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Earth's Largest Power Sweeping Resource

An Update for the New Year
From the Editor of
Ranger Kidwell-Ross Photo

The start of the year is always a good time to pause for reflection; to recall the successes of what has gone before and to plan for improvement in the coming year.

With that intent, I'm writing to recap the year 2007 from my perspective as Editor of, as well as to inform you about my aspirations for the power sweeping industry as we move into 2008.

I want to begin by thanking the industry companies that are supporting via the banner advertising programs they have with us. In 2007 these included Allianz/Madvac, Elgin, TYMCO, Applied Sweepers, Victory Sweepers, Pavement Maintenance Insurance Agency, Center Capital, Keystone Plastics, Sweeper Parts Online, Bids-A-Lot, and SweeperMarket magazine. The involvement by these companies is what has kept operational to date.

This past year provided over 80 articles targeted to power sweeping. To my knowledge, this is more sweeping-related information than is produced in any other venue worldwide. In addition, my periodic Editor's Notebook blog entries kept people up-to-date on the latest breaking industry news. also developed the first-ever Ethics Statement and Program for power sweeping contractors. The program was adopted by NAPSA and in 2008 will be a requirement for renewal of NAPSA memberships. Signing on to the Ethics Statement is also a requirement for all contractors who have a listing in our Contractor Locator section.

Because of the contractor 'pre-screening' provided by the Ethics Statement, those who need sweeping services in their local area have a higher level of confidence in calling participating contractors. More on that farther down the page.

Our sweeping stories this past year covered a wide range of both interests and geographical areas. These were as far-ranging as coverage about how sweeping is done in parts of Norway, Singapore and Thailand. Other major issues covered included the latest info on sweeping as a BMP in stormwater runoff regs, current best practices in fleet washing, performance tracking, sweeper maintenance issues, fleet vehicle maximization, work zone safety BMPs, getting the most money from your used sweeper fleet, and much more.

On the topic of employees, which is one of the real 'hot-button' issues throughout the industry, we provided expert information about interviewing, best practices for reducing turnover and figuring compensation, the retention benefits of flexible hours, and the rules to follow when firing, as well as articles on how to best handle a variety of other employee situations.

We also featured several powerhouse contractors and how they operate their successful businesses. These included the value of adding a fleet of small sweepers from Ohio's Phil Hicks, of providing allied services in addition to sweeping from Louisiana's Warren Burge, and Michigan-based Ray Confer provided his techniques for bidding and cost allocation. Uber-successful contractor, Gale Holsman, shared his secrets for how to ready an existing sweeping company for sale.

Other contractor-specific articles discussed how to get testimonials, tips for husband and wife operators, the systems that help a contractor make more money, the value of GPS, and ways to protect against employee theft, to just list a relative few.

Increased industry visibility was also gained through the two articles I wrote for Better Roads magazine. One of these catalogued current best practices for street sweeping and the second did the same for construction sweeping.

I was also one of the developers, along with Pacific Water Resources President, Roger Sutherland, of the testing and maneuverability protocols for a sweeper test by Washington, DC's Department of Public Works. And, slightly off-topic, I'm very proud of the award-winning book I wrote in 2007 called 'The Rise of Biodiesel.'

The year 2008 marks the start of my third decade of involvement with the power sweeping industry. I would like nothing more than to continue my efforts to improve the professionalism and stature of our industry. However, since is a completely independent effort and sweeping is a relatively small industry, a strong level of industry-wide support is required. I very much want to keep the website both up-to-date and free to use.

One of the ways you can support is by becoming a part of our Directory of Contractors, which is called our 'Contractor Locator' program. The good news is that your listing should more than pay for itself. Because of the strong visibility of the website -- coupled with the perceived value provided by our Ethics Program -- our Contractor Locator traffic is outstanding. It's not unusual for our Gold-level contractors to average over 500 log-ins to their information per year.

The big problem currently is that we don't have contractors listed in all of the locales. As a result, I'm having to field phone calls and emails from property managers, construction companies and others who are trying to find sweeping contractors in their local area. Once we fill all the geographical gaps with contractors, the program will work much better for all concerned.

