The cylce of losing/ securing customers - Cleaning Talk - Professional Cleaning and Restoration Forum
 
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post #1 of Old 02-10-2015, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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The cylce of losing/ securing customers

Hey guys, ive been around a while but i have a question, well, its an issue my mother is dealing with atm.

Shes been in cleaning for about 20 years. Last year she quit the service she worked for and started he own service (solo). She does top tier work and gets all of her new accounts from word of mouth, no advertising. She also has top tier clients, several big money homes.

A complaint or loss of a customer can ruin her week. She really stresses over this.

Myself, im of the mind that customers will come and go, sometimes they take your work for granted and just keep expecting more and more, sometimes they just get tired of looking at you, who knows.

What is average length of an account for you guys? How long before they get tired and move on to the next big thing? She has 16 accounts and 2 of them have had issues in a little over a year, that pretty good in my book.

Also she has her pricing worked out pretty well but i think its a little low. What do you guys think she should be charging for residential (per man hour)? The city she is in has a 1million population, the economy has to be one of the better in the country.

If no one wants to post prices in here, a PM would be greatly appreciated.

Last edited by You!!; 02-10-2015 at 02:10 AM.
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post #2 of Old 02-10-2015, 09:43 AM
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What city does your mom live in? Does she charge by the house or by the hour? Can't really answer your question without these answers.

When we had several customers and employees, a customer would last from a month to 7 years.

Even though I've been focused on many other things for the last few years, I've kept some of my customers and have cleaned them myself. So I've had these 10 customers about 8 years. I gave the other customers to my former employees when I decided to get out of the business. Talking to one of my ex-employees last week, she still has them all.... one just quit last week because of a divorce and the husband (lawyer) made it so she couldn't have a house cleaner in the divorce. And another guy that cleaned for me still has all his.

So I guess if she actually cleans the shower with water and a cleaner and doesn't just wipe it down. And she gets the rest of the house clean without rushing through.... I'd say 3-10 years would be my guess. Life does happen sometimes and people have to quit having their house cleaned but 99% of the time when people cancel, it is because of the cleaner sucking at their job. I know... according to everyone on here they clean excellent... I go by facts of keeping customers and not the fiction in most people's head. I know no one on here would ever suck at cleaning.... that's why they all are over-loaded with customers and never a worry about money.
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post #3 of Old 02-10-2015, 03:38 PM Thread Starter
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We are in the ohio indian kentucky region

She charges by the house but uses a per hour measure to come up with the price. $100 house= 3 hours = 33 an hour. Shes tries to stay in the 20-30$ per hour range Should she be charging more or calculating cost in a entirely different way? Unfortunately she is worrying about money.

Thanks again for a replies guys. Im really trying to help my dear mother out here.

Last edited by You!!; 02-10-2015 at 03:42 PM.
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post #4 of Old 02-10-2015, 08:33 PM
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That's exactly how I do it. I can walk in to a house and know how long it will take to clean it so I times that by what I want to charge an hour.

Although I've been in that area, I don't know it real well. I'd say all she can do it try to raise her rates. I'd suggest if she wants to raise her current customers to only raise 1 customer at a time. That way if she loses 1 or 2 she has complete control over it.

How old is your mom?
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post #5 of Old 02-11-2015, 03:37 AM
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It really depends on the individual - some customers prefer to have one and the same cleaner over years, some of them quit due to personal reasons.
In regards to pricing, the rate really depends on the demand and the competition.
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post #6 of Old 02-13-2015, 09:11 AM
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I work by myself too and her pricing sounds about right. I should charge more but it seems that most people in my area which is a big tri-city area scoff at anything over $20-25 hr. I figure out my price after my walk thru and figure out how long it will probably take me. I have lost several of my clients due to the economy or they had to move out of the area. Big military area here. I have quit several clients who were stressing me out and so stopped cleaning for them....best thing about being my own boss
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post #7 of Old 02-16-2015, 05:25 AM
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I have quite a lot of clients that stuck with me from the beginning and that was over 5 years ago. I guess it's all about how you keep in touch with them. You should always give time to connect with your regulars and ask them which things they think you should improve on yadayadayada. It is a cut-throat industry so losing customers isn't really that big a deal once you're in for a long run. As for the pricing, her rates are rather too competitive it sounds like. Is she complaining about the profits? If not then she probably has it right since profits are always a concern in any business you're in.

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