Open Forum

Pickup and Delivery

  • 1.  Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 12-05-2018 17:10
    ​I'm buying a laundromat and want to add pickup and delivery; the laundromat currently has WDF and Dry Cleaning drop-off, but there appears to be a fair amount of demand from customers for pickup and delivery. I've heard of delivery.com and Springboard, but wanted to know if there are others folks here have had experience with and what they think of the two I mentioned.

    Also, they seem to offer more than just the pickup and delivery software but also do custom websites, digital marketing, etc. so if anyone has used these services I'd love to hear about it.

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    Rich Flaherty
    Potential Investor
    Woodstock GA
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  • 2.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 12-05-2018 18:57
    Hi Rich,
          First let me say that adding pickup & delivery to an existing store is nothing to take lightly. It's a lot of work to do it well and build a great reputation. So many people think it's gonna be easy extra money but it's not. It's a completely different business model and should be treated as such. Way too many amateurs have already figured this out the hard way. However, if done well, it can be a great revenue source for a store owner but do not enter into this lightly. Take your time! When I entered the delivery business, I already had some great managers and team members in place and had been in this industry for about 7 years with 4 stores when we launched and it's still not been easy!!

         Given you're new to this business (I assume), I'd recommend holding off for atleast 6-12 months minimum while you get your feet wet.  I've been a Springboard licensee for several years and couldn't be happier. Not only is their software very nice but their "add on" services that they offer are simply amazing. We use their software, customer service, drivers logistics tools, digital marketing, and website. I dont think they offer anything that we don't use. While nothing and no one is perfect, I've never been let down by anything they do or say.  The people at Springboard are second to none. They genuinely care about your success and will mentor you in anyway that they can. I have very high expectations for everyone that I partner with and I'm happy that I'm with Springboard. If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask away. You can also call me if you'd like to. Lastly I do not work for, nor represent Springboard in any way. I'm simply a happy and satisfied customer.

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    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
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  • 3.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 12-06-2018 17:18

    Hey Rich - If you are a newbie you should definitely get your feet wet first for a few months (3-6) so you get a good lay of the land in your new business...there will definitely be things that come up that you weren't expecting... I started doing pickup and delivery 8 years ago and I haven't looked back... currently over 25,000 lbs/day with 22 trucks...It is by far the greatest opportunity currently in the laundry business regarding growth with smallest amount of risk investment...or what people like to say the best bang for your buck...it takes time to build and market the business... but when you learn from mistakes and capitalize on opportunities it is an amazing business! I use WashClubTrak and I am happy to answer all your questions off-line if you would like... Thanks, Rick


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    Rick Rome
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Wash Club
    Brooklyn NY
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  • 4.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-22-2019 01:01
    Have active wdf delivery service but struggling to keep packaging presentable through delivery process. Using Rhino bags and craft carry bags but clothes look beaten up when delivered.. help!

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    Mary Willis
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Newbury Park CA
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  • 5.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-23-2019 12:02
    Mary-

    I have a video I can send you about packaging.

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    SEAN DUPREY
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Springboard
    Cranston RI
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  • 6.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-28-2019 17:38
    Hi Sean,
    I would be interested in your video.

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    Bobbi Calderon
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Council Bluffs IA
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  • 7.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-07-2019 09:11
    Edited by SEAN DUPREY 02-14-2019 12:12
    Here you go Bobbi, if you have any interest in learning about our pickup and delivery business please let me know.
     
     
     
    Thanks
     
    SEAN DUPREY
    Business Development   
     
    Springboard :: Cloud Based Laundry Pickup and Delivery Software
     
    www.getspringboard.com
     
     
     



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  • 8.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-08-2019 17:15
    Sean,
    Thanks for sharing your video.  I have a Pick up & Del service but always looking for new ways to improve it.

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    Bobbi Calderon
    Bobbi Calderon Person
    Council Bluffs IA
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  • 9.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-29-2019 12:47
    Hi Sean,

    I am interested in that video to.

    Thanks

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    Simon Elwardany
    Pomona CA
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  • 10.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-31-2019 15:46
    Edited by SEAN DUPREY 02-14-2019 12:13
    Simon-
     
    Thanks for the note, do you provide pickup and delivery from your store? I'd be happy to discuss our software with you if you are interested.
     
