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How to start a Locksmith business in the UK

Rhino Trade Insurance 10 June 2023

In the UK, the locksmithing industry is booming. Now is a fantastic moment to enter the trade and set up a business due to the expanding population, rise in new-build properties, and (sadly) the growing levels of crime rates because of the cost of living crisis.

Those who are interested in dealing with locks, keys, and security systems may find that starting a locksmith business is a lucrative and fulfilling endeavour. To ensure its success, it needs planning, research, and preparation, just like any other trade business. 

In this post, we'll go through the essential steps to starting a locksmith business and offer some advice on how to build your brand, draw in clients, and expand your enterprise.

What to do when starting a locksmith business

In order to start a successful locksmith business, you should have a few things in your proverbial toolkit. A strong work ethic, fundamental locksmithing competencies, and some level of professional experience are unquestionably necessary. You should be able to manage your business, too. After all, managing a successful trade business provides a whole host of new obstacles, regardless of the industry. Let’s take a closer look at what you’ll need to get started.

Understand the trade

Prior to starting a locksmith firm, you must have some knowledge of the industry and how to do the job. Learning about keys, locks, and security systems is necessary for this. This knowledge can be acquired through formal training and education or by joining an experienced locksmith as an apprentice. This will allow you to learn more practical lessons on the job. 

You can obtain the right skills and knowledge from one of the various locksmith schools and training programmes that are offered. To keep updated on the most recent developments in the locksmith trade, join online forums and newsletters, attend trade exhibitions, seminars, and conferences and join a trade organisation. 

Buy all the necessary equipment.

You must spend money to make money, the old saying tells us. So from the start, you will need to invest in tools and supplies like picks for locks, key-cutting machines, blank keys, and other items such as basic hand tools as well as certain power tools. 

If you want to establish a locksmith business in your area, you will most likely also need to buy a van or work vehicle so that you can store/ transport your tools and supplies to/from job locations.

To guarantee that you can give your customers dependable and expert service, it is crucial to invest in high-quality tools and supplies. In order to manage your business, you can explore automated invoicing and other small business management software tools that will make the running of your company that bit easier. 

Invest in trade insurance.

Everyone working in the trades needs trade insurance to protect their company in case of an issue - whether it's big or small. To make sure you have the appropriate cover for your line of work, Rhino Trade Insurance has created tailored insurance solutions for practically all UK trades. We have the ideal locksmith cover for you at the most competitive price on the market, whether you're seeking protection in the form of Public Liability Insurance, Tools Insurance, Employers' Liability Insurance, Personal Accident Insurance and more. 

Don't leave your business short as a locksmith. Get protection against the risks and hazards you are faced with. Claims can amount to hundreds of thousands or even millions, so having the appropriate insurance in place means your business will survive should you have an accident, become ill or find yourself the subject of a claim.

Establish and market your business.

To attract clients and expand your locksmith business, marketing is key. As a local tradesperson, word of mouth goes so far, yet to build a solid client base, you need to have a strong brand to entice a large pool of customers.

Your brand should be a reflection of your beliefs, mission, and unique offerings. It is essentially your shop front and a professional extension of who you are and, therefore, should be consistent across all of your marketing materials, which will include a website, social media profiles and business cards.

You can employ a variety of techniques to market your company and develop your brand, such as:

  • Build a website with simple tools like Squarespace or Wix. 
  • Choose your company name and create a logo. 
  • Choose a colour theme that you like, and that goes well with your business (for example, will it go well wrapped on your work vehicle?) 
  • Post engaging content on social media channels 
  • Write blog posts on your website, perhaps showcasing work you have done (this helps with SEO when people search for you). 
  • Consider advertising on Facebook and Instagram. 
  • Build a rapport with other tradespeople and join online groups.

Find out all the things you need to know about marketing a new business here

Set your rates and thrive.

Before you open for business, you must also determine the price you will charge for your services. 

Your pricing list should take into account a variety of elements, including the services you provide, your level of experience, and the costs of your rivals in the same area. 

For context, the Master Locksmiths Association reports that the typical locksmith in the UK bills £65 per hour. As most tasks can be finished in an hour, many locksmiths charge a cheaper fee for extra hours of work beyond the first. It's also important to keep in mind that some locksmith professionals will charge an out-of-hours fee if the call occurs during "unsocial" hours. Typically, this refers to calls received between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m.

You can find out more about pricing your services here.

Why choose Rhino Trade Insurance?

Why not call Rhino Trade Insurance on 0116 243 7904 if you've been pondering your trade insurance options? Our industry experts can offer advice on what your particular business may need and also provide you with a completely unique and tailored locksmith package that is quality and cost-effective.

If you're interested in learning more about the cover alternatives available for your line of work, why not visit our website or read our blog? From there, you may utilise our straightforward website to acquire a price right away.


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