while still maintaining a high level of quality.  Make sure as you are looking for ways to improve your cleaning times you are not sacrificing quality!

If you are looking for a cleaning supply checklist, visit our page House Cleaning Supply Checklist.

Selling Your Cleaning Services on GROUPON.

Selling Your Cleaning Services on GROUPON.

I get this question a lot; How do I get my 1st Cleaning Clients??? While there are several ways, I wanted to share how you can build your cleaning business with GROUPON! This is the exact steps I took within the first few months of starting my Business. I was able to build my business by increasing my regularly scheduled clients quickly.

UPDATE: Recently LivingSocial and GROUPON have merged, so I the remainder of the post I will refer to GROUPON.

Before I go into this post I wanted to provide a Disclaimer:

Since I am upfront with my reviews, I do want to point out that you will NOT PROFIT from a coupon campaign.  You are selling services below cost, plus GROUPON will get a percentage of the sale which usually starts at 50% (though this can be negotiated). 

Yes, not all users will redeem their coupon, but even not servicing all your coupon purchasers you will not make profit off of the cleanings you perform for your GROUPON and LivingSocial customers. 

Who should use GROUPON:

I recommend using GROUPON or LivingSocial to:

  1. Newly established Cleaning Companies
  2. Established Cleaning Companies during slow periods

Related Article: 7 Low cost ways to grow your cleaning business

What GROUPON will do for your Cleaning Business?

  1. Provide ZERO cost marketing.  There are no upfront costs to you.  Utilizing these sites is 100% free.  You only pay a percentage of each sale.  That means GROUPON does not make any money unless your service sells. 
  2. Put your Cleaning Service in front of users in your local community who are interested in Cleaning Services. Thousands of users use GROUPON daily and search and buy local services.  Listing on these sites will put you in front of people living in your community who are interested in YOUR Services.  
  3. Perfect your cleaning system. You will gain practice cleaning several different types of homes.  This will benefit your service by ensuring you develop a cleaning system that is efficient in all different levels of cleanliness and surfaces.
  4. With proper planning and execution, you will build your Cleaning Business with GROUPON!

How much can you make selling cleaning services on GROUPON?

Remember you will not be making a profit off your GROUPON sales.  The goal is to build your cleaning business with GROUPON.

What you make off your campaign will vary based on the cost of your coupon, how many you sell and GROUPON’s fee’s. Here is an analysis of the campaign I ran:

Coupon sold: 3 hour cleaning discounted to $59.  # of coupons sold: 113. 

$6,667 in total sales.  50% of the sales went to LivingSocial and that left me with just over $3,000. 

About 80% of those that purchased the coupon actually redeemed their coupon, so we were able to service about 85 BRAND NEW clients.  8 of those clients became weekly or bi-weekly clients.  Just in 1 years’ time I made $20,000 off those new clients I gained from my LivingSocial campaign.

To me this was a win!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are Affiliate Links. What that means is I may earn a small commission if you click on one.  This comes at no additional cost to you as the buyer.  All of these products are products that I used exclusively in my Cleaning Business.  I only recommend products or services which I have used, tested and highly respect. When you order through my link it helps to provide you free content. I greatly appreciate your support!

 

Selling cleaning services on Groupon

 

 

How to build your Cleaning Business with GROUPON

Running a Successful GROUPON campaign

Now that you have decided that a GROUPON campaign is right for building your Cleaning Business, lets get into how to be successful in your first campaign.  Remember your goal is to increase your customer base, it is not to profit off of the GROUPON sales. 

Plan

Have a Plan in place.  Without a plan it will be VERY difficult to build your cleaning business with GROUPON.

When running your campaign expect to get a majority of your calls in the first 2 weeks of running the campaign.  You will be performing the majority of the cleaning services within the first 4 weeks your campaign runs. 

This mean you will be cleaning a lot of homes in a shorter among of time.  This takes adequate man power and supplies and equipment.  Taking the time to make sure you have the time and resources to complete these cleanings will be crucial to your success.

