If you are licensed in a state where the cosmetology and barbering state board allows mobile salons and concierge services like house calls, you may be ready to add offsites to your service menu. After all—customers live in a world where everything from take-out and groceries to a ride to the airport can be delivered to their home with just a few clicks! But now that you’ve decided to go mobile, what are you going to offer your clients? For your mobile salon to take off, you’ll need a dedicated business plan. Luckily for you, we’ve gathered everything you need to tackle in a few handy checklists!
Know Your Target Audience
Taking your salon mobile isn’t as simple as packing up your gear and heading out to visit customers. Before you open your books to let customers request appointments offsite, be clear about your target audience.
- Do you want to attract new customers, or reserve house calls for established clients?
- What distance are you willing to travel?
- What are your offsite requirements? (e.g. non-smoking homes, no pets, no children during scheduled appointments)
- How will you attract new customers to book mobile services?
If you’re not sure how to handle these points, you may want to consider a “soft opening” first. Start by offering mobile services and house calls to your established clients. That way, you can get a feel for it and decide if it works for you, before branching out to serve new customers.
Get Familiar with Your Local Competitors
You know your brick-and-mortar competitors – but do you know the players on wheels? If not, do some research on other local salons offering mobile services. If you find other salons in your area offering offsites, use them as a point of reference. Make a list for your business plan that includes areas of similarity, as well as where you can differentiate.
- What area do they serve? Could you expand that area to serve more customers?
- Do they take new clients? What will your requirements be for new clients?
- What services do they offer? What services could you offer that they don’t?
- Do they require deposits? What deposits will you require? How are they advertising this service? How will you market your mobile salon?
Decide What Services to Add to Your Menu
For mobile visits and house calls, you may need to whittle down your service menu. After all, not every service can be performed outside of a dedicated salon space.
- What services will your clients want most? (e.g., haircuts, color, foils, perms)
- Which services are best suited to mobile visits without compromising quality?
- How will you handle complex chemical services, like cysteine or keratin straightening treatments?
- Are there services that are not financially suited to house calls? (e.g., kids haircuts without an adult cut booked at the same time, bang trims, etc.)
- How will you ensure the same level of disinfection and sanitation in a client’s home?
When drafting your mobile service menu, make sure that you add only the services that your clients want most, that you’re sure you can deliver the same quality, and are worth it for you to travel offsite.
The Price is Right
Once you’ve settled on your service menu, it’s time to do a quick review of your price list. Remember, even pizza joints tack on a delivery fee – so don’t hesitate to make sure that your offsite services are adjusted to reflect everything from gas and travel time to mileage and wear and tear on your car.
- How will you factor in the overhead costs of mobile services?
- How do your competitors price offsite services?
- Will you charge a flat fee for offsite visits?
- What surcharge covers your expenses and is fair to customers?
Pro Tip: As an independent contractor offering mobile services, your associated costs are something to submit to your accountant for taxes. Make sure you keep updated logs of your daily mileage, gas expenses, monthly auto insurance, and maintenance costs.
Now that you’ve got a plan – we’ve got the tools to put it into action! It’s easy to enable our Outcall/Mobile Services feature and get yourself listed as a mobile business on Vagaro.com. Then, save time at checkout and keep your transactions sanitary with our new COVID-Clean touchless payments and you can be on your way to your next client in no time!
Header Image: Giorgio Trovato via Vagaro
Icons: Mia Montemayor via Vagaro