     
     
    Thanks
     
    Sean
     
     
     
     



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  • 11.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 04-04-2019 20:46
    Hi Sean, I also would be interested in your video

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    Colleen Taber
    Bubbles Laundry Spa, LLC
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  • 12.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 04-05-2019 11:21
    Hi Sean,
    Pls send me the video about packaging.
    Thank you.
    Michael@LaundryAngels.com
    Michael Hoskam, LaundryAngels.com

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    Michael Hoskam
    Suds City Laundromat
    Madison NJ
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  • 13.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 01-27-2019 08:36
    Hey Mary - What size poly bags do you use?...you should have a few varieties, if not just ping me and I'll send you my vendor's info...also, tie the corners of your exterior bags before transporting that will keep contents inside tight when moving around and make a better impression upon delivery
    thumbnail image
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    Rick Rome
    Store Owner/ Employee
    Wash Club
    Brooklyn NY
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  • 14.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-13-2019 17:01
    Rick - on another note can you share how you keep orders straight when they get to your laundry shop? With so much Landry (!) do you ever mix up orders??
    thanks!
    Mary

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    Mary Willis
    Mary Willis Person
    Newbury Park CA
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  • 15.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-15-2019 17:16

    Hey Mary - Good question...not sure you are aware or not but we don't have self serve customers anymore...there not allowed in...only drop-off or pickup and delivery...This helps a lot!...Yes we lose things...general rule of thumb is 1-2% of revenues goes to paying out customers for damages or lost items...we are at less then 1%...how??... a number of factors...we have 35 high def cameras at each facility...it allows us to get a good idea of what happened, we use different colored bags for different areas which also helps narrow down possibilities and easier to track... customer order history shed's light as well...most important is our machine tracking system and order logs within the WashClubTrak POS... It's not just 1 of these things that helps, its a combined effort...If I had to pick one thing you should do (outside the obvious of using software...hopefully ours) I would say get a real good camera system....If you want to talk off-line please feel free to ping me





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    Rick Rome
    Wash Club
    Brooklyn NY
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  • 16.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-15-2019 17:25
    Thank you, Rick. Cameras are certainly an option as are different colored bags. Things kind of fall apart when laundry is brought in for cleaning. With folding going on in a few places at once we go tend to mix up pieces versus destroy or lose. You have a LOT of laundry in your place all at once which suggests organization. Do you tag every wdf piece that comes in?
    Thank you !!

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    Mary Willis
    Mary Willis Person
    Newbury Park CA
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  • 17.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-15-2019 17:52
    heavens no!... We have a tight system in place that has allowed us to scale our business...all of this through software..specifically WashClubTrak... we definitely have mix ups as well...there is human interaction when processing, but not from cart mix ups but more from miss tagging a bag with the wrong receipt ...general human laziness...our system does help control this along with rewards workers based on performance...the goal of my business is to automate everything possible...this has a cost but if you are in it to win it then its marginal relative to the long term success you will get...For example, we have a call center...we use AWS bots and other CRM systems to help facilitate this...the fewer human touches within CS the better...yes there are times folks want to speak to people, and we support this...but more times then not people don't want to speak to other people, just get the answer quick and move on... they may ask what is your price per pound or do you service my area...all these things we utilize technology to expedite which in turn gives a better customer experience...

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    Rick Rome
    Wash Club
    Brooklyn NY
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  • 18.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-16-2019 14:59
    May I ask what you charge for pick up/delivery services? I'm doing that now in the mean time to build the business before we purchase a laundromat.
    Thanks!
    Tara

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    Tara McComas
    Tara McComas Person
    Blanchard OK
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  • 19.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-18-2019 09:26
    Hi Tara - Pricing varies based on location...the WashClubTrak software we use allows for a number of different pricing options based on operators desires...meaning we have tiered pricing... we also have the flexibility to charge different minimums based on the zip code also...in fact, we even have route logistics...so one area in town can be Mon & Thursday and another part of town can be Tuesday & Friday..in fact you can tie all 3 together if you really want to... so in short what we charge per pound varies from $1.19-$1.49...any other questions please let me know...happy to help

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    Rick Rome
    Wash Club
    Brooklyn NY
    ------------------------------

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  • 20.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-20-2019 07:16
    Should we be concerned. I think we should be...

    https://www.tidedrycleanerstx.com/locations#find

    They seem to be doing a big marketing push. They were on NPR this morning.

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    Conrad S. McLean
    Owner
    Bloomfield, NJ
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  • 21.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-20-2019 07:30

    They are aggressive marketers and I actually know the owners well...they are smart and knowledgeable operators... but competition is healthy and just because you have Lebron James on your team doesn't mean you will win all the time...Focus on your business strengths and leverage that and work hard to improve on your weaknesses...that will allow you to take market share and move upward!

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    Rick Rome
    Owner/Operator
    WashClubTrak
    POS/Laundry Delivery Software
    New York
    Rick@washclubtrak.com
    ------------------------------

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  • 22.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-20-2019 07:35
    And now this popped up on my news feed. They are pushing hard!

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/hate-laundry-tide-launching-game-changing-solution-neighborhood-181714565.html

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    Conrad S. McLean
    Owner
    Bloomfield, NJ
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  • 23.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-20-2019 07:47
    You are assuming that every operator for Tide will know how to operate...Just like any business the key ingredient is the owner and employees... how to manage them and daily situations that arise...not the fancy marketing...yes that will help drive business initially but will it pass the smell test on a regular basis...It's good to know your competition but never fear it

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    Rick Rome
    Owner/Operator
    WashClubTrak
    POS/Laundry Delivery Software
    New York
    Rick@washclubtrak.com
    ------------------------------

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  • 24.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-20-2019 09:36
    I completely agree with Rick. Any franchise is only as good as it's operator and team. I'm in Cincinnati Ohio which is P & G's headquarters. They launched a couple locations here first. One is very close to me and they have a horrible reputation. A great brand and big marketing budgets will help you in the beginning but you must execute to build trust. So far they're no threat to us whatsoever.

