How To Start And Run A Successful Aquarium Maintenance Business
Bellow, you'll find a collection of old articles about starting a fish tank maintenance company or aquarium installation and maintenance business. Hopefully, you find some useful information in them.
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Aquarium Maintenance Service Business… Who Should Start One?
Determine Your Motivation To Start Your New Aquarium Cleaning Company
Research Your Local Market and the Competition
Getting Started…the Necessities
Registering your fish tank cleaning business
Equipment for starting an aquarium maintenance company
Aquarium Technician Uniform
Liability and Insurance for Aquarium Service Technicians
Marketing: Getting Your First Aquarium Service Clients
Pricing Your Aquarium Services
Selling Fish Tank Supplies To Your Service Clients: Or Not
The Best Advice For Starting Your New Fish Tank Cleaning and Maintenance Service Business
Setting up an Aquarium Maintenance Business
Aquarium Service Offerings
Pumps for aquarium service companies
Filters for fish tank maintenance service business
Choosing heaters for your aquarium maintenance clients
Choosing lighting for your service customer's fish tanks
Stands and Canopies for commercial aquarium installations
Considerations about Tanks for your aquarium service company installations
Tools required to start a fish tank cleaning and maintenance company
Marketing your aquarium maintenance company
Aquarium Service Offerings
Aquarium maintenance service packages
Spin off Services
Selecting What's Right for Your Client
Selecting a Location for an aquarium installation
Aquarium Store Owner's Guide To Offering Aquarium Maintenace Services
Starting an aquarium maintenance company?
Take these tips from the Aquarium Service Pros!
by Aquariumpros.com staffReprinted with permissionhttp://www.aquariumpros.com/company
You work in an aquarium store and/or own an aquarium, and you've heard about aquarium maintenance companies that are charging $40.00 to $75.00 an hour, plus materials. You think to yourself: "Hmmm . . . I could do that!" Maybe you ordered and read one of those brochures that teach you how to start an aquarium service business, and it sure sounds easy enough. You think you have what it takes to clean aquariums, you have a little money saved, and you're ready to begin. All we ask is that you know a little about the business end first.
Read this page. We're not going to teach you how, but we will describe many of the pitfalls you probably haven't considered. You may change your mind, which just might save you a lot of money and aggravation.
Don't believe the hype about working as an aquarist!
It's not all peaches and cream! Aquarium maintenance can seem like a gold mine, but it's important to remember that all businesses face daily and on-going problems that cost time and money to solve. An aquarium business can face the same problems, only worse, because we deal with living aquatic animals that are easily damaged or killed. This is not a business of cleaning aquariums but a business of managing aquariums. This means you need a good working knowledge of everything there is to know about aquaria. To complicate matters, you have to depend on the aquarium owner to not do anything wrong - and not to blame you for something they did.
Think about the problems you've had with your aquarium. Now think about how you're going to solve fifty other people's aquarium problems, usually at no charge. Yes, that's right! We said "at no charge." Remember that as someone else's aquarium caretaker, you will usually be held responsible if a problem occurs. No one's going to pay you to solve a problem that they think you caused. Aquarium maintenance clients are not fish hobbyists, and many are not willing to educate themselves. You have to know the answers for them.
Fish tank maintenance is not easy work!
The hours are long. The work is difficult because each aquarium is equipped differently. Water sources are often a long way away from the fish tank. Aquarium emergencies can happen at any time of the day or night. If you have too many clients, the odds are that sooner or later, two of them will make an immediate demand on you at the same time. Our advice: Don't try it alone. Have a partner! Better to split profits than to have splitting headaches.
Operate your aquarium cleaning company legitimately.
If you start an aquarium maintenance business, the first thing you'll learn is that you'll have little or no support from the aquarium industry. You'll be in a business that is not truly recognized officially by the industry at large, unless you start out on a very large scale from the beginning. Aquarium retail stores will resent you and may even try to sabotage you or get you black-listed with suppliers. Aquarium supply and livestock distributors will not want to sell to you, sometimes even if you have the proper licenses. They risk alienating the retail stores that make up the bulk of their income.
