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scottish cleaning service

Aye, got to make hay while the sun shines. Gutter clearing is picking up though with all those leaves falling. I'm just ticking along and may go out and leaflet another street when I do two first cleans tomorrow.

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Incheck
Aye, got to make hay while the sun shines. Gutter clearing is picking up though with all those leaves falling. I'm just ticking along and may go out and leaflet another street when I do two first cleans tomorrow.

We had a fair few calls for gutters over the last rainy period, but now no rain and no more in sight for a fortnight. We had an exceptional october but november is looking pretty shy so far. It happens every winter at some point with february consistently being our worst month. Gotta take the rough with the smooth haven’t we 🤷‍♂️

Worrying never helps so we’ll see what happens if it stays as quiet as it is i will probably have to face up to my nemesis and get out knocking lol. Haven’t had to do it the past few winters so i’m praying for a miracle. I am taking in to consideration we have usually had a fair few storms by this point of the year. But the weather has been really good. So we would have usually lost a few days whereas we haven’t yet.

 

 

 

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Dane

Keep posting the fliers mate, you never know who will pick the phone up... I’ve had customers ring me who have had my first flier tucked away and that’s from 7 years ago!

Hope it picks up mate


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scottish cleaning service

Like to do my yearly internals at this time of the year. You have got to let the customers know you do it and its double money.

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Incheck
Like to do my yearly internals at this time of the year. You have got to let the customers know you do it and its double money.

Ooo i wouldn’t go that far lol. I may dare to canvass in dire straits, but i locked the box on internals long ago and didn’t keep the key for that one


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Kleenwell
16 minutes ago, scottish cleaning service said:

Like to do my yearly internals at this time of the year. You have got to let the customers know you do it and its double money.

double money?  how is that?

i dont think i could charge double in my area

i am advertising that i do interior window cleaning aswell.

but as yet, no interest.  even from my already established customers.

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scottish cleaning service
12 minutes ago, Incheck said:


Ooo i wouldn’t go that far lol. I may dare to canvass in dire straits, but i locked the box on internals long ago and didn’t keep the key for that one


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Easy money and no weather issues!

2 minutes ago, Kleenwell said:

double money?  how is that?

i dont think i could charge double in my area

i am advertising that i do interior window cleaning aswell.

but as yet, no interest.  even from my already established customers.

 

More hassle moving stuff about. I clean the mirror wardrobes, mirrors and glass on doors, and it takes double the time.

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Incheck
 
Easy money and no weather issues!

Aw mate i can’t. Netted curtains, blinds, cream carpets, white bedding, if its raining its a no go as i’ll show up soaked through, and when they’ve got the heating on full blast or if the house is filled with *** smoke...oh man


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scottish cleaning service
2 minutes ago, Incheck said:


Aw mate i can’t. Netted curtains, blinds, cream carpets, white bedding, if its raining its a no go as i’ll show up soaked through, and when they’ve got the heating on full blast or if the house is filled with *** smoke...oh man


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Some can be more bother than they are worth. All mine seem to have big white horizontal blinds which seems to be the fashion. I wish I made them because they are everywhere and cost a fortune. One of my customers paid £800 for a large one and two small ones. That's when I realized I was in the wrong game!

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BlueClearChoice

Maybe on your Facebook post in December you should put.

Clean windows for Christmas [emoji319]. People have the family’s round they want cleans windows during the Xmas meal. Worth a try.


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Tendering window cleaners

Stop for a moment and have a think about things, you have decided to go self employed which shows that you have aspiration, you have made some capital investment in uniforms, kit etc which shows you have a sense of belief in yourself however you have what a lot of other chaps have, and thats a reluctance to hawk. Please consider the following, when you knock a door, you will be treated to either interest, indifference or rudeness all of which can be covered by the old saying"Sticks & stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me".As a seasoned operator, I can assure you without fear of contradiction, that door knocking is the surest, steadyist route to a healthy client base.