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    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
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  • 25.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-27-2019 18:58
    Edited by Rich Cruz 02-27-2019 18:58
    Haven't really reviewed yet. Are they Tide the detergent or just riding the tide brand name and not associated?
    --
    Conrad S. McLean



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  • 26.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-27-2019 19:32
    Proctor & Gamble owns the Tide brand among many others. About 12-15 years ago they created an enterprise business that is trying to build franchises. The franchise is owned and operated by P&G. Some of these corporate entities are so arrogant that they think if they slap a successful brand name(like tide) onto an industry, they will dominate. They already learned after their Mr Clean Car Washes bombed that's not true. I think they've sold a lot of the Tide Dry Cleaners franchises, I guess to suckers. A 16 billion dollar company investing in a dying industry tells me they're clueless. I guess the Dry Cleaning model isn't doing well so now they're pivoting into laundry on top of their Dry Cleaning model. As Rick said, the reality is that although the market potential is enormous for laundry delivery, they will only be as successful as their franchisees. Each franchisee better be a rock star or they'll ruin the Tide brand. So far in Cincinnati, the Tide franchise locations have terrible reviews and reputations. I'm not impressed at all.

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    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
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  • 27.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 02-28-2019 19:53
    OneClickCleaners.com.

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    William Harper
    The Laundry Room of Palmetto LLC
    Peachtree City GA
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  • 28.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-01-2019 11:40

    OneClickCleaners.com.
    William Harper,  02-28-2019 19:52

    I'm always a bit wary of companies that promote the franchise over customers, because it begs the question who is the customer?  Their # 1 call to action that draws your eye is right at the top of their website, "Own a Franchise".  ​


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    MATTHEW SIMMONS
    Laundry Operator and
    Wash & Fold Software Consultant
    www.CurbsideLaundries.com
    (562) 533-0053
    ------------------------------

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  • 29.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-04-2019 18:13
    I'm with Rick and Dave - they've got the P&G muscle behind them, but they will only be as good as their franchisees. I've been through several vendors that didn't work out for various reasons - people do business in strange ways! And if their franchisees can't handle their capacity through brick & mortar, they will look to outsourcing - which can be a huge opportunity for any store doing WDF.

    But to the original question: yes, do it for 6 months, get into your groove, then open it up to delivery. I hesitate to mention platform competitor's names here, since I know Rick and Sean and their platforms are solid and I support them 100%! - but I do believe that your platform of choice depends on your own particular needs and technology comfort level.

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    Susan Becker
    Founder/CEO, LaunderBot
    East Bay, CA
    LaunderLink: Connecting WDF service providers to processors with excess capacity. Get in on the pickup & delivery game by doing only one thing: more laundry!
    ------------------------------

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  • 30.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 08:55
    The expansion of some Laundromat owners into another business (pickup and delivery) is not viewed by all as changing the competition matrix. I think it is.

    In a self-serve Laundromat the owner is protected from large, corporate advantages in the arenas where individual owners compete. There are no economies of scale that give an edge to big competitors because our business is really the sale of gas, water and electric through vended machines. Corporations don't buy utilities cheaper than individuals; in this way we are protected.

    When we enter the arena to compete against corporate giants like Proctor & Gamble (Tide Drycleaners and pickup and delivery) we are a David venturing onto the business battlefield without any stones in our pouch.

    Money, management, technology, lawyers, contracts and more money will kill us off in the future. Success for us in pickup and delivery will fade and then disappear.

    When drones are picking up and delivering the dirty clothes, the small guy will be put out of business.  Advertising, promotion and expertise will be the ultimate winning factors of the pickup and delivery business.

    I'm happy for those who are making money now on this expansion of their business, but I believe the future will follow in the same pattern as the demise of the small farm when big agriculture got into the game.

    I advise owners to be more competitive in their core business of self-serve and neighborhood WDF laundry facilities. The future for individual Laundromat owners in pickup and delivery is bleak. The future of WDF in Laundromats is questionable.

    This is just me looking into my crystal ball and offering an opinion. You're entitled to your own prediction of the future.

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    Larry Larsen
    Laundromat123.com
    Anaheim, CA
    Distributor - Insurance - Consulting
    Cell: (714) 390-9969
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  • 31.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 11:08
    Larry-

    We find many progressive laundromat owners are taking advantage of their existing infrastructure and increasing their market share by reaching out to non-laundromat customers.  We firmly believe this is a local business and best controlled by the operator doing the laundry. Let's assume your laundromat does $300,000 a year in traditional laundry business and you start a pick-up and delivery business with 50-100 orders per week.  That would increase your top line sales to between $400,000 - $500,000 per year. This is adding an asset light business (the delivery business) to an asset intensive business (the laundromat).  This would increase the owners cashflow, increase the asset utilization of his machines and increase the value of their laundromat business without investing in more machines. I know several operators adding this kind of revenue to their books without the traditional hassle of a brick and mortar location.