Not planning your time and resources can lead to failure.  You will not want to disrupt your current cleaning clients by servicing your GROUPON clients.  Make sure you are not moving around your current cleaning clients so that you can make room for your GROUPON clients.  Ensure you have enough cleaning supplies and proper equipment.

I remember cleaning for one of our Coupon clients and they were so impressed with the high level of professionalism and cleaning quality.  She said she had bought a GROUPON from another cleaning company and they brought a broom in place of a vacuum!  Needless to say the cleaning was not quality.  DON’T be like that Cleaning Company.

Make sure you have a quality vacuum, mop (I used a steam cleaner), cleaning apron, dusters and cleaning cloths, and cleaner.

Related: Must have tools for Speed Cleaning

Define what is included in the Service

When you run your campaign you will be working with an account representative who will help you build your campaign.  When defining your service, be sure to be specific with what is and what is not included in the cleaning services.  This will improve communication and expectations. 

The flip side to this is, if you have listed a service task that you complete it at every cleaning, make sure your are doing it with every cleaning.  If not, you will quickly build distrust with the client and completely ruin your chances for gaining a repeat client.  

Answer your phone

When you are first starting out it can be difficult to always be available to answer your phone.  This is especially true when you are cleaning homes yourself.  

Answering the phone will be the first impression to the new client.  Your business will not look professional if a client has to call several times to book their cleaning.  

What I did during my LivingSocial launch is coaxed my sister into answering my phone for me.  She had just had a baby and was a stay at home mom.  So we traded services.  I set her up with my calendar and trained her in how to book a client. 

This worked out really well and I had received great feedback. 

If you do not have a friend or family member to help you answer phones, there are answering services available.  There are variations in how these services charge.  I personally have never used one, so I can not review the different services out there, but have heard of other cleaning businesses having great success with them.  Here is an in depth review article you can reference.  Best answering services of 2019.

Provide a high quality service 

Don’t fall prey to treating coupon customers differently than regular, full paying customers.  You will have 1 shot to make a first impression, don’t blow it.  This will only push these new customers away and tarnish your business name. 

When cleaning for a coupon customer, you will need to pull out the red carpet and wow with your quality service.  Give them a glimpse of what it would be like if they hired your cleaning service on a regular basis. 

By providing exemptional and quality service, you will increase your chance of gaining a repeat customer or receiving a referral, which is the goal of the campaign!  These customers may not be ready to commit to full time cleaning services at the moment, but they are at least interested and may be ready at a later date. 

Collect information about the home.  Similar to quoting for cleaning services, collect details about the home so that you will know what to expect and what equipment will be needed to clean the home.  Fill out a customer data sheet for them so that you have their information to clean the home AND to follow up with them after the clean. 

Follow up after the Cleaning Service

Don’t let the day of the cleaning service be the only time that customer ever hears from you.  The goal of the Coupon campaign is to increase your customer base.  To do that you will need to follow up so that your business name stays fresh in their mind.  This way when they need their home cleaned, they will think to call your business. 

 

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Developing a communication plan for your GROUPON campaign:

The night of the cleaning service, mail the customer a hand written thank you letter and information about your company.  The packet should included a thank you letter, a quote and marketing material.

The thank you letter should say thank you for allowing you to service their house cleaning needs. At the bottom of the letter is where you could include a quote for cleaning their home weekly, every other week and monthly. 

To learn about what you should be charging for cleaning services and sign up to get my FREE price calculator, click here … What to Charge for Cleaning Services

Marketing materials, such as a brochure, should describing your business mission and services. Include at least 5 business cards for the client to share with their friends and family.  Providing this information helps to set the stage for a continued relationship. 

To see my New Client Welcome Kit, click here … Create a New Client Welcome Kit

The next day after the Cleaning Service, send an email asking how their experience was and to rate your cleaning service.  Provide a link to any directory you may be listed on (YELP etc.).  This will help you to build a rating in these sites and increase your referrals!

