This year has been tough, let’s not sugarcoat it. First there were bushfires, then the pandemic put our industry into lockdown. Then, just as our Victorian salons were celebrating re-opening, the second wave hit and every salon across metropolitan Melbourne has been ordered to close again.

To even suggest that you could improve profitability in the wake of the pandemic almost seems laughable when most salons are struggling to stay afloat, right? There are possibilities though. Here are three ways that you can end 2020 with a bigger profit.

Prioritise your most profitable clients
“If you have a look at your client database and what money they bring in, you may notice a patten,” says finance expert Joselyn Hall. “For example, while your most expensive treatment may be a luxurious facial, it may be that waxing is by far your most popular and therefore most lucrative treatment. With that in mind, you may want to prioritise waxing appointments over other treatments.”

Another option, Joselyn says, is to only agree to lesser treatments if they’re booked with another treatment. “An eyebrow tint is fine, but maybe you consider only booking them as a package with a brow shape and lash lift.”

Reduce overheads
You know the age-old adage: if you don’t ask, you don’t get. You’ll be surprised how many outlets are willing to extend businesses a leg-up in a bid to help them out during this time.

“Put your pride away and ask for help,” says Joselyn. “Ask everyone from your landlord to your bank, your suppliers and your energy provider. In most cases, they’ll be able to offer a discount, or at the very least, defer payments until you’re back on your feet. Cutting those costs now will help you turn over a better figure by the end of the year.”

Only cut staff as a last resort
You’ve spent both your time and money finding and training your staff. To replace them later is going to come at a cost – both mentally and monetary. 

If you’ve exhausted all of the options including JobKeeper and COVID-19 resources for family businesses, and you still can’t meet payroll, then be strategic.

“If you’ve made bad hires to start with, or you have team members that are divisive and cause tension for other staff members, then these – and not necessarily those on the highest salary – need to be there first considerations when it comes to terminations,” says Joselyn. “Following a strict most-expensive-must-go or a -last-in-first-out method may save you money in the short-term, but more in the long term if these were team members that would serve you well post-pandemic.”

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