Despite the fact that there is a constant need for clean clothing, many of us don’t have time to handle this simple but vital task. This may be as a result of our busy lifestyles, health conditions or sheer laziness. This goes with saying that laundry is one of the least favourite household chores.
So given the constant need for clean clothing, this $40 billion dollar industry is one you have to get into. Here is a complete guide to starting a small laundry business, if you are thinking about becoming a laundry entrepreneur.
Gain Experience in the Laundry Industry
Running a laundry business does not require any specific qualifications or experience but it is advisable you have experience when starting any business. Prior to starting a laundry business it is important you get a job in a laundry facility, so you can learn more about the business and what customers want.
Carry Out a Market Survey
Before you start your laundry business, carry out a market survey to ensure there is demand for laundry services in your area and know how your potential customers respond to your new business.
Write a Business Plan
If you want to have a seamless business operation, you need to have a business plan. A business plan gives you a deeper understanding of the market and is useful when applying for a bank loan or venture capital for your business.
Your business plan should include the laundry services you will provide and any special cleaning services, such as dry cleaning or ironing.
A business plan makes you gain clarity about where your business is headed and also helps you stay organized.
List the Items You Will Need
The next step is to get the necessary equipment you need to get your laundry business started. The equipment you buy depends on the scale you want to operate and your buying power. If you cannot afford a washer, you can wash with your hand.
Here are some equipment and items you will need to start your laundry business; washers, dryers, detergent, hangers, basins, iron, ironing table, garment conveyor, starch, water, generator, nylon and tags for identification, shelves and so on. These items will need to be factored into your budget when drafting your business plan to ensure your new business is financially viable.
Determine Your Target Market
It’s important you pick a target market to go after. So, when writing your business plan, include who your target market will be. Have at the back of your mind that your target market needs to be broad and should include, elderly customers who can’t take care of the washing themselves, busy working-class moms who don’t have time to do the family’s laundry and students who may be too busy to do their own laundry.
Identifying who your target markets are is important when it comes to marketing your laundry business.
Pick a Good Venue
A good location with little competition is key to your laundry business. If you have a garage at home and you live in a place that’s accessible for customers to drop off and pick up their laundry, you should consider operating your laundry business from home.
If you don’t have any of the above, look for an open location, such as on a busy street in a residential area with parking space this makes the dropping off of clothes and picking up process convenient for your customers.
You need to consider the price of renting the venue which may be high or low depending on the location and it should be factored into the business expenses.
Register Your Business and Get All Important Documents
When operating a laundry business, you may need to register your business and get some permits. Depending on your location, you may have to pay some local government levies. Do your best to find out the documentation process you need to go through and settle it to avoid any interference when your laundry business kicks off.
Start to Promote Your Business
Once you have everything in place, focus on marketing your business aggressively. From posting fliers to sending a direct email, and even getting your own website launched, here are some ways to market your business to different target markets:
- Put a signboard outside the shop to let people know what you do
- Use social media to advertise your business.
- We all love discounts, so offer promotions and discounts
- Print and share flyers wherever you go
- Use word of mouth. Tell someone to tell another about your business.
- Do home delivery and pick up.
- Go to schools, banks, offices and advertise your laundry services
- Make sure your prices are competitive and fair.
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