– How would you like
to make $750,000 a year running your own cleaning business? On today's episode, you'll
find out how to do it. (gentle music) On this episode we'll be
interviewing Austin Miller who started Spruse
Clean out of a necessity when he lost his job. And in less than three years, it's grown from a one man
operation to a 20 people multi-state cleaning empire. And he's also on track to break
$1 million in the next year. – [Austin] I started with
dollars literally dollars. This year I think we're on
track to do close to a million. – What are the profit margins
that you're shooting for? – Spruse Clean is also
one of the highest rated cleaning services in Seattle.
They've got a record number
of positive reviews on Yelp and they've more than
doubled their revenue in the last two and a half years. – [Austin] We're just so
busy with Yelp and Google. And Google even knew, we use Yelp for the first year and a half. We've done 12 to 17,000 in one day. – [Paul] An average cleaning business makes 50 to $70,000 a year so
his earnings are phenomenal. He's gonna share secrets
about the amazing growth, how much it took for him to
get started in the business, what he's doing to continue the growth. – If you wanna start a cleaning
business, do it tomorrow. – His tips will help any
business owner in any industry. So make sure you stick
around for this episode. Like this video, subscribe to our channel and let's go say hi to Austin. (gentle music) – Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you ended up
starting a cleaning company. I mean, did you have a cleaning
background in the past? – None.
– Okay. – So we started as Home Remodelers, lost our jobs due to the economy.
And we had a couple of
clients from Home Remodeling that needed their house cleaned. Asked me, a year later
hired him as my first hire. And then from word of mouth, we grew 367 times in the
last two and a half years. – 367 times.
– Yeah. One of the fastest growing
cleaning services out in Seattle. – Did you ever see the
potential of cleaning? I mean, when you were remodeling houses. – Not when I was remodeling houses but when I got into the market, I already knew from the get go there was a huge untapped market.
You just needed a little
bit customer service and a good cleaning service
and you could do it. (upbeat music) – Awesome, let's talk
about your initial budget when you got started two
and a half years ago. What was that like? You know, branching out of
renovation into cleaning. – Dollars. – And break it down for us as
far as how it was implemented, how was broken down? – So basically for the last
year when I first started was all my own money. Very lean budget, everything I made went
back into the company. I started with dollars, literally dollars. – Put a number on it,
10 bucks, 15 bucks, 21. What do you need to do to get started. – I think I had a couple
hundred in the bank after I lost my job. But cleaning supplies and just decided to go full on with it. And luckily I got
customers fairly quickly. So it compounded, you
know, two to three to four to where I'd had enough
to pay my monthly bills.
And then it compounded to where
I could hire another person. We got really lucky. – This business sounds like
an easy business to get into. I mean, a couple of cleaning
supplies, couple of rags. – Yeah.
– Paper towels. – As long as you're motivated. So if you are motivated and
you have good customer service and good quality work,
it's pretty easy to build. (upbeat music) – Let's talk about your
first year revenue. What you're on track to
do this year maybe 2021, if you have projections.
– Sure. – And what's the secret
to that phenomenal growth. – So first year was $96,000. This year, I think we're on track to do close to a million. Like shy of a million like 900
something thousand dollars. But 2021, we'll be well over a million.
It'll be close to like 1.5, 1.6. – From a hundred thousand to a million. When the average cleaning company makes 50 to 70 grand a year. What's the secret here. – Scaling, again they always
drive me to stop saying yes. I just always say yes. And I think that's just kind
of got us to a large staff with a huge clientele. And again, we're just not greedy. I'll take the 45%.
– That's amazing. And then go from there. I'm happy with that, I'll take 45% of 1.5. – And there's still a big.
– Huge. – Market to fill. – Oh, there are so many
clients looking for… There's, if you wanna
start a cleaning business, do it tomorrow. I'm not even worried, you'll
find your own clients. – There's no competition. – Everyone can eat in
this industry seriously. (upbeat music) – How many clients
currently do you guys serve. – About 450 a week.
– 450 a week. Okay.
– Yeah. – Are those repeat customers
or what's the percentage? – Somewhat, I think 30% are reoccurring. 30 to 40% are reoccurring. And then the rest are all new customers. – And where are they coming in from? – A lot of shit, we're
at number six on Google.
So we pop up fairly quick on that. A ton from Yelp, we
are number one on Yelp. And I think the other one
would just be word of mouth and just Google searching us. A lot of our stuff comes
from those two streams. Not much else. – What is it about Yelp? Cause we're, you know, we're
talking to different companies and we're hearing that over and over. At least for the Seattle market. – Yelp? – Have you been investing
in Yelp for quite a while. – Since beginning. And we do have a secret recipe for how we present ourselves on– – Oh, secret recipe.
– Yo, yes. – Let's try to get that out Austin. – They have a formula. And we've figured out if you
always go for five star reviews they're gonna stick here and there but they have a shadow formula
where they won't stick.
I think a lot of business
owners have seen that, where it's extremely frustrating. To get around that, you're gonna wanna ask your
clients for three star reviews. Make sure they're positive
three star reviews but nonetheless ask for a three star. It breaks the formula. As soon as that hits, you'll those hidden five star reviews will start showing up again. I think we jumped almost 20 reviews like that were hidden back to our board.
