How to Deal With Hobby Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers Undercutting Your Prices

Hobby Pet Sitters

How to Deal With Hobby Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers Undercutting Your Prices

You’re building a professional Pet Sitting or Dog Walking business with all the correct insurances and contingencies so you never have to let your clients down.

And that comes at a cost, right?

And that cost (now more than ever!) is inevitably reflected in your prices.

But you’ve worked hard and built up a great reputation that’s brought you a decent and growing list of clients.

You’ve educated your customers on what drives your pricing and why they should choose you and learned to accept that not everyone WILL choose you and that that’s actually not a bad thing (and if you need help with either of these, read this blog post – link to How to Deal With People Complaining About Your Pet Sitting and Dog Walking Prices)

And then one day you start losing clients to some new Pet Sitting business that pops up out of nowhere and is undercutting your prices!

Grrrr! It’s so frustrating!

And they seem to be everywhere! Everyone talking about them and saying how amazing they are!

And when you check them out you realise they’re not a professional outfit like you! They’re just a one man band with no overheads, no insurance – they probably don’t even have a website.

And if you dig further you may even find they’re not even set up as a proper business entity.

I used to get SO frustrated with this when we first started the business!

How could they come along and ‘steal’ the customers we’d worked so hard to find?

They’re not even doing things properly!

But these days I don’t give it a moment’s thought.

And I wanted to share with you the ways I’ve learned to deal with it over my 10 + years with a Pet Sitting and Dog Walking business;

How to Deal With Hobby Pet Sitters and Dog Walkers Undercutting Your Prices

#1. Rest assured that 99% of the time they will not last long!

Whilst I’d never want to wish bad luck on anyone, it’s inevitable that at some point circumstances will conspire that they can’t cope with and they’ll start letting customers down and losing them. Or they’ll realise just how hard it is and quit!

All the reasons that they’re able to offer lower pricing where they’ve cut corners, will be the reasons their business doesn’t have what it takes to last the distance.

And when they disappear and leave their customers high and dry, many will come back to you and this time they’ll know first hand WHY your higher prices are worth paying!

#2. Resist the Temptation to ‘Badmouth’ them at all costs!

Especially when one of your loyal customers tells you they’re moving to that new cheaper Pet Sitter!

It can be so tempting to talk them out of it and give them all the (totally valid!) reasons why they should stay with you! But it’s gonna come off as ‘sour grapes’.

Trust that they’ll find out the hard way and when they do they’ll come back to you!

But only if you’ve let them go without making them feel wrong for leaving in the first place!

Let them know you’re sorry to see them go and if they ever need you again, you’d love to have them back.

Remember that NOT EVERYONE is YOUR Customer! And the ones that go to the cheaper new ‘sitter one the block? They’re not your customer.

When you compete on price it’s a race to the bottom and the ‘winner’ ends up with pricing that’ll put them out of business. Let them! And be there for the customers that learn the hard way why it’s worth paying a little more for your services.

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#3. Keep Talking to YOUR Ideal Customers

Write blogs, social media posts and even eBooks like ‘What to look for in a reliable Pet Sitter’ and ‘5 Essentials to look for When Hiring a Pet Sitter’.

Customers who read posts like that are the ones looking for the best and most reliable service for them and their pets.

They’re the ones you want and they’re smart enough to realise that the new hobby sitter with the pricing below minimum wage is not gonna last and is not for them!

#4. Regularly send ‘Winback’ e-mails to past customers on your list

Tell them you’ve missed them and their pets and would love to have them back. And you can remind them all the reasons they chose you in the first place.

Will they all come back? No! And remember the ones who don’t aren’t your customer – for now! But keep being there for them with your amazing helpful content and fun consistent social media, and one day they might be again.

#5. Remember to Focus on Your Customers MORE Than Your ‘Competition’

Keep doing you and being the sort of Pet Sitter or Dog Walker you would want to hire.

Stand strong and steady and you’ll continue to attract the right customers for your business and grow your reputation.

And trust that you’ll be so busy you won’t even notice those hobby Pet Sitters that pop up and disappear like a flash in the pan from time to time!

What do you do when sitters undercut your prices? Let me know in the comments

27_ways_to get more customers


27 Ways To Get More Customers In Your Pet Business

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