Founder's Logo Each company with a Contractor Locator listing receives their own control panel that shows all the stats for visitors, website click-outs, etc. Depending upon benefit level, the listings run $100/year, $200/year or $250/year. Since all participating contractors are a part of our Ethics Program, they receive the added value of being able to use our Ethics Program logo on their websites and all of their literature.

As an example, Millenium Maintenance and Power Sweeping has had a Gold-level listing in our Contractor Locator since September of 2005. Using the data from the company's control panel, during that time Millenium's ads have been seen an average of 1900 times per month. Their ad click-throughs have accounted for 21 visitors to their information page per month. Another 79 visitors per month have gone to Millenium's info via selecting them in one of their states of operation. Not a bad investment for $250/year, eh?!

Millenium Logo

"I've tried all sorts of different advertising techniques and placements in order to grow my business.'s Contractor Locator is the listing that has worked for Millenium."

-Dave Ross, President
Millenium Maintenance and Power Sweeping

Until January 31st of 2008, every contractor who gets a listing in our Contractor Locator section may use the 'Founding Member' logo you see above. After that, use of the distinctive founder's version of the logo will not be allowed for new signup companies.'s Contractor Locator listings come with a 90-day total satisfaction guarantee. Click here to view a comparison of the program's three levels or call my assistant, Regina, toll free at 866-635-2205 (9 to 5, Pacific). You may also send her an email request for more information.

When it comes to sweeping contractors, is probably also America's largest developer of websites and website host. Turn-key websites start at $450, which includes purchase of your domain name, unlimited email addresses and hosting for one year. If you're even thinking about getting a website or changing the one you now have, we invite you to download and use's pdf-based Website Planning Guide. You'll find it to be a great help no matter who does your site.

We have also designed brochures, flyers and other promotional material for dozens of contractors, as well as set up a number of local Google and Yahoo pay-per-click ad programs, done search engine optimizing and more. If you need any of these items, we encourage you to let us know.

Also, as hundreds of contractors will testify, my 'Fundamentals of the Power Sweeping Business' is the best 'how-to' book on contract sweeping ever written. Whether you're a relative newcomer or a seasoned contractor, there's bound to be information in it you can use. It is offered with a 30-day money back guarantee.

Finally, if you've wondered if you qualified for a deduction of the tax on the fuel you use while parking lot sweeping, we can help you with that, too. We have a tax attorney on board who is also a CPA and knows how to assist sweeping contractors in that area of the IRS statutes.

At the least, please become part of our Contractor Locator program today. With listings available from $100/year to $250/year, it's affordable to everyone. Plus, if you don't feel you get more than your money's worth from the program after a full 90 days of use, we'll refund your investment in its entirety.

Here are just a few of the new things you will find at in the coming year:

Already started for 2008, in a partnership with several major industry finance companies, we have introduced a new 'One Click' Finance Program. Finally, there's a place for contractors and others in the industry to go to gain the best possible financing without having to waste time contacting multiple finance companies and filling out basically the same form over and over.

We are finalizing an arrangement with an online training company that presents a wide variety of training sessions per year. These will soon become linked from the website.

We also anticipate doing some training videos of our own this year, as well as some subscription-based teleconference seminars with top sweeping industry professionals. These latter will include a question-and-answer ability for those who register for the live teleconference. Once completed, the seminars will be archived and made available for a nominal fee.

We have also added a new feature section that will contain ongoing articles by Ron Roberts, The Contractor's Business Coach. Gale Holsman has also agreed to tape a three-part audio series on the best practice steps to take when purchasing an existing sweeping company as an industry newbie; as a current contractor in the same market area; and as a company located in a different geographical area.

We're adding technology that will allow us to expand the number of articles we can put into the .mp3 audio format that has proven to be so popular with both our contractor- and municipality-based visitors. As resources allow, more programs like these will be added throughout the year.

As always, please let us know if you have any info that should be shared with the U.S. and world power sweeping community. Your story ideas, as well as hints and tips, are vital in keeping the website fresh and up-to-date.

For more information about how any of the programs work, please give my assistant, Regina, a toll-free call today, at 866-635-2205. Or, if you'd rather, send us an email telling us your interest. You'll find that both your time and money will be well invested in a great cause -- helping to make the sweeping industry more professional and viable for everyone involved in it.

Ranger's Signature
Ranger Kidwell-Ross, Editor

PS May 2008 bring health and success to both your personal and business life!