Hey guys and girls,

Here is the situation my friend and I started a window cleaning business a little while ago (about a year ago). We have been really struggling finding jobs here our current marketing plan is only to hand out Rack cards and business card from door to door. We also advertise on our local craigslist, and usedvictoria site.I landed a few jobs here and there and have one returning contractor / developer. But other than that We only have a job maybe once a month if we are lucky. :frowning:

Also another issue because it is only my business parter and I we have not made enough to insure ourselfs for jobs. Right now we currently offer a wavier releaving home or business owner from any harm that happens to us on the jobsite.

[B]So as you can see this is a dillemma, Id like to build the business into a steady 10-20 + jobs every month. With your experince, with marketing your business what has worked? What has steadliy brang jobs in? Do you guys use contracts to secure jobs? [/B]

[I]Im aware that there are many window cleaning resource kits, etc that are offfered all over the internet, but to be honest im not looking for that, I just want honest oppinons and advise from real businesses owners who can help me out[/I]

I also face the fact that there is about 15 other window cleaing businesses within my local area/city. Ontop of that one of them has been established for almost 100 years I think.

[B]I really need to get this thing running again!!! please help!![/B]:confused:
posts and private messages are greatly appreciated.
Thanks in Advance!

for you specific questions use the search button on the top. Seems like you have a bunch of questions and the response could be lengthy, so search for specific things like “marketing for residential” or just “residential”.

The fact that you have competition shouldn’t make you scared. It makes me mad kinda, puts fire under my butt to work harder.

do some searching!

Do you have a website? If not, get a nice infomative website together and market it anyplace you can to get a web presence and clicks to your site to move up in the rankings of search engines. Anyplace you advertise your name put your web address with it, including here on WCR. This shouldn’t cost much, if anything, just tedious and somewhat time consuming. You can advertise on the thousands of free directories such as Craigslist, Backpage, Kudzu, Merchant Circle etc. Put a free listing on the yellow pages directories. Once business picks up pay for better ad placement or even Google AdWords, but be careful using Pay-Per-Click advertising and I as well as most on here do not recommend using ServiceMagic.

Read up on all that you can here, there is a wealth of info on all subjects. If you have a specific question, ask away, I’m sure someone here has info that can help.

I wish I only had 15 competitors in my area. At last check, my (friendly) competitor Paneless Perfection had one of his employees count window cleaners in our area and he got to 450 just from internet searches.

But this doesn’t help you so here it goes…

Fliers are your best bet for starting off cheaply. Search the forums, there are many fliers posted from other window cleaners. Just make sure the flier doesn’t come across as me, me ,me. Make it all about them and how they’ll benefit. Make an offer and give them a short time period to respond. Put your company name at the bottom. The top should be a headline that will get their attention and draw them in.

Craigslist can pull in work but your ad has to stand out, offer a good deal and look professional. I see ads all the time that read “we clean your windows real good, e-mail [email protected]” :rolleyes:

Maybe post up links to your craigslist ads and any flier or advert that you are handing out so we can give you pointers.

Hey guy, Here is what I did. In the very beggining fist of all I had a night time job so that I could continue to pay bills and all that. During the day I passed flyers to homes, knocked on doors and most importantly I went after store fronts. Spoke to every business owner I could get infront off and made them an offer for business window cleaning and handed them a residential flyer for their homes also. I also found the time to call window cleaners in my area to introduce myself and ask for subcontracting jobs. Wheather they could offer me one or none I always finished my conversation letting them know that I was a go to guy if they ever saw themselve with more work that they could handle. Luckily for me my efforts paid off and had more than one guy call me and offer me work. I cant say that all my experiences where great but it got me some much needed business. I also went after other service people, carpet cleaners, land scaping guys, handy mans, house cleaners and so on and asked them to refer me to their clients in exchange for a fee.

Before long I was able to quit the night time job and concentrate on continuing to grow my business. I was able to hire people to pass out flyers on a part time basis. I was calling my clients to make sure that they where satisfied with my services and ask for referals. I took adds out on news letters and classifieds and so on.

Store fronts dont bring in alot of money but they add up and what I like best about them is that although things are slow and I’ve lost some clients because of the economy when things slow down I still have some work to do.

I hope all this helps in some way and Dont Give Up!

As all of the above guys mentioned + letter your vehicle and wear some sort of uniform (nice colored t-shirt with docker shorts or pants) . This is all level one stuff. You have to pound the pavement to drum up the work. Pounding the pavement is really an advantage in the service business. My buddy who owns a retail store has to wait for someone to come through the doors before he makes a sale. keep at it and dont get discouraged. You will get a whole lot of “no’s” along the way. You get a few yes’s too. Keep at it like any business owner will tell you.

I know you don’t want internet stuff, but can sell you great stuff. He seems to focus on residences, which will be of great help to your business because you get the check as soon as you are done, solving cash flow issues. His price seems reasonable. don’t give up or get discouraged. It took me a good deal of time to build my business and make it profitable, but it is worth it in the end. Your efforts make you money, not some employer. Good Luck!