At the time of booking the cleaning service, you should have collected the clients email.  And so you will want to add them to your email list.  This way you can email them periodically with promotions and news about your Cleaning Business. 

3 months after the cleaning service was completed, if you have not heard from the client since, sent an email with a 10% off of their next cleaning service coupon.  This puts your business name back in front of the client. 

 

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Interrupting a current clients schedule to clean for a New Client. 

It takes hard work to score a recurring cleaning client.  Don’t jeopardize your relationships and your reputation with your regularly scheduled clients to book your GROUPON cleans.  This is why planning your resources in the beginning is so important.

Trying to up sell cleaning services to your GROUPON clients. 

Don’t come off as a pushy sales person.  Provide the cleaning the customer purchased at your high quality and follow up later.  Remember the goal is not to make a profit on your GROUPON cleanings.  It is to increase your client base.  You will increase your client base if you provide an exceptional customer experience.

Cutting Corners. 

It may be tempting to cut corners with the cleaning service because of the little bit of money you have collected for it.  Again, the goal is to not make a profit on these cleanings.  Provide a quality service and you will increase your regular customer base. 

 

How to Sign up for a GROUPON Campaign:

Once you have decided that a GROUPON campaign is best for your Cleaning Business you can create an account with GROUPON.  When you first Get Started you will apply to become a Merchant.  This may take a few weeks.  It goes through GROUPONS approval process and they check to see if your campaign is a good fit for the site. 

 

Here is a step by step process for Getting Started:

  1. Visit GROUPON Merchant Center and click GET STARTED
  2.  
Signing up for a groupon campaign.  Step by Step guide to build your cleaning business with groupon.

Choose Local Deals

Signing up for a groupon campaign.  Step by Step guide to build your cleaning business with GROUPON.

Type in your Business Name to get started.

Signing up for a groupon campaign.  Step by Step guide.

Choose a business Type

Signing up for a groupon campaign.  Step by Step guide.

Within 2 weeks you will receive a call from a Merchant representative.

Signing up for a groupon campaign.  Step by Step guide.

That’s it! 

Now you will wait to hear back from GROUPON.  You will receive a phone call or an email.  When the merchant representative calls, they will get information about your business, help you to build and schedule your first campaign.  You will choose what services you want to offer and at what price point. 

Don’t forget to Negotiate Your FEEs

I highly recommend you try and negotiate your fee’s.  Generally, you will start with a 50% fee of all sales plus about 2.9% for credit card processing fees.  All of this is negotiable. 

This is something I wish I knew going into my LivingSocial campaign.  I did not negotiate my rates.  I have heard of small businesses negotiating down to 40% and removing the credit card fees and having GROUPON pay those.  So if this is the route you go, try to negotiate!

 

 

RECAP: To build your Cleaning Business with GROUPON follow these steps …

  1. Plan
  2. Define what is included in your services
  3. Answer your phone
  4. Provide a high quality service
  5. Follow up after the Cleaning Service to land more cleanings!

Well that is it.  Tell me about your experience with running a GROUPON campaign.  Were you able to build your business with GROUPON? I would love to hear!

Best of Luck!

Roberta

5 Steps to Discuss Cleaning Fees with Clients

5 Steps to Discuss Cleaning Fees with Clients

Cleaning fees is a tough subject to bring up with your cleaning clients and is not always fun. Many maid service owners lack the confidence to clearly state cleaning fee’s without breaking down and offering their services at a much lower price than what they want. These discussions can be difficult to do, but are so VERY important for the success of your business!

When fee’s are clearly explained and combined with excellent customer service, it can lead to strong customer relationships. On the flip side, failure to clearly discuss fee’s can lead to mistrust with clients.

 

Why do many Cleaning Business Owners hate to discuss cleaning fees?

