man signing a cleaning contract for small business
April 23, 2024

How to Get Cleaning Contracts for Small Business


You need a steady flow of cleaning contracts for your small business to ensure a full schedule, more revenue, and long-term success.

But where can you get those cleaning contracts? More importantly, how can you ensure you win cleaning jobs for the bids you’ve placed?

Getting clients with cleaning contracts for small business doesn’t have to be complicated.

To help you, we’ve created an actionable guide with practical tips to bag more cleaning contracts and grow your company.

Let’s get to it! 

Where Can You Find Cleaning Contracts for a Small Business?

The global cleaning market will hit USD 633.18 billion by 2030, expanding at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.83% during that period.

These stats mean there will always be cleaning contracts you can pursue. You only need to know where to look.

Here are some places you can find cleaning contracts.

Your Network

Your network is one of the easiest places to get a cleaning contract.

The local businesses you already frequent, commercial real estate offices, property management companies, apartment complexes, and schools will likely need cleaning services.

Connect and interact with the decision-makers and property owners to position your company as their go-to cleaning service.

Government Bid Websites

Many governments publish tenders or requests for proposals (RFPs) for cleaning services on their websites.

Search for “[your country] government contracts” or “[your country] cleaning RFPs” to find relevant opportunities.

If you’re in the U.S., GovernmentBids and BidSync are excellent websites for finding cleaning contracts.

Non-government Bidding Websites

Popular websites where you can look for residential and home cleaning contracts include Thumbtack, TaskRabbit, Handy, and Housekeeper.

Most are paid sites, but you can use free trials before committing to a paid subscription.

Your Local Chamber of Commerce

Many chambers of commerce offer listings of businesses looking for cleaning services. You can also network with other chamber members to generate leads for cleaning contracts.

Online Job Boards

General job boards like Indeed and Glassdoor sometimes list cleaning contracts. You can set alerts to be notified when a new contract is posted.

Here’s an example of a cleaning contract opportunity on Glassdoor. 

cleaning contract advertisement snapshot

Industry Associations

There are several industry associations for cleaning companies, such as the International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA) and the Building Service Contractors Association International (BSCAI).

These associations often provide resources for finding cleaning contracts, as well as educational and networking opportunities.

Search Engines

Search engines can be a powerful tool to find cleaning clients for a small business. Targeted searches work best.

You want to avoid generic searches for “cleaning contracts”  and try something like “residential cleaning contracts [your city].” That way, you have a better chance of finding relevant opportunities in your local area.

Alternatively, you can use industry keywords like “janitorial services,” “building maintenance,” and “facility cleaning RFPs.” This refines your search and helps you find contracts in your specialty area.

Ways to Market Your Cleaning Company to Potential Clients

A typical B2B buying group involves 6 to 10 decision makers, who must agree on your bid and get buy-in from other organization leaders.

Even if you’re not targeting big residential clients with cleaning contracts, you must know how to position your business in a way that increases the likelihood of winning the bid.

Here are some tips to market your cleaning services to clients looking for contract cleaners.

Pick Your Target Market and Services

Narrowing down your target market and services is crucial to helping you get cleaning contracts. A targeted approach ensures you can direct your marketing efforts to businesses and homeowners most likely needing your services. 

Plus, specializing in a specific niche lets you learn about the industry’s requirements, regulations, and best practices. That way, you can position yourself as an expert, helping build trust and confidence with potential cleaning clients.

image depicting how to choose a pick a niche market and services for a cleaning company

Develop a Branding Strategy

A strong branding strategy is more important than you think when it comes to helping you get cleaning contracts.

On the outside, your brand may only look like it consists of elements such as colors, logos, and taglines. But your brand is the entire identity of your cleaning business. It gives your company its identity.

With prospective clients exposed to new brands daily, you need to go the extra mile to ensure you stand out in the crowd.

With the right branding, you can control how clients with cleaning contracts see your business.

To develop a solid branding stranding strategy:

  • Keep your messaging consistent across all platforms.
  • Develop a mission statement and values. Feature what you stand for on your website, social media, slogan, etc.
  • Let your audience know what makes you different and why they should choose your cleaning services.

Establish Your Online Presence

In today’s digital society, you must have a solid online presence to grow your cleaning business.

Besides increasing your brand visibility, having a digital footprint allows a potential client to verify your authenticity quickly. It also makes it easy to sell your services online.

Some ways you can use to establish your online presence include:

  • Create a professional website.
  • Create social media accounts for your business.
  • Implement search engine optimization (SEO).
  • Utilize Google My Business.
  • Offer online booking and appointment scheduling.
  • Maintain a presence on social media platforms.
  • Engage in content marketing through blogging.
  • List on online directories and review sites.
  • Implement email marketing campaigns.
  • Invest in paid advertising.

