3 Ways to Drastically Improve Pest Control Collections

Collections will make or break your pest control company. Every year, pest control companies lose millions of dollars in past due account balances that they either fail to collect, or pay expensive collections commissions to recover. 

The truth is, collecting money from an old customer is 5-10 times more efficient than signing up a new customer. When you sign up a new customer, you pay an acquisition cost as well as overhead, expenses, and labor costs to produce an average 20-40% profit margin. When you collect money from past due customers, you have ALREADY paid all of the overhead, expenses, and labor to complete the service and whatever you collect goes 100% to your bottom line!

Case Study

To put this in perspective, lets look at a company generating 1 million dollars in revenue. This company has a profit margin of 25%, an average collection rate of 85%, and their average contract value is $500. At the end of the year, this company would generate $1,000,000 in revenue from their 2,000 customers, spend $750,000 in expenses, and would collect $850,000. This leaves a profit of $100,000 for the year.

If this company is able to increase their collections by even 5%, their profit for the year would increase by $50,000! To earn that much profit from signing up new customers, they would have to grow their customer base by an additional 400 customers (20% growth) -- without considering customer acquisition costs like commissions or advertising! While these numbers will vary from company to company, the common truth is that increasing collections will do more for your bottom line than drastically increasing your customer base.

3 Ways to Drastically Improve Collections

So the obvious question is, "how do I improve my collections?" PestRoutes is here to help! There are 3 ways you can improve your collections:

  1. Increase AutoPay Percentage
  2. Improve Tech Collections
  3. Use PestRoutes' Collections Tools

Increase AutoPay Percentage

There is a direct correlation between collections and AutoPay percentage. The more customers you have on AutoPay, the more you will collect AND the faster you will collect. As an added bonus, higher autopay percentage also improve retention. PestRoutes can help you improve your autopay percentage in several ways.

  1. Reminding your office staff to collect an AutoPay method every time a customer calls in. In the customer Card Overview tab, we put a bold red flag on any customer that doesn't have autopay setup.
  2. Utilizing customer communication. Every email that goes to your customer (Service Notifications, Appointment Reminders, Collections Emails, and General Communication) has a link to their customer portal where it alerts them to add an AutoPay method. You can even send targeted email campaigns to all of your customers who don't have an autopay account asking them to subscribe.
  3. Tech Collections. From both the SalesRoutes and TechRoutes apps, your staff can collect autopay methods from customers while they are on location with the customer in the field.

Autopay is more convenient for both customers and you. It's really a win-win for the industry. You can keep a close eye on this statistic right on the main dashboard of PestRoutes so you know where you stand. To give perspective, many of our clients have AutoPay rates between 80-90%.

Improve Tech Collections

The person who is most available to collect money is your technicians. They are in front of every one of your customers an average of 4-5 times per year. Many companies are very good at training the technician to collect money on every visit. Some companies even implement policies where a technician can't start the service until they have collected the past due amount. You can monitor and improve this by utilizing our Tech collections report. This will show you how many opportunities a technician had to collect money vs how much he actually collected.

Use PestRoutes Collections Tools

PestRoutes has several tools to help you collect money after the time of service. Use the Accounts Receivable report to send SMS and voice messages, email and Snail Mail statements to customers when they have a balance due.

Sending statements to customers makes it very convenient for customers to pay you. The more convenient and available you make it, the better your collections will be.

Please see our guide on the Accounts Receivable report for more information.


Collecting past due Accounts Receivable can make or break your company. It can be the difference between bankruptcy and being wealthy. By implementing processes to improve AutoPay, Tech Collections, and Collections notices you can drastically improve your collections as well as your profit!