Building a Successful Cleaning Business: Strategies and Insights

Building a successful cleaning business involves more than just hard work and attracting new clients. Owners of thriving cleaning businesses focus on enhancing their operations, offering exceptional customer service, and distinguishing themselves from competitors. 

Key strategies for expanding a cleaning business include boosting online visibility and encouraging word-of-mouth recommendations, broadening the clientele, and ultimately, increasing revenue and profits. 

This guide is designed for both new commercial cleaning startups and established businesses looking for growth opportunities. It provides a comprehensive framework to scale up operations and improve financial outcomes.

The Four P’s of Marketing for Cleaning Services

Grasping the fundamental elements of the 4P marketing mix model is crucial in crafting an effective strategy for promoting your residential cleaning services. This approach revolves around four essential components:

  • Product 
  • Price 
  • Promotion 
  • and Place


In marketing, a product is usually something tangible. However, in the context of cleaning services, it refers to both the physical and intangible aspects of what you offer. Identifying and honing your unique service niche is vital. This clarity enables you to more effectively market your cleaning business.


Setting your service rates involves determining the starting price points for your offerings. Clear and consistent pricing forms the foundation for client negotiations and establishing service agreements. This step is critical in aligning your services with market expectations and business goals.


Promotion encompasses a range of tactics to effectively broadcast your message. This includes:

  • Utilizing advertisements to capture attention.
  • Developing social media strategies for broader engagement.
  • Engaging in public relations to build your brand image.
  • Implementing email marketing for direct communication.
  • Leveraging search engine marketing (like Google Adwords) for online visibility.
  • Embracing video marketing to visually showcase your services. Each of these elements, when used effectively, can significantly enhance the visibility and appeal of your cleaning service.


In the modern marketing landscape, ‘Place’ refers to where you market and sell your services, encompassing both physical and digital platforms. Understanding your target customer demographic is key to optimizing your marketing efforts. This knowledge ensures that your marketing activities are focused where your potential clients are most likely to engage with your cleaning services, be it online or in a specific geographic location.

Strategies and Insights For Building a Successful Cleaning Business

1. Relation Building and Networking

Networking and building relationships go beyond mere exchanges of contact information with fellow professionals in the cleaning industry. It plays a crucial role in elevating the visibility of your small business and serves as a valuable source for acquiring knowledge about best practices and the latest technological advancements in the industry.

To establish a robust professional network:

  • Engage both in person and online 
  • Explore local business or community organizations and join industry-specific associations
  • Effective networking strategies include membership in prominent industry associations like:
    • The International Sanitary Supply Association
    • International Janitorial Cleaning Services Association
    • the National Cleaners Association. 
  • Participating in conventions and conferences, especially those related to any specialized cleaning services your business offers, is another key approach.
  • Maintaining an active social media presence, particularly on platforms like LinkedIn, and participating in industry-specific Facebook groups can significantly boost your professional connections.
  • Joining your local chamber of commerce or business groups and being involved in community events also plays a vital role. 

For a new business, fostering professional partnerships with other business owners and customers is as crucial for building a solid reputation as managing your online presence.

2. What Makes You Unique

In the competitive cleaning industry, differentiating your business from others is crucial. Many cleaning businesses fail to stand out, often offering similar services. However, customers are drawn to businesses that offer something uniquely positive. By communicating distinctively or providing a service that sets you apart, you can significantly grow your cleaning business.

Here are a few things you can do to stand out and thrive and increase profits:

  • Innovation based on market feedback is essential. 
  • Analyzing Facebook, online reviews, and word-of-mouth feedback about your competitors can guide you in enhancing your own services. 
  • Introducing your team creatively on your website’s bio page, either through videos or text, can effectively build customer confidence. 
  • Showcasing your team’s expertise and approachability can be a key factor in demonstrating your business’s unique value. 

3. Target Niche Markets

Focusing on a niche market can significantly accelerate the growth of your cleaning business. When potential clients recognize your expertise in cleaning specific types of facilities or offering particular services, they are more likely to choose your business. 

