Yardwork is something everybody with a yard needs. But not everybody can afford a landscaper.
During slow times in the cleaning business, your housekeeper or maid may sell other services like yardwork to supplement their income.
Today on Ask a House Cleaner we look at odd jobs. Raking leaves, and shoveling snow as alternatives to cleaning.
Listen: Yardwork – Upselling for House Cleaners
Watch: Yardwork – Upselling for House Cleaners
Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.
Question: Is it a Good Idea to Upsell Yardwork?
Today’s question comes from a client who wrote into our show and she says “Ang, in your training you’ve talked a lot about upselling your services to make extra money during slow months.
I’m curious to know what your opinion is on upselling your services with landscaping and gardening.”
Answer: Yardwork is An Awesome Upsell For House Cleaners, Maids & Housekeepers
I like this question because as a kid you’re going to grow up in an environment that has a specific set of skills that’s intrinsic to your family.
In my family my Dad was a gardener, he was a farmer. He always had a greenhouse, he has a green thumb. And as long as I’ve known my Dad he’s been creating hybrids of plants and berries and different things that all involve gardening and weeding and, growing plants. And so, I picked up on a lot of that just by hanging out with my Dad and spending time with my Dad growing up.
Do You Have Outdoor Skills Like Landscaping, Gardening or Yardwork?
And so, I have a very specific set of skills in the gardening landscape arena that has nothing to do with house cleaning. It’s just something that I kind of grew up with and I picked up on.
And so, as I’ve grown my business I’ve worked in my own neighborhood.
People will drive past my house and they’ll stop and say “Ang, who does your landscaping? Who does all of these plants that you have in your yard?”
And I’m kind of like; “Me. I do it myself.” And it’s fun for me. It’s kind of a hobby, it’s not a business.
But I’ve been asked many times; “Can I hire you to come make my yard look the same way?”
Now, I don’t have a landscaping truck. I don’t have a riding lawn mower tractor or trailer that I can ride my lawnmower up on. I’m not equipped to do that.
I don’t I don’t focus on that. That’s not part of my business. But I certainly can throw a rake or a snow shovel in the back of my car. And I could go help out somebody with some simple services.
Try it. See if You Like Yardwork, Shoveling Snow, Trimming Hedges…
And one of those was pulling weeds. And I did trimming of hedges because I’ve got a hedge trimmer.
I always have carried a gas blower with me so that I can blow off patios and sunrooms and stuff like that.
So there are some outside tasks that I do, do. And I include that as part of a package that I sell to my customers. It’s not routine cleaning. It is an upsell.
Your Next Upsell is Limited Only By Your Imagination
There is a girl that I know that is out in Oregon and every year they get five months of snow. And the snow is really high. And so, as it starts snowing and it dumps 24″ and 42″ inches of snow, none of the customers can get out of their houses.
And so, she has a whole team of people and they go out and they shovel people’s driveways and walkways instead of house cleaning.
“We’re going to skip your house cleaning this week. During this week due to the blizzard, all of you guys stay inside. We’re not coming into your houses because you’re all snowed in.”
And the truth is she doesn’t want to be there cleaning when the whole family is home from school and the whole family is inside making a mess.
So, they switch gears and they upsell their services. And they all grab snow shovels and go shovel people’s snow for the same price that she charges for house cleaning.
And she is not cheap. She’s a very expensive house cleaner. But you know what? People need that service done.
Every Season Has it’s Own Version of Yardwork You Can Upsell
Now, during the autumn when the leaves fall, She’ll say “Listen, all of you guys have leaves. When you open your doors to go outside all of those leaves and the dust from the leaves blows inside your house. So, we’re not going to do house cleaning this week you all get bumped 2 weeks down the road. This week we’re doing yard pickup.”
And she shows up literally with rakes and a bag of garbage bags. And she and her team go around and there will be 10 people and they’ll clean up somebody’s yard.
And they’ll rake up all the leaves, and they leave 26 bags of leaves out there on the curb for the garbage service to come pick up.
And the people are more than happy to pay her expensive fee because that’s a service they don’t have and need.
Here’s a Secret to Upselling Your Services
If you want to upsell yardwork and leaf pickup services, start selling that in May and June. Because right now the customers don’t need it.
When they cancel a cleaning in the fall, reroute them to the leaf pick up.
You’ve already got this on the schedule. “Great. You don’t need house cleaning this week, we’re coming by to do the yard. We’re coming by to pick up the snow, and they sell these services far in advance.
And so, there are people right now that are three, four, five years in the running and they’re like “Put us on your snow shovel list.”
So, if you ever have a cancellation in this particular business, default immediately to “What do we have that we can offer our customers right now?”
And so, in addition to that, during the spring you could also do weeding.
Pulling Weeds Is Another Great Yardwork Move You can Upsell
If you don’t like to bend over or touch the weeds, there’s a little tool that I have called a Weed Zinger where are you just poke it in the ground and you twist it around and it pulls out the weed for you, and then you pop it in a little bucket. Bam! You’re done.
That’s another upsell service.
And if you charge $25, $35, $45, $55 I don’t know what the going rate is in your market but if you’re charging $55 bucks an hour to pull weeds that’s pretty good money.
That’s pretty good money but that’s something most people don’t want to do. And so, if you’re going to upsell your services, find something that you’re good at number one, that has a really low overhead. Pulling weeds is really low overhead.
With A Few Simple Tools – You Can Do Yardwork Year Round As an UpSell
Raking leaves is a project with really low overhead. You have to invest in a rake and you’re going to buy some garbage bags.
If you shovel snow, you’ve got to invest in a snow shovel. And a good one is going to cost you fifteen to thirty-five bucks. But once you own it, you own it for the rest of your career.
So this is a one-time investment and then you go out and shovel the walks every single winter. Because if you live in a place like Oregon or Montana or Utah there’s snow every year that’s a given. Every single year.
So if you have a slow month and people are not purchasing your services, or they are snowed or sick so they cancel – you can go straight to plan B. Sell them something else, because there’s probably something else that they’re willing to pay for.
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Resources From Today’s Show
Weed Zinger-Stand Up Weeding Tool w/ Spring Release – http://amzn.to/2s6xnX2
Snow Joe SHOVELUTION – Strain Reducing Snow Shovel – http://amzn.to/2t7i6Ut
Ames 30-Inch Poly Leaf Rake – 2915712 – http://amzn.to/2svqlvG
Hefty Strong Large Trash Bags (Lawn and Leaf, Drawstring, 39 Gallon Bags, 38 Count) – http://amzn.to/2suu64H
Poulan Pro 967044601 40V Dual Steel Hedge Trimmer, 24″ – http://amzn.to/2sgbDGI
Hitachi RB24EAP 23.9cc 2-Cycle Gas Powered 170 MPH Handheld Leaf Blower http://amzn.to/2t7rF5J
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