While clean clothes are a necessity for everyone, actually laundering the clothes is a time-consuming chore, and is rarely how your customer wants to be spending their time. While your most important equipment will always be your washers and dryers having other amenities and conveniences for your patrons can raise your facility above that of your competitors and even open up other revenue streams. If your laundromat is, if not fun, at least a pleasant place to spend time while clothes are being washed, your customers will definitely notice. Take a second to peruse the following ideas:
- Security Cameras: At first, you might think that having a plainly visible security system would make customers nervous. You definitely don’t want them to feel unsafe at your facility. Wouldn’t cameras mean that the area isn’t safe? Actually it’s the opposite. The thing is, your customers don’t know each other any better than you know them. So a camera system that watches the doors, the aisles, and the ATM lets the customers know that you care about safety, and will deter people from causing problems for them just as much as for you.
- Free Wi-Fi: Most people will know to bring something to occupy their time while waiting for their laundry to finish. For a lot of people, that will mean a smartphone or tablet. Being able to use Wi-Fi and conserve their data plan will be a great benefit for them. If other laundromats in the area don’t offer this service, then you’ve got an advantage. But there’s another reason you’ll want an internet connection in your laundromat; if you get the right kind of security system, it will be internet-enabled, and you’ll be able to monitor your business from anywhere from your personal computer or smartphone. Opening a guest account for your patrons makes it a win-win.
- Vending Machines: People may get hungry or thirsty while they are at the laundromat, but no one wants to abandon their clothes to go get food. They’ve already got a pocket full of coins—vending machines for snacks and soda will provide you with another opportunity to make money while keeping them satisfied and on the premises.
- Comfortable and Clean Seating: Too many laundromats consider seating to be an afterthought, with only a couple of old chairs with ratty cushions stuck in corners. If you have space that you dedicate to convenient, comfortable seating for your patrons while they wait, they won’t find their time there disagreeable.
- Dollar-coin Machines: If you have a lot of machines that do multiple loads at once, consider whether dollar-coin operation would make more sense for your facility. Feeding 16, 20, or 24 quarters into a single machine is tedious. If the option to use 5 dollar-coins were available, customers would notice and appreciate it.
- Arcade games: This was once a staple of the laundromat, but the heyday of arcade machines has passed. Still, one or two classic games could be fun, if you attract the right kind of clientele, as in a college town. This suggestion’s not for everyone, but is still worth thinking about.