The best upsells for the holidays, let’s go! Is there an ultimate holiday cleaning package and how often should you sell it?
But, what time of year should offer holiday upsells?
Listen: Upsells for the Holidays
Watch: Upsells for the Holidays
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. You can find this and 400 other answered questions in this series on our YouTube channel.
What is a Holiday Cleaning Package?
What is a holiday cleaning package and how often should you sell it and when should you sell it in the year? How do you sell upsells for the holidays?
It’s a great question and it comes down to, what are your skills? How much extra time do you have during the holidays on your existing schedule? Are you staffed properly for upsells? And are you insured for the upsells you intend to sell?
Now that we’ve asked those questions and you probably have answers, every company is a little bit different. What do you want to sell this holiday season? So, for Savvy Cleaner, which is the business that I’m running right now, we’re training house cleaners to set up packages that they can sell from October all the way through the holiday season.
There are a Couple Schools of Thought
Now there are a couple of schools of thought. There are a couple of things that happen during the holidays. One is this. You’re going to be so busy; you have no time for any special upsells.
The other thing is you’re going to be slow and you’re not going to have any business. So you’re going to need to up-sell some stuff in order to bump up the business, that way you still make money to pay your bills.
So, I don’t know which business set up yours is, but I’m going to address them both. The key to the success of going through the holidays smoothly is to know what it is you offer and to know your packages well in advance.
So, you can sell your packages early in the year and be blocked right now all the way through October, November, December, January, and February, because the holidays do not stop when the holidays are over. What? I know it’s true.
What are the Packages to Offer?
So, moving into the holidays, what are the packages? There’s a package that includes getting the guest rooms ready for guests coming in from out of town.
And so if there are families that have guest rooms that are not in use during the year, we want to make sure that we have a special package that includes us washing the linens and wiping everything down in the room. And making sure that the beds are made and that the bathrooms are tidied, refreshed and restocked.
Lots of people like to put in Q-tips, cotton balls, special soap and make sure that there are an extra toothbrush, toothpaste and things like that, in their guest bedrooms, for their guests. So, we like to make sure that everything is ready.
Guest Room Upkeep Package
If it is a college kid coming back in from out of town, we don’t want to fudge with their stuff because they have their stuff a certain way. It’s probably the way they always had it. However, we want to make sure that there’s no dust on anything and the trophies from their high school.
That includes sometimes going over them with a makeup brush so that they’re all, all the nooks and crannies, are free of dust and that they look spectacular and on display when the child returns from school. So, there are special packages that we can offer that include guest room upkeep. That’s also a package.
Cooking Package Upsell
There’s also a cooking package that we offer that includes large appliances. So, you’re going to go through the dishwasher and clean the entire dishwasher out. You’re going to clean out the cup and all the stuff that’s inside there, so it is shiny when somebody happens to open their dishwasher.
Also, as they open the oven and they pull out the Thanksgiving meal, you want to see the inside of the oven sparkle. You don’t want to open up the oven and see all this burnt, baked grease and stuff at the bottom of the oven.
Then, of course, because they’re going to be cooking, you want to make sure that their refrigerator and freezers are clean and defrosted. So that is one package that you sell. And we sell out of this package, close to the holidays and we start doing this in October.
Pantry Package Upsell
There’s also a pantry upsell when we pull everything out of the pantry. We look at all the dates because how embarrassing would it be if family members that come in and they see expiration dates on the food from a year ago, and they’re like, “Whoa, you haven’t gone through your pantry in a year.”
So, what we do is we pull everything out and check all the expiration dates. We put everything neat and tidy, make sure that stuff is on a lazy Susan so that you can spin it around and have easy access to it. And we make sure that there are extra packing containers.
So lots of people, extra packing containers like Rubbermaid or Glad containers, where you can put leftovers in them to send guests, neighbors or family members, home with extra Thanksgiving food. So, we want to make sure that we have all that stuff clean, tidy, easily accessible, and right there, front and center.
Silver Package Upsell
There’s another package also that we offer which is a silver package upsell. There are lots of homeowners that have these great big China hutches and inside there are a lot of silver platters that they use for Thanksgiving. But over the course of the year, they tend to tarnish a little bit and they all need to be brushed up and polished. The silverware, hardware, serving spoons, and all that stuff. So that is a special project, the silver itself.
Now there’s a special package that also includes China hutches, and so if you have a China Hutch with the China dishes a lot of times, people will have collections of dolls and things like that in them.
