How Have Laundromat Prices Changed Over the Years?
With inflation constantly making headlines, it’s only natural to think about how much you’re paying for things now and wonder about what it was like before. How have laundromat prices changed over the years? That can be a tricky question to answer. As Two Shot Clothing points out, prices at laundromats vary by location. You can find different prices within the same city or town if you shop around.
Since prices for goods and services tend to rise, it’s a safe bet that the cost of using a laundromat has also increased over time. Business owners inevitably need to raise their prices to keep up with their own rising costs. However, many laundromat owners take steps to work with their customers to deliver great value so that the process is as painless as possible.
Why Laundromats Need to Increase Prices Over Time
Like every other entity, laundromats need certain things to function. These things come at a cost, so laundromats have expenses. As the cost of necessary expenses rises, laundromats need to raise their prices to survive.
Some prices have changed more than others. As In 2013 Dollars explains, laundry equipment prices are 71 percent higher in 2022 than they were back in 1977. That means a machine that cost $500 in 1977 would cost $855 now. Other laundromat staples have also steadily increased in price. Consider how both energy and water bills have climbed in recent years. Laundromats use these resources heavily.
What about laundry detergent? CNN reported in January 2022 that Proctor and Gamble was raising the prices on Tide and Gain laundry detergents, Downy fabric softener, and Bounce dryer sheets by 8 percent. When industry leaders announce price increases, even store brands often follow in their footsteps. To make things easier for their clients, laundromats may provide detergent free or offer it in vending machines. With the amount of detergent used in laundromats, even small price hikes can have major impacts. There’s also the matter of labor. As wages rise, owners need to be able to pay their employees.
How Laundromats Can Retain Customers Through Price Increases
Although people have heard of penny candy, no one expects to find any on the store shelves. Price increases are normal. Customers don’t like them, but they do understand the necessity, and they’ll accept them if they’re reasonable and presented well. Fortunately, there are several strategies that laundromats can use to keep their customers coming back when they need to raise prices:
- Keep prices competitive. When prices rise, customers who are under pressure may try shopping around for better prices. Keeping your prices close to those of nearby laundromats can prevent your customers from switching.
- Improve the experience. People often feel better about paying more for something that delivers a better value. Providing a better experience can help offset the bite of higher prices. Consider adding a television, installing Wi-Fi, updating furnishings, or adding food and drink options.
- Use incremental increases. A huge price jump can be hard for customers to swallow and create a striking difference between the cost of using your laundromat and your competitor’s. Smaller, incremental increases that are spread out over time are less noticeable and easier for people to absorb.
- Establish a loyalty program. Loyalty programs are a simple way to reward your most consistent customers. Discounts or freebies for repeated use encourage people to keep coming back.
Laundromat pricing, laundry equipment, and the way that laundromats function has evolved over the years. However, one thing remains constant: people need clean clothes. As long as that’s true, well-run laundromats will continue to thrive because they provide a service that’s in demand.
Ensuring that your laundromat is stocked with energy-efficient washers and dryers is vital for its success. If you’re looking for a reliable distributor, check out Laundry Solutions Company, a full-service provider of premium vended, on-premises, and multi-housing commercial laundry equipment. Our leasing program provides no mileage fees, no service fees, and no parts fees. You will be able to use high-quality Speed Queen equipment while enjoying a flexible lease and predictable payments. To learn more about our products and services, please give us a call at 800-383-9274 or contact us online. We look forward to hearing from you!