How I Raised My Family While Growing My Pet Sitting Business

How I Raised My Family While Growing My Pet Sitting Business

Growing my pet sitting business while growing a family

As a business owner who is also a Mom, I get asked the question so many times, “Colleen, how did you build the business you did at the same time you were raising the kids?”

So I thought I would share my experience of growing my pet sitting business while raising a family and dealing with all the hundreds of tasks and responsibilities which come with both those jobs.

It almost started by accident when I was pregnant with my first baby, Lucy.

I really wanted to spend the first three months with her completely and not work at all in my business doing any pet sitting or managerial duties.

Working while the baby sleeps

So I hired my first manager with the plan that she was going to leave after three months, but I fell so much in love with my daughter and with mothering that I decided to make the manager permanent.

Having someone to take care of the day-to-day running of the pet sitting business freed me up, during the quiet times when the baby was napping, to work on business growth strategies and marketing the business.

The result: I ended up increasing the revenue by $53,000.

And that was when I realized just what a powerful tool it was hiring someone to manage the pet sitting team.  The more time that you take to work on your business and stop working in your business, the more quickly you’re going to be able to scale your businesses.

How I Raised my Family While Growing My Pet Sitting Business

 

Then, when our family grew to include my two boys, I still made business growth a priority.

The kids would go to a babysitter for a few hours a day so that I could still continue to work on the business. But that also meant that during the second half of the day I could completely focus on them.

And now, everyone’s at school until 4 PM, so unless I’m doing a coaching call at night that’s when I stop work.

I get to work from home, so whenever they’re sick, they get to stay home with me. We never have to worry about that. I’m at every school function, and I get to be with them during school vacations.

Hiring a team let me focus on my priorities

My pet sitting business has given me the freedom and flexibility to enjoy my family.

So that’s how I did it, guys. I had already hired my team of sitters before starting a family, but hiring a manager really made the difference in allowing me to focus my time and energy where the business, and my family, needed it the most.

That’s my advice to you,  you need a team to do the client work and a manager to do the administrative work so that you can have the time to grow and multiply your business.

With that strategy, I raised these three little kids (see video above) all the while growing a company that I love.

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The Huge Opportunity in the Pet Sitting Industry

An opportunity that is available to all of us in the pet sitting industry

There is a huge opportunity in the pet sitting industry, but most people are STRUGGLING to get their pet sitting businesses off the ground.

Why is my business bursting at the seams, while others are barely making ends meet?

Because I finally recognized the huge opportunity that was staring me straight in the face.

There is a market for your services

So, according to a study done in 2018 by The American Pet Products Association (APPA), 68% of U.S. households or 85 million families own a pet.

And most of these families that own pets consider their pets to be family members, and would happily pay top dollar to make sure that their furry friends are well-cared for.

There are millions, upon millions of pets that need your care, and you have the ability to create a professional and extraordinary service that will provide top-notch pet care to your pet-owning clients.

Back in 2001 when I started my business, I didn’t know any of this, I didn’t do any market research, I had no vision, I had no clarity. I didn’t know what opportunity was staring me right in the face.

So, that’s what I’m here to tell you today. There is a market for your services.

If this is what you want, a lucrative pet-sitting career, the opportunity is available to you. You’re only as small as you want to be because the clients are out there that need your services.

Hey there, Newbie Pet Sitter! Are you feeling stuck or overwhelmed with starting your pet sitting business? Fret no longer, my friend. I’ve got ya covered!

Enter Your Info Below to Download The Complete Checklist For Starting a Pet Sitting Business!

 

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The-Top-3-Essentials-for-Pet-Sitting-Websites

The Top 3 Essentials for Pet Sitting Websites

Your Website Should be the Cornerstone of Your Pet Sitting Business

Your website should be the cornerstone of your business. In most cases it will be your customers first impression of you and your business, so it’s important that you make those first few seconds when a visitor lands on your page count.

My advice to you is to hire a reputable graphic designer who will create a beautiful and functional web site for your company. I promise you, this will be the best money that you ever spend on your business! You can easily have a new site created for a reasonable amount of money. Visit  www.guru.com,  odesk.com or elance.com (odesk and elance is now upwork.com) to post your job and find a great designer.

When designing your pet sitting website it’s important to communicate with your designer exactly who your target market is and what it is that you’re looking to accomplish. Remember, designers are great at creating beautiful sites, but not many know and understand the business side of things. You need to let them know exactly what should be included.

The 1st Essential for Pet Sitting Websites

The first essential is your contact information on each and every page of your website. I know this seems like a no-brainer, but how often are you on a site where you can’t fine the phone number? Pretty often, right? You don’t want your visitors to ever have to search to find a way to contact you. Also, we’re now in the mobile age where a large percentage of your pet sitting prospects will be on their phones when they land on your page. Make it easy for them to reach you. All they should have to do is point and click to call your office.