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    SEAN DUPREY
    Springboard
    Cranston RI
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  • 32.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 11:30
    Edited by MATTHEW SIMMONS 03-05-2019 13:16


    When we enter the arena to compete against corporate giants like Proctor & Gamble (Tide Drycleaners and pickup and delivery) we are a David venturing onto the business battlefield without any stones in our pouch.

    Money, management, technology, lawyers, contracts and more money will kill us off in the future. Success for us in pickup and delivery will fade and then disappear.

    When drones are picking up and delivering the dirty clothes, the small guy will be put out of business.  Advertising, promotion and expertise will be the ultimate winning factors of the pickup and delivery business
    Larry Larsen,  03-05-2019 08:54
    You bring up some interesting points of how the business landscape will change with pickup and delivery.  We are still at its infancy.  At our laundromat, we have more competition in pickup and delivery than ever and we are growing faster than ever.  Whenever there is an explosion in consumer growth, big money will follow and will bring about innovation.

    That being said, David beat Goliath using technology.  Technology evens the playing field and allows individual laundromats like ours to compete and outclass the big players with infinite pocketbooks.  Having the best pickup and delivery software around costs about the same as a couple drinks at Starbucks per day, which allows you to compete against the big boys.

    As far as drones delivering clothes.  That may be entirely possible.  The average pickup and delivery order is about 40 pounds, so it may take a few drones and if that's the way things go, I'm sure there will be Uber like drone services, which will be cheaper than hiring drivers.

    And it may be that machines fold the clothes themselves, and before that is a household product, we're going to make bank when the machines are too big to fit comfortably in a home, but we can 'employ' them.

    There will always be reasons to hunker down and avoid the future, but we always need to adapt and innovate.  I think the future is a lot more precarious for in store wash and fold than it is for pickup and delivery.  Why would you drive to the laundromat, when the laundromat will come to your doorstep?

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    MATTHEW SIMMONS
    Laundry Operator and
    Wash & Fold Software Consultant
    www.CurbsideLaundries.com
    (562) 533-0053
    ------------------------------

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  • 33.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 12:19
    Well said by both Matthew and Sean. I love this type of challenge and debate among us. It makes us all think differently which challenges us and causes us to grow. If an entrepreneur isn't growing they're dieing.

       I'm always amazed at the mindset that big corporate money always wins. While there are certainly examples of that, they don't apply here, imo.  I'd take a local passionate entrepreneur with grit and fire in their belly over a large corporation with little to no passion behind them. The reality is, you can't hire or buy the grit in an American entrepreneur. That fire comes from within and it's personal.

         The pickup & delivery business is a service business. In a service business, execution is everything. Now let's assume that every tide franchisee is the finest entrepreneur in America. The franchise model that P&G is building can and will be successful but that doesn't mean world domination of wash, dry, fold but quite the opposite. They're just another competitor. Here's the problem for them, it's a capacity issue!

         Dry cleaning is a very different model than a laundromat. Their stores are dry cleaners first and foremost, that are trying to add an extra revenue stream of wash, dry, fold and good for them. They have very limited capacity to process wash dry fold but they don't mind because it's gravy for them and their franchisees. I, on the other hand, offer dry cleaning but it's an extra revenue stream for me. My core business is laundry delivery and retail laundromats. My capacity is nearly unlimited and growing as we speak. Btw, I am happy to see that P&G has entered the laundry delivery space, their advertising money and prowess will help elevate this new industry that many people aren't even aware of yet. Make no mistake though, they are no threat to the local entrepreneur with a very different business model and laser focus. 


    ------------------------------
    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
    ------------------------------

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  • 34.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 13:32
    I pretty much agree with Dave, Simon and Sean... nothing to really add except I don't believe pickup and delivery is an asset light business like software...but I believe his point was in comparison to traditional laundromat start-up costs; I'm supper happy to hear this debate...7 years ago when I started, heck 3 years ago; it would go on deaf ears now folks are really warming up!...Technology is the key to being able to service all the diverse customers you come across...The trend is your friend!

    ------------------------------
    Rick Rome
    Owner/Operator
    WashClubTrak
    POS/Laundry Delivery Software
    New York
    Rick@washclubtrak.com
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  • 35.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 15:12
    I agree that in the short term many local Laundromats will make money doing WDF and pickup and delivery. In the long term, not so much.