Discuss cleaning fees with clientsCleaning Business owners often times, do not want to talk cleaning fees with their clients upfront for fear of pushing them away.  There are lots of cheaper options out there, so many try to avoid it.

Don’t Loose your Value

But you know your value, so stick to it.  You don’t want the client to start the conversation and end in a bidding war, or worse end up cleaning a home for less than your value.  You have set your prices so that you know you will cover expenses and make a certain profit.  Any fee’s less than that you will be loosing money.

Don’t Loose your clients trust

Hiring a cleaning business is personal.  Home owners invite you into their home based on trust.  Create a trusting relationship that will last for many years. Clients do not do business with companies they do not trust!

Set your Cleaning Business up for success by being upfront with your clients when discussing cleaning fee’s.

 

5 Steps to Discuss Cleaning Fees with your clients

There are a few steps you can take to start having the conversation with clients from day one. Discussing fee’s with clients can be easier if you follow along with these 5 steps.

1. Take the Lead on Discussing Fees

Take the lead on discussing service price. You should start talking about the fee’s before the client does.  Don’t let the client or potential client ask the question. This can take the discussion in an awkward turn.

While it may be difficult to start the conversation on fee’s, it demonstrates leadership and starts to build the trust between yourself and the client.

Related Topic: How to Quote Cleaning Services

What you don’t want to happen is to have the clients start the discussion. They will most always come lower than your asking price. But then when you tell the This can lead to the client negotiating and setting their own cleaning fee’s.

2. Always be upfront and consistent on what your price includes

Continuing on the lead with your price discussion, you want to be very clear on what services are included in your cleaning service. Clearly define what is and what is not included in that service.

Always have a Cleaning Service Checklist to provide to the customer.  This way they have a list of what is included in their regular service you are quoting them on.

Related Topic: What to Charge for House Cleaning Services

If you offer any extra services make sure to leave a price list of those services. This way when the client asks you to clean the oven during a clean, you can refer back to the price list on the extra charge. What you don’t want to do is let clients assume there is no extra charge. This creates a sticky situation, one which does not end very well.

3. Discuss the value of the service

You know your value, now communicate with the client.  What value do you bring to the table?

Is it the time your client will save by not having to clean their home? Is it the awesome reliable customer service your client will receive? Or is there a special product you use that others Cleaning Company’s do not?

Whatever it is, make sure you communicate it when talking about price.

In my Cleaning Business no one in the area could mop floors like us.  We used a heavy duty steam cleaner that cleaned tile floors quickly and very effectively.  Our clients never had sticky floors (you know that feeling when you walk over a recently mopped floors and your shoes stick to the floors!) and never had any cleaning residue left over.  

It was a true value proposition that other companies could not offer and we made sure our clients and potential clients knew it.   

4. Ensure your client understands your fee schedule

After you have clearly explained your fee structure, ask the client or check with them to make sure they understand. Provide print outs or hard copies of what your additional fees are.

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You should be leaving each new client with a new client welcome kit.  These kits should include information about policies, cleaning checklists, and pricing for additional tasks. This will provided needed information to your clients so they know want to expect with future services.

If you are providing a quote to a potential new client, always provide a cleaning checklist so the client knows what exactly it is your company cleans when they visit a home. Make a clear list of what is included and what is extra. 

5. Put it to Pen

When you quote a client a price, always document it. This will avoid any miss communication. You can document it in an electronic format or on paper. Provide a copy to the client for their records. In the future when the client asks for extra tasks, you can always refer back to what was quoted originally.

After providing a quote to a client, follow up with a letter thanking them for the opportunity of provide them a price for cleaning their home. Include how much it will cost to clean their home on a weekly, biweekly, and monthly basis. 

If the client does not sign up for a while after the initial quote, you have a copy of what was originally quoted.  This way if they do call you in the future, you will have it ready. It is ok to put a time limit of how long a quote is good for. It is safe to use a 90 day rule. 

When your quoting a customer for pricing following these steps will increase trust. Consumers buy from those they trust. If you can develop trusting relationships, you can quickly build your customer base! 

