Tips & Tricks/03.19.24

Secrets to Starting Your Cleaning Business

Too many individuals embark on the journey of starting a carpet cleaning business, then struggle to sustain it over the long term. In the dynamic world of small businesses, success can be elusive and the journey particularly challenging.

In the broader small business landscape, (not just carpet cleaning) approximately 543,000 new businesses start every month, and seven out of ten make it at least two years. As the journey progresses, the survival rate dwindles – half of these startups endure for five years, and a third make it to the decade mark. Less than 25% of startups last 15 years or more.

Up to 3000 cleaning companies are started in the US every year, with initial startup investments spanning from $4,000-$50,000. The process for a cleaning business seems as simple as pulling the trigger on a wand, and like magic, the dirt vanishes. However, as we dig deeper into the nuances of this industry, the apparent ease may just be the tip of the cleaning iceberg.

What’s Required to be Successful?

Running a successful cleaning business involves much more than acquiring equipment and pulling the trigger. In this industry, an old saying resonates: "Most carpet cleaning companies don’t fail due to a lack of carpet-cleaning know-how; they fail because they don’t know how to run a business." This can be said for most small businesses that fail, not just carpet cleaning. While individuals may excel in their trade or craft, the challenge often lies in the intricacies of business management.

Throughout this series, we will explore key practices used by successful companies to establish and sustain a thriving cleaning business. Please keep in mind that these principles and steps are universally applicable to any small business, not exclusively limited to the cleaning industry.

The Most Critical Step

Creation of a robust business plan is the most important step. Consider your business plan a road map for achieving your dream. Without a map, how can you be certain you are heading in the right direction? A written business plan will serve as a beacon guiding your company on its path to success!

A comprehensive plan addresses all aspects crucial to the success of your business. Questions like, ‘Will I have employees?’ and ‘How do I hire them?’ are tackled, along with considerations about tax management, market strategies, necessary equipment, and the importance of business essentials like cards and a website.

A well-crafted business plan not only guides you from the initial startup but also maps out the journey toward your ultimate goal —the realization of your dream of owning and running a successful company.

Other Resources

The U.S. Small Business Administration has some fantastic business plan templates available.

Search for “Business”  in Legend Brands Tips & Tricks for other helpful tips for starting and running your own business.

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