I received a call the other day from a woman who said she needed her carpets cleaned. She had several questions regarding the cost of cleaning. I am always hesitant to give out quotes over the phone without seeing the actual space. I explained to her that my standard rate was .34 a sq foot which was not only one of the best rates in Traverse City, but that the first thing I would do upon arriving at her home would be to measure the areas to be cleaned and present her with a firm quote. She felt this was fair and proceeded to relate to me the reason she was so concerned about pricing. It wasn't that she didn't have the money to be able to afford the cleaning, it's that she had first contacted another area cleaner from whom she had received a flashy coupon and asked them for a quote. They had provided her a quote over the phone of $149 based on the number of rooms she wanted cleaned. However, when the cleaning person showed up, he proceeded to explain to her that her home wouldn't qualify for these rates and that the charge would be well over $350! Why would they do such a thing? Well, they know that once in a home, most people feel obligated to go ahead with the cleaning even if it will cost much more. It's truly hard to say 'no' in the face of a high pressure sales pitch. Of course this bait and switch tactic is not only unethical, but it's certainly not the way to grow a business. I truly believe she would have been willing to pay $350 to have her carpets cleaned if not for the feeling that she was being tricked by this other company. After arriving in her home I carefully measured and presented a solid quote to her of $190. She thanked me and asked me to go ahead with the cleaning. The carpets turned out great and I feel that I made another relationship with a loyal customer that I will be cleaning for for many years to come.
Carpet Cleaning might not be rocket science, but there is a method to the madness.