Hair salons cater to women, but women are not the only ones who want to look good; men want to look good, too! This is where barbershops come in, as they tend to focus on male clients. There can be some difficulty in making a profit in these small business barber shops, but if you approach the different aspects of the business with a good plan and a serious drive, you can succeed.
First thing’s first, you want to make sure your barbershop is up to local and state guidelines for cleanliness and legal measures, just like other cosmetologists. At first you may not think this can have an effect, but it definitely can. Have you ever walked in to a place and it was unkempt and filthy? I have a feeling you didn’t stay, or if you did that first time, you did not go back. This is how customers can feel if they come in to your barbershop and it isn’t up to the code of cleanliness. Not to mention this can also lead to you being fined or even losing your permits and licenses to even run your business! So make sure to take care of your shop and stay on top of extra seminars that can really show your customers you mean business and are one of the better shops in town.
Like with any business, you want to understand the market before trying or changing any sort of new market strategy to try and get new or repeat business. Check out what other competitors are doing, and what kind of demographics are in your community. Base your strategy off of the results you get from studying and researching the market. How did a client hear of you? Make sure to ask them that when they come in for the first time, and don’t be afraid to change your strategy up if you see a significant change in demographics. Also, don’t forget to take the average income bracket in to consideration when deciding how much to charge for your services.
Remember earlier where I spoke about keeping your barbershop kept up? That wasn’t just about cleaning up hair and dust. No, you also want to keep your paperwork and supplies in order as well. Organization is key to helping your profit margin. When paperwork is done and filed correctly, there are less chances of bills being misplaced, and therefore forgotten, and you can keep your books in order to avoid any unnecessary errors that could cause issues for you financially. As for supplies, when they are organized correctly, you can get a better view of your stock, and there will be less inventory issues when it comes to selling and buying more products. You want to be more efficient, as this leads to more profit.
Getting to know vendors is a big deal, as you will definitely need different supplies for your shop. This can be anything from scissors, to razors, hair care products, you name it. If you can buy in bulk, you can save some serious money, just make sure you have the room for it and not overcrowd! See the point on ORGANIZATION. Another benefit to building a good relationship with a vendor is for the potential to purchase items on short-term credit, or building a commission based structure for selling a vendor’s products.
So you’ve got a bunch of profits now, what next? Hoard all that cash? While that is a nice idea, you should really think of setting some aside as an investment in to the future of your business. How much you set aside is completely up to you, but it will definitely help. You never know when a rough patch could hit, and business slows down. Having some emergency funds will be great to keep you sailing, and not having to borrow money to stay afloat. Or maybe you’ve been eying that larger location in another part of town so you can expand your business?
As a shop owner, you have the say about who you want to help your business succeed. Your employees are your first line of offense when it comes to building and growing the barbershop. Finding barbers who are currently in an apprenticeship program or are fully licensed is great from a legal view, but it is also important to find people who have a very colorful personality. People love to talk when they sit in the barber chair, so having a barber who can chat back with the client it a sure plus. Make sure to set clear guidelines with your employees, and hold them accountable so the shop operates without a hitch.