Is Online Booking a Good Idea for Your Cleaning Business?
Today we’re speaking with Kathy Bodgan!
Online booking can be a really attractive idea. After all, how cool is it that someone came to your website and just pays you in advance for your time without ever speaking with you? It sounds great.
However, there can be a dark side to online booking.
What I advise is to look at your lifetime value of your customers. Which ones came from a random online booking and which one came from a face to face consultation you did?
If I had a cleaning company today, honestly… I would avoid online booking. The only REAL benefit that online booking gives to you is that people can sign up to be your client no matter where you are or what you are doing. You could be on the beach or spending time with your family as people sign up to be your cleaning client.
Resource Alert: How to Market a Cleaning Business – Automation or Face to Face? http://www.growmycleaningcompany.com/how-to-market-a-cleaning-business-2/
While that is a huge benefit, there is a lot of downsides to this as well.
For example, it is very hard to screen customers. You might get a lot of people using your online booking that only want a once in a month or a “sometimes” clean. That is a kind of client you should avoid. You should always be after weekly, or at least biweekly, cleans from your clients and accept nothing else. When you can’t screen customers to make sure they fit that framework, it can be really difficult to make sure the wrong customers don’t end up wasting your time.
In addition, it is really hard to explain the value you are offering to someone through an online booking. While a website can be a huge win for you from a marketing perspective, it is usually the cleaning consultation you will give to them in person that is going to make them see the value add your service gives to their lives.
If you’re in a small city, I would say online booking is something you should definitely avoid. Big cities you can get away with it… but really track who is coming through that online booking portal. What has their lifetime value to your business been?
Resource Alert: How to Get Clients for My Cleaning Business http://www.growmycleaningcompany.com/how-to-market-a-cleaning-business-2/
Have they been good clients? Or crappy clients?
If it’s the latter, I would say get away from online booking altogether.
One lesson you can take away from online booking though is the fact that people are paying you BEFORE you ever show up. Once you have clients paying on a monthly basis, make a point of charging all of your clients on the 1st of the month. If they have four cleans per month, then charge them all for all four cleans the 1st of the month.
When you do this, it can dramatically decrease people from wanting to reschedule with you. Rescheduling costs time and money on your part, but not if you had the client pay you upfront before you ever showed up.
Of course, when you bill them beforehand, it is less likely someone is going to cancel on you and want to reschedule.
Alright, let’s dive into the Lightning Round!
Best advice you’ve received either personally or professionally?
Get rid of the clients that are not providing you enough profit right away.
What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in the cleaning business we can all learn from?
Being too controlling. Let go of your need to control. When you let go, you can stop cleaning yourself and start growing your company.
What’s one idea cleaning nation can put into practice to improve their business or their lives immediately?
Have any questions? Leave a comment below!