Maximize profit for janitorial project work: Strategies for pricing and selling VCT stripping and waxing jobs


One of the best ways to increase customer loyalty and company profits is through taking on project work such as hard surface floor restoration, carpet cleaning, and window cleaning. With profit margins often times topping 50%, performing these services can be lucrative. Plus, it gives customers’ places a major facelift which should garner more loyalty.

In this article we are going to discuss pricing and selling resilient floor refinishing.  While almost all companies use square footage rates for pricing, understanding how these rates are calculated helps us have more confidence when quoting and adjust prices as needed, especially for large or more complicated jobs.

Calculating Cost Per Square Foot

An example will help illustrate how to develop pricing per square foot.  For our example, we will use 10,000 square feet of resilient floor, and assume application of 6 coats of floor finish.

Supplies Cost

Floor Stripper                 10 gallons of floor stripper at $20/gal = $200

Floor Finish                     20 gallons of floor finish at $22/gal = $440

Pads/Mops/Misc.         $175 (estimate)

Total Supplies Cost       $815 or $0.082/sq ft

Labor Cost

Wages                             70 work hours (estimate) at $25/hr = $1,750

Taxes/Benefits (20%)   $350

Grand Total Cost                 $2,915 or $0.29/sq ft (rounded)


Determining Selling Price

With the cost per square foot established, determining the selling price involves adding an appropriate markup.  When determining the appropriate mark-up, consider the difficulty of the work and the existing customer relationship.  Continuing our example:

Cost per Square Foot              $0.29/sq ft

Mark-up (75%)                          $0.22/sq ft

Total Price to Customer          $0.51/sq ft or $5,1000 + cost of travel + cost to move furniture

To ensure profitability, it’s wise to set a minimum price for smaller spaces. For instance, using the above pricing model, a 200 sq ft space would translate to only $102, insufficient to cover costs and effort. The recommended minimum typically price falls between $500-$1,000.

 Create An Active Plan To Boost Sales

The most effective way to increase sales for floor work (or any additional services) is to proactively approach customers with a plan. In simpler terms, offer a price and schedule before customers realize they need floor refinishing. This method not only boosts sales but also fosters customer loyalty as they see your commitment to enhancing their facilities.

Finally, we suggest setting up a commission program for Field Managers. This motivates them to not only sell more services but also to follow up and make sure customers are happy. By teaching managers to spot more service opportunities, helping them set prices, and giving them commissions, you’ll boost customer loyalty and profits.


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