Create Social Proof

How do you convince a prospective customer with a cleaning service contract that your company is the one they should work with or switch to?

Social proof can be more convincing than tooting your own horn. As many as 99% of customers read reviews before purchasing online. The stat points toward the power of social proof to influence purchase patterns and consumer behavior.

As a small business, therefore, you’ll want to up your social proof game to get cleaning contracts.

Here’s how you can do it:

  • Showcase customer testimonials
  • Share case studies
  • Show before and after photos
  • Get customer reviews

Speaking of reviews, only 5 to 10% of customers write them. Thus, you must know when and how to ask for customer reviews. 

Ask too soon, and the client may need more time to assess their experience with your company. Ask too late, and the customer may struggle to write a good review.

Luckily, MioCommerce offers a seamless and intuitive way to ask and manage reviews to help increase your presence on listing sites.

Hire Right and Train Your Employee

Hiring qualified cleaning personnel shows potential clients that your company takes quality control seriously and can deliver consistent, professional service.

In addition, training your team makes it easy for them to spread the word about your cleaning services to prospects.

How to Develop a Bidding Strategy to Win Cleaning Contract Bids

how to bid for commercial cleaning contract for small business snapshot

The average RFP win rate is 44%. You, therefore, need to work harder, not smarter, to increase your chances of winning the bid.

Winning a contract for a cleaning company starts by doing your due diligence. 

Here are some tips to help you be competitive:

Get Your Pricing Right

You want to make money when bidding for cleaning contracts. However, that doesn’t mean selling yourself short by underquoting.

Use the tips below to ensure you find a sweet spot between being competitive and making a profit.

  • Research the prospect and, if possible, schedule an onsite visit for a detailed, first-hand audit.
  • Access the opportunity to know the resources required to get the job done successfully. These may include special equipment, cleaning products, and special requests from the client.  
  • Determine the total cleanable square footage to help you calculate the custodial price. The average rate for commercial cleaning services ranges from $0.8 to $0.20 per square foot. Residential cleaning services, on the other hand, cost between $117 – $235 per visit.
  • Calculate the employee wage based on the time it’ll take to complete the job and the number of people you’ll need.

Once you have all the data, set a price that ensures you remain profitable while increasing your chances of winning the bid.

Remember to include overhead costs like insurance, transportation, taxes, etc., in your final estimate.

Write a Detailed Cleaning Quote

A winning cleaning quote is straightforward and professional. 

A good quote must include the following details:

  • Your company’s and client’s information –full name, address, phone number, and email address.
  • Pricing, with applicable taxes or additional fees.
  • Payment terms stating deposit requirements, accepted payment methods, and due dates.
  • Cancellation policy with any penalties or fees for cancellations made within a specific timeframe.
  • Guarantee/warranty
  • Terms and conditions, liability, insurance coverage, and expectations for the client and the cleaning company.
  • Expiration date

Here’s an example of a cleaning quote template.

cleaning quote for small business image

Writing a comprehensive cleaning quote can be time-consuming, especially when you have tons of information to piece together. But it doesn’t have to be. 

With MioCommerce Live Interactive Quotation, you can create detailed and accurate cleaning quotes in minutes.

You can test drive the feature for 14 days free of charge by clicking the link below. 

Masterfully Craft Your Cleaning Proposal

Pricing, check. Quote, check. It’s time to write a cleaning proposal that seals the deal. You want to write a comprehensive proposal with all the nitty-gritty. 

Here’s what you should include in your document:

  • A brief introduction about your cleaning company.
  • Cleaners to take on the project and their experience.
  • Service details.
  • Scope of work.
  • Frequency, e.g., one-time, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.
  • Duration, e.g., number of hours, days, etc.

Pro Tip: Read the client RFP to ensure you don’t miss any relevant details in your proposal.

Submit Your Cleaning Contract Bid 

With everything in order, the next step is to submit your bid.

As a rule of thumb, send your cleaning contract bid a day or two before the deadline. That way, you can set a good precedent from the get-go.

Note: You’re competing against other bids, so be patient while the customer reviews your document. Wait for at least 3 days before following up. You may also follow up again after 5 and 7 days.

When following up with the client, be professional. You don’t want to annoy the client with too many messages, but you don’t want them to forget about your bid.

You can use MioCommerce’s multi-channel inbox to follow up with the prospect in their preferred communication channel.

Strategies to Get Different Types of Cleaning Contracts for Small Business

man signing a cleaning contract for small business

There isn’t a shortage of cleaning contracts a small business can bid. However, you know how and where to get them. Here’s a brief overview of some cleaning jobs you can pursue.

Residential Cleaning Contracts

If you’re a commercial cleaner, it’s always a good idea to diversify, and one of the areas you may want to look into is residential cleaning.