    Why? Here are the some of the reasons:
    1) Most Laundromats are located in neighborhoods, with high visibility, good parking, glass storefronts and expensive rents. Is this the ideal spot for a pickup and delivery service? How about a 20,000 SqFt purpose build facility in a low rent industrial park. Loading dock, secure fencing for delivery vehicle and worker parking. Rents will be at least 50% cheaper than the retail locations currently favored by Laundromats.
    2) Current Laundromats may have a large underutilized wash capacity but also have a design not planned out specifically to maximize worker movement.  Wasted steps cost money.
    3) The underutilized washers of existing Laundromats includes many smaller washers that will not be installed in my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt central processing building. The wrong equipment costs money.
    3) The energy saving, and more costly, washers and dryers will be replaced with more worker efficient (non-insulated) dryers and fast cycle (industrial softmount) washers. Wasted processing time costs money.
    4) Combining the processing workers in one location will reduce management costs. One supervisor can oversee dozens of entry workers. Wasted management salaries cost money.
    5) Laundromats are not designed to handle all functions of fabric processing. In a centralized location, my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt store will have dry cleaning, spotting tables, steam, sheet presses, automatic folding machines and a quick and uniform wrapping process. Wasted processing time costs money.
    6) Extensive, effective and widespread advertising is expensive and large corporations can afford to invest and even lose money for many years to capture market share.  Laundromat owners can not afford to lose money to capture market share. Varied advertising costs money.
    7) The current individuals running successful operations (like Dave Menz) will be bought out, paid partly in stock options and hired as high-paid local management.
    8) Current Tide (and others) will utilize existing Laundromat owners to develop demand but when sufficient market share is achieved they will sever ties and build their own processing facilities. In effect, current Laundromat owners will help contribute to the demise of pickup and delivery. It's the corporate way. Using others saves money.
    9) The best operating software will be developed or purchased outright by the corporations. Do you believe that if Amazon got into pickup and delivery that local owners could compete? Unreasonable arrogance costs money and leads to failure.

    This is just a quick review. I still believe that the future is bright for self-service Laundromats. I would truly hate to see them go the way of Blockbuster and public telephones. I suggest we all compete in arenas where we can win now and in the future.

    ------------------------------
    Larry Larsen
    Laundromat123.com
    Anaheim, CA
    Distributor - Insurance - Consulting
    Cell: (714) 390-9969
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  • 36.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 16:18
    Larry L,

    Well said.  Laundromats are located, designed and equipped to best accommodate self serve customers.  Any serious entry into commercial laundry service requires a whole different set of parameters.

    I can understand why a person moving into an unknown industry such as commercial laundry would want to take baby steps at first but, at some point, one must go all in or fold and go back to self serve.

    ------------------------------
    Larry Adamski
    Muskegon Laundromat
    Spring Lake MI
    [Phone]
    ------------------------------

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  • 37.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 17:00
    Larry et all... in the spirit of saving time..I



