11 Mistakes to Avoid When Opening a Salon Business Today

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Written By Adeyemi Adetilewa

Opening a salon business can be a stressful time as there are so many things to remember and quite a few goals to achieve. Of course, there is so much potential to make mistakes or cause delays when opening a salon for the first time because there are so many moving pieces and boxes to check. 

However, opening a salon business doesn’t have to be filled with mistakes and missteps. By leveraging this guide, you can avoid most of these mistakes upfront that could lead to things like delays in opening your salon or going over your budget.

Make sure you create an opening a salon checklist that you can cross-reference with this guide to set yourself up for success. 

Whether you are in the early stages of opening a salon business or right in the middle of the process, this checklist will be helpful in assisting you every step of the way. 

1. Not Creating a Salon Business Plan 

Not Creating a Salon Business Plan

Your business plan is one of the single most important things you will need to arrange and have before you open your salon business.

Business plans are critical because they detail your direction, budget, mission statement, and other things like the services you will offer and the salon equipment you will purchase. A business plan is meant to be flexible and adaptable as you open your business. Even if you don’t have all the details upfront, creating a plan that can be adapted is wise. 

2. Prioritizing Cost Over Quality for Equipment 

As you begin to purchase salon chairs and other salon furnishings for your space, you want to make sure you are investing in high-quality equipment. This may mean that you are spending more money upfront, but it is well worth the investment.

A big mistake most business owners make is skimping on equipment to save costs, but all that does is create larger costs as your business begins to grow because you need to invest in new equipment. 

3. Not Creating a Detailed Budget

Not Creating a Detailed Budget

Similar to your business plan, having a detailed budget for every expense you will incur is critical to your success.

Many new business owners either go in without creating a budget or they don’t go into detail with their budget to cover every expense. Knowing your options for loans or financing is essential.

4. Forgetting About Digital Marketing

Don’t wait until your business and salon have opened to start marketing it. You should be making significant time and monetary investments into the marketing of your salon business well before it opens.

Once you have your salon’s name and location determined, you should create social media pages that are on brand and start sharing more about your business, the services you will offer, when you will open and how clients can book you. It is also important to set up a website with similar details. 

5. Choosing the Wrong Location

Location is one of the most critical factors to your salon’s success. If the location of your salon business is in an area that is not accessible, doesn’t have parking, or is close to other competing salons, this isn’t great for business.

You want to make sure that your salon business is in a bustling area that can be easily accessed by car, public transportation, or by foot so that your clients can easily find your salon. Setting up shop next to competitors isn’t the best idea, but if you can find ways to differentiate yourself, it could be helpful. 

6. Selecting the Wrong Point of Sale System

When you officially open your salon business, you will need a robust Point of Sale (POS) system to handle all of your transactions.

Before you select a system, you will need to conduct research to find the best system for your business and team. Selecting one that doesn’t mesh well with your business could be detrimental. 

7. Forgetting About the Legal Aspects

Forgetting About the Legal Aspects

Do you have plans to register your business, get your salon’s name trademarked and get your certifications? There are a few different legal processes a salon needs to undergo before they open shop.

When you are conducting research on the certifications and kind of business you need to register as, be sure to check out local resources that are specific to your region. 

8. Not Determining a Design Aesthetic 

When you are designing your salon space, it is important to determine an aesthetic before you buy decor or salon equipment.

Salons that have a modern aesthetic and thoughtful design are appreciated by clients and employees. Create a salon design mood board to get inspiration for your salon. 

9. Leaving Out a Renovation Budget

One budget item that new salon owners may miss on their business plan is renovations. Whether you are building your space from scratch or moving into an existing space, renovations and unforeseen construction costs can add up.

Account for extra construction costs and renovations on your business plan to make sure you can build the space of your dreams. 

10. Forgetting to Conduct a Market Analysis 

As you look for a location to open your salon business, you will want to conduct a market analysis, which can show you if the region you are eyeing is prime for your business.

When salon owners don’t conduct a market analysis, they usually end up in locations where there are too many competitors or the location isn’t right for a salon. A salon’s services and offerings can also suffer without a market analysis. 

11. Skimping or DIYing Salon Branding 

For salons that are new and just opening, their branding needs to be strong and eye-catching. If you plan on skimping on your salon branding or selecting a designer simply because they don’t charge much, make sure you consider your choice carefully.

It is important to your business’s success to have branding that matches your vision and attracts clients. Don’t skimp out on branding! It is one of the most critical aspects of your salon.

Have you made any of these mistakes or did some of these common errors surprise you? Either way, we wish you so much luck in your new business endeavors!

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