Updated: February 16, 2020
A laundry shop business has proven itself to be more than just a fad. When other franchises have already closed or dwindled down, laundry shops continue to thrive, particularly in Metro Manila.
The steady growth of condominiums and apartments in the city, coupled with the ever-increasing busyness of people, have made laundromats a stable businesses to own.
And during my visits to other urban cities in the country, I’ve likewise seen laundry shop businesses, which are doing quite well. So, if you’re thinking of starting a laundry shop business, then here are some tips to remember.
1. Choose a good location.
The location of your laundry shop is a crucial factor to your success. It should be convenient and easily accessible to your prospective customers.
For example, if your target market are residents of a particular condominium, then it would be smart to set up shop at the nearest commercial area from the property, which is usually the ground floor of the building.
Know your demographic and choose a location that’s near them. Specifically, find neighborhoods where people have no time to wash their own clothes.
2. Have the proper materials and equipment.
Washing clothes can be a meticulous process. You can’t mix the clothes of different customers, you need to wash whites and colored clothes separately, there will be small and large pieces too.
Thus, it’s important to design a systematic washing process for the business, and have the proper materials and equipment for the operation.
For example, you should have enough laundry nets and baskets to organize everything, as well as a large enough wash space. And nowadays, digital scales are favored by customers because they can provide more accurate readings.
Lastly, purchase washing machines that are meant for commercial use. Those that are made only for home use will break down easily with daily use. And to keep your electric bills low, opt for washing machines that run on LPG instead of electricity.
3. Use good-quality products.
Before buying soaps, detergents, and fabric conditioners in bulk, test them first and see if it will meet your requirements. And make sure to get them from a reliable supplier.
Moreover, know and keep a record of how much of each product is needed for every wash load. Sometimes, a more expensive detergent will turn out to be more economical because you need less of it per wash than a cheaper brand.
One key to good income for a laundry shop business is to find that balance between cost and quality in choosing products to use. If it means trying and testing several detergents, then do so before opening your shop.
4. Have value-added services.
Additional services that you can offer will mostly depend on your target market. Sometimes, a free parking space will give you an edge over competitors if most of your clients drive cars.
Providing a door-to-door pick-up and delivery service has become an essential part of the business, so be sure to consider this in your business planning.
More importantly, when it comes to your operations, decide early on if you will provide dry cleaning, ironing, and other related services.
5. Win customer loyalty with quality and consistency.
It’s not enough to just deliver good service to your clients, you have to be consistent with the quality as well. That’s why having standard operating procedures in the business in important.
As a regular customer of laundry shops, I’ve experienced times when the clothes delivered to me, while clean, had a new fabric conditioner scent, or was delivered to me on a day that’s different from what was promised.
You may be delivering clean clothes, but such inconsistencies will make your customers feel that your business has a tendency to be unreliable.
Lastly, damaging or losing items is the worst thing that a laundry shop can do. Not only will you lose a customer, but that customer will most likely tell others about it and you’ll lose other clients as well.
6. Design for space efficiency in laundromats.
Recently, self-service laundromats are becoming more popular in the city. If you’re choosing to start this coin-operated laundry shop variation as a business, then remember to design your space properly.
Observe existing laundromats and analyze the flow of people inside. What do they do aside from washing clothes? Do they stay and read a book? Talk to other customers? Eat in one corner?
Invite friends to come over in your laundry shop, let them act as customers, and simulate a busy day. Then ask for feedback and suggestions on how you can improve the use of your space for efficiency and comfort.
Do you own a laundry shop business? What other tips can you give? Share them below in the comments section.