If not already done, make sure the word "RELIABLE" stands out on your flyer, go knock a door, when it opens say the following:

You: Hi, sorry for disturbing you, we are a local, RELIABLE window cleaning company looking to increase our work in this street/road. Can I add your windows to my list or do you already have them sorted.

now at this point they will either say,

Victim: sorry we already have a cleaner.

You reply: no worries, hand them the flyer and say, if your circumstances change I would appreciate it if you would give me first  opportunity to show you how reliable we are.

 

or if you hear

victim: how much do you charge.

You reply: The same price as the other customers we have in this street £20 (or whatever).For that you get windows,frames, cills thoroughly cleaned on a reliable/regular basis.

 

Go knock twenty doors on the trot, use the above approach and I'm certain you will come away with a new found confidence.

I wish you success in the future, and remember, there is no substitute for knocking doors.

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Incheck

We all wish you the best. It’s far from an easy road. We nearly went bust after 6 months, canvassed the whole time, and in April it was the decision, do we continue or dont we, then all of a sudden, people started asking for ad-ons, and it all just came together luckily. We invested in the equipment needed e.g, gutter vac and pressure washer, decent van, bigger ladder. we didn’t take a wage for the first 5 months as everything went straight back in to the business.
One day i knocked a door and had an ear full as it was someones elderly parents in a bungalow and their daughter started complaining -she’s had struggle to get up out of her chair and come all the way to the door just because you’ve knocked on the off chance. That really demoralised me and i did feel bad. Also round by us there’s a neighbours forum and the hostility towards cold callers is very much apparent. But none the less, it got us going.
After these kind of experiences We decided to place a huge emphasis on ad-ons and create a picture portfolio of jobs done. It really helps. There’s a lot of windys by us who focus only on windows and they are well established for a decade or more so we came in to the market when they were at their best. We simply had to broaden our list of services.
If i canvass this year i think i may try for gutters instead as i think the returns could be better and i know which areas have the most gutter problems.
But whatever happens the lads on this forum are sound as a pound and can give you their experiences and advise that are comforting because you know you are never alone when going through dark experiences.
I have no experience with commercial window cleaning but if you have the appropriate kit this could be an potential target market for you. A few lads on here do really well off commercial [emoji4]


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scottish cleaning service

That's what happened to me. Started up with me and my neighbor as customers and quickly jumped to 10 customers. Then 6 months later I got one customer round the corner and it jumped to 20. Now I am branching out 500yds ( Far for me ) away and I am up to 30 customers. The moment you are in the vicinity people begin to notice you. I am a great talker and always chat away with my customers and they refer me to folk they know. Like a stone landing in a pool and then the ripple effect. My sign written van is my best asset and parking it where people will see it is forward planning.

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Daniel Perkins

To the OP and other talking about finding it difficult to get work, firstly this time of year is a fairly difficult time to break into the market. Because the weather is deteriorating IMO windows outdoors are put on the back burner (there are exceptions) as many see it as "what's the point they'll be dirty the next day" type of thing. Commercial/Retail wise, businesses are just concentrating on making money and not how good the shop looks (there are exceptions) & if the stores are high street or retail parks etc then same applies as the domestic (weather deteriorating whats the point etc).

 

It's just an awkward time to really break in, domestically people saving money for christmas & commercially businesses concentrating on making as much money as possible before the quiet periods in Feb/Mar/April etc kick in. I always find in retail that when the tumbleweeds start blowing around in Feb, one of two things happens. 
 

1) You get cut back or let go

2) They are so quiet that they start concentrating on cleaning and merchandising and that's when you will gain.

Unfortunately talking face to face is something that has to be done in our job to get alot of work. If you are going to peoples homes that will want to know who you are & if you are going to commercial route, it is cutthroat so you have to get your face in there.

