Author Archives: Graham Rogers
Author Archives: Graham Rogers
Someone asked me the question: How Quickly Can I Make Money In A Oven Cleaning Business Graham?
Oven Cleaner Makes £1K in His First Business Week…You Must Be Kidding!
Okay if you asked me this even just a few weeks ago if someone could make a thousands pounds a week in their first week in an oven cleaning business I would have laughed at you. “Seriously? You must be kidding! No one can make that sort of money from day one. It takes a while to build up your customer base, and to build up your business”. I would have told you and I would have probably have taken it further and got into a serious strop with you and had an argument with you as I remember the pain I had to put myself through to clean all those ovens to get my first £1000 week.
Which was about one year after starting. (I can’t remember when it exactly was I’ll dig out my diary and put the date in here when I know it).
So then back in 2004 and 2005 I was working like a maniac, charging £35 to £45 for single cleaning 4 to 5 ovens a day. I remember thinking when coping with my seriously aching arms every night “how can anyone sustain this?”. But I did and I pushed through it and grew my business, getting four employees to do what I was doing. All of us working like busy bees flat out driving everywhere, me myself sometimes driving up to two hours to get to a job, driving from Wiltshire to South Hams in South Devon to clean AGAs (Salcombe has always been a busy location for us).
So it has been a surprise when our new franchisee Lee Cole took £1004 in sales in week one of starting his new business. And then even more of surprise when he did again in week two. Week three was a bit lame with £340 but week four was over £1K again.
So we’ve been scratching our heads. And really the conclusion is that we can be a lot better at getting our business going than we think we can!
Lee bought an area from us we had already covered, down in Newton Abbot. As I said I been down there a lot in the past but really the only way that we have gained that business is by advertising on line. But being in an area and marketing locally really does help!
Looking at how Lee has got his work. He has been lucky with repeat customers booking in, recommendations from people who have used us before and by being super pro-active. He has cleaned lots of AGAs and range cookers. So our marketing is hitting the mark.
Oh and there was one small thing I’ve done – I’ve tried out a new way of advertising, well new for us really, using Google Adwords in a different way. I’ll do another post on this soon so look out for it.
Update: Lee announced at our AGM in January 2017 that in his first 15 weeks his total sales income for his business had been £16,000.
Update: Lee’s total sales for his first 12 Months was £47,000 which equalled his old salary as a Waitrose store manager.
So this week I am out training our new franchisee, John Rorke of Wolverhampton West. On Tuesday he started doing his real world ovens with a single oven and hob in Clifton in Bristol. The hob was actually an unusual NEFF five burner which I have only cleaned myself a few times before. The oven was an older NEFF oven with black enamel inside. But a nice job for John to start on.
The clean went very well and the customer was very happy.
On Wednesday John cleaned a three oven AGA. We normally do the AGA cleaning towards the end of the training, but this one appeared and it was local so we decided to do it. John did a fabulous job on this. In the afternoon we went into Bristol and cleaned a single oven, hob and extractor. This was a straight forward clean. The only problem really was finding somewhere to park when we got there but after driving around the block I found a space that was convenient.
On Thursday John did range cooker cleaning, as well as the splashback and extractor hood. This wasn’t an easy job and I helped him a lot with the really dirty hob. The range was in a pub and on the way there I was wondering how it got booked in for us. I was thinking if it’s a commercial range there is no way we could do it, as it would have been too big of a job for training. But when we got there, it was standard domestic range but it was in the pub kitchen just behind the bar. The Landlady said “We don’t do food in the pub”. I thought that this is probably true now and this is the reason why it was booked in. She obviously told us this on the phone when it was booked in: “it’s an ordinary domestic range and we don’t use it for the pub”. But it had been used at some time to cook for the pub and for a long time at that as the top was just caked in burnt on carbon, the extractor and splashback had thick grease on them.
So four hours later we had finished and the Landlady was very happy, everything sparkling like new.
In the afternoon John cleaned a single oven, hob and extractor. John did the whole clean and it really looked great at the end . It was a straight forward job except for taking the door apart. This had another pane of glass in the middle of it. Also unusually the oven had two fans at the back. This was the first time I’d seen this.
So it’s all go at this week. I am carrying out oven cleaning franchise training, training our latest franchisee John
Rorke. He will be coveringWolverhampton West. This area covers the area to the West of Wolverhampton and covers an area that I lived in for 18 months when I did my technical training when I was in the Royal Air Force. I was at RAF Cosford from Jan 1983 to July 1984, doing my Air Radar Avionics training, which overall I enjoyed learning all about electronics and getting paid for it. I also loved being in the RAF Cosford rowing team and rowing and socialising at the local Ironbridge Rowing Club.
So today, Tuesday, is day two of John’s Oven Cleaning Franchisee training. Yesterday we did the first day introduction stuff in the morning and then visited to Spillers of Chard showroom to look at some fantastic cookers and kitchens there. It’s a fairly long drive from here in Bristol but is worth it as the size of the showroom means we can see lots of different combination of cookers, ovens and AGA branded cookers. It means we can look at all the different AGAs which are being sold at the moment.
A few years back I was worried as the showroom there for the smaller ovens consisted mainly of Pyrolytic ovens and I was thinking is this a trend? Now they have redesigned their showroom and there are a lot less Pyrolytic ovens. I’m wondering was it because they didn’t sell many of them? Also now a few years on I’ve seen people using the Pyrolytic function on an oven and seen the results of using it – lots of smoke in the kitchen, difficulty in cleaning racks, doors etc and know that even people with these sort of ovens are still going to use our service.
So a good look at AGAs and then back to the office.
Today we are going to go through stripping down ovens and go out for our first job this afternoon.
We are all excited as we have a new franchisee starting in a couple of weeks as we need to do franchisee training. He is John Rorke and he will be covering the Wolverhampton and West Staffordshire area. So we are getting things in place. We run the training here in Bristol in our office and training suite. I generally do the training although sometimes I get assistance from the guys who work for us. Though this time I am planned in to do all of the franchisee training this time. But as it was just over a month ago that I did the last franchisee training I feel in the groove and able to deliver some excellent training.
With our training we spend the first day going through some important health and safety stuff, a quick overview of our cleaning process and then we go and have a look at a whole range of different cookers in a showroom down in Somerset, The Cooker Centre at Spillers of Chard. I’ve been taking franchisees there since we have been training them and it’s a quick way for them to appreciate the market that we are targeting, and the sort of cookers they are going to be cleaning. Everything from a single oven NEFF oven, to a Falcon Range, all the AGA cookers, to the largest Wolf (American style) range cooker. Also as the cookers are set in bespoke kitchens it shows the cookers in their best light, as it were, all gleaming and new. And we can look at the top range fridges and freezers, such as the Sub Zero Freezer that sells for £12,600. It must be a good one.
So currently it’s all systems go to get things ready for him. I have already started setting up his internet presence and setting up his Google Advertising. I am also putting things in place for the delivery and conversion of his van which will be delivered to us by the end of his training so he can drive off in it. I am still working out whether to do the conversion differently as I have found a new way for us to line the back area in the van to improve it.
I’ve decided to start blogging on this site rather than my old theovencleaningfranchise.co.uk site which now directs to this page.