Is the Pest Control Industry Safe From a Recession?


Written by

Drew Lund

Customer Success Manager at Cedar Systems. Industry expert with experience in multiple sectors across pest control. Executed successful programs in customer success, operations strategy, business and franchise development, and technical project management.

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Upcoming Recession: Should Pest Control Companies Be Worried?

Any mention of a recession can bring a lot of fears to the surface.

Should you be worried about your pest control business?

Worrying can be a waste of time — especially in the pest industry.

It’s all about having a plan. Once you have a plan, you can take action.

Put your fears at bay and continue reading to learn why pest control is a recession-resistant industry.

Is Pest Control Recession-Proof?

Well, is anything entirely recession-proof? 

The answer is NO, but pest control is definitely recession resistant. Every pest control owner should consider the future of this industry.

The good news is that the pest control industry is expected to generate $17.4 billion in revenue by 2023. 

There are many reasons why this industry can thrive even when the economy isn’t. Let’s look at how you can protect your pest control business even during a recession.

9 Reasons Pest Control Is a Recession-Resistant Industry

The pest control business has grown in the last few years and continues to grow. Most companies and homeowners won't wait for a recession to end before calling an exterminator. 

In the past, demand usually stayed the same for pest control, even during recessions. No excuses exist; you can grow your business even during economic hardships

Here are the reasons why.

#1: Growing Urban Populations

The growth of urban centers makes them more crowded, increasing the likelihood of pest infestations. 

People in cities often need help dealing with infestations from:

  • Rats 
  • Cockroaches; and 
  • Bedbugs 

A study concluded that by studying the effect of urban heat on organisms, we understand why certain insects or animals thrive in urban heat.

#2: Business Reputation Protection

Many businesses — such as restaurants and hotels — are profoundly affected by a recession and can’t risk any negativity tarnishing their reputations. For this reason, pest control remains a top priority for these businesses.

Healthcode violations could tank a business, especially during a recession. No one is willing to take that risk.

After dealing with the actual problem, pest control companies also develop prevention plans to protect against future infestations.

#3: Public Aversion to Pests

Pests have a bad rap, and it is easy to see why. People’s aversion to pests runs deep. 

Pests can:

  • Destroy crops
  • Eat through wooden structures
  • Infest homes; and
  • Spread disease

Therefore, even a recession wouldn’t prevent the average person from ridding their home or business of a pest infestation. 

Fear of bugs, mice, snakes, and bats is typical due to their creepiness and fast, unpredictable movements.

#4: Risk of Disease

Pests cause many public health issues, such as these four:

Infectious diseases are spread by:

  • Ticks
  • Mosquitos 
  • Houseflies
  • Rodents
  • Other animals

Cockroaches and rodent allergens can trigger asthma and allergies. Also, many people have an allergic reaction to:

  • Bees
  • Wasps
  • Bedbugs
  • Fleas
  • Mosquitos

Rabies is carried by:

  • Raccoons
  • Skunks
  • Foxes
  • Bats 

Microbial disease and infections can be caused by:

  • Bacteria
  • Viruses
  • Prions
  • Protozoans

#5: Ineffectiveness of Household Products

Sometimes people decide to use household products in an isolated case — yet pest control is recommended to avoid further infestation or eliminate rodents and wildlife.

The products pest control companies use are more effective than anything you can buy. And when it comes to your family and your business, getting the job done right the first time is a must.

#6: Increased Safety

A large percentage of house fires are caused by rodents chewing on wiring. Rodents aren’t necessarily looking for food when this happens. Rodent teeth grow at a fast rate and need to be worn down. Hence all the chewing. 

Rodents can weaken infrastructure in a home or business by:

  • Gnawing through aluminum and lead sheeting
  • Chewing through electrical wiring
  • Damaging framing; and
  • Making holes in pipes

Once there are issues with electrical wiring, fires can start by shorting out light fixtures and appliances. 

Additionally, many rodents end up in vehicles, especially during winter months. Their chewing through wires can cause fuses to blow and fires to start.

#7: Protecting Food Sources

Pests can negatively affect everything from massive commercial farms to community gardens. Disease-carrying pests in food facilities can cause outbreaks of food poisoning. 

All in all, pests can wreak havoc on food sources. 

