Selling is an art, especially when it comes to sell window cleaning services. Because there aren’t any eye catching physical products to push, or potential impulse purchases to win customers over, it’s all about how well you can sell your business and that’s not something you can just learn overnight.
Window cleaning services can be a profitable way to start your own business when you might not have access to a lot of capital. However, as you grow and start hiring your own employees, it’s important to make sure that your selling strategies grow with you, starting with…
1. What is canvassing as a window cleaning contractor and how to take it one step further?
Canvassing as a window cleaning contractor refers to one of the simplest (and most effective!) selling techniques: going door-to-door in residential neighbourhoods or to shop fronts, and offering your services. The reason it works so well at the beginning of a new business journey is because, as long as you do it yourself, it’s free and helps create instantaneous relationships with potential customers.
Even once you’ve got a couple of employees, there’s nothing to stop you from gaining new business in this way. In either case, you’ll want to make sure most of the “leads” you contact in this way end up converting and hiring you. This means making an excellent first impression. Your appearance (neat look, clean uniform) and positive attitude will go a long way in getting people to consider trusting you. When it comes to sales, most books are judged by their cover and whilst that’s not always fair, you can’t fault people for how they choose to spend their money.
However, one great addition to your professional persona is the way you collect data when you go canvassing. Most window cleaning business owners simply hand over their card or a flyer and are off on their way, relying on the customer to take action. Instead, you can take control of the situation and, in addition to the card (but instead of the flyer), offer the customer a 10% discount on their first job!
The way to hand over this discount? Via email. Take your tablet or mobile device with you, create a form (make sure to include a disclosure notice that their info might be used for marketing activities!) and record their info. This way you’re in control of the conversation and you can go on to keep them up-to-date via newsletters and other promotional content.
2. The power of options.
It’s an old retail strategy that you never ask a customer “Do you need help?” because there are only two possible options to that and “No.” is the easiest. Rather, a good salesperson will ask “What can I help you with?” because it requires more engagement of the customer and implies goodwill.
You can use the same strategy by not asking the customer directly “Do you need our window cleaning services?” or “Would you like an estimate of the cost of our window cleaning services?”. Instead, you can try creating an estimate beforehand and simply hand it out whilst canvassing. This way, you can offer your contact details or, better yet, make use of a quoting tool on your mobile device (tablets are ideal, and they look more professional) so that the customer can visualize 2 – 3 options on a screen.
Either way, it’s about engaging customers in a direct way. It will be easier to get a better understanding of the services you offer and the differences between them, rather than simply being told a price and then left with a “Yes/No” answer.
You can even try a branding exercise and present customers with the tiers of service you offer: bronze, silver, and gold options, in order of price. This way, you increase your chances that the customer will either go for the silver or the gold, since very few people want to feel like they are “bronze” or “basic” customers.
The secret to a truly premium option is convenience. Give that to your customers and it’s what most will pay extra for without batting an eye. Peace of mind is worth more than a quick saving, so including automatic notifications, zero-touch service (keep reading to find out more!), and highlighting that the customers need not put in any effort (especially not in cleaning after the team leaves) makes it almost impossible to say No.
3. Put the customer’s expectations first.
Following up from the previous point, considering the way many of us interact with businesses nowadays, we know the first touchpoint is often a digital one. It could be through an app, a website, by email, or even by text, but it’s all on-screen. For those of us who may prefer not to have to pick up the phone, or are maybe too busy during 9-5 hours, it’s a convenient method of researching a business and still being able to book a service, hassle free!
As far as digital interactions go, it’s been predicted that by 2022, 72% of customer interactions will be through a digital medium and involve emerging technologies. The same study, from Gartner, goes on to predict that in contrast, conversations by phone will make up just 12% of customer service interactions, down from 41% in years pre-2020.
Zero touch isn’t about removing responsibility, it’s about providing convenience and trusting customers (and your software) to take control of their journeys. It’s fair to say that phone numbers are still good, email addresses are better, but an online booking form where users can book their own window cleaning service, is the latest and greatest that a software solution has to offer.
To sell window cleaning services, you also have to encourage repeat customers and the best way to do that is to make it as easy to hire you as possible! Whether it’s 24/7 access for night owls who like to book their contractors at midnight or multiple contact options for those who hate phone calls, taking care of these details puts you firmly in control of your sales.
4. Partner up!
It’s very common for plumbing businesses to partner up with electrical contractors in order to deliver a more rounded-up service. After all, it’s very likely that if a home-owner or business owner hires a plumbing company for a larger project, they’ll be needing someone to do the wiring too. It’s also a matter of trust: if you don’t know any electricians, it’s natural to ask the plumber who’s working on your bathroom right now rather than sit down and do your own research.
Contractors can also take advantage of these projects to sell window cleaning services by making friends with other field service specialists who could either recommend them in exchange for a commission fee, or do so simply out of their own desire to help! This is why networking and being a part of groups can be incredible for your selling strategy. After all, there’s no recommendation like one from an expert!
5. Price for profit – yes, that will get customers coming back.
Say this with me: My prices don’t depend on my competition!
As mentioned before, price isn’t the only decision factor a customer will consider and honest work deserves honest pay. This is why simply looking at a competitor’s prices and deducting $5 isn’t going to earn you as many fans as you might expect. Not to mention the irreparable damage you will do to your company and brand. It’s very hard to escape the “cheapskate option” image once established.
Prices should be set according to your costs and overheads, but also according to the value you provide the customer with. Going above and beyond to offer them convenience, quick and high-quality service, as well as fulfilling their expectations of a modern company with old school work values is worth a lot more than a quick sale based on undercutting your own profits. Check out the video below for more tips on this!
At the same time, many customers enjoy the idea that they’re the kind of person who likes to pay for good service. Just like going to a restaurant feels better than a fast food joint even if the end result is a full stomach for both, employing the premium option because it’s worth it encourages people to talk about it (if not outright brag to their friends and acquaintances too), effectively doing the marketing for you.
The Takeaway on how to sell your window cleaning services
In the meantime, perhaps you’re wondering where to start and we wouldn’t blame you; there’s a lot of information around, which can make things more confusing than they need to be.
That’s why we’ve cut through the noise to present hard numbers you need to see in our neat 10-step checklist. With it, we’ll walk you through the process of boosting profits with better quotes. Click below to download it and start selling better!
Hi! I'm Cristina Maria
And I want to bring next-level strategies to the field service industry. When I'm not working on the best tips to grow your business, I'm on the lookout for a sci-fi novel to beat The Foundation.