Remember that you're small potatoes. The more legal you make your business, the more respect you'll get, but you'll also face more problems. Starting a small business used to be easy, but federal, state and local government have gone out of their way to make it difficult. The laws governing business are complicated, and professional help is expensive. Sales tax needs to be collected and paid. Business bank accounts require a federal tax identification number. Incorporating may help protect you from lawsuits, but this requires expensive legal help. The list goes on.
Fish tank service company insurance requirements
Don't rely on incorporation, get insurance!
This is the biggest mistake made by amateurs that start an aquarium maintenance business. Remember that you'll be working with large volumes of water owned by people wealthy enough to pay you for your services. All you need to do is make one mistake that floods someone's expensive Parquet floor, and you'll get sued out of business so fast it'll make you dizzy! If the damage is bad enough, you may wind up paying for the rest of your life. And now for the kicker . . . good luck getting insurance!
Only a handful of carriers will cover aquarium maintenance companies, and they're going to ask lots of questions about your level of experience and how you'll operate your business. You can't blame them. Water damage is expensive to repair, and claims could be enormous. New to the aquarium industry with only your hobby as experience? Expect outrageously high premiums! Oh, and by the way, don't forget to tell your automobile insurance company you'll be using your vehicle for a business which relies on transportation. If you don't and they find out, they'll drop you like a stone. If you do, they'll more than double your rates. Either way, you'll lose.
Financing your aquarium maintenance start-up
No matter what you've heard or read, you will need money to start up your business. Even if you're working out of your home, you'll still have equipment and inventory to buy. Insurance, legal fees, accounting fees, advertising, phone book listings, and other startup expenses all cost money. Remember that most new businesses don't make a profit for the first four to five years, and you can't do aquarium maintenance for more than six accounts on a part-time basis and work another job. The demand on you will be too great, and what if you get a call for an aquarium emergency while you're at work? Clients won't accept the excuse that you were working. Our recommendation: Don't even try it without at least $10,000.00 to $20,000.00 in your bank account. Bank or small business loans? You can try, but your ears will soon be ringing with the laughter you hear as they escort you out the door!
Research the competing aquarium service companies in your market
If there are already plenty of aquarium stores and/or maintenance companies in your area, can you compete? What can you offer that they don't? Do you know more than they do? As a new business, you need to offer competitive rates and guarantees. If you offer guarantees, can you back them up? If you offer the lowest prices, you'll only attract clients who couldn't afford the service if they paid full price. They'll expect more for their money, and if you don't charge enough, you won't make anything.
If you'll be the only game in town, find out why!
You've done some market research, and checked out your competition. There's obviously a lot of wealth in the area, as many of the houses are worth millions. The area is developing rapidly, with lots of new subdivisions filled with huge, expensive homes. You've made a rough approximation of per-capita income, and have found a potentially large market of high-end customers. All of the aquarium stores in your area are all smaller ma & pa operations. Their fish and knowledge are average, or below average. They don't sell state-of-the-art equipment or acrylic aquariums. None of them offer aquarium maintenance services, or what they offer is limited. You've pumped them for information, and to your surprise, you know far more than any of them. Wow! The future looks rosy. Or does it?
If a city seems to have a fair population with a level of high income, and is rapidly developing, why isn't there at least one quality aquarium business? Not necessarily a large store, but at least one with a knowledgeable staff, saltwater livestock, nice-looking tanks, and some newer protein skimmers and wet-dry filters in stock. FIND OUT WHY! The reason may be as simple as no one's ever thought of it before, and in that case, go for it! However, experience has taught us that there's usually a very good reason why certain specialty businesses don't exist in a larger city.
