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June 12, 2017

How to Encourage Customer Loyalty at Your Laundromat

Maybe you’ve just opened a new laundromat and you’re looking to build up your clientele. Perhaps you’ve been open for a while but many visitors don’t return or flip-flop between your laundromat and the nearest competitor. With approximately 35,000 laundromats in the US, people have a lot of options for their laundry needs. That’s why it’s more important than ever to build a loyal customer base to make your laundromat business successful. If you’re looking to develop a loyal following at your laundromat, here are 10 unique ideas to help encourage customer loyalty:

  1. Implement a punch card system. The punch card, which allows customers to earn perks after a certain amount of purchases at a business, will encourage your laundromat patrons to return and earn the freebies.
  2. Pass out coupon books with freebies for customers to use on follow up visits. Customers will want to utilize the discounts, causing them to return to your laundromat instead of visiting a different facility.
  3. Cater to a niche group. Many businesses already have discounts for seniors in place, so your laundromat can capitalize on that trend to both attract and retain the aging population living in the area by having a “Senior Day” or offering a senior discount. Besides seniors, you could also have special discounts to attract local college students or military veterans.
  4. Use a Smart Card Laundry Vending System. Having a branded card system will allow you to start a loyalty program at your laundromat to encourage customers to keep coming back. Plus, your customers will appreciate not having the hassle of carrying (or running out of) cash and coins.
  5. Provide free Wi-Fi.Studies show that free Wi-Fi increases foot traffic, time spent on premises, and the amount customers spend. Having internet access will set you apart from other laundromats and entice customers to return.
  6. Have a selection of toys, games, and puzzles on hand. Parents often have to bring their kids with them to the laundromat. This can be problematic when the youngsters get impatient, bored, and antsy. Having a selection of games available will help keep the kids occupied and impress their parents, causing parents to want to frequent your facility over the less kid-friendly competition. Adult patrons without kids may also enjoy having something to do while they wait, so some recent newspapers, magazines and adult-friendly games are also great.
  7. Have a weekly discount day. Trying to fit laundry into an already busy schedule can be a challenge. A weekly discount day can encourage customers to carve out time specifically to visit your facility on a regular basis to take advantage of the savings, rather than just visiting a random laundromat whenever they find the time.
  8. Host a community gathering. Did you know that more than 80% of your clientele live within a mile of your laundromat? Hosting a community event, such as a cookout or community fundraiser, is a great way to get new and existing customers to visit your facility. It also shows that you care about the community, which will make you stand out from other facilities in the immediate area. As an added bonus, an event is a great way to get customer’s contact information to help with promotional efforts. 
  9. Keep your facility clean. Customers come to a laundromat in an effort to clean their clothes. A dirty facility is a good way to send them screaming for the exit and the nearest competitor. Invest in garbage and recycling bins and pay special attention to the bathroom.
  10. Keep equipment working and updated. Similar to a dirty facility, a rundown facility with broken or outdated machines will also cause your customers to leave for a competitor. Be sure you make all repairs in a timely manner and take preventative measures to keep them from wearing out. Customers will likely frequent the most updated, energy-efficient laundromat, so investing in new equipment is also important.

 Pittsburgh Laundry Systems is here to help you along every step of your laundromat business journey, from design to financing. Contact us today to discuss how we can help!  

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