In the coin laundry industry, we are always looking for new ways to turn a profit. We look for a new product we can sell or service we can offer that will increase our revenue. According to the Coin Laundry Association, 96% of the coin laundry stores in the United States offer some type of ancillary service.There are numerous options so it is important to carefully choose what will work best in your market. If you offer a premium feature or service, you are no longer a commodity. You will differentiate yourself from your competition and in turn, you will attract new customers.
The most common ancillary service offered is vending machines. Vending machines give your customers the option to purchase a snack and a soda while they are waiting for their final load to finish. Not to mention, when a customer has a few extra quarters left over, what are they most likely to do with them? In addition to snack machines, no laundry should be without a soap dispenser. Not only is this a great way to make additional profit, but it is very convenient for your customers who forget or run out of detergent. Vending machines and soap dispensers both require little floor space and can help maximize your profit per square foot.
In addition to vending machines, many laundry owners have created snack counters to provide their customers with a greater selection of food such as pizza, hot-dogs, sandwiches, and nachos. Some stores also offer a variety of coffee or energy drinks. Giving your customers a wide variety of options, especially meal options, will definitely give you an advantage over your competition. Your customers can eat their lunch while they are waiting for their last load to finish drying.
Many coin laundries are offering a wash-dry-fold (WDF) service as a way to generate additional income. This service refers to customers dropping off their dirty laundry and having the attendant wash it and fold it. The Coin Laundry Association estimates that 64% of coin laundries in the nation offer a WDF service. This is a great way to attract new customers, some of which may have never even used a laundromat before. Most laundries will charge approximately $1.00 per pound, and will usually require a 10 pound minimum. Some stores also offer pick-up and delivery service with a minimum order to further accommodate their customers.
If you have an established wash-dry-fold service, it may be time to consider targeting some commercial accounts. Similar to WDF, attendants set aside specific machines and will wash and fold the laundry for the appropriate account. This is a rapidly growing trend in the industry, but the idea itself is quite simple. You have idle machines, attendants with spare time, and a successful WDF service — why wouldn't this work? The ideal accounts to target are those that are too small for large commercial laundries, such as fitness clubs and salons. To be successful, pickup and drop-off services are essential. Furthermore, it is important not to overextend yourself with commercial accounts. Make sure you have the appropriate number of machines and the appropriate amount of time dedicated to your commercial accounts. Remember, your regular customers must come first.
Depending on where your store is located, numerous ancillary services may be successful for you. You must do research. Ask your customers what types of services they would like. No extra-profit center is guaranteed to be successful. However, with the proper planning, something as simple as a wash-dry-fold service can pay huge dividends. You will be offering your customers something that your competition cannot. You have differentiated yourself in the marketplace and will begin attracting customers away from your competitors.