The cleaning industry benefits from market stability, low overhead, and plenty of opportunities for growth, but nothing is guaranteed. It also happens to be an incredibly competitive industry. You’re tasked with winning and retaining clients over the other guys.

With so much competition, your top priority is performing cleaning services of such outstanding quality that they advertise themselves. Quality services are the obvious first step, so you’re on the hunt for more effective ways to land cleaning contracts.

You may be an established commercial cleaning company, a contractor, or a beginner hoping to start a successful cleaning business. A strategic, structured, and multifaceted method for acquiring contracts is essential for all of the above.

You’re in the right place. In this complete guide, we explain what a cleaning contract should include and present 11 effective ways to get clients. Then, we’ll help you optimally price your contracts, ensure you have proper licensing and close deals. Stay until the end to answer all your FAQs about commercial/office cleaning contracts.

Commercial Cleaning Contract: Explained

As experienced commercial cleaners know, it’s important to start with a contract. 

Contracts establish an agreement, in writing, between all involved parties. The cleaning company and the client both get the opportunity to set their expectations of each other. 

You’re signing off on the expected services and payment details ahead of time. This helps mitigate potential disagreements about the cleaning services. 

Commercial cleaners should regularly review and amend their contracts and update them as needed. Contract reviews and updates may be necessary if you change the cleaning services you provide or if the client wants different services or frequency.

What’s Included in Commercial Cleaning Contracts

Here are some of the terms commercial cleaning and janitorial service contracts typically include:

  • Cleaning dates and times
  • The specific, itemized cleaning services and exclusions the client wants
  • The number of cleaning staff
  • Contract duration; it may be short- or long-term
  • Payment amount, method, timing, and any late fees
  • Both parties’ contact information

11 Effective Ways to Get Clients for Your Commercial Cleaning Business

Getting enough clients to grow a commercial cleaning business isn’t easy. Whether you’re just starting out in commercial cleaning, or you’re an established business, the following 11 steps can help you obtain more clients:

  1. Always Provide High-Quality Cleaning Services

First and foremost, exceptional cleaning services will speak for themselves. Clients will be more likely to work with you long-term, organically write positive reviews, and recommend you to other people and businesses

  1. Connect with Property Managers and Realtors

Real estate agents and property managers are great contacts to help you find more work. Not only will they probably need help cleaning many different properties, but they can also connect you with even more mutually beneficial contacts if they’re impressed with your services.

This can also help you with clustering your commercial cleaning contracts. ‘Clustering’ means you have groups of clients located close together. It can make your business operations more efficient to schedule cleanings consecutively for places that are nearby. 

For example, you might partner with someone who has several properties within a certain locale. If your schedule allows, it would be smart to clean this closely clustered group of properties back-to-back, saving time and transportation costs.

  1. Network and Join Events to Promote Your Commercial Cleaning Services

You should try to network with related businesses and meet industry professionals with expertise and experience capable of growing your cleaning business. Some of the best ways are joining trade organizations and attending events. 

For instance, check out the Association of Residential Cleaning Services International (ARCSI) and the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Joining these trade associations has advantages like certification discounts, insider cleaning industry information, and quality website referrals.

  1. Come Up with a Marketing Plan

To gain commercial cleaning contracts, prospective clients first have to find out about you somehow. Marketing is how you make that happen.

It’s usually not adequate to rely on the first one or two marketing channels coming to mind. Choose marketing channels aliging with the target markets you serve. Then, closely track the success of each marketing strategy and make the necessary adjustments.

  1. Optimize Your Website with Relevant Blog Posts

Some estimates show the average customer does 57 percent of their decision-making using online resources before ever speaking to you. So if potential clients can’t find you online, you’ve already lost. 

You need a website, and it needs to be visible and enticing to the kinds of people you want as clients. One of the most effective ways to catch the attention you want is by optimizing the site. 

In addition to contact information and the services you do, the website should provide more value and build more trust with informative blogs. Regularly adding new, quality content and relevant keywords to your site will prioritize it in search engines and attract new clients.

  1. Utilize Social Media Platforms

Social media is another vital piece of your online presence. It’s a great tool to connect with your target audience, inform them about your industry and services, announce offers and discounts, and lead them to your website. 

Social media is also a good place to network with other professionals, businesses, and satisfied clients. You can emphasize positive reviews from past and current clients and develop a trusted reputation.

  1. Highlight Recycling and Eco-Friendly Practices in a Marketing Campaign

More than ever, people are aware of environmental impact and are concerned with minimizing it. The cleaning industry tends to produce a lot of waste like plastic and use potentially damaging chemicals. Therefore, it’s important to showcase your eco-friendly practices like recycling in your marketing. 

Your target audience will likely feel more positive and reassured about your cleaning business when you share their values and embrace environmentally conscious practices.

  1. Offer Coupons/Discounts

Deals making your prices more competitive could give you an edge. So occasionally make coupons or discounts available to new customers. If you can make your commercial cleaning service more affordable, even temporarily, it’ll be more appealing to potential clients comparing you to your competitors.

Some of the most common commercial cleaning discounts are ‘buy one get one’ deals or discounts on the first cleaning for new clients. You may also consider offers in exchange for client referrals or reviews.