 

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The last thing you need to know about discussing cleaning fees with clients

The take away with discussing cleaning fees with clients is to

  • Be open
  • Always be upfront
  • Have consistent pricing

If you stick to these rules you will be successful in taking to clients about pricing. You will dodge the haggling some clients like to get into.

As always this is your business, don’t let clients set the prices. And always maintain trust and credibility with having a consistent price structure that all clients will come to expect and understand.

What are your biggest struggles with talking cleaning fees with clients? Leave a message so we all can share in our experiences ?.

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New Client Welcome Kit for Your Cleaning Business

New Client Welcome Kit for Your Cleaning Business

How exciting, you just booked a new cleaning client! So how do you welcome your new client? With a New Client Welcome Kit that is. Now is the time to start setting the stage for the client experience with a new client welcome kit for a positive relationship!

Don’t leave your new client hanging until you show up for their first cleaning.  Impress them with a welcome kit that provides information that includes

  • A Welcome Letter
  • Client Data Form. So they can tell you more about them. 
  • Cleaning Checklist. What they can expect from you.
  • Customer Polices. What you expect from them.
  • Promotional materials. So they can tell their friends about you.

Having a welcome will create a positive first impression with your new cleaning client. In the new client welcome kit, you will set expectations and let the client know what to expect in your relationship and the cleaning service you provide.

Need Help with Quotes and Pricing? Read my super helpful articles to help you through it!

 

 

How to create a new client welcome kit for your cleaning business.

I have put together a list of what you should include in your new client welcome kit. 

What to Include in Your New Client Welcome Kit:

1. A Welcome Letter

A Welcome letter introduces you and your business. It also lets your new client know how excited you are that they have hired you to clean their home. Make sure your welcome letter is warm and inviting.

In your letter, introduce your self and your business to your new client. Next, tell them how you will provide excellent customer service.  Then, end the letter with what they can find in the new client welcome kit. If there is any paperwork that needs to be returned to you in your new packet, tell the client when and how to send it back to you.

2. Client Data Form

The purpose of the client data form is to collect the pertinent information for you to provide the best cleaning service for your client.

What to include on your Client Data Form:

Information about the client

Start the form with a section where the client can provide contact information. Contact information includes house phone, cell phones and email.  This way you will have multiple ways to get a hold of the client when needed. Include an area for the client to tell you how they want to be contacted in the event the cleaning needs to be rescheduled or in the case of emergency.

Next, include a section where you collect basic information about the house. Ask questions such as how many bedrooms are in the home, how many bathrooms, and what kind of flooring is through out the home. Having information about the house will give you a better idea of what cleaning supplies you will need to bring into the home.

The next section of the form should include any important information about the clean, that is specific to their house. For example: How does the client want you to enter the home?  Does the client have any no touch items in the house?  Any pets, what are their names, and where will they be?

Include a question on where central garbage can is located. You will be collecting trash in the house and will need to know where to put it.  Is it in the garage or on the side of the house?

Ask the client what to do if a door is closed in the home. Sometimes this indicates a do not enter. Ask if it is ok for the cleaners to enter bedrooms or bathrooms with closed doors and clean.  Sometime clients will have out of town guests you are not expecting. If a door is shut for privacy you will need to know what is expected.

3. Customer Policies

The purpose of the Customer Policy document is to set boundaries for the homeowner/client. This document should eliminate surprises or questions in the future. For example, if a hurricane comes through your area, your client should know a head of time what to expect from you and your cleaners.

Having the Customer Policy document will help to create a long and happy relationship between you and the customer.

Items to include in your customer polices.