The 2nd Essential for Pet Sitting Websites

The second essential is to establish the “know, like and trust factor” with your visitors. I know I’m always harping on this, but in our industry this is crucial for converting visitors into paying clients. Think about it this way… our new customers are in essence giving strangers the keys to their homes and trusting them to take care of and safe-guard their most prized possessions. They need to visually see you and immediately get the feeling that you are a person for whom they can trust and rely on.

How do you do this? You add a video of you on the homepage of your site. I know everyone’s first reaction to this is, “no way!” That was certainly my first reaction, but I’m telling you if you want to bring in tons of new clients, video is a MUST!

The 3rd Essential for Pet Sitting Websites

The third essential is testimonials from happy clients. Social proof is one of the best and most cost-effective ways to convert prospects into paying clients. If they can see that your current customers are raving fans they will be much more likely to use your service. If you don’t have testimonials, go and get them! Ask your clients if they wouldn’t mind writing a few words about their experience with your company. If you’re just starting out, be sure to go above and beyond the call of duty for your new clients (you should always do this,) then follow-up with them afterwards to see if they were happy. If they are, you ask them for a testimonial.

Try and get into the mentality of going and getting the things that you need but don’t have versus having the mindset where you say, “I don’t have that, so I’m not going to do that.” You won’t get too far in business if this is the way you think.

Your Homework Assignment: Go and do it or go and get it!

  • If you don’t have a website, get one! Websites are so inexpensive these days; there is really no excuse to not have one. If you don’t have a website you will lose credibility with your pet sitting prospects and you will fall drastically short against your competition.
  • If your website is basically a virtual brochure it’s time to upgrade. Hire a designer and get a professional site created. Be sure to include the contact information on each and every page.
  • Record a video of you on your homepage. If you can’t afford to have a professional one created then have friend record it for you on your phone. It doesn’t matter! You just want your prospects to know, like and trust you.
  • Gather testimonials for your site.
  • Download my 12 Website Essentials Infographic right below this post. This will help you to create your new amazing pet sitting website!

Hey there, Newbie Pet Sitter! Are you feeling stuck or overwhelmed with starting your pet sitting business? Fret no longer, my friend. I’ve got ya covered! Grab my Complete Checklist For Starting a Pet Sitting Business. This resource is 100% FREE and is my gift to you. Don’t wait any longer to get started and streamlined. You’ve got this!

The Know, Like, and Trust Factor

Increase the Know, Like, and Trust Factor on your Website

Hey, guys! My strategy for you today is the Know, Like and Trust Factor.

I was out and about early this morning. I had to be at the hair stylist by seven o’clock to get my hair done.  The Pet Nanny Coach site is being updated (I can’t wait until you see it!), and I needed some fresh, new photos (if I see that picture of me with Dr. Watson one more time. . . !).

I wanted to get new pictures taken for my new site, and this got me thinking about your websites.  There are so many that I visit and I don’t see anything of you anywhere on your site!

I’m not saying I don’t understand, because I did the same exact thing with my first site. I didn’t want to be anywhere on there. I had pictures of pets everywhere, but Colleen was nowhere to be found until my business coach taught me the importance of the Know, Like and Trust Factor.

What is the Know, Like, and Trust Factor?

So, what is that?  It is giving the people the opportunity to know, like and trust you through your website, because people like doing business with people.

People want to know who the owner of your business is. People want to know who they’re going to trust to come into their homes to care for their most precious pets, and their homes and their prized possessions, and you can do this through your website.

A Challenge – Part One

So, my challenge for you is first, to create a video on the homepage of your website – face to camera. You need to look at the camera and say, “Hi, my name is Colleen Sedgwick. I’m the owner of Pet Nanny, and my pet sitting company rules, and this is why.”.

You want to let them know who you are, what you're about, what you stand for, and what your values are. Click To Tweet I can promise you this – you are going to see a huge uptick in the number of new clients that you get from visitors to your website. They’re going to have a connection with you through the video, and they’re going to get to know, like and trust you.

A Challenge – Part Two

The second part of this challenge is to look at your “About” page and spruce that page up!  Your About page is the second most-visited page on your website, after your homepage. So, you really want to make this page shine.

You want to let people in. Share details about you, such as:

  • Let them know what organizations you belong to.
  • Why did you start this business?
  • Did you have a defining moment in your life that made you say, “Hey, I want to start a pet care service that is extraordinary.”
  • Are you involved in rescues?

Tell them your story

Anything that is going to open a little window into who you are is going to make a huge difference.  Your website visitors are going to begin to know, like and trust you right from the get-go, and you’re going to sign up clients much more easily than when you were not showcasing yourself.

So get out there and complete this challenge!  Create a face to camera video to put on your homepage, and spruce up that “About” page and show people who you are.

All right, guys, I am wishing you a great day. Take care!