Winter canvas??

Discussion in 'Water Fed Pole Cleaning' started by Hunty, Oct 18, 2015.

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  1. Hunty

    Hunty Active Member
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    Hi all,
    So I started out May'ish this year and have done well I think canvassing wise.
    Just wondering what is it like canvassing now summer is over, does it start to slow now and no one wants a windie or is it plain sailing?
     
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  2. spruce

    spruce Grand Master
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    #2 spruce, Oct 18, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2015
    Just carry on canvassing. It may slow a little but generally the ones who you get now are the ones that genuinely want a window cleaner.

    However, as you get toward mid Nov into Dec be aware of the ones who are suddenly desperate for a window cleaner as they tend to be ones that end up as one of Christmas cleans under the disguise of wanting a regular cleaner.

    Do add an initial first clean price so if they turn out to be one offs then you haven't lost much.

    If you are busy then another way to weed them out is to postpone the first clean until the new year. If they go crackers then it was always just a single clean they wanted.

    But we have all been caught at one point or another.

    We did very well cleaning on Saturdays when some people are more likely to be around, see you cleaning and approach you for a quote. You've been around a while so you are now in a position to ask for referrals from you existing customer base. Ideally you are looking for referrals in estates where you work already.

    One customer got us 9 new customers. One of those new ones added a further 5 to our customer list. In fact the majority of customer's we have have come from referrals and word of mouth.
     
  3. Hunty

    Hunty Active Member
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    Nice one thanks spruce I get a bit of referral at the mo but I want/need to get to 500 customers to be comfortable, I am getting busier and just wanted to update the business plan as to how long this will take.
    I expect it to slow but get what you are saying as I have lost a few who have said can you give me a knock next summer, haha they thinks we only work 3 months a year lol, so at least what I get on will be serious.
    Point taken with xmas cleans I will say they need to pay for first 3 cleans as standard procedure that will sort that out :thumbsup:
     
  4. spruce

    spruce Grand Master
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    That a bit harsh, but if you can get away with it then fair enough. In our area that would probably chase good potential customer's away. It has taken many years for some to pay us a month in advance, and some still will not pay before the job is finished. If they were going out when we arrived, we have to call back for the payment. Annoying, but that's the way it is.

    I have always been of the opinion that if you do a good job and customer's like and trust you, work will slowly keep coming in even without those gentle referral prods.

    We always used to spread new cleans out a bit so we weren't doing too many a day. They can be hard work. Your loyalty is to your current customer base and so they come first. It takes a few cleans before that customer gets on your loyalty list. It also works the other way as well, we also have to earn their loyalty and trust.
     
  5. spruce

    spruce Grand Master
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    Depending on your cleaning cycle! If you are cleaning 15 semis a day then you will just manage 315 customers a month on a 4 weekly cycle with good weather.

    I would be inclined to recommend that you also canvass for additional work within your existing customer base if you are short of work. Gutter clearing and FSG cleaning are good earners if priced right - you can also 'tie' them into an annual clean. Don't forget to offer the garage door clean for and extra £1.00 or £2.00. (We try to stay away from inside cleans these days as they take too long and are a pain. They always seem to take 3 or 4 times longer than external windows and we used to charge twice the external price -£10 external + £20 internal but it will still pay if you have gaps in your work.)

    In the motor trade a salesman will earn more by up-selling add-ons. Finance, GAP insurance, mechanical breakdown cover, mudflaps, carmats, paint and fabric protector applications all add to his commission.

    Winter does reduce the amount of work you can do due to bad weather and reduced daylight hours, so always bear that in mind when canvassing. I would always recommend from experience that there is a fine line between not having enough work and having too much work. Having too much work tends to make all your customers unhappy if they feel you aren't providing a regular service.
     
  6. Hunty

    Hunty Active Member
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    thanks spruce, all taken on board, I started my business offering end of tenancy, oven and carpet cleans, the glass was always going to be the add on for end of tenancy but I fell in love and it has become the priority, I have dropped end of tenancy and oven (time consuming for money), but kept the carpet so this is where I focus my add ons and fill the empty days for now.

    I would never bite off more than I could chew though so again points taken, thank you.
     
  7. adamangler

    adamangler Wakefield Window Warrior
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    I would push the carpets if you have spare time, better money if done right.
     
  8. Poles Apart

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    We stick notices on our overall jacket backs December and they read: "A window cleaner is for life not just for Xmas". We ALWAYS charge double for a first clean anyway it stops all the messers, my philosophy is if they haven't had to pay for a window cleaner for so long they won't object to paying more for a first clean if they do object then they don't want a regular window cleaner so will mess you about later.:D
     
  9. Hunty

    Hunty Active Member
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    I no I don't enjoy cleaning carpets as much as windows if I'm honest, I don't mind doing the odd carpet job to break up workload but I wouldn't want to do every day!
    Do u clean carpets?
     
  10. adamangler

    adamangler Wakefield Window Warrior
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    I have just started dabbling with carpets, but concentrating on windows at the minute. I think anything done everyday would get boring, so far with carpets i have achieved about £40-50 per hour, i cant get anywhere near that with windows in my area
     
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