You’re probably wondering why you’d even worry about how to make money online when we’re talking about starting your own house cleaning business. What does the Internet have to do with going into someone’s home and cleaning out their bathtub? My question to YOU is – why would you even want to go into someone’s home and clean out their bathtub? Especially if I can show you how you can make money online starting your own house cleaning business – without ever leaving your own home!
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not going to tell you that it’s a lot easier to work online than it is to clean houses. That’s just not true. Being successful online and scouring bathtubs for a living can both be grueling. So if you’re looking for an easy answer you’re not going to find it here.
And trust me. I think there’s absolutely nothing wrong with making an honest living cleaning houses. Plenty of perfectly respectable people have done it, including me! In fact, entire corporations have been built around the house cleaning industry.
So, if there’s nothing wrong with cleaning houses if that’s what you like to do, and working online isn’t any easier on the knees, then what’s the reason for this article? Because, by adding the Internet into the equation, you can increase your business without leaving your house. That’s it in a nutshell.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s take a look at what you need to do to get started making money online with a house cleaning business.
The one thing that most small local businesses have in common is that they don’t realize the importance of having an Internet presence. But it’s becoming more important every day. When someone is looking for a plumber or a mechanic or someone to clean their house, they turn to the Internet , not the Yellow Pages and not their neighbor. Most people don’t even know their neighbor these days and who needs those old, clunky phone books when you can find everything you need on your Internet enabled cell phone.
So the best thing you can do to get your house cleaning business off the ground is set up a website since the Internet is where most people turn for information now.
But not just any old website will do. You need to take special steps to make sure your site is optimized for the search engines so your potential new clients out there can find you when they look for a local house cleaning service.
You see, the search engines, Google in particular, realize that more and more people are using their computers and mobile devices to look for local information. Where’s the nearest Italian restaurant – in Dallas? What time does the matinee start – in Berea? Who can I find to clean my house – in Columbus?
Consequently, it’s no longer necessary for the searcher to actually type the name of the city into the search query. If you only type in the word “plumber“, which is what most searchers do now, the top results will be local plumbers. That is, so long as those local plumbers have taken the proper steps to optimize their sites.
The first thing you need to do is register your business and website with Google Places and then make sure you register with Google Maps. This process tells Google that your business is out there, that you have a website, and as a result, when someone looks for a house cleaning service in your area, your website will appear in the index. You can also submit your site to other search engines, like Yahoo and Bing.
That’s all well and good, assuming the searcher actually types in “house cleaning service“. But what if they do a search for “apartment cleaning” or “office cleaning” or “window cleaning“? You probably offer those services, too, but you might not come up in the results for those terms. That’s where the content of your site comes in to play.
The search engines will only tell people about your site if they know your site will fit the bill. And the only way they’ll know that is if you use keywords to tell them. Let’s say that someone goes to the Internet to find a window cleaning service. If that’s something you offer, then you’ll need to use ‘window cleaning service’ as a keyword in an article on your website so the search engines can see it. When they do, they’ll include your site in that index that they return to the searcher.
On the Internet, it’s all about using the right keywords in your content. Especially for local businesses. Each keyword you use is another way for searchers to find you. The key is to anticipate what keywords they’re going to use and then include each one in an article or blog post on your site.
Having a website for your house cleaning business means you can communicate with people 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. A website is a virtual assistant or sales person and potential new clients can get information about your service whether you’re there to answer the phone or not. It’s important, though, that you include some specific information:
- Your hours of operation
- A description and breakdown of the services you provide
- Testimonials from satisfied clients
- Contact information, including a good email address or contact form
All of this information should be visible as soon as someone hits your site. It should be the first thing they see. If you want to go into some lengthy explanation or family history stuff, include it farther back in your site. Most people who visit your site the first time are there because they have need of your service. If they like it, they’ll worry about all that cutesy stuff when they have time.
Include a Lead Generation Form
I can’t think of a site where I wouldn’t use a Lead Generation form but it still needs to be said. You will inevitably have people come to your website who are just ‘looking around’, trying to get some idea of pricing and services, and they’re not quite ready to take you up on your offer yet. You need to get contact information for these people before they leave your site. A lot of people, once they leave your site, never find their way back, even if they really want to. You need their contact information so you can periodically pull them back to your site.
Include a Lead Generation form, or opt-in form, or email form, whatever you choose to call it. Give them a coupon for a couple bucks off their first house cleaning or give them the recipe you use to make your special window cleaner. Give them something that will make them give you their email address so you can market to these people. You already know they’re interested in your service and that’s more than half the battle. Now all the need is a little nudge to get them to schedule that first appointment.
Once you’ve got your site up and running, you’ll pick up more business faster if you promote your business on some of the social networks, like Twitter and Facebook. Search out and follow people who live in your own community. Don’t worry so much about whether they might be interested in a house cleaning service. Just get involved with these online communities and word will spread fast enough.
There about a million and one different things you can do to promote your site and get more people looking at it and there’s no way I can cover all of that here. Just keep in mind that more and more people are using the Internet to look for local service providers. And, because of the changes the search engines are making, it’s easier than ever for a local business to appear in search results.
The important thing is to just get started. Soon you’ll be making enough money online with your house cleaning business that you’ll have to hire other people to do the cleaning while you sit home and count the money.