Niches can vary widely, such as specializing in cleaning distinct types of properties including

  • Office buildings 
  • educational institutions 
  • restaurants 
  • healthcare facilities 
  • or industrial spaces 

You might also target specific sectors like: 

  • short-term vacation rentals 
  • post-event cleanup 
  • or post-construction cleaning 

Another attractive niche is using eco-friendly cleaning products and implementing environmentally sustainable methods and equipment.

To identify the right niche, research is key. Assess the demand for specific services in your area and consider if additional training or licensing is necessary to cater to these niches. Once you’ve established your specialty, focus on delivering exceptional service within this niche and actively market your business. This targeted approach not only helps in building a solid reputation but also in driving business growth by attracting clients specifically looking for your expert services.

4. Expanding Services for Business Growth

When experiencing a plateau in business growth, one effective strategy is to introduce new cleaning services, thereby boosting both revenue and profit margins. However, before expanding your service portfolio, it’s crucial to conduct thorough research in your local area. This includes assessing the demand for various services and analyzing what competitors are offering.

Consider specializing in services such as: 

  • Disinfection and sanitization
  • Eco-friendly cleaning options, 
  • Floor and carpet cleaning
  • Intensive deep cleaning
  • Wall washing. 
  • Window cleaning
  • Pressure washing. 

Keep in mind that some of these specialized services may necessitate additional training or certification for your team. The decision to diversify should be aligned with your business plan and financial strategy, ensuring that it contributes positively to your company’s growth trajectory and overall objectives. By carefully selecting and implementing new services, you can create new avenues for revenue and strengthen your position in the cleaning industry.

5. Create an Impactful Website for Your Commercial Cleaning Company

Given that 94% of first impressions are influenced by a website’s design, it’s crucial for cleaning companies to establish a professional and user-friendly online presence. Key elements to include in your website are:

  • Essential details such as contact information, operating hours, geographic service areas, and a comprehensive list of services offered.
  • Easily accessible call-to-action buttons to guide visitors towards engaging with your services.
  • Intuitive menus facilitating effortless navigation throughout the site.
  • An attractive layout featuring high-quality images and videos to captivate visitors.
  • Showcasing customer reviews and testimonials to build trust and credibility.
  • Displaying company certifications and accolades to highlight your expertise and achievements.

Ensuring your website is mobile-friendly is also paramount, as it allows potential clients to access and navigate your site seamlessly on any device.

6. Online Reputation Building

Online reputation management is a critical aspect of modern business, especially since an overwhelming 98% of individuals consult online reviews for local businesses. Prioritizing the management of your company’s online image is essential.

To enhance your brand’s reputation encourage customers to leave positive reviews on your preferred platform. Simplifying the feedback process can significantly increase the likelihood of customers sharing their experiences. For instance, sending a direct link that allows customers to review with just one click can be very effective.

Actively managing your online reviews is also crucial. This includes expressing gratitude for positive reviews and addressing any negative feedback promptly and professionally.

Prospective customers often turn to platforms like Google or Yelp for reassurance that your company is adept at handling any potential issues effectively. Additionally, maintaining an active presence on social media and consistently posting content can greatly boost your company’s online visibility and strengthen its reputation.

7. Maintain Accurate Online Presence

For businesses in today’s digital world, it’s crucial to keep online pages and directories up-to-date to ensure potential customers can easily reach out. Neglecting this could significantly impact client acquisition, as 62% of consumers report they are likely to avoid businesses with incorrect information online.

Online directories are pivotal for listing essential details such as:

  • your business address, 
  • phone number, 
  • offered services, 
  • operating hours, 
  • years in business, 
  • and customer reviews complete with photos. 

Popular platforms for these listings include Google Business Profile (previously known as Google My Business), LinkedIn, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and Yelp.

It’s vital to regularly refresh your listings and directories to keep information current. Effectively managing online reviews is equally important. Encourage customers to leave reviews by sending them a link to your preferred review platform. Additionally, responding to these reviews promptly and professionally can significantly enhance your business’s reputation and credibility. By ensuring accurate and up-to-date online information, you open your business to greater visibility and increased trust from potential customers.