 

This is the way I see it and just my opinion, there is endless amounts of glass around the place, the outdoor work will get pounded by wind, rain, traffic fumes etc & the indoor work will get pounded by finger prints, food, drink and christ only knows what else... at some point every single one of these places indooors or outdoors will need to get their window cleaned. Drive around your area, note all the glass around.. it's endless but there isn''t endless window cleaners to do it. You have to canvass, I'm not saying undercut as I don't like that but if you are walking by a place that windows are in sh*te, what's the harm in popping in and leaving a card? Maybe they don't have a window cleaner, maybe they do and you just happened to come on day that glass is dirty or maybe they do and he just does a crappy job and they have been too lazy to get someone else.

 

Once you are fit and healthy, have decent gear, an idea of what you are doing, know how to talk to people (IMO the most important of all) & you make a concerted effort to canvas.... you will get work. It may be slow at first but you will get it. Wish you and anybody else who's is finding it tough, the very best of luck.

Edited by Daniel Perkins

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Kleenwell

i realize this time of year is going to be slow and i did time it wrong to start.

i think my expectations were just a little high from the get go.   i knew it would take time to get established, i just thought i would have seen more

work than i am getting.

i am advertising conservatoire, gutter+fascia cleaning.   internal window cleans.

i dont yet have a gutter vac (i would like one) but as i am using my car, space is at a premium. 

my website is starting to get a few more hits per day.  its steadily building.

my google ad has had over 200 impressions in less than 24 hours.

im just glad i have a weekend job to fall back on at them moment.

i appreciate all the help and comments. i would love to go canvasing.  maybe one day soon, i will have the confidence to do it.

i can phone people out of the blue and then knock their door no problem.  i can judge their personality over the phone.

someone said that the person behind the door can do nothing to me.  but when i worked for n-power, i had hot water thrown over me and even

had a guy come out at me with a bass ball bat.  needless to say, it wasnt long before he was in the back of a police van.   but it didnt do much to help

my anxiety

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Daniel Perkins

It can be awkward approaching people for a job but ultimately that's what it comes down. Confidence in yourself, your price and the job you can do. Once you are sure of yourself and have your spiel sorted... imo you pretty much end up saying almost the same stuff to everyone. Anxiety can be a p*xy thing though so I do sympathise with you. You'll need to find a balance though so you can go that extra yard to grow your business and do what has to be done.

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Incheck
i realize this time of year is going to be slow and i did time it wrong to start.
i think my expectations were just a little high from the get go.   i knew it would take time to get established, i just thought i would have seen more
work than i am getting.
i am advertising conservatoire, gutter+fascia cleaning.   internal window cleans.
i dont yet have a gutter vac (i would like one) but as i am using my car, space is at a premium. 
my website is starting to get a few more hits per day.  its steadily building.
my google ad has had over 200 impressions in less than 24 hours.
im just glad i have a weekend job to fall back on at them moment.
i appreciate all the help and comments. i would love to go canvasing.  maybe one day soon, i will have the confidence to do it.
i can phone people out of the blue and then knock their door no problem.  i can judge their personality over the phone.
someone said that the person behind the door can do nothing to me.  but when i worked for n-power, i had hot water thrown over me and even
had a guy come out at me with a bass ball bat.  needless to say, it wasnt long before he was in the back of a police van.   but it didnt do much to help
my anxiety

Yeah there’s never a wrong time to start but there are easier times. We started late october and didn’t have much positivity until the following may, what with van breakdowns, some days canvassing you’d pick up a lot, some days not glimpse etc. I had a mental breakdown not long before we started and came in to it with my back to the wall. It can be overcome my friend [emoji106] from the bottom rung of the ladder the only way is up


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AJ Fry

Good luck buddy, I’m in a very similar boat, in the first few weeks of putting my name out there, for me I’m trying to work it round my existing work, I’m currently self employed so consider the relative flexibility a blessing to work windows in the gaps.

It’s clear to see from the advice from the experienced guys on here that canvassing is our bread and butter. I feel nervous about that too, however I’m prepared to push through and get out there.