So we want to make sure that, especially if it’s grandma or grandpa’s house and the kids have been there throughout the year, and maybe they touch them with jelly fingers or whatever, you want to make sure that all the China hutches are spic and span. You can see through the glass. Everything on display is displayed properly. So that’s a special project.
Holiday Decorating Package
We also have a holiday decorating package, and this is a package I love to partner with my professional organizing friends. So if you don’t have any professional organizing friends, I recommend you go out and make some. Because they are specialists in organizing and tidying things up that’s not necessarily cleaning, but you can work with them on a holiday package and what that looks like is home decorating.
So, you might do during the holidays, and I know I’m a huge candidate for this, I’ve got five Christmas trees that are artificial Christmas trees we use in our home. One of them is a 12th foot tree that goes in my conservatory and it takes about two days to decorate.
That’s to pull the tree out, hook it up, make sure that all the lights are working, put on all the decorations, and then because it’s an artificial tree, you have to fan each of the little branches so that it looks like a real tree. It looks magnificent when it’s all decorative, but it takes about two days to do. It’s a project I now pay someone to do because I don’t have time to do it myself.
Families Need Their Homes Decorated
So, as you go into the holidays, there are families that have three, four, five, eight Christmas trees in their home. They don’t have the time, so are you willing to decorate a Christmas tree? This does not require a lot of skill. You might be bringing the boxes down from the attic, and so this is where you get the professional organizer to help you like, “Hey, stand on one end of the ladder and I’m going to push this tree down to you.”
And then you carefully bring it down the ladder and then you go hook it up. So, it’s two of you carrying the Christmas tree, and that way you have enough help.
Then also, you can chit chat while you’re doing this and it’s a lot of fun, but the Christmas decorating takes an enormous amount of time. And so, you can spend two, three, four, eight hours just decorating someone’s home for Christmas.
Upsells are Great for Slow Months and Holidays
So if you have a slow month, this is an awesome upsell project. Also if you’re growing your business, it’s also a great upsell for somebody who does not have enough work, that you’re trying to bring on for the holiday season.
I know every year we end up hiring extra Christmas help just for this particular type of thing. And it starts back in October because there are a lot of Halloween fans that have lots of Halloween stuff.
They want to put out cobwebs in the trees and they want to put out Christmas-like Halloween lights and they want to decorate with all kinds of fun things in the yard like graves, witches and blow up things. But it requires a lot of time and energy.
Halloween Packages are a Great Upsell
So as a house cleaner, if you’re slow, this is a great upsell for you because the people that will hire you for Halloween decorating may also hire you for the 4th of July, Labor Day decorating and other important holidays.
So, when you find customers that are willing to pay for the decorating, keep them on your list because they will keep paying you to come back and do the decorations.
Taking Decorations Down is Also an Upsell
Now the next upsell, they will pay you to take them decorations down and so a couple of weeks later, after the holidays are over, you come back with your professional organizing friend or the help that you’ve hired for this particular project, and then you wrap everything up.
You put everything away in special boxes. Like all of the Christmas tree ornaments must be put away carefully, so they don’t break, bend or shatter.
So you are that person that’s required to put them all away carefully and then guess what? You’re also the person that’s going to take them out again next year. So, you’re doing yourself a favor by packing them up properly.
We Know Where Some Customer’s Decorations are
We have customers that we’ve worked with for 10, 12, 15 years, that we know where their decorations are. And we know where everything is and how they like it. We know when we have to come and how early in the year we need to plan for it.
Then you can start booking out next year’s calendar right now. Because if they liked your service this year, you book it out for the next year. “Hey, let’s do this again next year. I’m going to put you on the calendar right now. So, I won’t give up your spot.” And they go, “Yeah, let’s do that.” This time next year, they can always cancel, and they have first right of refusal, but they’re already on the calendar.
And how easy is it to say, “Let’s just keep our calendar. I’m super busy again this year. I’ll just pay you to do it. Maybe next year, I’ll do it myself. Let’s just have you do it again this year.” And then year after year, after year after year, they pay you to come back and do it again.
What Price Do You Charge for Upsells?
So, the price that you’re going to charge for these services depends on the size of the home and the scope of the job. If it’s a job that includes 12 Christmas trees, you’re going to charge more than one tree.
So, it’s the scope of the job and the size of the home. It’s how long it’s going to take you and how many people are involved? Put together your own packages, but start booking them throughout the year. That way when the holidays hit, your schedule is well filled and you know exactly how many people you need to hire in order to do the jobs.
This way there are no surprises and you’re not wondering like mid-November, am I going to be able to pay my bills or how am I going to buy Christmas for my family and all those things? You’ve already taken care of that well in advance.
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