16. Get Customer Reviews

In the realm of marketing a cleaning business, honest reviews from current and past clients are invaluable for building credibility. With current statistics indicating that 84% of consumers read reviews for local businesses before making a decision, it’s clear how significant these reviews are. 

While negative feedback may impact your business, consistently delivering high customer satisfaction is key to garnering positive reviews. Notably, the trend has shifted from customers predominantly leaving reviews for negative experiences to increasingly acknowledging positive experiences as well.

Key platforms where reviews can greatly benefit your cleaning business include:

  • Google: As the leading search engine, positive reviews on Google can significantly boost your ranking in search results.
  • Yelp: Yelp remains a pivotal marketing tool, being one of the original review sites and still widely used by consumers.
  • Facebook: Positive reviews on Facebook not only increase your visibility on the platform but can also enhance the presence of your Facebook page in general search engine results.

Understanding and utilizing these platforms for showcasing customer feedback can be a powerful component of your marketing strategy, helping to attract new clients and establish your cleaning business as a trusted and preferred choice.

8. Boost Visibility with PPC and SEO Strategies

In the digital marketing realm, Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) are crucial for elevating your commercial cleaning website’s visibility in online searches, ultimately driving more leads and sales. 

PPC ads, like Google Ads, position your business prominently at the top of search results when people look for the cleaning products or services you offer. This model is cost-effective as you incur charges only when someone clicks on your ad.

SEO, on the other hand, focuses on enhancing your website’s organic search rankings. This is achieved by strategically using location-specific keywords in various parts of your website, including the homepage, menus, landing pages, and blog content. 

SEO isn’t just about keywords, though. It also encompasses other technical elements crucial for online success, such as ensuring your website pages load quickly, are mobile-friendly, and have proper URL structures. By integrating both PPC and SEO strategies, cleaning businesses can significantly improve their online presence, making it easier for potential clients to find and engage with their services.

9. Create Quality Content for Online Platforms

As reported by Digital Portal, an astonishing 4.95 billion people, or approximately 62.5% of the global population, were using the internet as of January 2023. This surge in internet usage translates to an increased number of people seeking information and content online, presenting a prime opportunity for growing your cleaning business.

Creating high-quality, engaging online content is a key strategy for rapid business growth. Here are some content ideas for your cleaning business: 

  • Videos, articles, and social media posts related to cleaning can significantly boost your business’s visibility and growth. 
  • Establishing a blog dedicated to cleaning not only educates potential clients but also showcases your expertise in the field. Brainstorm a variety of cleaning-related topics to cover in your blog.
  • Launching a YouTube channel is another effective approach. Use this platform to highlight the unique aspects of your cleaning business, share cleaning tips, and demonstrate your team’s cleaning methods.
  • Facebook Ads can further accelerate the growth of your cleaning business, drawing in more clients through targeted online advertising.
  • With 57.6% of the world’s population active on social media according to Smart Insights, platforms like Instagram and Facebook can be powerful tools for engaging with your audience and attracting potential customers.

With the right online presence, your business will soon become a top result when people search for cleaning services in your area.

10. Enhance Client Engagement through Targeted Email Marketing Strategies

Email marketing presents a valuable opportunity for cleaning companies to engage directly with their clients through tailored messaging, significantly boosting the efficacy of their marketing efforts. Crafting and segmenting email campaigns allows you to deliver messages that resonate with your audience, while personalizing these emails can greatly enhance their impact.

Your email marketing strategy could encompass a variety of content, such as:

  • Follow-ups after providing a cleaning estimate
  • Seasonal promotions or special offers
  • Informative cleaning tips and techniques
  • Inspiring client success stories 

Like any marketing initiative, it’s essential to regularly assess the performance of your email campaigns and fine-tune the messaging for optimal results.

11. Offer Training and Certifications for Employees

The foundation of a successful cleaning business lies in the recruitment of the right employees and their effective training. The quality of work your company delivers hinges on your staff’s ability to perform exceptionally. To maintain this high standard, it’s crucial to provide continuous educational opportunities for your employees, aligning them with industry benchmarks.

