How to Start a Cleaning Company in Kenya
There are few businesses in Kenya that will always be in high demand and a cleaning company falls under that bracket. Customers hire cleaning companies for professional cleaning services on a daily basis either residential or commercial services. However, starting a successful cleaning services firm in Kenya is a difficult task that requires great effort, sacrifice and financial investment to ensure the business survives in the market.
By doing proper planning and organization, starting a cleaning company may be easier for the business to become successful in the market. Either commercial or residential cleaning services are lucrative endeavors for your cleaning company when you start the business.
The aim of this article is to discuss how to start a cleaning company in Kenya and remain successful in the industry by following these steps:
- Conduct your research
- Select a value proposition and your name
- Choose your area of specialization
- Selecting a business location
- Obtain your cleaning business license
- Procure cleaning business insurance
- Create your cleaning business brand
- Perform the cleaning yourself
- Create your pricing and service list
- Buy your cleaning equipment
- Market your cleaning business
- Perfect and customize your customer experience
You have established the ideal business idea, and now you are ready to take the next step of starting a cleaning company. There is more to starting a business than just registering it with the relevant authority.
Since there is diversity to be discovered within the cleaning industry, you need to determine the type of cleaning services to offer. You make a decision whether to provide commercial or residential cleaning services with your company.
This article will help you in starting your cleaning company by applying these steps to ensure your new business is well planned out, registered correctly and complies with relevant authorities.
1. Conduct Your Research
Carry out sufficient research before venturing and starting a cleaning services company to understand the business and the industry and get to know the requirements. You need to research widely to learn the pros and cons of beginning a cleaning business and know things like cleaning skills needed for delivering quality services, cleaning chemicals used, the best cleaning materials and tools for thorough cleaning services.
Educate yourself on how to do proper cleaning as well as how to avoid cross-contamination from one customer’s home or organization to another. Research widely on cleaning detergents to ensure you understand the best and safe chemicals and how to use and apply effectively.
Capital is frequently tight when starting a cleaning business but there are helpful resources to apply like YouTube and free online resources to get wide knowledge of the business.
2. Select a Value Proposition and Your Name
The value proposition is the heart and soul of your cleaning business since it assists you targets the right clients and stands out in a congested market. Putting your business company values on paper will aid you convey to your clients what they anticipate from your business.
Choosing your niche is the best thing for your cleaning business as you understand customers’ needs and keeping you focused to offer the best cleaning services. If you do not determine a particular niche, you need to differentiate what you provide and your cleaning business.
When settling on your value proposition, consider:
v How do your cleaning services offered solve your client’s problems?
v What services help your firm stand out from the rest? It could be your:
- Skilled and certified staff
- Time guarantee and location
- Climate-friendly cleaning chemicals
- Your target market
- Simple online booking
Immediately after knowing your cleaning business values, you are in a better position to recommend a business name. The business name may match your business value (for instance “speedy” or “green” to complement your time guarantee) or select a name that brings out your creativity or show something catchy.
Additionally, ensure your business name is:
v Simple to spell
v Pronounced easily
v Not more than three words
3. Choose Your Area of Specialization
Professional cleaning companies provide cleaning services that fall into two classes: commercial and residential cleaning services. A commercial cleaning service is more profitable than residential cleaning although if you are able to get residential customers, it is a viable cleaning service.
For commercial cleaning services, your customers include offices, learning centers, medical centers, hotels, shopping malls among others. The cleaning service tasks in commercial cleaning include washing windows, floors, kitchen area, doors, office arrangements, washrooms and emptying of trash cans. Commercial cleaning services are provided either weekdays, weekend, twice a week or at night which depends on your planning with the clientele.
On the contrary, residential cleaning services cover general cleaning that is done usually once a week. Accordingly, working towards a big customer base means higher profits for your cleaning company.
4. Selecting a Business Location
The cleaning business is a viable enterprise once you get a good location that is, it can be run in a commercial place or be home-based. To minimize your starting charges, the business can be run at your home place to avoid expenses like rent costs.
There are some good places where you may start your cleaning company like in Nairobi, big estates such as Runda, Lavington, Kileleshwa and areas around Upper Hill which hosts many commercial offices and homes. Setting your cleaning company adjacent to the above named locations will provide a big customer audience thus getting more clients for your cleaning services.
Subsequently, once your customers’ base becomes big enough, and the business is performing well, you can review establishing your commercial workplace in the most suitable area.
5. Obtain Your Cleaning Business License
You are ready to start operating your cleaning business legally by getting a license. You are able to register your cleaning company by consulting your local office of the Attorney General or a Huduma Centre adjacent to your town or located across the country. If you are in Nairobi, you can visit Nairobi General Post Office or Sheria House to register your business.
