The Ultimate Business Set Up Course

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Ultimate Business Set Up Cours

Welcome To The Ultimate Business Set Up Course

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course is the all-encompassing guide that offers the fundamental training you need to make a living in the world of detailing.

Aimed at experienced enthusiasts looking to transform their hobby into their career - or as a master guide to promoting and expanding already - established detailing businesses - this course is a frank look at every aspect of the car care industry with Auto Finesse owner and founder, James Batty.

Before offering our own detailing products, Auto Finesse had its roots in both mobile valeting and unit-based detailing, covering all aspects from high-quality maintenance washes to high-end correction details. To this day we offer business-to-business training to professional detailers in both these disciplines from our home base at the Auto Finesse Detailing Academy and out on the road in our fleet of mobile detailing vans.

This Virtual Academy course is your unique opportunity to draw on over 25-years of experience in the detailing business, including discovering the potentially costly mistakes made along the way.

Throughout the duration course James takes you through the reality of what it takes to run a business, from the initial setup of your van or unit, and the all-important website, to the services to focus on, how to expand your initial offerings, and how to maximise your earning potential while maintaining value and ultimately going the extra mile for clients.

Find out about the vast number of options when it comes to professional marketing, how important brand recognition, consistency and up-selling are, and why your setup, work ethic and persona is everything when attracting potential customers.

This course covers everything from the basics to the most advanced business principles, and includes the answers to the most common questions such as: What do I need to charge to make a profit? Will offering a whole range of services waste my time? How can I create a detailing van that’s an effective mobile billboard? Should I concentrate on having the best social media? How do I invest wisely in my setup? And, What is my target audience?

Whether you’re planning on becoming a mobile or unit-based operation, or simply looking to offer more services in your day-to-day operation. The Ultimate Business Set Up Course is your first step in discovering what it takes to build a successful detailing business.

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Car with Autofinesse Products

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course Includes:

Detailing Business 101 – Is running a detailing business right for you? And what does it involve? Find out what makes a successful business and the things you should consider before making your first steps.

Unit or Mobile Detailing? – See the advantages and disadvantages of both kinds of detailing setup. Are you looking to reach an extremely wide customer base for washing and valeting, or control the conditions for every paint correction by making your customers come to you?

Building A Detailing Van – The office - and often home - to any mobile detailing business. Here we explain exactly what makes the ultimate mobile detailing setup… and how it doesn’t have to cost the Earth. Setting Up A Unit – If you’re looking to take the plunge into the world of unit detailing, here’s how to make the best of your premises. Get the rundown of the true costs of running a unit and the bigger, more specialist detailing tasks you’re likely to tackle on a day to day basis.

Building A Successful Business – Discover how to promote your business, offer the best value, the services to consider and planning your time effectively. Does social media really offer the best marketing opportunity? Find out here.

Talking From Experience – There are no shortcuts in business… except of course from learning from the experience of others. Here you can get the lowdown on our mistakes, so you don’t have to make them.

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Car cleaning
The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Car Polishing

From mobile valeting to unit-based detailing to the best Detailing Products, we have every consideration covered here, taking you through not only the fundamentals of the set up you'll need but offering key insights and crucial advice on marketing, finance and all the finer details to help you build a successful business.

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Unit Or Mobile Detailing?

The first decision to make before purchasing any professional equipment, detailing products, a van or even unit space is whether you want to create a mobile detailing business or be entirely unit-based. This decision will be dependent on a number of factors, and ultimately comes down to what you want from your business.

Both options have their benefits, and both have their drawbacks, so we've put a brief guide together to make sure you have all the relevant information before you make your first step into the business.

Below you'll find the key advantages and disadvantages of both kinds of detailing…

Advantages of a unit-based business:

You will be working inside, which makes the job easier. You can control your working conditions and room temperature 365-days of the year, especially for potentially lucrative professional services such as paintwork correction and application of ceramic coatings. Up-selling products or extra services is considerably easier. You can have products on display in your unit or talk customers through potential up-sells. For example, hanging test panels on the wall (showing before and after paint correction) gives customers a visual reference of the services you provide. Less time-consuming. Aside from the traveling time needed to get to customers, there's no repeated setups - such as putting up a canopy in winter - for every maintenance job. You never have to find a space to perform your detail if your client doesn't have a driveway.