Obtaining certifications not only exemplifies your commitment to professional excellence but also enhances your business’s visibility, especially in online searches for certified services. These certifications, which vary depending on the specific field or association, can include credentials like:

  • Certified Custodial Technician (CCT)
  • Certified Custodial Supervisor (CCS)
  • Certified Workloading Specialist (CWS)
  • Certified Sales Executive (CSE)
  • Custodial Certification
  • Medical Cleaning Certification

In addition to these external certifications, consider implementing in-house training programs. Such programs ensure that your employees are well-versed in your business’s unique processes and are equipped to deliver consistent, high-quality service to every customer. This holistic approach to employee development not only uplifts your service standards but also positions your business as a distinguished player in the cleaning industry.

12. Realistic Goal-Setting

For any cleaning business aiming for success, setting clear and achievable goals is a fundamental step. Establishing objectives across various time frames—weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annually—provides a structured focus and facilitates the monitoring of progress. 

Leading cleaning companies often set specific targets in areas such as:

  • Appointment scheduling
  • Sales achievements
  • Customer retention
  • Client satisfaction
  • Outbound calls
  • Marketing lead generation
  • Google review accumulation
  • Cost-efficiency per appointment

However, it’s essential to ground these goals in reality. For instance, aspiring for a 50% growth is impractical if your business has no history of achieving such a significant increase. 

Similarly, planning for substantial growth should be aligned with the capacity to invest additional resources into your company.

13. Use Eco-Friendly Products and Practices

In today’s world, the consciousness about health and environmental protection is at an all-time high, making it a pivotal factor for potential clients when choosing cleaning or janitorial services. Businesses in this sector can significantly benefit by highlighting their dedication to using environmentally friendly products and methods. 

Eco-friendly cleaning companies stand out by:

  • Employing non-toxic cleaning products accredited by programs like EPA Safer Choice or Green Seal. These green products are composed of ingredients that are safer for both personal health and the environment.
  • These companies can adopt sustainable practices to minimize waste and conserve water, enhancing their appeal to environmentally conscious customers. 
  • Practices such as using reusable cleaning supplies, refilling spray bottles, investing in water-saving cleaning equipment, and providing sustainable paper products in restrooms contribute to this green initiative. 

By adopting these eco-friendly practices, cleaning businesses not only contribute positively to the environment but also gain a competitive edge, potentially leading to an increase in commercial cleaning contracts from eco-conscious clients.

14. Retain Your Customers

For new small-business owners in the cleaning sector, a common oversight is prioritizing the pursuit of new clients and more jobs without a strategic focus on retaining existing customers. The bedrock of sustainable business growth lies in cultivating a loyal customer base.

To achieve this, it’s essential to offer:

  • Top-notch service 
  • competitive pricing 
  • attractive referral programs that provide additional incentives for customers. 

Creating and promoting a referral program that rewards customers with discounts or credits can significantly enhance loyalty.

15. Incentivize Customer Referrals

Maximizing your existing customer base to attract new clients is an effective strategy, and creating a referral program is a powerful way to harness word-of-mouth marketing. 

For a referral program to be successful, it should have:

  • Clear objectives 
  • Appealing incentives 

Consider offering perks like:

  • Discounts 
  • Complimentary services to your current customers
  • Exclusive deals for new clients
  • Cash rewards
  • A free bottle of cleaning solution

To ensure your referral program gains traction, actively promote these incentives on various channels, including your 

  • Business website
  • Customer emails
  • Social media platforms

Streamline the referral process by making it straightforward for your customers to make referrals by incorporating a user-friendly referral button or widget on your website.

16. Use Advanced Equipments and Technology

In the cleaning industry, employing the right equipment and technology is key to:

  • Enhancing operational efficiency
  • Improving work quality
  • Simplifying tasks for cleaning crews. 

Innovative cleaning technologies like electrostatic and ultraviolet-C (UVC) are revolutionizing the way companies disinfect surfaces and purify the air in various facilities, including office buildings. These technologies enable faster and more effective cleaning processes.

