As the owner of a small business, you’re always focused on the bottom line. Where can you save money? How can you boost your revenue? Is it time to raise your prices? Laundromat owners provide an indispensable service but because many laundromats offer nearly identical services, consumers often choose which laundromat to frequent based on location or price. While your prices should always be fair and reflect the value of your service in your market place, it’s also important to understand how you compare with your competitors and how you fit into your customers’ budgets. If you’re interested in learning how to attract cost-conscious customers, use the tips below for help.
How to Attract Cost-Conscious Customers
Offer Customer Loyalty Cards
If you want to keep your customers coming back time and time again, consider offering loyalty cards. Not only will a loyalty program set you apart from your competition, but also it’s a great way to ensure your customers never decide to stop by a competitor’s laundromat. Everyone likes to satisfy a promotion in order to get free stuff. The following are some options you might consider for your loyalty program:
- Offer a Bonus to Customers Who Put Money on a Loyalty Card: If your laundromat relies on a card system, consider rewarding customers who put a certain amount of money on a loyalty card. For example, you could offer a bonus $2 for every $20 a customer puts on their card. Your loyal customers will appreciate the perk, and you’ll get paid upfront (ensuring payment even if a customer decides never to return).
- Use a Punch Card System: Offer punch cards that let customers redeem one free wash for every 20 washes. If you choose this system, be sure to choose a unique stamp or hole-puncher so that customers can’t pull one over on you. Also, be sure to advertise the cards around your store.
- Provide a Birthday Discount: If you set up loyalty cards, ask customers to input their birthdays so that they can receive a special, personalized discount on their birthday (perhaps one free wash and dry). If you see someone using the discount in your store, be sure to tell them, “Happy birthday!”
Set Up Sales and Promotions
You could also set up promotional deals that entice customers to visit at a certain time or on a particular day of the week. For example:
- Free Dries: On certain days/times of the week (your least popular times), allow your customers to dry their clothes for free.
- Discount Days: Is Friday an unpopular day to do laundry in your area? Make it a discount day! Offer 25% off all washes on Fridays.
Be Honest About Price Increases
Prices increases are inevitable – or at least they should be. When you decide it’s time to raise your prices, don’t hide your decision from your customers. Instead, use the following guidelines to notify them:
- Explain why you’re raising your prices. Are you simply responding to inflation? Have you invested in new equipment that’s more efficient and eco-friendly? Have your rent or utility costs gone up?
- Don’t apologize. State the facts, but don’t say sorry. Your customers should understand that you have a business to run.
- Thank your customers. Express your gratitude for your customers, old and new, for their support and loyalty.
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