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Average customer retention?


DavesWindows

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DavesWindows

Hi all,

Looking at starting up this Febuary hitting lead gen hard and fast target getting 100 new customers per month (for the first 2 months).

Can you please enlighten me with your customer retention rates so I can factor this into my model?

E.g how many out of 10 will still be with you in 6 months, 12 months etc 

Honest figures please based on your own experience.

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We get very few cancellations usually only when a customer moves or dies , you will always get ones that say they want a regular clean when they want a one off but experience will help you see them before getting taken for a mug , try charging more for the first clean if you can this will help put off messers , honestly our retention rate must be 99% not boasting but I cannot remember the last cancellation we had and we have over 4000 customers 

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You might be lucky to still have 50% at the end of the year.

@Pjj’s 99% is virtually unheard of, especially for someone starting out. So don’t be disheartened when you lose customers.

Best quote I’ve heard recently about window cleaners, is “we are marketing business’s that happen to clean windows”

Unless you are very fortunate with the customers you gain and the areas you work advertising is an ongoing battle that will either cost you a lot of money or time. Even if you have an exceptionally good retention you should still always be looking to compact your work and improve your prices/hourly rate.

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scottish cleaning service

I was going to get more cancellations when I changed over to wfp. So I had to do both until I had a handful left. At that point I made a stand and it was either my licence or them I lost. In the end they stuck by me after I gave them a freebi to see how it turned out. They were all okay with it, now I wouldn't dream of offering anyone a Trad service unless its an inside clean which I'm rapidly falling out of love with. 🤣

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Why would you lose due to the change over.

Changed my whole round and lost a whole 1 who was a **** anyway.

I just cleaned wfp and carried on.

Didn't even mention it.

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scottish cleaning service
5 hours ago, Dave B said:

Why would you lose due to the change over.

Changed my whole round and lost a whole 1 who was a **** anyway.

I just cleaned wfp and carried on.

Didn't even mention it.

We call is "the west of Scotland culture" they don't like change nor do they like folk doing well in life. They all seem to like folk to fail, just the way its been since I was born. Everyone who moves away seem to do well in life. 😳

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There is no need to loose any customers if you educate them about the service you provide explain what you will do the frequency you work to and what you expect of them ie 4 or 8 year round cleans , set your stall out and be firm about what you offer , if they hesitate or it’s not what they want walk away , Ime lucky I don’t  need any more work but those we do take on dont  cancel I do get the odd one that slips through the net and lie about a year round service and say leave it until the spring I remind them of what they agreed to if they still say leave it till the spring I say don’t bother calling as we won’t be back as you have gone back on our agreement , I have had a few have the cheek to phone in the spring asking us to start again and they get told why we will not be returning , the only cancellations we get are deaths or ones moving house , and over the last 2-3 years maybe 10-20 whose circumstances have changed , but that’s it .

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I'm coming up to 2 years now.  I've not lost any through my own fault.  I lost 2 during the first lock down and I've lost 5 in the last few months due to house moves.  Currently house moves is the biggest issue, the house market has gone crazy.  I clean, see a for sale sign, next month it's sold and last clean.  But losing customers due to them not being happy or cash strapped just hasn't happened, other than the 2 during lock down [one was a friend who really just didn't like the fact I was doing ok, had nothing to do with money although that's what she claimed].

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7 minutes ago, Chris34 said:

Currently house moves is the biggest issue, the house market has gone crazy.  I clean, see a for sale sign, next month it's sold and last clean.  

Ask your customers to let you know when they move out so you can offer your service to new owners. Can't hurt to ask them?

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22 minutes ago, ched999uk said:

Ask your customers to let you know when they move out so you can offer your service to new owners. Can't hurt to ask them?

I don't need to, they offer it for me, one stayed on but switched to 8 weeks as they didn't see the need having them done every 4, more money though, they said that my previous customer had highly recommended me and said I was the best window cleaner that have ever had, made me so happy to hear that.  I contacted them to thank them and they said it was a pleasure, they were happy with their new home but said unfortunately the newly acquired window cleaner was awful.  Makes you feel good things like that. 

Three of the house moves are still in the switch over phase so still waiting to hear although everybody is having big building work as well prior to moving in, just gone crazy.

Speaking to a mate yesterday about all these home improvements, came to the conclusion that it's cash in hand stuff that's driving it all.  We've got a mate who has been furloughed on full pay, my mate bumped into him during lunchtime at a cafe and he was covered in paint and was a bit cagey, reckon he's doing cash in hand whilst claiming furlough.  Must be thousands doing this, but if they are then they wouldn't be able to spend it on a car as mr taxman would ask where did the money come from, however paying somebody to paint your house is a good way of using the money up without mr taxman asking about it.  Something is driving all this spending, people are supposed to be losing their jobs / pay cuts but there is loads of spending going on.  