    Why? Here are the some of the reasons:
    1) Most Laundromats are located in neighborhoods, with high visibility, good parking, glass storefronts and expensive rents. Is this the ideal spot for a pickup and delivery service? IT CERTAINLY CAN BE...SOME FOLKS BELIEVE THAT THE HIGH VISIBILITY IS A GREAT WAY TO BE SEEN OR OTHERWISE KNOWN AS MARKETING... THEY WOULDN'T HAVE TO SPEND AS MUCH TO PROMOTE THEIR PICKUP/DELIVERY...ANOTHER POINT ON THIS, 2 YEARS AGO I BOUGHT A LAUNDROMAT THAT WAS DYING... TO BUILD IT NEW WOULD COST $500K...I PAID A FRACTION OF THAT...YES HIGHER RENT THEN AN INDUSTRIAL SPACE BUT THE COST SAVINGS OF NOT BUILDING A NEW PLACE VS PAYING HIGH RENT WAS SIGNIFICANT...   How about a 20,000 SqFt purpose build facility in a low rent industrial park. Loading dock, secure fencing for delivery vehicle and worker parking. Rents will be at least 50% cheaper than the retail locations currently favored by Laundromats.... DON'T NEED 20,000 FT TO OFFER PICKUP/DELIVERY SERVICE...2,000-7,500 WORKS WELL...IF YOU OUT GROW THAT YOU CAN ALWAYS GET MORE SPACE...RISK VS REWARD
    2) Current Laundromats may have a large underutilized wash capacity but also have a design not planned out specifically to maximize worker movement.  Wasted steps cost money. I AGREE..
    3) The underutilized washers of existing Laundromats includes many smaller washers that will not be installed in my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt central processing building. The wrong equipment costs money. YOU NEED ALL MIXES OF EQUIPMENT...YOU ARE CONFUSING WHAT I CALL INSTITUTIONAL (HOTELS/HOSPITALS/NURSING HOMES) WITH MINI-INSTITUTIONS (CORPORATE GYMS, HAIR SALONS, MESSAGE, NORMAL GYMS etc) I HAVE MANY ACCOUNTS THAT GIVE ME 20LBS BUT I CHARGE $80 MINIMUM...DON'T WANT TO WASTE WATER USING A 100LB MACHINE FOR 20LBS... 
    3) The energy saving, and more costly, washers and dryers will be replaced with more worker efficient (non-insulated) dryers and fast cycle (industrial softmount) washers. Wasted processing time costs money. I AGREE THAT WASTING MONEY IS NO GOOD BUT I DON'T SEE YOUR POINT HERE
    4) Combining the processing workers in one location will reduce management costs. One supervisor can oversee dozens of entry workers. Wasted management salaries cost money.  I AGREE THAT WASTING MONEY IS NO GOOD BUT I DON'T SEE YOUR POINT HERE
    5) Laundromats are not designed to handle all functions of fabric processing. In a centralized location, my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt store will have dry cleaning, spotting tables, steam, sheet presses, automatic folding machines and a quick and uniform wrapping process. Wasted processing time costs money. PLEASE SEE ANSWER TO POINT #3
    6) Extensive, effective and widespread advertising is expensive and large corporations can afford to invest and even lose money for many years to capture market share.  Laundromat owners can not afford to lose money to capture market share. Varied advertising costs money. I STARTED WITH 3 EMPLOYEES AND $500/WEEK ON DIGITAL ADVERTISING...IT 1000% WORKS AND EVERYONE SHOULD ADVERTISE...YOU HAVE TO MAKE THE INVESTMENT THE SAME WAY YOU DO IN TECHNOLOGY & EQUIPMENT...IF I TOLD YOU FOR EVERY $100 IN AD SPEND YOU WOULD GENERATE A CUSTOMER WITH A LIFETIME VALUE OF (conservatively) SAY $1000, WOULD YOU DO IT? ALL DAY ALL NIGHT
    7) The current individuals running successful operations (like Dave Menz) will be bought out, paid partly in stock options and hired as high-paid local management. KUDOS TO YOU DAVE! 
    8) Current Tide (and others) will utilize existing Laundromat owners to develop demand but when sufficient market share is achieved they will sever ties and build their own processing facilities. In effect, current Laundromat owners will help contribute to the demise of pickup and delivery. It's the corporate way. Using others saves money. YOU ARE ASSUMING THAT THOSE CORPS WILL KNOW HOW TO BE GOOD OPERATORS...AS YOU KNOW IT DOESN'T HAPPEN OVER NIGHT AND LIKE SOME OF THE OTHER FELLAS ON THIS THREAD I'D TAKE AN ENTREPRENEUR OVER A CORP ONLY GUY ANY DAY OF THE WEEK... 
    9) The best operating software will be developed or purchased outright by the corporations. Do you believe that if Amazon got into pickup and delivery that local owners could compete? Unreasonable arrogance costs money and leads to failure. YOU ARE CORRECT THAT GOOD SOFTWARE CAN BE PURCHASED...BUT DOING LAUNDRY IS NOT ALWAYS LOGICAL...THE AMAZON'S OF THE WORLD ARE TOO BIG TO BE INVOLVED IN A MARKET THAT SOME SAY COULD BE $9 BILLION...THERE GOING AFTER BIG BIG VERTICALS LIKE CONTENT OR HEALTH CARE...NOT TO SAY THEY WOULDN'T TRY IN THE FUTURE BUT AGAIN THEY STILL WILL NEED EXPERT OPERATORS TO GUIDE THEM... 

    This is just a quick review. I still believe that the future is bright for self-service Laundromats. I would truly hate to see them go the way of Blockbuster and public telephones. I suggest we all compete in arenas where we can win now and in the future. THERE ARE MANY TYPES OF REVENUE STREAMS IN THE LAUNDRY WORLD...AND SELF SERVE IS ONE OF THEM...BUT ITS NOT THE FASTEST AND GREATEST OPPORTUNITY ANYMORE IN THE LAUNDRY WORLD...ITS PICKUP/DELIVERY...ASK ANY MILLENNIAL IF THEY ENJOY DOING ANYTHING THAT DOESN'T HAVE AN APP FOR IT!!? 

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    Rick Rome
    Owner/Operator
    WashClubTrak
    POS/Laundry Delivery Software
    New York
    Rick@washclubtrak.com
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  • 38.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 19:30
    Larry,

         With all due respect your post isn't "well said", it's filled with assumptions and flaws. Regardless, I appreciate your feedback and participation. As a distributor, I think your knee jerk reaction to this new segment of our industry is very shortsighted. I'd suggest to take a deep breathe and genuinely try to understand what it is we're doing. As Matthew stated our industry is evolving before our eyes. You sharing this information with your customers could potentially take them from a good business model to a great one!! Just my two cents.
    Now I will respond according to my specific model and situation, everyone's situation is slightly different.

