Star Distributing recognizes that goals are an important part of a laundromat owner's business plan. There are several different categories to consider when setting goals to create a well-rounded and comprehensive laundromat business plan.
When considering equipment goals, begin by answering one simple question: What keeps you up at night?
Start by prioritizing which equipment should be maintained and which equipment should be replaced. Analyze which machines, if any, require frequent maintenance, then consider whether it is more cost-effective to repair or if it makes the most sense to upgrade the equipment.
Next, evaluate if your equipment mix is still correct or if the demographics of your customer population has changed, requiring new equipment. Star Distributing can work with you to answer these questions. They can also help you to develop a five-year plan to modernize your facilities, which can alleviate the financial burden of a major overhaul.
Renovations and Store Updates
Gone are the days of multiple loads of laundry based on colors and fabrics. Customers are now flocking to larger machines where they can combine loads to save time.
When planning a cosmetic change to the store, you should start by considering equipment placement. In the past, larger machines were hidden in the back of the store with smaller machines located closer to the entrance. Today's trend is to move larger equipment to the front of the store, making the machines easily accessible for customers who are willing to pay more to use them.
You can also increase convenience for your customers who have larger loads of laundry by installing automatic doors, providing a plentiful supply of clean, easy-rolling laundry carts, and ensuring that the store can be easily accessed with those carts.
Surprisingly, signage is not something that is generally considered when upgrading a store. Several laundromats sport old, poorly lit and uninviting signs. Upgrading an existing sign can be as easy as refreshing its paint, or it might involve completely overhauling it in favor of a more eye-catching new design.
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in laundromats executing effective marketing campaigns. Store owners are realizing the value in Internet-based marketing, such as social media and tablet/mobile apps. As customers are getting much of their information on hand-held devices, it's important to make sure that your store's website is mobile-friendly.
A very successful multi-store owner once said, "If store owners take care of their employees, their employees will take care of the business." This year, work with employees to increase training, improve customer service skills and help customers to identify them by providing uniforms.
Finally, make sure to include local community events on your plan for the year. Being an active member of your community can significantly increase store recognition. One recurring customer is worth $500 per year, so consider handing out coupons or other incentives at community events to get new customers through the door.
After finalizing a year-long business plan, determine how you'll measure success; this will, in turn, help identify new goals. Aside from revenue, success benchmarks can include the number of replacement machines purchased, emails captured, gift cards used and new recurring customers, to name a few.