That’s why I’m always asking for the [B]location[/B] field to be completed at the time of registration.

It makes it easier for everybody.

Hey guys and girls,

Thanks again for the advice im still reading through it and checking it all out. It seems the basic message is keep hustling till your legs are bleeding. I am posting my previous rack cards and also some new ad’s I have been working on. One is a revision to Eric Rivest from Ontarios Crazy Clean that I found in the post section of documents. I hope I am not stepping on toes by using his material and changing images etc but if there is any problem with it I will dispose of it (have yet to distribute it). Any other suggestions are welcome. Guys I really would like as much feedback as possible to see If i can ramp this business into a new level of earnings. Thanks so much! Look forward to more feedback!!

Warmest Regards
Paul J.

Mispelled [I]“RECIEVE”[/I] over the 30%
30% off is not a great call to action as mentioned here before, and it also might be a little too much at the end of the day.

Flyer looks good, I shouldn’t have every word on caps, mix it up a little.
Avoid use of generic photos, use your own when possible.
See if you can get your own internet domain name, so you can drop the Gmail address.

A few things that you should look at, all that being constructive criticism

Here’s some input for you, that I guarantee will make it twice as good right away:

Rephrase every one of those sentences to be about THEM, not you.

No one cares about you or your business (from the clients point of view), they only care about what you can do to make their lives easier and better.

Make it about them.

Wow, that page got blasted!

At this time of year things are going to be relatively slow, and operating on low funds you gotta use yer noodle!
Go to the nearest stripmal, bring yer bucket and ask to clean their windows for free! Let them know this is the quality of your work every time, and for a weekly gig its 15-20-50 bucks…whatever. Knocking on doors has never worked for me…Im not the best looking cat so they hardly even open the door for me:cool: Ive noticed that people dont really respond that well to door to door approachs, they would rather find you…AND PLEASE DONT GET IN THE YELLOW PAGES!!! BIG HHUUUGGGEEE wast of money. People with cash use the internet to find people, its easier and they get refined results.


Be patient. If you cant get t-shirts, buy painters pants (all white) and wear white t-shirts to start, or even white sweatshirts. Get truck magnets eventually but its even better to get your truck blasted with your info and logo.

Your competition is NOTHING compared to mine and just about everyone on here. But the thing is, there are enough windows to clean for everyone so dont worry too much about it.

My AT&T Yellow Pages ROI is typically between 3:1 and 5:1. Is that a waste of money?

It may be your location because that is a decent return. Several years ago I was in the Verizon print YP with a nice 1/4 page, color ad @ $160 a month and got a 0 ROI. I have received a much better response from my online YP listing at half the price. And I can change the listing if need be and can cancel at anytime. With the print YP your stuck. The print YP companies won’t cancel an ad that is getting no response without you first changing your phone number. And then you are still obligated because a contract was signed.

Other than flyers all my advertising is done online. Whenever I am looking for a service I look online. I don’t even keep my yellow books when they come to the door. Much easier to click on my favorite YP, then type what your are looking for and the area than it is to haul out a big bulky book and have to thumb through the a-z to find the page you need.

I guess it all depends on where your located and what your service is. If no one was making money on their print YP ad then they would not advertise in them and I wouldn’t get 3-5 new books a year.

Glad to hear you are getting a good return on your ad. I would of been happy just to break even with mine.

My YP ad is doing well. I have a smaller ad but I’m listed 1st because of the name. I get 4:1 each year and this will be my 3rd year. If you figure return customers my ratio goes up. I got one customer my first year that paid for the ad and they are a repeat customer so any other response makes me money. Plus my customers can find my number in case they misplace my business card (seems to happen to the same ones each year).

Gutter cleaning…inside and outside…WHAT??? They got gutters inside the house too??..I know what you mean but i cant imagine how many customers will pick up on that.

Great ideas! You address what may be on the list of concerns for your prospective customers.
To make it a little more professional I would trade “gonna” for “going to” and in your opening statement either change it to “cleaning [B][I]service[/I][/B] is to your satisfaction” or "cleaning sevices [B][I]are[/I][/B] to your satisfaction.

If you want to get your business going fast start selling storefront work. In doing this you will get storefronts and you will also get residential work from store owners, employees, and people who see you cleaning the stores. If you stay productive talking to people and hading out business cards you will find work!!! I use my storefront work as free advertising for my residential work. I find it far more effective than any other low cost form of advertising such as flyers and so on! And if i get to the point where I have more storefront work than I want I will just sell some of my accounts!

I think figured a bit of why I havn’t been getting most of my store front customers, I usally charge like 50+ for a commercial job but the technique i was taught way back ( 1/4 strip on three sides then horiztonal pulls) takes forever!!!, so a job that takes someone 5 mins per window takes me 10 or more so i price pretty high. Plus i have a business partner that we go 50/50 so a 25 dollar job seems worthless after split and gas cost.