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There are many books, videos, podcasts, etc. that will tell you how to succeed in business. They all offer different ideas and principals you can apply.

I would like to share my top three tips for succeeding in the cleaning business. I feel these are ‘musts’ and without them, you will not succeed.

It may surprise you that none of them are related to cleaning. They are related to the business side of your service. You can have the best approach to cleaning in the world, but without clients, you’re out of business.


Tip # 1 – Learn to Prospect

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Prospecting is the art of finding a potential client that is willing to talk with you about your services. When you are first starting your cleaning business, most of your time should be spent prospecting.


If you’ve never been in sales then this is something you must learn. I would highly recommend anything written by Brian Tracy as a starting point.


Related Post: Digging for Gold – How to Prospect


Prospecting is actually quite simple, it’s also very repetitive. You need to contact many businesses to find someone willing to talk with you.

There are many ways that we prospect for new cleaning contracts including:

  • Telemarketing
  • Door to door
  • Networking
  • Direct mail programs

I have talked with plenty of disappointed people over the years. They had the notion that people would somehow find them after they registered a cleaning business. This rarely happens.

To be successful in business you need to become obsessed with finding new clients through the direct results of your own prospecting efforts. That’s the beginning. Once you find someone, you need to master the next step.


Tip # 2: Master Your Presentation

cartoon image of manHow you present yourself and your company to a potential client will make or break you. When you show up to do an estimate are you dressed for success?

Are you on time and prepared? Are you a good listener? These are just a few of the things required to make a good presentation.

We recently recorded a video on how to estimate commercial cleaning jobs. This video covers the entire process of a commercial cleaning estimate.


You can watch the video on estimating here


Your presentation begins with the very first impression you make on your prospect. If it’s by phone, it needs to be polite, short and to the point. If it’s in person then you need to look sharp, speak clearly and demonstrate that you’re knowledgeable about your industry.

Anything you send out to a potential client such as a post card or flyer should look very professional. Remember – your prospect is bombarded with solicitations from other vendors every day.


Tip # 3: Know How to Price Your Service


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This can be the tricky part, and when you’re first getting started it can be tough. If you price your services too low, you may end up regretting it

On the other hand, if you’re too high, you will price yourself out of a job. Finding the middle ground is where you want to be.

Let me offer this suggestion – when you’re first getting started, it’s better to be low than high. At least you will get jobs and learn the process. If you’re too high, and don’t get any jobs, you’re done.



I would suggest that you calculate an hourly rate per person that you need to charge. Then figure out how long it will take to clean the building each visit. Once you have a cost per visit, multiply it by the number of visits per week. 

Then multiply your weekly cost by 4.3 because there are 4.3 weeks in a month. Most clients want a monthly fee, be sure to calculate sales tax if your state requires it. I would highly recommend that you watch our free video about estimating. It’s packed with helpful information.

The other common method to price a building is by the square foot. This uses calculations based on a price per square foot, it’s more suitable for large facilities (100,000 Sq Ft) and not something I recommend for beginners. Of course, you can also purchase software and apps to help with pricing.

Starting a cleaning business is not easy, the unfortunate fact is that 4 out of 5 will not succeed. If you master these three things, the odds will be in your favor.


Enjoy This Free Video