    1) Most Laundromats are located in neighborhoods, with high visibility, good parking, glass storefronts and expensive rents. Is this the ideal spot for a pickup and delivery service? How about a 20,000 SqFt purpose build facility in a low rent industrial park. Loading dock, secure fencing for delivery vehicle and worker parking. Rents will be at least 50% cheaper than the retail locations currently favored by Laundromats. You are in CA where rents are very high, I pay 6 PSF. Still think my rent is expensive??? In addition to this, from a delivery perspective, my rent is actually free. My retail laundromats each stand on their own and easily cover the rent. Adding delivery on top of this model adds no additional rent, so I have zero additional rent. Your point is flawed and incorrect. 
    2) Current Laundromats may have a large underutilized wash capacity but also have a design not planned out specifically to maximize worker movement.  Wasted steps cost money.  Our laundry processing team is processing 90% residential orders. They do the orders very similarly to the way a self serve customer does only more efficient. Our laundromat design is ideal for this. When we do process light commercial orders, it's even more efficient. Your point is flawed and incorrect in my scenario. 
    3) The underutilized washers of existing Laundromats includes many smaller washers that will not be installed in my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt central processing building. The wrong equipment costs money. While we have a $30 minimum per order, we still receive orders from 8-10lbs up to several hundred pounds. Each order is processed separately, so the machine mix in my mat is actually ideal for what we do. As others also indicated, by having only large capacity machines, a facility would be incredibly inefficient.  Your point is flawed and incorrect.
    3) The energy saving, and more costly, washers and dryers will be replaced with more worker efficient (non-insulated) dryers and fast cycle (industrial softmount) washers. Wasted processing time costs money. You don't seem to understand how big of an advantage this is. We already have the equipment! We didn't buy anything additional. This is a tremendous advantage. Once again, I think you misunderstand what we're doing....How is having energy saving equipment a bad thing? I'm unsure how other equipment is most worker friendly... At production time, all of our coin machines switch to free until 7am the next morning. They literally operate like OPL equipment, just hit start! No they aren't direct injection but that's actually a negative once again. Our services are fully customizable, so our customers can and do choose from 8 different detergents among other things. They would have no desire to have their families' laundry done with a commercially injected product. They want the retail products they know and love. Your point is flawed and incorrect
    4) Combining the processing workers in one location will reduce management costs. One supervisor can oversee dozens of entry workers. Wasted management salaries cost money. All of production workers work out of my one facility currently. They have a working supervisor beside them all night but the supervisor is a laundry processor that's paid a little extra. There is literally no waste or additional layers of payroll. All processors report directly to our GM, she also manages this store. Btw, our drivers and attendants all report to her as well. Oh, she also oversees our 3 other stores too. Yes, she is a rockstar but her job is incredibly efficient. She literally oversees dozens of workers currently with additional layers of payroll. Your point is correct, but it's what we're currently doing so your argument is flawed. 
    5) Laundromats are not designed to handle all functions of fabric processing. In a centralized location, my hypothetical 20,000 SqFt store will have dry cleaning, spotting tables, steam, sheet presses, automatic folding machines and a quick and uniform wrapping process. Wasted processing time costs money. This goes back to my comment on a previous post. We are not a dry cleaner and di not aspire to be. We sub out our minimal dry cleaning family whom are phenomenal at what they do. We don't need, nor desire a dry cleaning plant and operation. Our processes for wash, dry, fold and packaging are quick, efficient and repeatable. Your points are flawed and incorrect. 
    6) Extensive, effective and widespread advertising is expensive and large corporations can afford to invest and even lose money for many years to capture market share.  Laundromat owners can not afford to lose money to capture market share. Varied advertising costs money. Yes, marketing can be expensive. Obviously we don't have unlimited funds but neither does P&G. They have a marketing budget and expect to see an ROI on that. Corporations are very data driven. If you really believe that they will continue to pour unlimited funds into a black hole without ever getting a return, you are very naive. I can personally afford to operate my delivery business at a break even for infinite amount of time in order to capture market share. I have been reinvesting 100% of our net profits for 2 1/2 years already and will continue to for years to come. I'm 42 and in this for the long haul. I also have many other businesses that provide a very nice living for my family. While P&G has more money, I'm willing to bet I have a bigger stomach for the long term. Your point is flawed and incorrect
    7) The current individuals running successful operations (like Dave Menz) will be bought out, paid partly in stock options and hired as high-paid local management. Ha ha ha!! This is my favorite!! First of course everything is for sale. If P&G writes a huge check, Yup they can buy our business. Here's the kicker, I love this business, am fairly young, and am a big picture thinker. My adult daughter works for me, my 5 grader works with me often in our businesses and will someday help me run our family of businesses. That better be a really big check for me to sell. Frankly, they'd never pay what I'd require. I'm living my dream. The past part if my favorite. I can honestly say, they could offer me a salary of $500K per year and I'd turn them down in a second. I'm 100% entrepreneur. My days off working for others is way in the past. Not.A.Chance. Obviously I feel your points are flawed and incorrect.(I do agree that most local operators would take the money and job tho. Just not me)
    8) Current Tide (and others) will utilize existing Laundromat owners to develop demand but when sufficient market share is achieved they will sever ties and build their own processing facilities. In effect, current Laundromat owners will help contribute to the demise of pickup and delivery. It's the corporate way. Using others saves money.  This may be your biggest error in thinking. Singlehandedly, this would bring them down. Operators, like myself, Rick, Matthew, Sean and others understand, they will never be successful in building a brand and reputation in the delivery business by outsourcing the most important part. The single most important path to success in this instance is controlling the production of the laundry. I sincerely hope they try this route, because they will waste millions and eventually fold up shop. Us existing operators understand this and oh... So does Washio!! Your points are greatly flawed and incorrect. 
    te best operating software will be developed or purchased outright by the corporations. Do you believe that if Amazon got into pickup and delivery that local owners could compete? Unreasonable arrogance costs money and leads to failure. Obviously Amazon and P&G are great companies and much more sophisticated than my operation. Sometimes that can be a hindrance though. This isn't rocket science, it's all execution and customer service.  I suppose I'm arrogant, because I don't believe large corporations  can provide better customer service than me nor execute better than our team. I literally left my dinner table, got in my SUV and personally delivered an order to a customer in a snow storm a while back. Why?? Because I promised them next day turnaround. Of course a corporate manager can do this. Will they??? Btw, I'll do it daily if needed, will they???

