When running any business, it’s common to focus on growing your business and increasing revenue. Revenue is important but increasing profitability is better, so we suggest you also focus on minimizing expenses, instead of just relying on new revenue for growth. This article lists 6 ways we have seen professional detailers waste money. Are you guilty of any of these? Don’t worry if you are, we have suggestions on how to fix each one!
- Paying to come up #1 in Google – Who doesn’t want to come up #1 in google for certain search terms like Best Detailer in (insert City)? Of course we all would, but it comes at an expense of time and money. Organic search results are not that easy to manipulate so coming up that high naturally requires a lot of time and effort put into your website. The other option is to pay for ads which can be effective if you carefully manage them, however there is a learning curve to maximize your investment. Lastly you can pay a marketing firm to help you with your search result rankings but be cautious because there are some shady companies making bold claims. To learn more about local searches from quality sources check out these sites:
- Moz Local Learning Center – Local search guide so you come up higher in search engine rankings.
- Local SEO article on Search Engine Land – Helps you understand how to come up in search engines.
- Moz SEO Beginners Guide – The best beginner’s SEO guide out there!
- Google Webmaster Academy – Quick, free tutorial on optimizing your website for Google.
- Paying for express shipping – Occasionally you’ll need a product in an emergency, but generally speaking you should be able to plan for what items your detailing business needs. Set up a time you regularly check your inventory and upcoming appointments to ensure you have plenty of product, pads, etc. on hand, even if you get a few last minute appointments. Order accordingly and prevent embarrassing issues that could be easily avoided with simple planning. Additionally, if one item fails like a broken backing plate or buffer and that prevents you from completing a detail make sure you have a backups ready to go. If you want to save more on your shipments check out this blog post Save Money On Shipping.
- Not maximizing a sponsorship – As a business owner you can expect to be asked to sponsor numerous things like car shows, charity events, forums, etc. It always sounds good when you sign up but successfully sponsoring something takes time. If you choose to sponsor one, make sure you do everything in your power to maximize this investment. Utilize all available marketing mediums they offer like advertisement in fliers, banners, including a business card in goodie bags, mentions on their website, promotion on their social media pages, eblast to newsletter subscribers, etc. Any good organization knows they need to create win win sponsorship’s so they should embrace helping you out. Therefore, it never hurts to ask if there is anything else they can do to help you out to ensure it’s a successful sponsorship.
- Paying for an expensive custom website – While it may seem ideal to create a custom website exactly the way you want it’s often not worth the time and expense. There are many great services such as Squarespace that will help you build a great website that is fast, effective, customizable and very affordable at $20 per month. No matter what your technical ability is you should be able to have a professional website that doesn’t cost you a fortune.
- Paying full price for supplies – As a professional who purchases detailing supplies on a regular basis you should be able to purchase products at a discount. You can look for sales that meet your needs or join a savings program like the DI Wholesale Program to ensure you are saving on each purchase. Product expenses will have to be passed off to customers one way or another, so do your best to purchase items at a great price. Keep track of your expenses and make sure you are charging your customers enough to cover not only your time but also the products in use.
- Testing every new product that comes out – In general most detailers have more products on hand than they can actually use, find the balance of testing new things but not testing everything. Read through product reviews and good resources like the DI Ask-A-Pro Blog Product Review section. Check with other pros and see what is working for them. When you hear good feedback from reliable sources make the investment!
Have any other ways detailers waste money? Share your thoughts below!