How To Start A Dry Cleaning Business

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A dry clean business indeed has immense growth prospects. You can either start a dry cleaning business from scratch or join a dry cleaning franchise.

In this article, we have explained what exactly you will need to do for starting a dry cleaning business on your own and how a franchisor can help you in having a profitable business. You can understand both these things and decide which way of doing business is more suitable for you.

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So, let’s start:

10 Steps To Start A Dry Cleaning Business On Your Own

Just like any other business, a dry cleaning business also requires your time, money and efforts that will go into majorly ten activities mentioned below:

Step 1: Finding an ideal location

Find an ideal location to start dry cleaning business
Find an ideal location to start dry cleaning business

The first step to starting a dry cleaning business is finding the right location to set up a store. You cannot open a dry cleaning shop randomly at any place. It requires proper research about the population, demography, and market competition in an area.

Shortlist a few locations and assess where you will face less competition and a stable population to avail of your service. For this, you will need to carry out a recce of different locations and markets which will definitely need a lot of time and effort, so, be prepared.

Step 2. Finalizing an ideal store

Find an ideal store to start a dry cleaning business
Find an ideal store to start a dry cleaning business

Once you have shortlisted an ideal location, it is time to find an ideal store. It may seem easy, however, it takes substantial effort. Because just like the location, you cannot choose any random shop. The shop should have enough space to accommodate machinery and facilitate other operations. It should have space for branding purposes. There should be a parking space near the shop. The rent of the shop should be as per your budget. And, most importantly it should be visible to your potential customers and drive you maximum footfall.

Step 3: Designing the store

Designing a store is yet another task that you have to do. It will require constant focus as you should design your store to use the space in an optimum manner. Here are some crucial layouts that you will need to consider:

  • Electrical layout
  • Civil layout
  • Mechanical layout
  • Plumbing layout

If you are conscious of Vastu, then you will have to work as per a Vastu layout too.  You should acquire knowledge about all other aspects of a store layout. You can either outsource this task to an architectural firm or hire architects and monitor them.  

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Step 4: Monitoring contractual work

Construction and design will not happen overnight. These things take time and involve a lot of workers like electricians, plumbers, carpenters, etc. Even if you outsource these tasks to a contractor, you must be there to monitor everything. Because, let’s admit, contractors often don’t pay the utmost attention to such tasks.

Keep a close eye on the construction activities and plan daily and weekly supervision of the contractor so that everything stays on track.

Step 5: Figuring out the best machines and chemicals

Best of machines and chemicals are required to run a dry cleaning business
Best of machines and chemicals are required to run a dry cleaning business

There are so many options available for machines and chemicals used for dry cleaning. So, a random search on the internet will leave you confused about multiple options. If you are new to the dry cleaning and laundry industry, chances are that you will not understand which machines and chemicals are best in their categories. So, you need to carry out detailed research in this regard and shortlist the best brands for both of these things. Because you should not compromise on the quality of machinery and chemicals as they directly impact the quality of your dry cleaning service.

Step 6: Connecting with reliable suppliers and vendors

After finding the ideal brands to purchase machinery and chemicals to start a dry cleaning business, you will have to find the right suppliers and vendors. Here are the following things that you should keep in mind while finalizing suppliers and vendors:

  • The quality and price of their products should match your requirements and budget.
  • They must ensure consistent delivery as you will need certain raw materials on a regular basis. If they will not provide the required things consistently your business will suffer. 
  • You will need raw materials and maintenance service for your machinery on time, hence, they should be punctual. 
  • In the case of machinery, suppliers or vendors should provide post-sales services as well. Because your machines will require maintenance from time to time.
  • Last not least, all your vendors or suppliers should be reliable. Sometimes when people are deceived by these people in different ways, such as they don’t deliver the agreed quality of products or they don’t provide any services at all even after charging in advance. To avoid such negative circumstances you must work with reliable people. 

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Step 7: Setting up the right prices

It is crucial to benchmark and set the right price for your services when you start a dry cleaning business. You will have to carry out intense research at the ground level as well as online. The key is to check the prices at which your competitors are operating within a specific territory. You might have to visit other dry cleaning stores in your area and enquire about prices.

This is crucial because if you will set the prices too low, you will struggle to make profits. And, if you will set the prices way higher than your competitors you will lose your potential customers.

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Step 8: Hiring and training staff

Train and hire people for dry cleaning business
Train and hire people for dry cleaning business

In general, a dry cleaning shop needs three types of employees – Store manager, washer men and delivery executives.

You will have to hire these employees carefully on the basis of their skills, merit and reliability. It might require you to post jobs on employment websites, newspapers, etc. You can also outsource the hiring to HR agencies.