  1. Ask for Customer Reviews and Referrals

Seek feedback from clients to verify they’re happy with your cleaning services. If they’re not, correct the situation. 

If the client is pleased, you can request they refer a friend or write a review for Yelp, Google, social media, and/or your website. You don’t necessarily need to add an incentive. Once you have several good reviews, display them prominently on your website for potential clients to see.

  1. Have Flexible, Easily Accessible Booking and Payment

Getting pricing information, booking services, and paying should never be frustrating or inconvenient. It may be enough of a barrier when someone is so close to hiring you, but changes their mind last minute and opts for your competitor instead.

So once someone sees your social media pages and your website and wants to use your commercial cleaning services, actually closing the deal should be as easy and accommodating as possible. This means it’s easy to navigate your website to find information, book services, and pay. Enable clients to communicate and pay with whatever option they prefer- in person, online, or via phone.

  1. Give Preliminary Cleaning Quotes/Cost Estimates

Cleaning costs can vary drastically for different spaces depending on size, layout, use, materials, and features. So it may be difficult to provide a simple pricing guide for clients to reference on their own. 

For an accurate idea of costs, you probably need to provide a customized cleaning quote/estimate given specific details about the space in question. A custom cost estimate prepares the potential client to make an informed decision. It lets them know you’re experienced and transparent, charging only for the services they need.

Next up, we’ll cover how to price your cleaning contracts.

Pricing Your Commercial Cleaning Contracts The Right Way

Fair prices are another major factor capable of helping people reach a decision to pay for your cleaning services over your competitors. It’s important to set commercial/office cleaning contract prices to create a good value. At the same time, you must cover labor, equipment, and supplies while securing adequate profit margins to grow the business. 

Account for the frequency, scope, and type of cleaning, adjusting for individual tasks and the supplies or equipment needed for each. 

  • Frequency- Spaces you clean more frequently will take less work to clean. So you may charge less for more frequent cleanings, and charge more for less frequent or one-time cleanings.
  • Scope- You’ll charge more for deep cleaning and disinfecting services than you will for routine cleaning.
  • Cleaning type- Cleaning standards for a medical facility, restaurant, or bar are much different from a standard office space. Any specialty services should cost more, especially those that require specialized equipment or training.
  • Tasks- Some tasks like window cleaning (usually $2-$7 per window) will vary in frequency depending on client preferences. A client who wants you to clean the windows once a week should have a lower total price compared to having the windows cleaned daily. You should also price bathroom and kitchen/break room cleaning separately (up to $3 per square foot). 

Decide whether you want to charge by the square foot, a flat rate, or another pricing structure.

It’s common to have a sliding scale for cleaning costs per square foot. On average, commercial cleaners charge $0.09-$0.17/sq. ft. up to 12,000 square feet and $0.04-$0.12/sq. ft. up to 40,000 square feet. The average overall comes to $0.11/sq. ft.

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Commercial Cleaning Contracts Licensing You Need To Gain Client’s Trust

Clients are trusting you with the safety and condition of a property. Licensing proves you’re responsible and deserving of their trust. Requirements may differ depending on the state, but wherever your business is located, these documents will make more clients feel confident hiring you to clean.

Here are some of the qualifications you may need when you start a commercial cleaning business:

  • State cleaning business/vendor’s license, registration certificate, or seller’s permit
  • Local business licenses from your municipal/county clerk office
  • Doing Business As (DBA) license to open bank accounts, sign contracts, and accept payment under a legitimate, proprietary business name

Closing The Deal With Your First Commercial Cleaning Client 

So your first commercial cleaning client has discovered you, and decided you’re a good match based on your general prices, qualifications, and reputation. What are the final steps to take before finalizing your first deal?

Before you settle on all the contract terms like price and sign, do a walk-through. Even if the client gives you a detailed description of the space and all its features, you should see it for yourself before moving forward. 

Physically seeing and inspecting the premises gives you a chance to accurately anticipate the demands and appropriate cost of the job. You can also use your expertise to make cleaning tasks, scope, and frequency recommendations while consulting with the client. 

This helps guarantee you both agree on the expectations and the client will be happy with your work.

FAQs About Commercial Cleaning Contracts

How do you approach a business for cleaning contracts?

To get commercial/office cleaning contracts, join professional organizations and events, get in touch with property managers and realtors, and use traditional marketing tools like flyers, business cards, pamphlets, and discount offers.

How do I get clients for my cleaning business?

Think about your cleaning specialization, the type of client you’re aiming for, and the best way to reach them through traditional and online marketing channels. You’ll need a competitive pricing scheme, licensing/registration, and in-person consultations.

How profitable is a commercial cleaning business?

Depending on your operating expenses, insurance, licenses/certifications, and the economy, cleaning businesses can eventually start earning $100,000/year.

What stage is your commercial cleaning business in?

Do you have an established business you’re trying to grow with a smart marketing strategy? Are you still a small or one-person cleaning business planning to scale up your operations? Or are you still in the earliest stages of planning to start a commercial cleaning company? 

You might want to consider becoming a subcontractor, which can be a highly efficient route to acquiring commercial cleaning contracts.

If you’re located in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, contact us at Dallas Janitorial Services to find out how.

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