Opening a new business is not an easy task, especially since there are so many challenges and hidden costs involved. According to the United States’ Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 80% of startups survive past the first year. However, nearly half of the new businesses won’t last more than five years, and just one third will celebrate their tenth year business anniversary.
The reasons why small businesses fail are complex and influenced by a series of external and internal factors, combined with a poor economic climate or political crises. Nevertheless, if you decided to follow your dream and start a new business, perhaps one in the cleaning industry, here are some tips that might increase your success rate.
Come up with a sustainable business plan and find the necessary financing
It takes more than a good business idea to thrive in the cleaning market so if you want to open a new company in the field, you would better come up with a perfect business plan. Estimate the size of your company, the average costs and how many employees you would want to hire.
Then, establish a headquarter office, print out flyers, advertise your business, and be willing to do some pro bono jobs until you gain a reputation.
You should also take into account the local economic climate and the opportunity for your business idea. In other words, decide if the city, town or county in which you will conduct your business would require a new cleaning company. Consider the competition and try to come up with original ideas on how to beat your competitors instead of just asking for lower fees.
Decide on your clientele
When starting a new cleaning business, it is important to pick the right clientele. Decide if you want to offer cleaning services for residential spaces or commercial spaces. The clients you wish to sell your services to will determine the type of equipment you’ll need and how much you will charge.
Keep in mind that commercial spaces like office buildings will require the use of high-performance tools such as a power scrubber, harsh chemicals, and the services of more employees. Most cleaning jobs for commercial spaces are conducted during the evenings or weekends, so you will have to seek people who are willing to work around this schedule.
Also, commercial cleaning involves chores likes cleaning kitchen areas, washing and scrubbing the floors, washing windows and doors, and emptying trash cans. And, since most of these actions are noisy, the cleaning process usually takes place after all the employees have left the building.
By comparison, most of the residential spaces cleanings take place while the owners are at home and include personal interactions, and meeting with dozens of clients. The cleaning jobs are usually performed once a week by one or two employers. You will also charge lower rates for residential cleanings but, on the bright side, you will require fewer supplies.
Decide on the type of services you want to provide
The key to thriving in this business is to always care for the client’s needs and requests. The cleaning services provided should be flexible and tailored to suit each of your clients, regardless if we’re talking about commercial spaces or residential spaces.
Keep in mind that some customers may be very picky when it comes to the quality of the cleaning, while others may require the use of special products or methods.
The general trend is to give up on some of the harsh chemical substances and replace them with organic, non-invasive cleaning products. These supplies might be more expensive and harder to procure, but you will also get to charge more if you decide to use them.
Value your employees
You cannot start a successful business without carefully selecting your employees and caring for them. Keep in mind that employees are your most valuable resource in a cleaning business so you should train them accordingly and treat them well. Offer bonuses, days off, and incentives for those who perform well.