Whether you’re a pet enthusiast who dreams of turning your passion into a paycheck or a seasoned pro, you’re in luck! The global pet-sitting market is booming, with an annual projected growth rate of over 10%. While demand for pet sitters has never been higher, the competition can be fierce. And to create a thriving pet-sitting business, you may need to stand out from the pack.
In this guide, we'll explore some ways on how to promote your pet-sitting services and attract more four-legged friends.
If you’re just getting started in the fur biz, focus on developing a memorable brand identity, including a unique name, logo, and slogan that reflect the personality and offerings of your business. A professional brand can make your business more recognizable and build trust and credibility with potential clients.
Are you a canine caregiver or an exotic species specialist? Before you begin advertising your business, clearly define the types of services you plan to offer. Pet sitting can encompass a range of tasks such as dog walking, quick house visits, longer overnight stays, and pet boarding. Offering a variety of services can attract more clients, but don’t spread yourself too thin as you build your brand.
Now that you’ve mapped out your services, it’s time to identify your ideal clients and tailor your messaging toward them. Your marketing campaign should target clients who are a match for your services and live nearby. Driving to far-flung fur clients can quickly eat up precious time and money. And keep in mind that tech-loving millennials are one of the fastest-growing demographics of pet owners. Building a digital presence with engaging content can help you reach that audience.
One of the most effective tools for promoting your pet-sitting business is a well-crafted website that showcases your services, rates, contact information, and testimonials. But unless you’re a seasoned web builder, designing a website can be, pardon the pun, ruff. Fear not! Easy-to-use drag-and-drop website builders such as Wix and Weebly make it possible to create a high-quality site without knowing how to code. For more tips on how to build a hassle-free and affordable website, check out this article.
If your site gets buried at the bottom of Google Search, how will all those pet-loving millennials find you? One way to stand out is with search engine optimization (SEO) — a fancy term for tips and tricks to make your website rank higher. Check out this article to learn how to use keywords, links, and quality content to soar to the top!
According to a survey by Pet Sitters International, over 85% of all pet sitters use business cards to promote their services. And more than a third use brochures and flyers. Whether you’re at a dog park, social gathering, or your favorite lunch spot, keep your business card handy. You may even want to consider posting a flyer and business cards on your local hospital bulletin board to capture new clients needing extra help. And to sweeten the deal, include a discount code on the back of your card.
Another powerful way to attract more customers is by establishing a presence on popular social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram. And hyper-local sites such as Nextdoor can help you target your campaign in a fixed geographical area.
Most pet owners love nothing more than seeing their fur babies having fun. Fill your feed with dynamic action shots of happy pets to engage existing and new clients. Of course, not all fur parents are alike, so it’s important to get permission before posting.
When I asked a friend who runs a thriving pet-sitting business about the key to her success, she replied emphatically — word-of-mouth referrals! Yes, she networks with veterinarians, groomers, and other pet-service providers to spread the word. And references from happy clients are critical. But her secret sauce is the strong relationships she’s built with other local pet sitters. So if you want to grow your pet-sitting business, head straight to your local dog park and introduce yourself! And check out this article for more tips on word-of-mouth marketing.
Research confirms that most people trust recommendations from family and friends over any other form of advertising. But pet-loving millennials may go online first to assess the quality of your services. One disgruntled online critic could tip the scales, so it’s vital to encourage satisfied clients to leave positive testimonials on platforms like Yelp and Google.
Consider creating branded merchandise such as T-shirts, pet tags, bandanas, or magnets with your logo and contact information. Websites like Zazzle make it easy to create your own designs. Pet-friendly swag is a great way to reward happy clients who post online reviews.
Continuing education is crucial for any professional pet-care provider. Earning a Certification for Professional Pet Sitters (CPPS) demonstrates your commitment and can set you apart from casual pet sitters, neighbors, or friends. So don’t be shy about highlighting your certification on your website, business cards, and flyers. A CPPS certification is valid for just three years, so staying updated on best practices should be an ongoing process.
To stand out from the flock, consider offering additional services such as pet grooming or training classes. And if you specialize in overnight stays, you can offer to collect mail, water plants, and vacuum up all that pet hair. By diversifying your offerings, you can attract a broader clientele and increase your revenue streams.
You go above and beyond to provide exceptional care. But when it comes to rambunctious animals, mishaps may be inevitable. Pet sitting insurance is an affordable way to help protect your growing business and it can cover accidents or damages that may occur while caring for a client's pet. Having insurance not only helps provide financial protection but also helps offer peace of mind to you, your staff, and your clients.
At Simply Business® we understand the types of coverage that can help small business owners plan and prepare for what may happen. And our online quote tool is available 24/7. Spend a few minutes on your laptop or mobile device, and we’ll get to work shopping among some of the top insurers in the country. You simply review the results and choose the policy that fits your needs and budget.
Not sure what you need? Questions about coverage? Our licensed insurance agents can help take care of your needs over the phone. They’re here to help at 844-654-7272, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-8 p.m. (ET).
In today’s bullish pet-sitting market, opportunities abound! By maintaining excellent service and implementing these marketing strategies, you can stand out from the herd and build a thriving pet care business.
Born and raised in the fishing port of Gloucester, MA, I grew up listening to the sea stories of local fishermen. My first job was “chum girl” on my dad’s tuna boat, where I spent my formative years covered in fish guts. Since then, I’ve worked as a researcher, blogger, and writer for documentary films. When not at work, you can find me surfing the cold waters of the North Atlantic or searching for warmer waves around the world.
Courtney writes on a number of topics such as risk assessment, starting a small business, and financial resources.
This content is for general, informational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal, tax, accounting, or financial advice. Please obtain expert advice from industry specific professionals who may better understand your business’s needs. Read our full disclaimer
*Harborway Insurance policies are underwritten by Spinnaker Insurance Company and reinsured by Munich Re, an A+ (Superior) rated insurance carrier by AM Best. Harborway Insurance is a brand name of Harborway Insurance Agency, LLC, a licensed insurance producer in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. California license #6004217.