Here’s how to get a residential cleaning contract quickly:

  • Check your client portfolio to see who’d benefit from your housekeeping services. It’s easier to win a current than to convince a new one. 
  • Upsell residential cleaning as a complementary service. Consider giving a discount to increase the chances of signing up the customer.
  • Go for short-term residential cleaning contracts. That way, you can review the terms and conditions of the agreement. 

School Cleaning Contracts

Where you can get cleaning contracts for schools differs depending on whether the institution is private or public.

For public schools, the best places to look include:

  • Government procurement websites
  • State-level procurement portals
  • Local government websites
  • School district procurement offices

You can also subscribe to a notification service or platform like BidSync to receive alerts for relevant contract opportunities in the education sector.

For private schools, you can use the following strategies:

  • Contact individual private schools directly to inquire about potential contract opportunities
  • Build relationships with individuals with connections to private schools, such as parents, alumni, or board members.
  • Check online directories and listings. 

Pro Tip: Create a page on your website dedicated to cleaning for schools to make it easy to showcase your service. 

Office Cleaning Contracts

You can get office cleaning contracts by targeting businesses and commercial entities that may regularly require your services.  

Here are some avenues to explore to get office cleaning service jobs.

  • Networking with businesses.
  • Check online marketplaces like Thumbtack, Angie’s List, or Yelp.
  • Cold calling and direct client outreach.
  • Talking to property management companies that oversee commercial office buildings. 

Bank Cleaning Contracts 

The best way to start looking for a bank cleaning contract is your locality.

We suggest pitching smaller banks with a solid offer to make them consider working with you. You can contact the branch manager directly or talk to someone in procurement. 

Note: Chances are, the small bank you’re targeting receives offers from other cleaners regularly. You must, therefore, focus on your unique selling proposition to secure a contract.   

In addition, make it easy for the bank to sign up for your service with instant access to pricing and seamless appointment scheduling.

Watch the video below for more insights on how to get cleaning contracts fast.

Get Cleaning Contracts Fast | Commercial VS. Residential

“I ended up posting on Craigslist. I did get someone who wanted me to clean their Airbnb.”

Raylen – Founder ‘The Hustle Network’

Bonus Tips

Before you place a bid or chase a contract, make sure you’ve implemented the following requirements, which are standard in the cleaning industry. 

Acquire Proper Licensing

You need a cleaning business license to operate your business, let alone look for cleaning contracts. 

Licensing requirements vary depending on your location. In the U.S., for instance, you need a business license, a trade license, and a sales tax permit. You’ll also require OSHA and ISSA certifications. 

Check with industry-specific regulatory bodies or professional associations for licensing and certification requirements. 

Get the Necessary Insurance for Your Cleaning Business

In most cases, you’ll need to accompany your cleaning quote with proof of insurance and bonding.

Some insurance covers for residential and commercial cleaning businesses include:

  • General Liability Insurance: Caters to risks like property damage and customer injuries.
  • Commercial Property Insurance: Repairs or replaces damaged, lost, or stolen business property.
  • Business Owner’s Policy (BOP): Combines commercial property and general liability insurance. A BOP policy is cheaper than buying separate covers individually.
  • Worker’s Compensation Insurance: Covers your employees for work-related injuries and lost wages.
  • Commercial Auto Insurance: Caters to property damage, medical bills, and legal expenses if your business-owned vehicle is involved in an accident.
  • Commercial Umbrella Insurance: Offers supplementary coverage for liability claims that exceed the limits of a policy, such as general liability, commercial auto, or employer’s liability insurance.
  • Hired and Non-owned Auto Insurance: Covers your personal, leased, or rented vehicles for work-related use

In addition, large customers might ask for commercial janitorial bonds, so you’ll need to ensure your business is bonded to meet their requirements.


How Can I Get Cleaning Contracts in My Area?

You can get cleaning contracts in your area by networking with local businesses online and offline. Promote your services on social media and through testimonials. In addition, get a website to increase your business’s visibility.

How Do You Quote a Cleaning Contract?

To quote a cleaning contract, start by assessing the scope of work. Also, consider factors like size and frequency of cleaning to enable you to provide a competitive price.

How Can I Make My Small Cleaning Business Stand Out from Competitors When Bidding for Contracts?

To stand out from competitors when bidding for contracts, highlight your unique selling points. Focus on why the client should choose you over other bidders.  

Scale Your Cleaning Business with MioCommerce 

MioCommerce understands that chasing contracts and bidding can be challenging, so we’re making it easy for you to onboard prospects. 

We offer innovative tools to attract and convert customers quickly and, by extension, streamline your quest to get cleaning contracts.

Book a free consultation call with one of our experts to see how MioCommerce can help you grow your cleaning business.