Not prioritizing pest management can lead to devastating consequences for: 

  • Warehouses, 
  • Processing facilities; and 
  • Farms 

Brown marmorated stink bugs, native to Asia, have been damaging US crops since the 1990s. These bugs caused $37 million in damage to crops in one year.

#8: Climate Change

As temperatures continue to increase around the globe, so do pest populations. Pest control is needed to reduce the risk of infestations due to the warmer temperature in which many pests thrive. 

Scientists predict that climate change will increase the number of insects and expect farmers to lose 10% - 25% of crops from said insects.

Scientists also believe that warmer weather is causing increases in the mice population, leading to more work for pest control companies.

#9: Growing Middle Class

Nowadays, people have more money and see pest control as a necessity, not a luxury. Today's society expects more hygienic living conditions than that of the past. When the need arises, people hire help!

6 Ways To Safeguard Your Pest Control Company Before and During a Recession

Pest control software can improve your business by helping you be more effective and organized. Getting a leg up on the competition can increase your business. It’s time to grow your pest control business today, even in uncertain times. 

Are you ready to dedicate your time to protecting health and property? 

You can have a successful pest control business in any economy when you are committed to:

  • Learning
  • Growing
  • Improving; and 
  • Communicating honestly

#1: Amp Your Marketing

Now is the time to make a name for yourself. Focus on your community and get the word out that you can help with pest control. Let people know why they should take preventative measures and what to do when they realize they have a problem. 

There are different ways to let people know about your services. 

  • Go door to door.
  • Set up face-to-face appointments.
  • Contact people by phone.
  • Post on local marketplaces. 

#2: Increase Your Social Media Presence

Social media campaigns can help keep a business in the mind of customers so that when an issue arises, they already know who to contact.

In addition, joining local groups is a great way to share your expertise and services when you see people talking about their issues. 

Don’t enter social media as a pest control company. Enter as “you” and build relationships. This relationship usually works better as it won't get you kicked out of groups for spamming its members. 

You don’t need to be a big business to be successful. In personability, you can gain what you may lose in the name of a large company. Give your customers the gift of comfort and accountability by being someone they can rely on when times are tough.

#3: Focus on Customer Education

Many people have no idea about the havoc pests can wreak in their homes. 

When customers understand the …

  • Impact of pests 
  • Lack of effectiveness of over-the-counter products; and 
  • Importance of controlling pests 

… they’re more likely to prioritize it.

Sharing signs that signify issues with pests helps educate the community. 

Additionally, understanding the customer’s journey can help you build a plan of action for your business.

#4: Develop Client Relationships

Personal relationships help solidify business relationships. People want to work with people they trust and consider friends. Make that connection and develop client rapport. 

Once clients know you are dependable and get the job done, they may rehire you for other jobs and recommend you to friends and family.

#5: Offer Recurring Services

Recurring services are often built into a business’ budget and are less likely to be downsized or slashed during financial hardship. 

Remember that any business associated with food needs your help. 

Offer your services to clients in the following industries:

  • Hospitals
  • Retirement homes
  • Daycares
  • Restaurants
  • Fast-food chains
  • Lodging
  • Property management
  • Offices
  • Conveniences stores
  • Supermarkets 

After getting a base of customers you know you’ll be servicing on a recurring cycle, you have a safety net to help protect your business.

#6: Modernize for Better Efficiency

Modernized customer service leads to more efficient transactions. There are many benefits of using pest control fleet management software.  

When your customers are stressed about the recession, your interaction with them should be smooth and flawless. Software can help increase that efficiency. Find out how to implement this ease below.

Cedar Pest Software: Helping Pest Control Companies Stay Ahead of the Competition During a Recession

Cedar Pest knows what it takes to run a successful pest control business — you need support. Improved processes, better customer communication, and updated marketing plans can help companies through a recession when times get tough.  

Cedar Pest develops pest control software for managers. We understand the ins and outs of running a pest control business and can offer software that explicitly supports the industry's needs.

With Cedar Pest, you can improve your:

  • Reporting
  • Customer management
  • Sales
  • Scheduling and routing
  • Mobile tools
  • Integrations; and
  • Payment processing

Pest removal and control cannot be done by an individual effectively. Over-the-counter pest sprays will never replace professional services. Therefore, businesses to eliminate pest problems are essential and will always be needed. 

Let Cedar Pest help you thrive in any economy.

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