The business can be registered as a sole proprietor or a partnership if the business is run by two or more individuals. A business license can be obtained at the respective county government offices; Nairobi County Offices at City Hall and varies depending on the business location as well as the county government you will be operating in.
6. Procure Cleaning Business Insurance
Cleaning insurance is a mandatory way to safeguard your business and your future workers. You should not clean anyone’s home or building without insurance to ensure safety of their property in case of any loss or damage. Insurance grants you safety which is a necessary section of managing your cleaning business.
The final thing you want as a brand new entrepreneur is to accidentally trigger damage to a new customer’s home, without insurance, and get yourself in debt. Almost all customers would not risk outsourcing cleaning services without insurance liability.
Different insurance companies in Kenya provide various insurance covers for instance Resolution Insurance Company provides Liability cover whereas Britam Insurance offers Employer’s Liability cover. All these covers protect employees for damages or losses which occur when providing cleaning services.
7. Create Your Cleaning Business Brand
You are able to utilize your value proposition to modify your cleaning business name into a brand. Select your brand colors and generate your company logo which might require professional personnel or create for yourself the company logo.
Use your business logo for everything: your website, vehicle wrap, business cards, estimate, uniforms, door hangers, invoice and quote templates among others. It is also good to change your business logo along the way since it is easy to swap out an old logo for a newly updated version on your social media, website, invoices and email signature.
However, restoring your old logo on physical areas like vehicle wraps or uniforms will be time-consuming and more costly.
8. Perform the Cleaning Yourself
You need to serve your first customers yourself so as to get the opportunity of offering the best services and obtain referrals. Cleaning yourself will reduce and eliminate labor costs since you are your own boss.
No one can be the cream ambassador of your cleaning business than yourself. You need to begin feeling overwhelmed in order to start looking for your first staff. As you begin receiving more work, pinpoint one individual to work with by training them
. Enable them to learn from you that you treasure higher quality service provision than money. You will be spreading company values and culture that will be left to other workers as you grow.
9. Create Your Pricing and Service List
Find what your competitors are offering in the market when creating your service list. Utilize their website as a resource to obtain your service list established and examine for any business gaps in the market which opens up an opportunity for your cleaning business to stand out.
Your pricing pattern in addition instantly influences your profit margins since some cleaners have square footage based charges and others give contracts. Pricing your cleaning services is a big factor in ensuring your business is successful by either getting contracts for a given period of time or offering square footage charges. Pricing your commercial cleaning services requires:
v Computing your contract charges
v Computing your square footage costs with workers (if you have any to start)
v Factoring in insurance, overhead and equipment
v Evaluating profitability
v Factoring in fees and taxes
10. Buy Your Cleaning Equipment
Beginning a residential cleaning business is a comparatively affordable venture which requires disbursing little funds to make money. You need to break your supplies, tools and equipment into two parts:
1. The products you will utilize and have to buy regularly like that is mops, rags and cloths, face masks, latex gloves and all-purpose cleaners
2. The products that will last you many years like caddies, vehicles and vacuum cleaners
The amount of capital required to start a cleaning business should never hold you back as long as you have the passion and mindset coming in.
The goal of your business should be the drive of success and the idea that failure is not an option which will keep you going and running the cleaning company.
11. Market Your Cleaning Business
Marketing is essential in your cleaning business to increase sales and generate profit. Applying strategic marketing in your cleaning business will easily get clients along.
You need to spend a portion of your budgeted money on social media marketing through buying Google ads and Facebook ads as well as YouTube Channels and perform a detailed marketing of services. There is also using Facebook pages, Twitter, Instagram and creating company websites to market your business and reach a large audience for higher sales. Additionally, apply the power of referrals through friends and families.
12. Perfect and Customize Your Clientele Experience
Afterwards, you have to work out how you will run your cleaning business by making adjustments based on what works and what does not. One of the processes is by having a professional-looking quote template which puts the power back in your hands on how to manage your cleaning business effectively for higher sales and return on investments.
Additionally, digital invoices and quotes save time since customers view the invoice or quote, get it right to their email and approve it online. Implementing quote and invoice templates will enable clients to access them from the company’s website. This will ease the process of getting new customers since you are able to discuss prices and any other information online. Therefore, your target audience increases attracting more clients for your high quality cleaning services.
Starting a cleaning company in Kenya requires proper planning, good financial investment and obtaining the necessary documents from relevant authority. As an entrepreneur, you need to plan well and know the market and industry at large for good management of your cleaning company. You need to get knowledge and skills required in providing high quality cleaning services.
High quality cleaning services will consistently retain clients, thus focus on providing unmatched cleaning services and obtain long-term customers and maintain a good reputation. Cleaning company is a profitable business venture in Kenya since cleaning services are required on a daily basis by either residential or commercial places.