Some areas may look like a gold mine, until you discover they really aren't. This must be determined before opening a business, not after. Areas with high populations of wealthy people who are very politically-conservative; or are deeply-religious; or are from certain ethnic groups and backgrounds, may not prove to be that profitable for an aquarium business. "Old money" by the way, got to be "old" through saving and careful investment, not by spending left and right on what some people consider to be frivolities.
How can you tell? Explore the types of specialty stores in the area. What kind of furniture do the furniture stores carry. A lot of modern, vogue styles, or lots of traditional pieces. What kind of car-dealerships do you see, and what are they selling? How many new-age, or yuppified restaurants are there? Got sushi? Health-food stores? If they exist, how successful are these businesses? By now, you should be getting the idea.
Think you'll make a lot of money running a fish tank service business?
Don't bank on it! As we said, most new businesses do not make a profit in their first four to five years of business. You'll be shocked at how quickly the money you make disappears. Most new aquarium clients won't pay you up front. The more business you have, the more expenses you'll have and the more inventory you'll need. One good vehicle repair bill can set you back for all the profit you've made in a month. Without the vehicle, you're out of business. One mistake which forces you to replace a tank full of saltwater fish, and you could get set back even further. Retail stores can make more profit on maintenance than a maintenance company. Why? Because to them, it's gravy. Their entire overhead is paid for by profit made from walk-in business, and the employees they use for aquarium service can also work in the store.
Streamed live on Nov 11, 2020 - Love aquariums and working on them? Have you ever considered turning your fishkeeping passion into a business? Today we join Chris from AquariumServiceBusiness.com as we discuss turning aquarium your hobby into an aquarium maintenance business!
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Aquarium Maintenance Service - Business Plan
TASKS TO DO TO START AN AQUARIUM MAINTENANCE COMPANY
By: Chris Wade
THIS IS A QUICK LIST OF TASKS YOU WILL NEED TO DO TO GET YOUR AQUARIUM SERVICE COMPANY UP AND RUNNING ALONG WITH A BUNCH OF VERY USEFUL OR NECESSARY BUSINESS TOOLS THAT WILL HELP YOU BE SUCCESSFUL.
You may thing that turning your fishkeeping hobby into a new aquarium maintenance company is as simple as just picking up a hose and bucket and start scrubbing algae for paying clients. You’d be Incorrect. There is a little bit more to it than that!... [read more]
Aquarium Services Business Plan
EcoAquatics will manage saltwater aquariums for its clients. We will help every step of the way, from setting up the aquarium, to cleaning it, maintaining it, and feeding the fish. Depending on the client, they can go step by step along with us, or simply enjoy the finished product.
We will help clients make choices that will not harm the environment in any way. We understand that sometimes this hobby can be damaging to the reefs we are trying to simulate. One of our main goals is to help our clients understand this, and choose reef friendly inhabitants.
The client must pay for equipment, supplies, and inhabitants, directly through the supplier, using their credit cards or accounts with local retailers. We are not going to buy and resell, just direct purchases.
We will focus on saltwater tanks only. Freshwater tanks are easier and require less maintenance. Saltwater takes advantage of what we know how to do. Furthermore, saltwater tanks are more likely to have features, colors, and visuals that enhance an office appearance.
We will customize the aquarium to match the client’s budget. We will help our clients decide whether they want a fish-only or a reef tank, while we have an emphasis on reef aquariums, we can do both. We will also make sure that all the inhabitants... [read more]
How to Start Aquarium Maintenance Business
The aquarium maintenance business is providing services of cleaning and maintaining aquariums of the client who doesn’t have time for it. It is absolutely an ideal business for entrepreneurs who are pet lovers by nature and want to turn their hobby into a successful side business venture.
A clean aquarium is required for healthy fish and it is recommended after every 10 days the tank should get cleaned. A beautifully organized aquarium with colorful fishes is always very soothing and relaxing. One can initiate this venture from a home location with low capital investment.
As your fish tank business grows you can expand by...[read more]