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22 minutes ago, Chris34 said:

Speaking to a mate yesterday about all these home improvements, came to the conclusion that it's cash in hand stuff that's driving it all.  We've got a mate who has been furloughed on full pay, my mate bumped into him during lunchtime at a cafe and he was covered in paint and was a bit cagey, reckon he's doing cash in hand whilst claiming furlough.  Must be thousands doing this, but if they are then they wouldn't be able to spend it on a car as mr taxman would ask where did the money come from, however paying somebody to paint your house is a good way of using the money up without mr taxman asking about it.  Something is driving all this spending, people are supposed to be losing their jobs / pay cuts but there is loads of spending going on.

I doubt it's the case everywhere I have 2 mates who are always booked 3-4 months plus in advance because they are very good at what they do and have ran successful businesses for well over 10 years, no one is really looking to go on holidays abroad which  cost £1,000's so there is only one thing to spend on and that's home improvements.

As for the furlough ones on the fiddle unfortunately they are usually ones the taxman doesn't look at as they are the paye lot

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Since starting up earlier this year, I have lost 1.2% of my customers to date.  

But that figure will likely increase as I have had a few cancellations recently for silly reasons.  I will allow them to miss one clean only before they are removed from my schedule.  Those that have building work going on are treated with more leniency.

 

 

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8 hours ago, NewGuy said:

Since starting up earlier this year, I have lost 1.2% of my customers to date.  

But that figure will likely increase as I have had a few cancellations recently for silly reasons.  I will allow them to miss one clean only before they are removed from my schedule.  Those that have building work going on are treated with more leniency.

 

 

The silly reasons could be covering for strapped for cash but not wanting to reveal exactly why, I have had some in the past that have said they have had a change in circumstances aka found someone cheaper. 

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10 hours ago, Iron Giant said:

The silly reasons could be covering for strapped for cash but not wanting to reveal exactly why, I have had some in the past that have said they have had a change in circumstances aka found someone cheaper. 

Yes I agree and it's not my place to question any reasons they give me.  It's fairly straightforward to work out that this time of the year is difficult for families with Christmas looming.

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16 hours ago, Dave B said:

Yet all my customers this week are making a point of asking will I get them done again before xmas as they want them clean.

Ha, I've been getting asked that, 'will we see you again before Christmas', ha, didn't really think much of it but yeah they must be keener than I thought.  

 

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On 13/11/2020 at 10:03, Chris34 said:

Ha, I've been getting asked that, 'will we see you again before Christmas', ha, didn't really think much of it but yeah they must be keener than I thought.  

 

will we see you again before Christmas'👍💰

They want to make sure they see you to give you a tip, had loads asking us 😀 🎄

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On 08/11/2020 at 22:15, DavesWindows said:

Hi all,

Looking at starting up this Febuary hitting lead gen hard and fast target getting 100 new customers per month (for the first 2 months).

Can you please enlighten me with your customer retention rates so I can factor this into my model?

E.g how many out of 10 will still be with you in 6 months, 12 months etc 

Honest figures please based on your own experience.

The retention rate depend on many factors. How good you are at cleaning the windows is the main one. Do you interact/know your customer and they you. Pricing of the service, frequency etc all have an effect with keeping them. Plus their own lives and circumsatances may change (remember furlough as not ended yet). Seems lots of Newbies who want to start forget the core part which is cleaning windows!!!. And submerge themselves with the idea of their business model and projections on paper proposed van livery etc instead. This job aint rocket science....but there is a hell of a lot of people who cannot do it well. And you will not keep customers just because you have a new van or pole or strategy whilst doing a shoddy job.

  • Agree 2
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1 hour ago, mike007 said:

The retention rate depend on many factors. How good you are at cleaning the windows is the main one. Do you interact/know your customer and they you. Pricing of the service, frequency etc all have an effect with keeping them. Plus their own lives and circumsatances may change (remember furlough as not ended yet). Seems lots of Newbies who want to start forget the core part which is cleaning windows!!!. And submerge themselves with the idea of their business model and projections on paper proposed van livery etc instead. This job aint rocket science....but there is a hell of a lot of people who cannot do it well. And you will not keep customers just because you have a new van or pole or strategy whilst doing a shoddy job.

The only hard part of this job is getting and retaining good customers. 

  • Agree 3
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