So I started working for this new Window Cleaning Company but I found out They under bid other companies accouts to get their business. I’ve been cleaning windows for a long time and I’ve never been a fan of stealing other companies business. Leaving this company soon. What are y’all’s thoughts on Window Cleaning Companies that Steal other’s Businesses?
Generally that’s scummy behavior. Certain franchises have a reputation for that sort of behavior around me and I have a few of their old accounts due to their quality not being good.
You get what you pay for. Undercutting = Cutting corners in my eyes.
if all a company has to sell on is lowest price that implies they have nothing else worthwhile to “sell”
forcing fast growth thru lowest prices isn’t really very fast either
This happens alot in my area. Some of thee $40 storefront account told me some chump is doing them for $10. I laughed my ass off! I have larger commercial accounts that get me 600-700 a day so I just stick with growing those. Storefront is good for when its slow, but its alot of work for a lil bit of win.
I had one residential clean scheduled last week. I get the date on my calendar and call the morning before heading out… “Oh I’m sorry I forgot to tell you, my neighbors kid runs a window cleaning business and he did it the other day for HALF what you quoted”.
Fine by me. The other dickhead gets a cheap low ball client, and I get to do the higher tickets with customers with enough class to not schedule and cancel day of appointment.
From now on I am going to tag on a same day cancel fee. $125
I got these two mansions for 1600 bucks a piece while the other guy was half my price.
I don’t mind the low ballers. If anything, they help me close more jobs.
Some people don’t realize that we gotta make money too. I’d say if they’ll let someone do your job for $10 then let him keep it that’s way too cheap. I’m like you I want even look at a small place for $30-$40 or less.
The thing is, no one “owns” a customer. So you can’t really consider it “stealing” a customer.
I know it can feel like that, but it’s just business. It’s always been like that, and it always will. It’s the nature of the business or any service business, really. There is no barrier to entry into the window cleaning business, and anyone new that comes in will have the same strategy.
And from the customer’s perspective, everyone likes to feel like they are getting a good deal. Or a lot of value.
The best thing you can do to insulate yourself from this is to diversify your service offering and learn to acquire other work that’s not as easily “stealable.” Think high-end residential, larger commercial projects, etc. Jobs that are not as easy to do or acquire.
Happens often in this business because there’s such a low bar to entry in window cleaning.
At the same time, life is long. Let them undercut. They’ll burn out from the volume or end operations because of such low profit margins. You never know, you may just get those clients back. For example…
I had a downtown condo complex of (5 addresses) 40 units and I was undercut by 50%. New company comes and does a terrible job. Don’t even think they finished. Complex doesn’t get cleaned for 2 years after that. The 5 addresses decouple and split into separate administrations. They all 5 contact me separately and I charge them each over double what they we originally payed me.
People are gonna do their thing. You just do yours and offer quality and kindness.
I can’t tell you how many times a company under bid us and got our Account… Just for the Customer to call us and say: We want you back… They’re not doing it the way you did.
I’ve just never been one to take someone else Accouts even if I knew I could do a better job. If anything I’ve helped them out and they’ve helped me. I like to get to know my Competition. They’ll be jobs I’m not interested in so I’ll give them a call and let them know it be something they could do and likewise they’ll give me a call and say hey I got this Customer that wants this… But it’s more up your alley so you can have it.
It’s how I started my business…( am I bad?) Contacted all the window cleaning customers of the
company I worked for, for 11 years, after getting fired by new owner.
I immediately thought the way Chris L replied. Stealing isn’t exactly the right term. But the whole idea of purposely undercutting to gain volume is very shortsighted.
I do feel that lowering the price and not doing a proper job as per the agreement is wrong, as well as operating illegally when it comes to how you pay your help and so on.