Because we got those three star reviews, but they're formal, they
just want to validate them. These are actual reviews and not people just spamming you guys
with five star reviews. (gentle music) – How do you decide on
pricing and estimates? Do you charge for that? Walk us through a little bit. – So that's actually
where we stand out hugely. Is we actually designed our own formula and a pricing calculator on our website. So you don't need to
do an estimate with us.
It gives you an exact price
based on the size of your home, based on the rooms in it
and what extras you want. So it gives you the booking summary, what you're paying for each room. And allows you to customize
your clean based on those rooms. So it's not just a one shot you know, okay, it's $300 for this. No, you pick what you want cleaned and the price for that room. So it takes out us having to
do an estimate again lean, I don't wanna do that. You just do on the website. So it gives them a quick
price within minutes.
(upbeat music) – What are the profit margins
that you're shooting for? What's the sweet spot for you to be in? – 45%.
– Okay. – We actually pay our staff the highest in any state per hour. And we're even taking, we're
still taking a 45% margin of profit so that's the sweet spot. – That's the sweet spot, okay. – Not too greedy. – Industry wise, a
little lower in general. – Yeah, just because in our industry, people pay their staff a lot less. But again, it's hard work
and we wanna make sure that our staff is getting
compensated fairly, if not well. So we just take a little bit outside. (upbeat music) – What's been the most
successful approach to marketing? And how are you acquiring
new customers today? – Yelp ads. As much as Yelp can suck, it's a vital tool to have in any business. We put a lot of money into our Google ads and we put a lot of money in our Yelp ads. Aside from that, there isn't
much marketing else we do. – What's your marketing budget
per month at this point.
– It's about two grand.
– Two grand. – That's about it, yeah. – For a business that's gonna
do cost a million dollars in revenue.
– We run very lean. – With a $2,000 marketing budget. That's amazing.
– Yeah. – What did you start with though when you were at a
hundred thousand a year? Would you spend anything or. – A little bit, I think
we spent like 350 bucks.
– [Paul] Okay. – Cause it was like $15 a day on Yelp, which equated to about
three to 450 a month. And that was pushing it. Like we didn't have the money for that, but we did it anyway. – So Google, Yelp, not much. I don't hear much Facebook or Instagram. – They're not buying–
– For service industry. – Yeah, you don't need them. And we just never, we never
needed them to a point, but okay, let's do this too. We're just so busy with Yelp and Google. And Google's even new, we use Yelp for the first year and a half. We really just need Yelp. – Yeah, just figuring out which platforms are gonna give you the
best return on your money.
(upbeat music) Let's talk about your daily,
weekly, monthly expenses. What does that look like? I mean, how much are you standing? – The only expense we have in our business is our lease and marketing. – That's it? – The only overhead we
have is our cleaners but it's a direct profit margin
on each job they do anyway. The only overhead we
have again is a lease, any marketing we do and then
my admin staff in office. – So what are you at monthly then with, what do you do have a couple
of grand, 10,000, 20,000.
– I think like for Spruse
cleaning expenses in general, 6,000 a month. – Okay, can you break that down to us? Yeah, I would probably say. – What's the biggest expense? – Actually, you know what? I take that back. It would be about eight or
9,000 because our admins takes up a lot of that. – Okay. – And then about two to
3000 Google and Yelp ads. That's about it. (upbeat music) – What's a good day for Spruse Cleaning as far as dollar wise. Is that something you can share with us? – Sure, a good day would be, we've done 12 to 17,000 in one day. That's a motivator, I'm gonna
have a drink after that. But we're pretty steady every day now. Even I hate to say, we're doing better than
we ever had during COVID. So we're just seeing a projection after this to be even greater. (upbeat music) – So you're spending two
grand on marketing now. I'm curious if you increase
that number to $10,000, what would that do to your business? (chuckles) – Probably 800 clients
a week easily, yeah.
– A chaotic week. – We would never be ready for that. It's crazy how the dollar
value per lead actually works. It just gets your business
in so many more people's eyes that if we go almost
four times our budget, it would be four times
the business easily. I would probably say over
a thousand bookings a week. – Wow. – We just don't have the
manpower unfortunately. As much as I'd love to be like. – But that's awesome
cause you have that lever that you can sort of. – And that's exactly what
it's a faucet, right? Turn on and off whenever we need it. So if we have a slow month, on. If we don't, off. It's that easy. (upbeat music) – Okay if I gave you a hundred bucks today where our viewers who wanna
start a cleaning business I gave, we gave them a hundred bucks.
How would you recommend they
use that a hundred dollars? – Well, you're not gonna live by a vacuum for a hundred bucks unfortunately. – So let's up the budget a little bit. – Let's do 200, you have $200. I would definitely get
a vacuum sharp brand first and tile I need surface. Microfiber towels, don't use paper towels and go eco-friendly. A lot of products, people are super, super like
conscious of eco-friendly products nowadays that if
you use harsh chemicals, when they may be allergic or two they just don't want that in their home anymore. So keep it that eco-friendly,
environmental friendly and you'll be good to go. – I hope you guys enjoyed
this first episode of us interviewing Austin Miller. What an incredible journey. I hope you guys enjoyed it
and took away a lot of things. Make sure you check out episode two. The link is in the description below. Or just hit the thumbnail here. And please, if you haven't
already subscribed, hit that subscribe button, like this video and come back for more
amazing content from Upflip.