17. Emphasize Benefits Over Services

When promoting your cleaning business, it’s common to focus on listing the services you offer. However, it’s important to remember that potential customers usually contact you because they’ve already identified their needs, be it carpet shampooing or window cleaning. The key to effective marketing lies in highlighting the advantages of choosing your company instead of a competitor.

Emphasize perks that set you apart, such as:

  • Offering free estimates
  • Showcasing the simplicity
  • Efficiency of your process. 

These aspects can significantly enhance your appeal. Furthermore, if you’re aiming to cultivate a base of recurring customers, consider implementing a loyalty rewards program.

18. Get Certification in the Cleaning Industry

While it’s not mandatory to have a certified cleaning business, achieving such recognition can significantly distinguish you from competitors. The International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA) has been instrumental in uniting cleaning businesses and setting industry best practices, thereby ensuring safe and sanitary solutions for both customers and corporations.

Obtaining the Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS) Certification from ISSA involves demonstrating excellence in six key areas: 

  • Quality Systems
  • Service Delivery
  • Human Resources
  • Health, Safety, and Environment
  • Management Commitment 
  • Green Building

While the certification process includes fees for application, business assessment, and membership maintenance, the benefits are substantial. Holding this certification not only enhances your credibility with customers but also serves as a powerful marketing tool for your cleaning business.

19. Make a Promotional Video

Creating a promotional video for your cleaning business might initially seem daunting, but it’s an incredibly effective marketing strategy. Such videos offer a dynamic way to convey what your business offers, bypassing the need for potential customers to sift through website text.

With video marketing, you can present a friendly and professional face for your cleaning business, connecting with customers in a more personal and engaging way.

20. Other Innovative Marketing Techniques for Your Cleaning Business

Expanding the reach of your cleaning business requires thinking beyond just a website and a Facebook Business Page. Consider employing creative advertising methods that will capture the attention of potential clients in unique ways.

  • One effective approach is to transform your vehicle into a mobile advertisement. Invest in branded magnets for your and your employees’ cars. This mobile marketing strategy ensures visibility on the roads and reaches people who might not have discovered your business otherwise.
  • Another tactic involves the use of door hangers and flyers in local neighborhoods. While placing flyers in private mailboxes isn’t permitted, hanging them on doors is a viable option. Door hangers are especially useful as they’re less prone to getting blown away and provide an easy method to disseminate information about your cleaning services.
  • Take advantage of networking with local businesses to place your business cards in prominent locations. Establish connections with owners of eateries, gas stations, and small shops, who often allow the placement of business cards for free. 

This form of grassroots promotion can significantly enhance your local visibility and attract new clients from within the community. By implementing these innovative advertising techniques, you can effectively spread the word about your cleaning business and stand out in a crowded market.


The landscape of marketing a cleaning business in today’s digital world is both dynamic and multifaceted. By embracing innovative strategies and leveraging the power of online tools, you can significantly elevate your business’s profile and reach. From creating a user-friendly website and utilizing SEO and PPC ads for higher online visibility, to engaging in email marketing and establishing a strong social media presence, each approach plays a pivotal role in drawing in new clients and retaining existing ones. Incorporating video marketing adds a personal touch, making your services more relatable and accessible.

Remember, the key to success lies not just in adopting these strategies, but in their thoughtful implementation. Tailoring your approach to highlight the unique strengths of your cleaning business, whether it be through eco-friendly practices, specialized services, or exceptional customer engagement, will set you apart in a competitive market. As you continue to innovate and adapt, your business is not only positioned to grow but also to become a trusted and preferred choice in the cleaning industry.

Kenneth Cutler

Kenneth Cutler is the founder and head editor at Clean My World. Based in California, he has been writing about home cleaning and cleaning appliances for quite some time and various major brands such as Miss Mill Mag and Lifestyle Magazine. Over the years, Kenneth Cutler has reviewed thousands of vacuum cleaners and other related home appliances and products. This enabled him to develop a unique insight into what makes a good vacuum cleaner. He keeps an eye on the market trends and USA regulations. Apart from talking about cleaning stuff, he likes to play music and enjoys live concerts.

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