Business & Marketing
When and How to Raise Your Salon Prices
Posted on April 5, 2022
Are you feeling burnt out at the end of your work day? Burnout can happen when we put more energy in than we get out. When your books are filled to the brim and you aren’t finding much time for yourself, this can be an indication that you are undervaluing your services.
When burnout happens, it is good to take a look at your business model and ask yourself, is it time to raise my prices? Raising prices, no matter what the service, can be scary, if not raise a lot of uncertainty.
You might ask yourself:
“Is this price increase justifiable?”
The truth is, you don’t need a reason to justify a price increase. Let your work do the talking! If you are thinking about raising your price, it’s likely because you and your clients value your work highly.
If the reason is more logistical, like raising prices to match inflation, then that can easily be explained, and most clients know they will be facing the same price increase at most salons.
“Will my clients still come to me if I raise the price?”
Chances are, your clients don’t come to you because you’re affordable. They come to you because they love you, the relationship they have with you, and your work.
Instead of asking yourself, “Will my clients still…”, ask yourself, “Would I pay fifteen dollars extra to have my hair looking exactly the way that I desire?” If you answer yes, then your clients probably will too!
“What if this destroys my business?”
Simply put, as a Solapreneur, you are the business! The most important thing you can do is invest in yourself by making sure that you are being paid your worth and taking some time off for self-care, friends, family and life. In taking care of yourself, you are taking care of your business.
Do you value your work at the rate you want to charge? Do your clients value your work that highly as well? Then that is what you need to be charging in order to maintain the work-life balance that your work merits.
If you should lose clients that are not willing to pay new prices, the worst-case scenario is that you attract a new clientele who is willing to pay more for premium services.
Now that you know you are worthy of clients who can pay you your full worth, let’s talk logistics.
How to Know When It’s Time for a Price Lift
Whether overhead is going up, you want to attract a new clientele, your books are overflowing, or you believe your work is worth more than what you are charging, there are a couple of things to consider when raising the price.
How do you know when the best time is to raise your prices? The short answer is, raise your price now, at the moment you realize the need to, but give it time to sit with your clients.
If you want to change your price, let your clients know at least one month in advance, so that they can expect the change when it happens. This shows respect for your clients, so they don’t schedule an appointment a month in advance and pay more than they think they are paying when they leave.
The way that you tell your clients also matters.
How to Tell Your Clients
While the price change itself should not affect business, how you implement a price change can make or break certain relationships.
It is important to let clients know about pricing increases in some way that is concrete. There is no need to explain why prices are shifting, just that they are.
Choose 1 to 3 of the following methods for letting clients know about upcoming pricing changes:
- Email: either via plain text email or group newsletter email
- Print signage: hang a sign in the salon explaining price change details and dates
- SMS text messaging: if you have a mass text list, this is a great method to let people know about the price change
- In-person: at their last visit before the price hike - it never hurts to clarify pricing increases at a client’s last appointment before the changes are implemented
- At the point of booking: when clients sign up to book online, it may be helpful to have a notice or email at the point of booking that lets them know about the changes
Do not assume that your client is in-the-know about price changes. Prepare and remind each client now, so that there are no surprises later.
When to implement the price increase
Once you have determined the new pricing structure and given your clientele proper notice, it is time to up your prices. It is good to choose a solid date, like the first of the month, the beginning of summer, New Years Day, or some other date that feels like a good transition date.
When you are solid in the date of your price increases, you will be better equipped for any possible resistance, and proceed knowing that you did everything you could to prepare clients for the shift.
How to implement the price increase
Even with proper notice, some clients may forget about the price changes. For this reason, it is important to update the price increases anywhere that is applicable:
- Update website prices
- Update service menu prices - online and in-person
- Show new prices on booking site
- Update any other pricing listings that you may have - ie. Yelp, Google Business, signage, etc.
Get paid your full worth
As a Solapreneur, you set your prices - so it is up to you to make sure that you get paid your worth. If you need to remember why you are so worth the price increase, remember all that apply to you:
- Inflation is rising / overhead costs are rising
- You have gained experience as a beauty professional over the years
- You are educating yourself and expanding your skills, tools and value
- You are highly sought after
- You need space for soul clients
- Your books are full
You are worth any of the discomforts you must push through to make these changes. It is going to feel oh so good to be paid your full worth!