Do you have what it takes to be sweet in your very own suite?
You got your professional beauty license in hand, an IG page and a bag of nail tools with a brain full of art ideas for digits so you want to jump into getting your own suite, after all- that is the way to go, right?! Everyone else seems to be doing it. Well, it does seem to be that way, yet you don’t get to see the backside of the story. Many fail within their first year. With many not making rent after 6 months and ultimately having to break their lease. That is why many more salon suites offer month to month options now.
Many beauty pros are self sufficient, independent personality types and not really wanting a job or a boss. However, without the necessary business skills, time management know-how and a marketing plan many ‘jump out on their own’ and then fall pretty hard.
How Do I Know If I'm Ready to Go Into a Salon Suite?
First, let’s talk about why some have been unsuccessful and why...
- Jumping too soon
- Not enough clients
- No tracking system for money (coming in or going out)
- Too many expenses
- No marketing plan. No elevator pitch
- Overspent seed/start up money
- No savings for clientele building or slow months
Here is a checklist of things to have in place prior to getting your own space.
- Service timing and consistent clients. You don’t need to be booked solid, however you need at least 15-20 consistent clients who always book. This income should equal more than 1 month's rent. If not, you are headed for disaster.
- Seed money. Living month to month is stressful while trying to build a business. Many of us start this way and operate this way for years. The amount doesn’t need to be extravagant, it just needs to be sensible. Begin with 3 months (of saved money) to fully cover all expenses, not just the space rental.
- Create a budget and a theme for decor and equipment. Don't go in willy-nilly, have a plan and have a budget. Use your organizing tetris skills to stay within your budget. Move things around as needed. Buy used or in bulk to save.
You can get your beauty and your business on, and here’s how.
1. Make sure to have enough clients
This is important. If you have 3-8 steady clients- that is not enough. Aim more for about 15+ solid consistent clients that you’ve had for 6 months +. These current, present day clients should bring in enough money to cover your entire rent. So for instance if your current clients totalled up for a month is $1275 in services and the rent is $350 a week = $1400 a month - It is not yet time for a suite. Aim to gain 5 or more solid clients.
I am not against a ‘jump and grow your wings on the way down’ approach- I often succeeded at this or found my way into something else - but setting oneself up for success is more important.
2. Don’t operate on magical thinking...
...which is ‘If you build it they will come.’ It can work sometimes yet having 6 months of savings to cover all expenses will have you more focused on building your business and less stressed about it not growing and making your rent by hoping clients will come. Get help, real help - rather than hope! Marketing skills are key and necessary!
Take this poll to see if it’s a sweet time to make the jump into your own space.
- Do you have working hours ?
- An easy way for clients to book ?
- An easy way for clients to pay ?
- A marketing plan ?
- An elevator pitch ?
- A menu of services ?
- A solid clientele of 15+ ?
- Seed money ?
- A budget ?
- A contingency plan 6 months of savings ?
- A way to track your income/outgo (app/scheduling) ?
*If you’ve answered YES to 7 or more then you are a candidate to look into getting your own suite further.
*If you’ve answered NO to 6 or more- get help! Back away and get the proper support and education prior to ‘making the jump’.
Close to taking the jump? Check out HOW TO MARKET YOURSELF AND YOUR BUSINESS, ANYTIME & ANYWHERE IN 2 EASY STEPS
Naja, aka The Nail Guru is an award-winning nail artist, international educator and seasoned salon owner. A key-note speaker and published writer, her nail work has been seen on Lady Gaga, Mary J Blige, Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Kanye West, LL Cool J and many more. She holds a Guinness World Record for the most polish changes in an 8-hour period, with 69 polish changes. Her passion is helping young entrepreneurs in the beauty field make consistent CASH from their CRAFT. She offers online classes, monthly workshops & coaching on the business side of the industry for beauty professionals.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, Click here.