  • Cancellation polices, how to cancel an appointment and any fee’s that may be charged.
  • Lock out policies. What will happen if cleaners are not able to get into a home, and how you will treat that. Will there be a fee charged after so many lock outs, etc?
  • Damage and Breakage policies. Accidents happen, your new client knows that, tell them how situations like these will be addressed.  My customer policy also had the following ‘We request that all valuable, irreplaceable, collectible, or heirloom items (whether monetarily or sentimentally valued) be stored and/or not cleaned by our team’. Tell them how long they have to report any incidents.
  • Inclement weather policies. Depending on where you live, you may experience inclement weather from time to time.  In Florida our inclement weather included Hurricanes and Tropical Storms.  Those of you living up north, have to worry about snow and ice.  Provide information on what will happen if your cleaners can not drive to services a home.  Let the client know how you will contact them to reschedule.
  • Hours and Holidays. Include here, hours of operations.  When can a client call you and get an answer. Do you have an after-hours number? Does your company observe any holidays and what are those holidays?
  • Any other information specific to your business.

Click here for Further Reading —> Why Every Cleaning Service Need Insurance and What You Need

4. Cleaning Checklist

The purpose of the Cleaning Checklist is to 

Include a comprehensive list of what is included with each cleaning, on the cleaning checklist. This will let the client know what they can expect with each of their cleaning visits. Questions may arise or clients may want to add an additional item to their cleaning service, you can refer to this document to justify any responses or price increases.

An important note to make, if you include a cleaning check list, make sure you and your cleaners are following it to a T.  When you say you are going to clean the top of the refrigerator, you better clean the top of the refrigerator.

Clients will look for these items and will notice when they are not done.  When you don’t follow your check list, it will create distrust with the client.  The client will be less likely to continue with service and will certainly not tell their family and friends about your business.

The cleaning checklist will also help protect you from those clients who like to leave notes asking for you to clean out the refrigerator. And you know they are out there!  When a requested item is not included in your regular service, you will want to be compensated for it. The moment this situation comes up refer to this document to justify the additional charge.

5. Promotional Materials

The purpose of including promotional materials is to let your clients share your business with their friends and family.

Items to include in your welcome kit include business cards, pamphlets, fliers or other promotional items. Business cards serve two purposes 1st: so clients have your contact information and 2nd: so that the client can pass it along to their friends, family and neighbors! Referrals do not cost you any money and the have the highest conversion rate to booking!

Once your new client sees how awesome you and your business are, you will want them to pass your information on to everyone they know! Make it easy for your client to tell people about your business.  Provide 5 business cards and a handful of any pamphlets or fliers your business has.

Next provide a description of your referral program: Providing promotional materials will not be very helpful if you do not entice the client to promote your business name.  Come up with a great referral program your client can not resist.

You can provide a free cleaning after 3 a referred client has completed 3 scheduled cleanings.  You can offer discounts to neighbors if they schedule on the same day and rotation.  We provided a 10% discount to both neighbors if they scheduled on the same rotational day.  We saved LOTS of money in drive time by cleaning two houses on the same street.

When to Use your New Client Welcome Kit?

The new client welcome kit should be sent out the minute after you have booked your new client.  You can send it in email or you can send it via snail mail, or hand it to them if you are face to face. Either way it is important to get this package out to your new client ASAP.

I HIGHLY recommend sending the new client welcome kit in two forms.  One in paper form and second in electronic form, such as email.   This way if the client looses one he/she has a backup copy and can save or store it whichever way works best for them.

Presenting Your New Client Welcome Kit

This is an important step, how you present your new client welcome kit will further speak about your brand.  We are in the business of cleaning houses. Therefore, any material you give a client should be neat and tidy.  Don’t just hand your new client a stack of papers. Care should go into putting it together.

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All our new client welcome kit’s were hand delivered or mailed in a green pocket folder, the kind the kids use for school.  The green matched our brands colors, and the pockets provided for better organization. We attached our business card to the front of the folder to identify where the folder came from.

Each document was placed in each side of the pockets. The welcome letter and documents they needed to fill out were in one side of the folder and promotional items on the other.

Looking to get more clients?  Read these articles

There you have it. How to create a New Client Welcome Kit for your Cleaning Business.

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