In today’s busy world, business owners feel the pressure to make their businesses as accessible to customers as possible. However, more access doesn’t always translate to more profits. Is it worth the trouble to be a 24-hour laundromat?
Is It Worth the Trouble to be a 24-Hour Laundromat?
Depending on where you live, you might see a lot of 24-hour businesses. For example, in New York City, you can find 24-hour grocery stores, clothing stores, and even barbershops. A 24-hour business can be a lifesaver when you need one. But how do those business owners manage to keep their doors open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Does all that hard work actually pay off? Is it worth the trouble to be a 24-hour laundromat?
The Pros: Maximum Visibility, Maximum Accessibility
One of the best ways to get a loyal customer base is to be available to them when other businesses aren’t. That’s the real argument for a 24-hour laundromat. You might think there aren’t a lot of people who need to do laundry late at night, but think again. People who are more active at night, like college students, night owls, and people who work night shifts (like nurses, security guards, etc.), love being able to get their errands done outside of typical business hours. There are also people who live in houses and buildings that simply don’t have laundry facilities, and they rely on laundromats to keep clothes and linens clean. If they have a laundry emergency in the middle of the night, they’ll be happy to see your doors open.
There are also laundromat customers who actually prefer to use a laundromat’s extended hours to get their laundry done. Why not go to the laundromat when it’s a little slower and you don’t have to wait for your favorite machine? Making your laundromat available to all customers 24 hours a day means that as long as your machines are functional, you’ll never turn away a paying customer. This translates to goodwill and money in your pocket. No wonder so many laundromats stay open 24/7.
The Cons: The Investment Might Not Pay Off
Unfortunately, the success of a 24-hour laundromat still relies on the laundromat attracting enough business outside of regular working hours to make keeping it open worthwhile. After all, keeping a laundromat’s doors open can be an expensive proposition. You’ll be paying for electricity, water, and even potential staffing costs whether late-night customers show up or not. If your 24-hour laundromat lacks customers, you won’t make a profit. Offering other services that can be done during late-night downtimes, such as a drop-off laundry service, can fill the gap. However, it still may not be worth it overall. How can you decide?
Is a 24-Hour Laundromat Worth It for Me?
Ultimately, every business owner needs to decide for themselves if their laundromat will do better with extended hours. If you aren’t sure how a 24-hour laundromat fits into your business plans, ask yourself these questions:
- Is my laundromat already operating at full capacity, or are there other investments that are more important right now? For example, do we need equipment upgrades or repairs?
- Is my laundromat located somewhere that I can expect 24-7 customers? Is it easily accessible 24 hours a day, and is there consistent foot traffic?
- Can I afford to invest in additional staff time, utility costs, and other resources needed to keep my laundromat open 24 hours a day?
- Are there other considerations I haven’t looked at, such as the business hours allowed by my lease? Are there any local regulations for 24-hour businesses I need to learn more about?
Take some time to consider these questions. If you don’t know the answers, find them out before you try and make your 24-hour laundromat a reality.
Is it worth it to run a 24-hour laundromat? You’re the only one that can answer that for your business. Consider the questions above, and see if it makes sense for you.
If you’re on the hunt for a reliable distributor, be sure to 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!