Spring clean your profile!
Summer isn'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 (a smartphone is fine) and a makeup artist for your photos on Pawshake - just try and add shots that are natural and taken in decent light.
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 email them to you.
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.
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 make it your own!
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)
- Pet-friendly features of your home if you’re taking in clients (for example cat flap, large grassed yard with 6 foot fence)
It's a good idea to regularly visit other Pawshake Pet Sitter pages so that you can see what sort of information sitters are adding, and see if you can adapt it to suit your profile. You can also update your profile to add answers to frequently asked questions.
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 were 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, post your profile on Facebook and Twitter and anywhere else you can think of. 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 summer pet sitting!