Once recruitment is done, you will have to focus on training your employees. While store managers and delivery executives do not need extensive training, washermen do. The quality of dry cleaning directly depends on how your washermen work. These people should understand various intricacies of dry cleaning and laundry such as:

  • How to clean different types of fabrics
  • How to clean heavily embroidered or embellished clothes
  • How to iron different fabrics
  • How to treat different types of stains from different fabrics

There are various other things that washermen must know and practice before working in a dry clean store. For this, you should  get them trained by experts.

Step 9: Promoting your business

Marketing & advertisement for laundry business promotion
Marketing & advertisement for laundry business promotion

Whenever a new business enters the market, it requires marketing and advertisement. So, you will have to create and implement proper marketing strategies both offline and online to spread the word about your business.

Your marketing strategies should be both informative and convincing. People should know that a dry cleaning shop has opened in their neighbourhood. And you should convince them to try your new business via your marketing and advertising approach.

These are some of the activities that you will have to do:

Traditional/Offline Marketing

  • Distribution of pamphlets
  • Building tie-ups with local salons, grocery stores, gyms, etc.
  • Putting canopies in neighbouring societies
  • Putting banners and flyers in the neighbouring area.

Digital/ Online Marketing

  • Listing your shop on business directories like JustDial
  • Running paid Ads on Google
  • Running paid Ads on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, etc.
  • Building and running a website

Step 10: Controlling business operations

Operations management in dry clean business
Operations management in dry clean business

When you start a dry cleaning business, you will have to constantly manage business operations. Your staff, vendors, and customers – there will be way too many people connected to your business. 

As a business owner, you should be readily available to help your staff when they need assistance in running your store. You will also have to ensure that your staff is satisfied with their job to avoid manpower retention.

Moving forward, you will have to maintain cordial relationships with vendors and suppliers to avoid traction in essential supplies.

And at last, you will have to focus on your customers. You will have to ensure that they get accurate information about your services and their orders whenever they need these things. And, you should be able to address their complaints as well.

You are equally responsible for suppliers, vendors, staff and customer satisfaction. So, you will have to work accordingly.

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To manage so many things altogether you must have undeterred focus on your business. If you think you cannot give your 100% to these activities then starting a dry cleaning business on your own isn’t a wise decision.  Don’t take the whole responsibility on your shoulders, otherwise, you will fail to ensure that all the above-explained things are taken care of. As a result, your business will become just another local dry cleaning shop with stagnant growth. Hence, a better option is to take the franchise of a well-established laundry and dry cleaning business like Tumbledry.

How Tumbledry Can Give You A Profitable Dry Clean Business?

Before coming to how we can help you to start a dry cleaning business, let us tell you about Tumbledry’s journey till now.

Tumbledry was started in 2019 with just 1 store. Fast forward to 2024, we have 1000+ stores spread across 360+ cities. And these numbers are going upward every day. Our short-term goal is to have 2000 stores by 2026 and we are well on track to achieve it.

We hope this conveys that we abide by the research, the right strategies and diligence towards our work. And you can rely on us to start a dry cleaning business.

Now, let’s see how we can enable you to build a profitable business.

When you will sign up for a Tumbledry franchise, the onus of setting up your business will be on our team. Our experts will shortlist the best locations to open a store for you. Then, they will find out some financially viable shops in the selected location or market. Next, we will help you with the construction and design of your shop. Once it will be done, we will provide you with the right machinery, chemicals, packaging material and other raw materials at the right price (lower than the market rates).

Moving on, we will help you with the recruitment and training of staff as well. We have a proper training academy where we train washermen to handle all sorts of customer’s items in the right manner. This will help you in offering high-quality service without any damage to your customers.

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We will also do finance integration for you to make online business easy. You will also get access to two different Tumbledry apps for consumers and for delivery executives. When it comes to branding and marketing, you will get complete support from our end in both online and offline marketing strategies. We will even promise you a certain conversion rate with our marketing campaigns.

To handle customer queries or complaints we have a centralized customer care centre, so, you don’t have to maintain a separate system for this aspect. Last not least, our dedicated territory sales manager (TSM) will always be there to help you at every stage of running your Tumbledry business.

While we will take care of everything else to start a dry cleaning business, you will just have to follow our instructions. Tumbledry is here to guide you and lead you to a profitable dry cleaning business. Hence, you can always rely on us.

You can go through this video for a detailed explanation of how we can help you to start a dry cleaning business.

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Key Takeaway

If you have decided to start a dry cleaning business, you should know all the things that it takes to successfully start and run this business. We have already explained them in this article. Once you go through them, do a self-assessment. Figure out whether you can do everything on your own properly or not. If you think you manage all alone, go ahead and start your business. In case you think you will need assistance, then you can always join a well-established franchise like ours. Both ways of doing business have their own specific benefits. You can choose anyone as per your requirements.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. They do not necessarily purport to reflect the values or views of Tumbledry.

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