I do believe the longer you wait and build it up in your head to something bigger and scarier than it is won’t help. Don’t think anyone ever feels particularly ready to get out there, but from past experience the build up to something “scary” is always worse than the event itself.

Be polite, courteous, and smile and who knows, you might even start to enjoy it, with the satisfaction of seeing your business grow, and your confindene. Good luck mate.

I’ll keep you posted on how I fare.


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Iron Giant
i realize this time of year is going to be slow and i did time it wrong to start.
i think my expectations were just a little high from the get go.   i knew it would take time to get established, i just thought i would have seen more
work than i am getting.
i am advertising conservatoire, gutter+fascia cleaning.   internal window cleans.
i dont yet have a gutter vac (i would like one) but as i am using my car, space is at a premium. 
my website is starting to get a few more hits per day.  its steadily building.
my google ad has had over 200 impressions in less than 24 hours.
im just glad i have a weekend job to fall back on at them moment.
i appreciate all the help and comments. i would love to go canvasing.  maybe one day soon, i will have the confidence to do it.
i can phone people out of the blue and then knock their door no problem.  i can judge their personality over the phone.
someone said that the person behind the door can do nothing to me.  but when i worked for n-power, i had hot water thrown over me and even
had a guy come out at me with a bass ball bat.  needless to say, it wasnt long before he was in the back of a police van.   but it didnt do much to help
my anxiety
Target more affluent estates were people ain't drugged up nutters, people need their windows cleaning all the year round so no time of the year is a bad time to start up,

I used to dislike door knocking as I have had confidence issues for various reasons over the years but I have now been trading close to 19 years, small steps is all it takes [emoji6]

County Durham Lad

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scottish cleaning service

My mate started PVC cleaning and told the customers he would be back in 6 months. I knew the outcome because you only need your PVC cleaned every one or two years. At the time he was so confident because he was picking up nearly the whole street because they hadn't been done in decades. He is now going back round cleaning them but they are not that dirty. Anyhow, he got his first rejection and he has felt it bad, he thought he was on to a money spinner. I believe he will give up soon or try another estate because like gutters, PVC is an annual thing or longer. In the end you have got to put oneself in the customer's shoes to understand the outcome.

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Skxawng

You can let jobs trickle in one by one by advertising, flyers and word of mouth and build up your work slowly.

But that's only if you have the luxury of being able to.

If you need the work fast then your only real options are buying a round/lead generation/paid canvassers if you have money, or if you don't have money then door knocking.

At least with door knocking you can pick and choose the areas and houses that you want. You can focus on areas around existing customers and nicer areas where you can earn more.

I like the name Kleenwell btw 🙂

Edited by Skxawng

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Green Pro Clean Ltd

Nothing wrong with the name Kleenwell but..... it needs to be Kleenwell WINDOW CLEANING - might sound daft but it needs to say exactly what it does on the can.  

 

We not spoken for a while @Kleenwell so give me a call, i'd be interested to hear how you got on fully from the leads and see if there isn't something you may have missed in there.  

 

Canvassing is by sure a very steady way to get work all year (never canvass in the dark however or after hours where they are putting kids to bed etc).  Look at it like this, if you only got two customers per day from canvassing then by the weekend you have 10 new customers, by the end of the month 40 and by the end of a year 480 and that for most is a full round with some icing on top. 

 

Facebook / Twiter / Google ads etc are all well and good and do work BUT and this is a BIG BUT....  'YOU ARE IN A BIDDING WAR'  you will see them talk about bid caps, impressions, target audience, CPC etc but here's what it means to the average Joe, if you spend £50 a week on Google ads in you area starting out (or FB or any of them) and you are in a good aea you will be up against lads that are spending £50 - £100 A DAY and more in some cases much more (often depending on the area they are wanting to dominate) and they will have higher 'bid caps' than you as well - so in short during 'prime time' you are being out bid by bigger deeper pockets and all that's left for you to 'buy' are the dregs left over clicking through bored at 11pm waiting for a cab home from the pub or such like.  Unless you have a substantial budget to compete on advertising then you can literally just be throwing money away.  FB GOOGLE etc are happy for you to do this as it's not in their interest to tell you how to spend money efficiently with them they want you to spend as in-efficiently as possible so you spend more.  Those are just facts.  

