Freshen your profile for the holidays
The holidays aren't far away and with it comes peak petsitting period, where all sorts of people are turning to Pawshake to find the perfect companion for their furry friends while they’re away. We've put together a few tips to get your Pawshake profile in excellent condition so that it is a sure stand-out.
Pictures, Pictures, Pictures!
If you were a pet owner scrolling through the site, your eye is going to stay on a smiling person’s well-lit and well-presented profile picture for a lot longer than a grainy selfie - in turn you're then more likely to read their profile and click through to that page. You don't need a fantastic camera and a makeup artist for your photos on Pawshake - just try and add shots that are natural and taken in decent light - even a smart phone takes great pictures.
People’s faces help to build trust, so make sure your profile picture is representative of YOU. You’re the service you’re here to sell, after all! If you don’t have anything that’s just right, maybe ask your friend to take some snaps next time you’re out and about.
Note that pet people love looking at pictures of pets. It’s pretty much a given. Add as many good-quality pictures as you can of yourself with your pets, other people’s pets (with their permission of course) and whatever other animals you can find who are happy to pose and/or snuggle with you. This will also help to build confidence with pet owners as they can see that you know how to handle animals responsibly, and that you might have good chemistry with their pet.
If you’re offering to take Pawshake clients into your own home, it’s a good idea to add one or two pictures of the spaces where the pets would be staying, and any other people or animals that they might be sharing with. Pawshake even has an option to make a little mini-profile for your own pet that is featured on your page.
Add a video.
That's right - you can add a fun video on your profile so that potential pet clients can get to know you and your personality. A friendly introduction is all that is needed, but feel free to get creative!
Freshen up your profile text
Pet owners will feel like they know you already if you add a few decent paragraphs about yourself - your hobbies, your previous pets, your current pets, pet care experience, any study that you are undertaking or have finished, your daily routine or work and how this may affect your availability, favourite dog walks or parks nearby, the layout of your home etc. Be sure to include plenty of keywords such as 'pet sitter', 'dog walker', 'pet care' etc.
Keep up to date with availability
Pawshake has an inbuilt calendar on each sitter’s profile to show when they are available to take bookings. If you’re an active sitter with fully booked days, if you have holidays organised, if you work on certain days and not others - make sure this is reflected in your calendar! It’s also handy to write up a brief bit in your ‘About Me’ so that people know, for example, that you can’t have clients in your home on Monday nights.
Logging on to Pawshake regularly is a great habit to get into - not only to check your messages and update your calendar (and take a peek at the Wall of Paws) - but adding and changing content on your page regularly helps to keep it fresh and make it yours!
Make sure clients know what you can offer
Some things it could be important to note are:
- You and your partner pet-sit together
- You have or don’t have a car
- You’re comfortable giving a pet medication or dealing with a special needs pet
- You’re certified in pet first aid or have other relevant animal training
- You offer grooming or training as part of your Pawshake service
- You might offer additional, non-pet services such as bringing in mail
- You’re comfortable with caring for other sorts of animals (for example lizards, rats, chickens, horses etc)
- Safety features of your home if you’re boarding guest pets (for example pet flap, secure balcony, large grassed yard with tall fence)
It's a good idea to regularly visit other Pawshake pet sitter pages so that you can see what sort of information sitters include, and see if you can adapt it to suit your profile. You can also update your profile to add answers to frequently asked questions, such as what suburbs you visit.
Ask clients for feedback
Pawshake has a feedback service with gold star ratings that appear at the top of your profile and in search. There's no better way to show that you're a trusted pet sitter! So once you secure that first job, make sure you ask the pet owners to take a minute to give you a sparkling review at the end.
Remember that you’re providing a service!
While the other points are for helping potential clients, this one’s for you. Set your rates to a price that you believe is fair for your time and energy, even if you are doing this just for the love of animals! Having a detailed profile page and setting reasonable work rates shows that you’re a hard-working and responsible person - someone a pet owner would be more than happy to leave their fur kid with.
Lastly - get yourself out there.
Let everyone in shouting distance know that you’re a proud Pawshake pet sitter! Tell your friends and relatives to get word around, write yourself up fliers to distribute at dog parks, put up posters on community notice boards. The solutions are endless!
So take a half hour soon to spring clean your profile: it’s a win-win situation for everyone. Best of luck with your holiday pet sitting!