Running a beauty salon can be a rewarding enterprise. Whether you’re a trained beauty therapist, or are simply interested in setting up a business, running and managing a salon can be a very profitable venture, provided you follow a few simple rules.
Read on to find out what steps you need to undertake to start up and maintain a beauty salon.
Like in any other business, planning is a big part of what can make your beauty salon a sustainable success. Hopefully, you’ve got a name for your salon already, but if you don’t, suggestions from friends and family are a great way to go.
You’ll need to decide on the matter of space, too: if you have existing property that can be converted into salon space, nothing like it; if you don’t, you’ll have to look around for space you can rent.
How much of it you’ll need depends on quite a few factors, which you also need to plan for and decide on well before you begin. Some of the questions you need to ask yourself are:
What services are you going to offer?
Hair care, body care, manicures/pedicures, waxing, skincare and eye care, reflexology, and aromatherapy are examples. Some services can be clubbed together and performed in the same physical space, while others require dedicated areas. Also think about whether your beauty salon will cater just to women or be unisex. If unisex, will separate physical areas be needed for male and female clients?
How many staff will you need?
Whether it’s just you to begin with, or whether you need to hire other beauty therapists for the salon. Having a staff on board automatically increases the space you’ll need to accommodate people, equipment, and décor. Having a staff also means you need to plan for training and uniforms.
Do you plan to retail products?
If so, you’ll need to factor in extra storage space and space to set up promotional material.
Remember that some cities may have municipal regulations that require you to register with them and/or get clearances for setting up a salon – be sure to check on this well before you start. Don’t forget to factor in restroom facilities for your physical space as well.
Designing and Decorating:
Once you decide on your services and number of staff, and have space that you can effectively convert to a salon setting, make a list of what physical changes need to be made to the area, and start working on it.
Things you’ll need to consider when visualising your space on paper, apart from sofas, tables, and chairs, are power points, water points, lighting, and windows. You don’t necessarily have to stick to a particular theme, but having one can help your clients identify with and be pleased by the overall ambience.
Choosing and Purchasing Equipment:
It’s best to buy equipment that’s of the highest quality that you can afford. You need to look at equipment as investments which both pay for themselves and make profits for you in the long run.
What kind of equipment you purchase depends on the services you plan on offering (and the availability of staff to perform them). Know that you can sometimes lease salon equipment instead of buying outright – look into what suits your budget best.
You’ll also need a reception desk, with lockable drawers that can hold cash and receipts. A computer is a good way to be organised: if purchasing a new one outright doesn’t fit well into your budget, go second-hand, or have your personal computer serve its time at your salon.
An old-fashioned appointment book is perfectly acceptable to begin with, however, and you can move on to a computer as business grows.
If you’re looking to sell retail products at your salon, choose one company and stick to it. Becoming a dedicated franchisee of a particular brand can help boost the image of your salon overall.
Before you open your salon, ensure that you have enough of all essential supplies. What supplies you need to keep in stock depend on the services you plan on offering. When offering services such as waxing, you’ll need to ensure you have enough wax and related supplies at any given point in time.
Manicures/pedicures require specialised tools, and if you’ll be selling retail products, you’ll need to have enough stock and a stand for them. The following list covers supplies common to even the most basic of salons:
• First aid box
• Scissors and combs
• Hair dryers
• Cotton wool
• Disposable gloves
• Equipment cleaner
• Relaxing music
Publicity And Marketing:
Make sure that a part of your budget is spent on publicising and marketing your venture. This need not be very expensive.
You can advertise in magazines and papers, send out flyers in the local neighbourhood, and even advertise online, either via dedicated website, or on social networking sites. Having an introductory offer or two on services can be a real boost as well.
Sustaining and Growing Your Business:
Sustaining a beauty salon doesn’t take much: you just need to keep your customers happy. Never underestimate the power of word of mouth. Customers that enjoy their experience at your salon will always share and recommend your business with their family and friends.
Growing beyond your present scale of operations depends on how successful your venture is: you might want to slowly begin growth by offering more services, move on eventually to expanding or relocating physical space, or even starting a new branch entirely.
Whether you’re a trained beauty therapist, or are simply interested in setting up a business, running and managing a salon can be a very profitable venture.
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