Thinking about opening a linen supply services business? We tell you what you need to know to get started.
Value Propositions in Linen Supply
Linen supply companies serve up a range of opportunities to companies situated in the food service, beauty and other industries. The best linen supply service providers are capable of delivering clean table linens and uniforms on a 7-day a week basis, enabling their clients to project a professional and spotless brand image to their customer bases.
Based on the current state of the linen supply services industry, three value propositions stand out to linen supply clientele: Speed, flexibility and reliability. As much as they hate to admit it, restaurants and beauty care providers are captives to the delivery of new linens. Without a provider that is capable of delivering variable amounts of clean linens on a daily basis, it would be extremely difficult for them to operate at or near peak levels.
Beating the Competition as a New Linen Supply Provider
Emerging linen supply service startups must quickly become students of their local linen supply market. In a perfect world, your startup would be able to supply clean linens at a lower cost than your competitors. But in reality, volume linen supply requires the implementation of technology and operational processes that are beyond the grasp of most startups.
Instead, you'll want to focus on quality, and on exploiting market opportunities based on the industry's most critical value propositions. By delivering exceptionally high quality linen tablecloths, uniforms and other materials in a service-oriented business model, you will quickly capture a core customer base, which can gradually be expanded through scalable growth strategies.
The Eco-Friendly Trend in the Linen Supply Industry
Environmental friendliness has become a concern for many businesses in today's economy. Whether they are motivated by genuine environmental consciousness or the marketing advantages of "going green" is irrelevant -- the takeaway is that eco-friendly processes are just good business.
Startup linen supply service companies need to be aware of the eco-friendly trends in their industry. The use of recycled materials, Energy Star rated equipment and a variety of other green practices, you increase the value of your services, creating an attractive (and potentially cost saving) feature that can be incorporated into your sales and marketing strategies.
Business Plans for a Linen Supply Services Business
One of the worst mistakes you can make as a new business owner is to not create a business plan.
The key benefit of writing a business plan is that it defines the game plan. If you don't have a business plan, your leadership will be handicapped, choosing short-term opportunities at the expense of long-term benefits.
Start by defining your business mission. The process of writing a mission statement doesn't have to be complicated. From there, the other piece of the business plan puzzle will begin to fall in place.
Look Over the Competition
Prior to launching a linen supply services business in your town, it's a smart move to determine how many competitors you have. Try our link below to get a list of local competitors near you. Just enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of linen supply services businesses in your community.
Is the established competition doing a good job? It's important to understand their strengths and weaknesses and think through how you'll stake up against those established businesses.
Learn from Others Who Are Already In This Space
If you are seriously contemplating launching a linen supply services business, it's a wise move to learn as much as you can from somebody who is already in the business. Local competitors are not going to give you the time of day, mind you. Why would they want to educate a future competitor?
Fortunately, somebody who runs a linen supply services business in a location that is not competitive to you will be much more likely to talk with you, once they realize that you are not going to directly compete with them in their community. In that case, the business owner may be more than happy to discuss the industry with you. Our estimate is that you may have to contact many business owners to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
Where would you find somebody who runs a linen supply services business who is willing to advise you because you live in different cities?
It's not that hard. Just use the handy link below and enter in a random city/state or zipcode.
Advantages of a Linen Supply Services Business Purchase
On a percentage basis, more entrepreneurs intend to enter linen supply services business ownership through a startup than through a business purchase. However, many new entrepreneurs aren't experienced for the rigors of a startup operation.
There are a lot of factors that need to be considered in buying vs. starting a business. By buying a profitable linen supply services business, you'll shorten the amount of time it takes to achieve a return on your investment because you'll have the advantage of a proven operation and an existing customer base.
Don't Forget About Franchising As an Option
Your chances for doing well in business immediately improve when you join the ranks of franchisees and leverage their successful brand and track record.
Prior to making the decision to open a linen supply services business, it's worthwhile to investigate whether franchise opportunities in your space might alleviate your startup process.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding starting a business may be of interest to you.
If you already are in business and came here to learn about growing an existing linen supply services business, these resources will come in handy:
If you sell to linen supply services businesses, you're in the wrong place. These resources are more appropriate for you:
If you are still exploring all of your options, please browse our directory of guides below.