Tips to know BEFORE you buy a salon!! - tanTALK - Tanning Salon Business Owners Community
Once upon a time, a girl in the Midwest, sick of working hard for everyone else, tired of leaving her kids at home to be raised by everyone but her, who decided to go into business for herself. I stated the why of wanting to own my own business. This was followed by a whole series of questions regarding business ownership—everything from what type of business I desired to embark upon, to whether or not I had enough capital, to did I need or want business partners?
I was a misplaced Floridian who missed the rosy, healthy-looking glow of a sun-splashed body.
One of my dearest Florida friends owned and operated her own tanning salon and hanging around her place, I got a taste of what was involved as far as licensing, costs, upkeep, employees, etc. I only wish that the decisions beyond what kind of business to open had come with such great ease. I briefly explored buying into a tanning salon franchise, but balked at the prices on those things.
Convinced that I could do it myself for a fraction of the cost, I ordered a tanning bed catalogue and set about planning and spending. I rented a premium location near major businesses and a huge local college, two distinct advantages over the other tanning salons currently in local operation.
I got the proper permits and paid through the nose to have the place renovated to accommodate half a dozen beds to start with and for wiring to city code. None of this came cheap.
I opened Tropical Tan North and it was wildly successful, and I closed it four years later. Oh, I was making money, but not nearly enough given the outrageous clientele numbers we were enjoying.
The salon had a great location, was always open, had the newest bulbs, the cleanest beds and the lowest cost lotions, so we had the numbers. But, for example, I barely profited off of tanning lotions, which I underestimated to be such a huge part of salon business. By neglecting to realize this and seriously under-pricing the competition, I literally walked away from profit.
Because we had higher traffic than other salons, the beds were constantly in operation, which naturally spelled out the need to replace bulbs and acrylics more often, not to mention those occasional mishaps that result in bed damage. In my case, superior customer service became a curse.
Because our salon had become known for its courtesy, I was personally in attendance for at least 14 hours a day, every day, to deliver.
I paid my bills and closed up shop. For four years my intended American Dream of being an independent business owner bordered an all-out nightmare. Analyzing the situation now, I can see that I had many assets: Had I invested that time, talent and money into a franchise tanning salon chain, I might still be in business today.
When making the decision to go independent, I seriously undervalued the benefit of guidance and tools of those who have gone before us.
Tanning Salon Revenue and Income Potential Calculator
My independent operation had a well-earned reputation that cost me only 14 hours a day, seven days a week, with minimal profit to show for it. It works, or there would be no need for franchising whatsoever.Tanning Salon Refused Service To Woman Due To Her Weight
But along with the franchise price tag comes the power of a network and access to solid business knowledge, and that is priceless. Thursday, November 13, Confessions of a Former Independent Tanning Salon Owner.
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Newer Post Older Post Home. With useful articles on starting your own franchise from selecting the perfect franchise to managing your business, Franchise Monster will guide you through the process. View my complete profile. Confessions of a Former Independent Tanning Salon