Disadvantages of a unit-based business:

You must persuade your customers to come to you. Some potential clients will see this as an inconvenience. Generally speaking, customers will travel 20-30-minutes to have their car detailed, whereas a mobile business could reach a wider audience, cover a larger area and doesn't take up more of your client's time. Having a business location may restrict you to smaller portion of the detailing market - those looking for the most in-depth (and time-consuming) services rather than services - such as routine maintenance - where multiple vehicles can be completed in the same timeframe. There are extra costs to cover, not only rent and equipment, but energy bills, water rates, your commuting costs and potential Business Rates depending on the local authority.

Advantages of mobile detailing:

A mobile setup is ideal for reaching a larger customer base because you can travel as far as you are willing to. You can also choose the area that you work in. A sign written van is great for free marketing, promoting your business while you travel. Potential customers will also take notice of your branding when you are parked up cleaning vehicles for other clients. You're likely to pick up a higher percentage of less time-consuming tasks such as repeated routine maintenance when the customer isn't required to travel.

Disadvantages of mobile detailing:

The Winter months can be a struggle. Unpredictable weather conditions mean that you need to be prepared for every eventuality, especially if you're offering more involved services such as paint correction/enhancement and ceramic coatings. In winter you may be setting up a canopy for every job. Unless you purchase multiple mobile setups, you are restricted to cleaning one vehicle at a time. You will also have to complete your detail within a strict timeframe - you cannot work late at night or extremely early. There is no guarantee of finding an ideal location to complete your detailing - not every client will have a driveway. Aside from the initial setup, extra costs - such as fuel, general vehicle maintenance and filling up with water or generator fuel - are often overlooked. If your mobile setup is off the road for any extended period, you cannot provide your services. Commuting to and from your clients is time that needs to be factored in. What's the right decision?

To Summise...

The truth is that there's no right or wrong answer, and no one can make the decision for you - ultimately the choice you make will depend on what suits your circumstance and what you want from your detailing business. Mobile detailing is great for reaching a large customer base, as you can travel as far as you need to, but arguably harder work and more time consuming. Detailing from a home base, however, will make your life more comfortable, but require customers to visit you, so that can sometimes limit your reach - particularly if you have other competitors in the vicinity. The key here is to do your own research - taking into consideration the area that you'd like to work in and your finances - and make your final decision based on what's right for you.

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The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Car Washing
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Planning Your Time Effectively

Effective time management is essential in any business as this will not only impact your workload, but also manage your customer expectations.

This premise is often overlooked but it's essential to get right as ineffective planning could lead to disappointed customers, particularly if jobs overrun. The worst-case scenario is that you could blemish the reputation of you and your business.

Always allow a reasonable timeframe to complete every job, so you can effectively manage your workload and keep on top of your diary.

Don't overstretch yourself, but at the same time you don't want to be waiting around forever for the next booking. Equally disastrous is to let a job overrun and cause delays to subsequent bookings on the same day. Always be realistic when quoting prices, at the same time being mindful of how much time each booking will take out of your working day.

When starting out as a professional detailer we recommend timing yourself on all the different types of service you'd like to offer. This will allow you to identify how long you need to comfortably complete a full range of detailing tasks. Remember that every detailer will work at a different pace and a great tip on how to ascertain yours is time yourself for your first three maintenance washes on a medium sized vehicle. Obviously, your times will differ based on a number of factors - particularly varying weather conditions - but this will give you a rough idea of how long the job will take you to complete time after time.

Of your three timings we recommend taking the longest and using this as your rough guide. By choosing the quickest times, you are at risk of rushing future jobs, cutting corners and potentially missing areas. Of course, as you gain experience over a large number of bookings, the time it takes you to complete any given task will reduce naturally. So, review your job timings on a regular basis and adjust them accordingly.

Remember to work to a realistic schedule for every job, but don't forget to allow travel time if you are a mobile detailer. Factor in the time of day and, depending on where your job is, allow a little leeway for congestion, particularly if you are travelling through rush hour.

The Ultimate Business Set Up Course - Shooting for Business Set Up Course
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Next Steps...

Congratulations on completing the Ultimate Business Set Up course!

Before you go, don't forget to have a peek at some extra resources that you can take advantage of right now to continue your learning. We have a whole selection of online resources in the Guides section of our blog.

We welcome your feedback and hope you've enjoyed the course. Don't forget to shout about your new skills and knowledge, and share your progress on Social Media, too!

If you have any questions after you go, please don't hesitate to send an email to