 

Leaflet drops are OK and will still get the odd customer however as far as time / cost versus reward it is not worthwhile anymore. The letterbox is so abused on a daily basis that they sort the mail from the flyers without even looking and bin the junk mail - YOUR LEAFLET

 

Now we get down to the nitty gritty - 

 

You decided to leave (or are planning on leaving) a job you've done for who knows how long.  You want the independence and freedom of working for yourself and of being the boss and afterall for most that's the dream.  Total self sustainability. Here's the glitch in your plan. 

 

You may have been a mechanic, an accountant, a baker, a road sweeper, a doctor even, who knows? Then you decided to become a window cleaner. 

 

Now in all those other jobs before you would turn in, get your list of tasks (job list) for the day and crack on, then you would knock off and go home and collect a paycheck at the end of the week.  But wait a minute, all you've done for the week is a list of pre-determined jobs, your work sheets have been handed to you every morning and you've done what every good employee / worker does, you've completed the list, felt chuffed about it and gone home proud of yourself knowing you did good and the boss is happy.  So what's the problem?  

 

Here's the problem, in your last job you're the 'ENGINEER' the guy that gets the jobs done, the one that thinks on his feet, solves the problems and gets the work done, no need to ask the boss how to bake a loaf of Sourdough because you already know and the boss is busy reconciling the books, managing other employees, taking money to the bank etc, all those boring tasks that interfere with baking the bread.  No need to ask the sales girl at the counter how to bake a loaf, what would she know? She's just the one that smiles at the customers, sometimes up-sells them on a doughnut and makes sure the customer has everything they want / need.  She wouldn't know how to bake a loaf bread would she?  

 

Do you see the point yet?  The boss knows how to do boss like stuff, take care of the mundane nitty gritty paperwork, accounts, debt chasing etc.  The sales girl knows how to sell the product how to make sure there's none left on the shelf at the end of the day but neither of them can bake (clean windows) worth a stuff that's your department, the engineer, without you the whole thing falls apart, no one gets a fresh loaf (clean windows) and that's that - but hold on without a Boss man to organize the rounds, plan out the day, order stocks, reconcile books, make sure you know what you're doing and making sure you have the tools to do it then your job doesn't get done - Without the sales girl to schmooze the customers, upsell a little here and there, and smile sweetly day in day out regardless of how rough her day might be then you have no clients to provide your product to begin with.  

 

(Bloody hell, I started writing a novel) 

 

You should be getting the point now, now you've become the engineer, the boss and the sales girl all rolled into one.  You're now a man of many hats and you need to be able to wear them all otherwise it simply won't work.  

 

That's how 90% of window cleaners get by, simply by being that man of many hats.  

 

If you can't be that man of many hats then you need to consider which hats you can wear and then hire in people that can wear the other ones.  

 

A prime example for us is the accounts, I absolutely hate them and they more confusing week by week, taxes, VAT, payroll, franchise commissions and so on. 

 

Now I could spend many hours getting my head around them....OR...  you guessed it we keep a professional chartered account on the payroll to deal with it for us.  Sure it's not cheap BUT with the hours I am not invested looking at the books I can get on with the things I do best in the business and make more money for the business than I ever would if I was sitting there staring at the books - so well worth paying someone else to do it for us. One less hat I need to worry about.  

 

Let's look at my friend John down on the south coast - quit his job in the big office in the big smoke as he was tiring of the 5 hour commutes and lack of quality family time with his newborn children.  John quit the job, bought a brand new van and called Grippa in to kit it out for him.  He then learnt how to clean windows.  

