Ways To Make Quick Money Launching...

A Dog Walking "Fast Cash" Business

The Venture Step-by-Step

Making The Moola

  • Pricing – Dog walking is priced by the walk, not by the hour. Therefore, a walk can last less than or more than 60 minutes. How long a walk lasts depends on the dog. A very fit dog can walk for hours. A very obese dog can crash after 10 minutes.

  • Also, walks can be long or short, depending on the route. They can be steep or flat, depending on the terrain. They can be safe or risky, depending on the location.

    • Find out what kind of walks potential clients want for their dogs and how much they are willing to pay for each type.

      Visit local competitor's website and check out their pricing schedule. Call them and ask how much they would charge for the same type of walks that you plan to provide.

    • Ask yourself how much your time is worth per walk.
    • pricing dog walking

      It's difficult to generalize pricing for dog walking because it differs so much depending on the area, clientele and competition. Offer a baseline price to your customers. Let them haggle a discount to arrive to a figure that fits in their comfort zone.

      But remember that clients want simplicity. They want a stable pricing scheme that they can understand and use to compare to other service providers.

      So use a straightforward method to determine base prices for your walks. Don't look at this as the absolute set price, because it isn't. Remember pricing depends on a client's perception of the value you offer relative to your competition.

      Use the calculator below to estimate pricing based on the following details.

      Summary: Figure out your desired earnings, convert it into an amount to charge per walk, and then compare that amount to your competitors' prices to make adjustments for your clients.

      • Estimate your desired weekly earnings.

        Don't forget that you'll be paying off your business expenses with your weekly earnings. Your business expenses will be items like doggy treats, water, gas, etc.

        So be sure to determine a weekly earnings amount that will reasonably compensate you for your time and effort after deducting expenses.

      • Estimate the number of hours that you will spend walking dogs each week.

        Will it be 5 hours? 10 hours? 20 hours a week?

        Think about the goals that you have set for yourself. How many hours of walking will it require you to meet those goals?

        If you set a goal of walking 10 dogs per week for 30 minutes twice a week, then you're looking at walking for 10 hours every week.

      • Divide your estimated weekly earnings by the estimate of hours that you'll spend walking.

        By dividing your earnings by your walking time, you'll end up with an estimated hourly rate.

      • Divide your estimated hourly rate by 60 minutes.

        Now you have a walking rate per minute.

      • Multiply your walking rate per minute by the number of minutes that you'll spend on a single walk for a client.

        Example: You determine that your hourly rate is $45. Take $45 and divide it by 60. The result is 75¢ per minute walking. You know that a really out of shape Pekingese will take no more than 20 before giving up on you. You want to know how much to charge for that 20-minute walk.

        Multiply 75¢ by 20 minutes and you end up with $15 for a 20-minute walk.

      • Compare your price with the prices offered by your competitors.

        If you see that your prices are much higher than your competitors, then you'll have to justify your higher price to your clients with a service worth that premium, or you'll have to lower your weekly earnings expectations. If you still want to make your desired weekly earning, then you'll have to spent more time walking per week. Get more dogs.

      This is a very basic method for setting prices. It's mainly based on what your competitor's are charging and what you'd like to earn per week. As you gain more experience and add services to your operation, you'll be able to establish a more sophisticated pricing scheme for your business.

      Pricing Extras

      • It's standard practice for dog walkers to offer discounts to clients who hire them for several days in the week.

        Example: Your client agrees for you to take his dog out for 3 20-minute walks per week. Rather than charge him $15 for each walk, you charge $45 per week – $12.75 per walk, which is a 15% discount – if he commits to this arrangement for a month.

        Since you're coming several times a week, you'll be earning a worthy rate even with the discounted pricing because of the frequent visits and long-term service commitment.

      • Don't be afraid to make adjustments to your pricing as you learn the business. If your services are seen as a great benefit by your clients, then increasing your price periodically won't destroy your customer base.

        If they find you valuable, they'll be willing to pay extra.

  • Getting Paid
    • Accept Cash Payment Only

    • Set an expectation with your clients that you only accept cash for the time being.pricing dog walking

      That's not to say that dog walkers aren't paid by check. They are. In fact you may have clients who would rather have the convenience of paying with a check than with cash.

      Just understand that if you get paid by check and you don't have a business checking account, you will have to ask the client to write the check out to you rather than your business.

      It's also preferable not to risk a bounced check.

    • Invoice On A Weekly Basis

      Professional dog walking services tend to invoice clients on a weekly or monthly basis. I suggest that you follow the same protocol.

      Just ensure that you specify clearly in your agreement how and when you will be paid.

      Example: In your agreement you specify that you will email your client's invoice every Friday.


      • It's preferable to email invoices to your clients. It saves delivery time and cost of delivery. Indicate when payment will be late and that you'll follow up with a phone call, if payment is not received by a certain date.

        Here are some free templates you can use to create an invoice.

      Just because professionals tend to invoice on a weekly and monthly basis doesn't mean that you can't use a different method for your business. Maybe your clients would rather pay you for each walk as they happen. Be flexible. Develop a relationship with your clients.

      Also whatever you work out with your client try to secure it in writing as part of a service agreement.

    • Open an AlertPay account with your business email address for clients who would rather not pay in cash.

    • You could offer to have them pay you through AlertPay with their credit card. AlertPay is a competitor of PayPal. (Why I don't recommend using PayPal)

      Invoicing a client after completing work can lead to delays in payment. So using a service like AlertPay with clients who you trust means that they will receive your invoice electronically, which can expedite payment.

      AlertPay will allow you to send invoices via email to your clients with a "Payment" button they can click on to automatically make payment to your AlertPay account using their credit card.

      There are fees associated with accepting credit card payment, but these fees are well worth it. You give your reliable clients a far easier and smoother form of payment than asking for cash payment.

      In order to send invoices, you will need to open the Personal Pro account - it's free.

      You can easily transfer money from your AlertPay account to your personal bank account at any time. But in order to do this without limitations, you must become verified with AlertPay.

      There are three simple verifications necessary:

      • Credit Card Verification

      • Bank Account Verification

      • Phone Text Verification

      Being unverified doesn't disallow you from receiving funds to your account, but certain limitations may be imposed at any time by AlertPay if you aren't verified.

  • Track Your Finances

    • Use Outright's free online accounting software to track your business' finances, unless you want to start with the granddaddy of all small business accounting packages Quickbooks by Intuit.

      • Outright is a simple to use software for micro businesses, and even estimates your federal tax, which comes in handy when paying taxes.

      • It's all online based, which means you don't need to download any software and store your records on your computer.

      • Your data is stored on a secure server, and you can access it from any computer that has internet access.

      • The service is free for the time being, but Outright may decide to begin charging a fee at any time.

      • Once your business is well established, I recommend going with a more sturdy accounting software like Quickbooks Pro.

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