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How Do You Know if There is Enough Business to Support Your Salon?

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While you can never know for certain that there will be enough business to support your salon, there are steps you can take that will help
business’s chance for success. One strong point in your favor from the start is that the beauty industry is a solid one that tends to do well, even in a struggling economy. The key to any successful business is planning. Here are some aspects you should include in your business plan to improve your odds of having enough business to support your salon.

Know Your Market
The first thing you will want to do is decide what kind of salon you want to run and who your services will be geared toward. Whether you will be a high-end trendy salon or a family-friendly casual one will determine a number of aspects of your business plan, including location. Location is a fundamentally important aspect in a service-oriented business of any kind, especially for a salon that depends on walk-in customers.

Once you’ve determined the kind of clientele you wish to serve, you’ll need to further break down your market’s core demographic in order to determine their needs. What are the needs of your customers? What are their biggest concerns? For example, is cost the biggest concern of your clients or is convenience more important? Are luxury services and the chance to be pampered by beauty experts of utmost importance to your intended clientele? Knowing the answers to these questions will increase the likelihood finding ways to fulfill those needs and, in turn,having enough business to support your salon.

You’ll also want to be aware of trends and growth within your market. If there are a number of family oriented salons in your area, would it make sense to go with that trend because it’s what seems to be popular in your area? Or should you buck the trend and go for something that stands out and makes your business more visible? The ultimate decision has to do with the trends and forecast in your area, but a little research on the competition should give you an idea of what works and what doesn’t.

SWOT Analysis
A classic business tool is the SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. If you take the time to understand these key components to your business, you will be well on your way toward employing successful business strategies toward your growth.

It may be hard to pinpoint each of these areas if you haven’t yet started your business, but it’s always a good idea to brainstorm potential issues that could arise and the things you’ll need to be aware of regarding your future business needs. For example, you may know that your salon will start out small. That could be a weakness in your market where people tend to be attracted to the larger, flashier shops. However, you can turn that into an opportunity by getting creative and coming up with ways that your salon excels, like individualized consulting services for each client and other such perks. One threat to consider is always neighboring businesses. If you’re in a mall, you could face changes in shopping traffic patterns. In a neighborhood, there’s always the possibility of decline. Being aware of these possibilities ahead of time will help you to build a stronger and more vital business that can withstand change.

Services
Finally, the services you offer are a big factor in your potential to succeed. As a startup, your salon may be small. Offering too many services is a trap you want to avoid, as it could spread your staff too thin and put them in a position of not providing stellar salon offerings. You don’t want to have staff that is seen as jacks of all trades, but masters at none. Offering fewer services is just fine, as long as the services you do choose to provide have worth to your clientele and are performed with excellence. You also want to be sure to focus on customer service. A friendly, professional staff can go a long way toward repeat business and client loyalty.

Will you accept walk-ins? What about products? These are definitely aspects of your business you’ll want to take into consideration. Walk-in customers from a busy neighborhood or mall can be the lifeblood of a salon. However, if you’re projecting a high-end image, you may wish to maintain the appearance of exclusivity by requiring appointments. If you can market your salon and its services as trendy or high-end, you can charge premium rates. What you charge will also affect how much business you attract. Market research on the competition in your area will help to determine what is sustainable in terms of pricing.

Keep these foundations in mind when planning your business. With some time, research and creativity, you’ll surely find that there will be enough business to support your salon.