    This is just a quick review. I still believe that the future is bright for self-service Laundromats. I would truly hate to see them go the way of Blockbuster and public telephones. I suggest we all compete in arenas where we can win now and in the future. I'll leave you with this Larry. I respect your opinion and see why you'd feel the way you do but yourey simply on the outside looking in this time. As Matthew indicated, this is a great opportunity for the right operators and our industry in evolving. I'm actually more concerned that the old "laundromat" model could be the best pay phone if we don't evolve. I appreciate you buddy! 

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    Dave Menz
    Queen City Laundry Chain
    Cincinnati, OH
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  • 39.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-07-2019 15:22
    Larry and Dave I appreciate both of your opinions. Larry your view point is a bit apocalyptical and a bit depressing. I do like Dave's brighter and more cheerful outlook. I would say it is anybody's guess to know exactly what I going to take place. Do either of you have strong data to support your theories?  Just curious is all!  On another subject. Who would of guessed that some dorm room of college students would of invented a file sharing program called Napster that would  almost destroy the profitable recording industry.

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    ROY JACOBS
    ROY JACOBS Person
    Rolla MO
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  • 40.  RE: Pickup and Delivery

    Posted 03-05-2019 20:31
    Edited by Larry Larsen 03-06-2019 07:26
    I made an earlier contribution as to why I believe corporate involvement will dominate pickup and delivery services In the future. A few comments were posted countering my thoughts and predictions. Here are some clarifications to my previous post:

    I do not believe this prediction will happen immediately but will come to pass at a future date as corporations compete for the pickup and delivery trade.

    I earlier stated the money spent on higher rent for visible retail locations would be better spent on advertising and promotion. I frequently use Amazon, but I have no idea where their operations and warehouses are located. Visibility is not required for pickup and delivery success.

    In the future the corporations will build processing facilities to handle their pickup and delivery business and co-ordinate with their existing food and product delivery operations to minimize delivery costs.

    I agree that Laundromats have a large underutilized wash capacity but these facilities have been designed as retail self-serve Laundromats. Corporations will design and build their processing plants specifically for speed and efficient use of labor.

    Their processing plants will not have twenty toploads, twenty 20-LB frontloads and smaller amounts of larger machines all stuffed into a 2500 SqFt space designed as a self-service facility.

    The energy saving dryers will not be used. They will replaced with more labor efficient models such as those currently used in industrial and large commercial plants.

    These plants currently use large vent, high airflow, non-recirculating dryers that get the job done quickler and save labor used in processing. These labor costs will be widely considered in their plant designs.

    These plants will likely use Super High Speed washers to aid water-suspended particulate removal and a labor reduction benefit in less waiting time. The process will produce oderless, softer and cleaner clothes than currently available from hardmount washers.

    These large processing facilities will allow a reduction in management costs since one manager will be able to supervise dozens of entry level workers. Currently pickup and delivery services have an owner/manager for a half dozen or fewer workers per location. Centralizing processing will reduce management costs.

    A centralized service facility will provide a larger variety of fabric processing options including dry cleaning, pressing, automated folding, spotting, steam and WDF.  Delivery of all these services will be handled by a single driver on a single trip.

    I suggest that individual Laundromat owners will not be able to compete with the advertising expertise that corporations will purchase and apply. They will flood the internet and other other advertising options.

    I opine that Tide (and others) are currently using existing Laundromat owners to develop procedures and allow calculation of market potential. Corporations will buy the expertise and develop a training program to reduce costs of labor in their plants.  Much like supermarkets do now.

    Our business is not so complex that corporations won't be able to duplicate our skills.  Using robots, and efficiency consultants, A commitment to laundry pickup and delivery will bring rapid expansion and eventual domination of the pickup and delivery business

    They will install the best software to interface with customers and continually seek to improve it. The individual owner-operator cannot match this massive investment in new software and technology.

    This is my prediction of the future of pickup and delivery. What’s yours?
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    Larry Larsen
    Laundromat123.com
    Anaheim, CA
    Distributor - Insurance - Consulting
    Cell: (714) 390-9969
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