CHICAGO – July is traditionally one of the weakest revenue-generating months of the year but you wouldn’t know it from looking at the results of the most recent AmericanCoinOp.com StatShot survey.
Self-service laundry operators in three of the four regions reported their sales increased in July, led by the Midwest with an impressive 11.2% gain compared to July 2011 sales. The West posted a 5.5% July-to-July sales increase, while the Northeast posted a respectable 2.5% rise.
The South reported the only month-to-month loss, 2.5%. Nationally, coin laundry sales were up an average of 3.3% in July compared to July 2011.
Coupled with increasing sales, running a self-service laundry as efficiently as possible is important to a business’ bottom line. Operators were asked about their utilities costs as a percentage of gross.
Those in the West fared the best, paying 22.5% for utilities in July. But the gap between all four regions was minimal. Operators in both the Midwest and the Northeast paid 22.8% for utilities last month, while operators in the South paid the highest percentage in the country, 24.2%. Nationally, utilities as a percentage of gross averaged 23.1% in July.
How did some operators keep their costs down? By installing wells to replace municipal water, installing a timer (presumably to turn on/off lights), or replacing one-third of the store’s washers with 340-G soft-mount machines, netting a 3% savings on utilities. Another said installing credit card readers throughout their store had produced “impressive results.”
AmericanCoinOp.com’s StatShot includes information on sales, wages, costs and other financial data based on anonymous, unscientific survey responses provided by industry owners and operators.