 

John was now a window cleaner, what he wasn't was a window cleaning business, afterall to be a business you have to have customers, so he called me. 

 

Why? John is no salesman, he is however a good engineer (someone that gets the work done) and also has good boss like qualities (dealing with the mundane office stuff) but he's no salesman.  

 

Hes realized that he's now a window cleaner but to be a window cleaning business he needs customers so to get them hes employed a salesman (canvasser) 

 

WIth bags packed I head off down to the sunny south coast for a week with my finest walking shoes on (gonna cover a lot of miles) and start knocking doors.  I also take John out and give him some pointers on pricing, door knocking etc to help build his confidence up and more importantly his experience.  By the end of the week Johns round is now starting to look like a sustainable business with repeating customers signed up.  John also takes advantage of our lead generation and I head back to the Midlands and on to the next job. 

 

Johns rounds are now well established and his business secure, why?  He hired people to do the parts he didn't want to do / couldn't do himself.

 

Starting out for us we didn't have the option to hire people to do the work we didn't want to do or were uncomfortable with, we just had to get on with it as we were so far beyond broke it would have made Woolworths and BHS seem like profitable business models.  

 

If you're not a salesman there's no shame in that, perhaps you've never worked an environment where you've needed to be before, perhaps the very thought of knocking a door and asking for the business turns your stomach and perhaps your concerned that when they do answer the door you're going to choke and fluff it completely.  These are all natural and believe me even some of the best canvassers I have known have the same fears, they just push through till they get rolling. 

 

I've said it before, i'm not really a window cleaner, i'm a salesman whose product is clean windows, I sell the customer the 'dream' of nice clean windows every time and that's what they buy into.  For me sales is the hat I wear, I pay accountants to do boss like stuff and I pay 'engineers' (window cleaners) to clean the windows, my time is solely consumed with the growth of the business, generating customers, getting the business through the door and continual expansion.  It's the hat I wear better than any other hat in the company so it's the one that I choose to wear the most.  

 

The 'engineers' day started at 7.30am and he'll be done by 3pm.  The accounts will open at 9am and bugger off by 4.30pm.  Me?  My day hasn't started yet, 10am, that's when I'll start following up calls and enquiries, a couple of hours pounding pavement knocking doors and priming streets with leaflets, talking to anyone that will listen about the benefits of clean windows, making more calls and finally finish up about 7pm tonight - remember what we said at the start? No calling after dark or when the 'put the kids to bed hours kick in'   Then time for some supper before answering more emails not only from Green Pros enquiries but also for the many other window cleaners we work for generating business up and down the country.   

 

You have to spend two things to grow a business successfully, effort and money.   

 

You can do it by spending just one or the other, but it will take a lot longer than if you spend both.  Speculate to accumulate. 

 

You all know me, where to find me so if I can be of assistance just ask.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Green Pro Clean Ltd

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Lemming

When's the book out Darren? [emoji1]

Seriously though, it's a good post and has inspired to get into my uniform and go canvass. I'd invest in your lead generation offer but I can't afford it just yet!

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Chris34
On 22/11/2018 at 09:27, Green Pro Clean Ltd said:

 

You should be getting the point now, now you've become the engineer, the boss and the sales girl all rolled into one.  You're now a man of many hats and you need to be able to wear them all otherwise it simply won't work.  

 

That's how 90% of window cleaners get by, simply by being that man of many hats.  

 

 

 

Yeah good post, I think I'd have to draw the line at becoming the sales girl though, I can bring myself to do all the other jobs but to go around knocking on doors dressed as a girl... well just not worth it  :1f602:

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Green Pro Clean Ltd
23 minutes ago, Chris34 said:

 

Yeah good post, I think I'd have to draw the line at becoming the sales girl though, I can bring myself to do all the other jobs but to go around knocking on doors dressed as a girl... well just not worth it  :1f602:

 

Yeah. Wouldn't want to spoil your evening hobby for you.  

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