What are some things that you do to encourage repeat bookings?

asked 2014-12-08 18:14:52 -0600

Hi all,

I've been a pet sitter on http://Rover.com for five months now. In that time I've made one regular customer. Most of my clients book me once and I never see them again. What are some tactics used by you that encourage repeat bookings?

Some things that I do are: - Clean up any messes that the dog has made (torn paper, over turned trash, ect.) - Free dog wash for clients who are gone extended periods of time (I also do this for free on request) - Sweep up or vacuum after dogs who shed (if the owner is gone more than three days) - If the trash can is full I'll take that bag out when I walk the dog (usually if the owner is gone extended periods of time) - If asked, I'll buy the dog food when it runs out (leaving the receipt so that I can be reimbursed later)

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answered 2014-12-09 17:27:08 -0600

I've been with Rover for 2.5 years now and I would give these tips for getting repeat business:

  • Be personable and friendly with the owners. Chat with them during a meet and greet and drop off/pickup. Ask how their trip was, etc.

  • When they pick up their dog, give them some of the highlights of the dogs stay with you.

  • Send a LOT of photos that are high quality. I always tell owners 'I've been known to take a LOT of photos, if you ever get tired of them please let me know!' I have yet to find someone who asks for less.

  • Send pictures of you and the dog snuggling, or you walking them. Asking your partner or friend to take one of you really helps.

  • Tell them once or twice that their dog was awesome and are welcome back any time. I always make this the last thing I say when the owner is leaving.

  • I tell them to contact me if anything comes up. I even tell them if I appear unavailable to still contact me, because I can make an exceptions if I'm home.

There are many more, but once you get into the groove of it, you will find more and more people will start coming back to you. Happy sitting!

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answered 2014-12-08 19:13:53 -0600

Hi Chris -

We do sitting in our home, so our situation is a little different. The number one thing I do is make sure to get a lot of good pictures while the owners are away, showing them all the fun stuff their dog gets to do. Frequent updates put them at ease, especially in the instances where they don't use sitters frequently. Then I put together a little goody bag to send the dog home with - sample treats, doggy bags/holders, and sometimes homemade treats. I always include a note saying how much we enjoyed having their dog stay with us and (for those dogs/owners we'd really like to sit for again) how much we'd love to watch their dog again.

That said, I've also only been sitting on Rover for a few months, and also only have one regular client. I have a full time job and my partner is a student, so we aren't trying to host dogs full time, but even if you are, a few months is still a short time to establish a strong client base. This is especially true considering most people don't use sitters all that frequently, and Rover, though growing rapidly, still isn't known to a lot of dog owners. If I were wanting to grow our business faster, I'd be making business cards, and leaving a few with clients after every stay--for them to keep and to give out to friends/family, and I'd be asking around at local pet-related businesses to see if you can put up fliers or if they ever recommend sitters to their customers. Booking new customers is the key to making repeat customers, and the more new customers, the more experience and expertise you'll have to impress them enough to ask you back.

Good luck!

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Great answer!

Jessica M.'s profile image Jessica M.  ( 2014-12-09 17:23:23 -0600 ) edit
answered 2014-12-15 20:28:57 -0600

I also only offer sitting in my home. I have only been with Rover since May of this year and I already have 3 return customers. Like the above answers I also send a TON of photos. I sometimes use a collage app with cute frames, backgrounds and clip art. I make it a joke, " I can get carried away sometimes". No one has ever asked for less photos. I also tell them to contact me even if I appear unavailable, exceptions can be made. At meet and greets I tend to greet the dogs first. One client told me " if you had not greeted my dog first the way you did, I never would have left her with you". I am honest, if there were any issues I let the owners know, having worked in Vets offices and boarding/daycare facilities I hated having to tell owners "everything was great" when the dog was aggressive with staff or other dogs. I as an owner would want to know what needed working on. The majority of owners appreciate your honesty. I always send home a report card after the first visit, detailing highlights of the stay as well as any issues. I decorate them with fun stickers. All my visitors this month (Dec) are getting their pics taken in a Santa hat and holiday collar which I will not send until Christmas day. It will be a great surprise I think. Hope that helped somewhat :-)

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