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How To Start A Profitable Barbershop Business – Complete Guide

Do you want to start a profitable barbershop? Find here a detailed barber shop business plan guide covering aspects like licenses, cost and investment, setting up, and much more.

The barbershop comes under the health and beauty industry segment. Hence, the business demands specific licenses from the relevant authorities. As a barbershop owner, you will be providing services like shaves, haircuts, and grooming services for men.

Generally, there are two ways you can open a barber store. Either as a franchise partner of a reputed brand or initiating your own store. If you are an absolute beginner in this industry, then you must consider starting as a franchise. In that case, the mother company will help you in initiating the business including advertising.

12-Step Barber Shop Business Plan

1. Market Research

The first step to follow toward launching a barber shop business is to understand the local demand for barbering services. It is advisable to do market research explore your competitors and identify gaps or niches you can fill. In addition, find out the gaps that exist and plan accordingly.

2. Create a Business Plan

Crafting a barbershop business plan is a must for this business. First of all, conduct market research in your area. Check the other barber stores and their amenities. Also, check how much they are charging for specific services. These all will help you in determining several aspects of yours.

First of all, you will need to determine the business size. How much space do you need for opening the store? And calculate the other startup costs. How you will compete with other stores? Also, plan for advertising and human resources.

3. Legal Requirements

This is mandatory. For opening this type of store, it is better to be a barber yourself first. And if you are not then you can attend specific classes to get the training.

After completion of your course, you must gain some practical experience. And after having that, you can apply for a barber’s license. To get the barber’s license, you will need to apply in the specific application form with fees. Also, the authority may ask you to submit proof of your practical experience.

After getting the barber’s license, you are now eligible to open a shop of your own. However, in starting the business, you may need a business license for commercial operation. Also, you will need to register your business either as a proprietorship or an LLC (Limited Liability Corporation) or as a corporation. Select the form of the organization very carefully.

It is better to consult with a small business advisor before incorporating the company. In addition to that, you will need to secure an employer identification number. Not all states require a salon to have a business license, so remember to check the requirements in your area.

4. Choose a Proper Location for a Barber Shop

As with any other retail store business,  selecting the right location is a make-or-break decision in this business. Select a location that has wide visibility. Also, the location must have the potential for sufficient footfall. And according to your plan secure the space you need. Furthermore, ensure your shop complies with zoning regulations and safety codes.

5. Name Your Barber Shop

It is essential to choose a catchy and attractive name for your barbershop. A properly selected name will not only enhance brand growth but also fetch more customers. You can check our step-wise guide on naming a business to learn more.

In addition, check the availability of a relevant website name address, so that creating a website does not become difficult in the future.

6. Calculate Barbershop Monthly Expenses

Apart from the fixed costs, running a barbershop demands monthly expenses. And you must be prepared for that. Typically, you may need to consider the store rent, utility bills like electricity, telephone, etc., employee salary, and advertising and promotional expenses.

7. Funding

Generally, the startup cost depends on several aspects of this business. These are the number of stores you are opening, the location, the size of your store, and the amenities you are providing. Also, it depends on the quality of the equipment that you purchase to run the store. Explore financing options such as personal savings, loans, or investors if needed.

Suggested Read: How Much Does it Cost to Start a Barbershop

8. Services and Pricing

Determine the range of services your barber shop will offer, such as haircuts, shaves, beard grooming, and styling. You need to set competitive pricing based on the local market and the quality of your services.

9. Setup the Barbershop

After securing the space, you will need to set up the store. For this kind of business, you must prepare a floor plan. It is better to talk to an interior designer. Generally, you will need to provide space for keeping the chairs, storage, a waiting lounge, and a cash counter. In addition to that, your store must have some basic amenities like

  • Hot and cold running water
  • Public bathrooms
  • Drinking water
  • Each barber chair may have a square footage requirement (such as 35 ft2 per chair)
  • Containers for trash and soiled items
  • Cabinets that close for storage of barbering tools and clean towels

In addition to that, concentrate on the color, mirrors, floors, and sitting arrangements. Moreover, you must provide a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere for your clients.

10. Buy Insurance

Also, buy the right insurance. This is not a type of license, but many states still require it for any business. The most common type of insurance is general business liability. Actually, it protects your business from any liability claims caused by unexpected events, for example, a flood or a fire.

11. Procure Barber Shop Equipment

Actually, the specific requirement varies depending on the specific services you provide. However, some of the basic equipment lists may include

  • Barber chairs, child seats, and seats for the waiting area
  • Scissors, clippers, trimmers, razors, brushes, mirrors, etc.
  • Disinfectant chemicals and sanitizers per station
  • Spray bottles, neck dusters, talcum powder, towels
  • Garbage cans for waste products and ‘to be cleaned towels’

12. Promote your Barber Shop Business

This is a must. Promote the business both online and offline. However, word and mouth is the best way of promotion. You can publish an advertisement in the local print and electronic media. Also, offer opening discounts.

Before opening, you must have a promotion plan. Also, use social media carefully. Create your own business website. Your website must consist of the name of the store, address, contact details, and services you provide.

Becoming a barber and starting a barbershop are completely two different things. If you have enough passion, dedication, and risk-taking ability, then only it is justifying to start a barbershop of your own.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Barber Shop Business Profitable?

Barbershop is a recession-proof business.  The demand for haircuts is never going to stop irrespective of any season of the year. In addition to this, this business can be started with less investment.

According to the National Association of Barber Boards of America Executive Officer Charles Kirkpatrick, the industry is growing at roughly 10%. Currently, barbering is the fastest-growing profession in the U.S.

When people come to a barbershop, they just don’t only look better but also feel better. Along with the specific haircuts and treatments, barbershops help in rejuvenating the clients. So, that they can feel stress-free. Today’s barbershops are helping to define, enhance, and critique traditional notions of what it is to be a man.

Additionally, a high-end barbershop often offers a wide waiting lounge, TV, WiFi, snacks, drinks, etc. And definitely, this type of store has the revenue potential to attract upscale consumers who look for a lifestyle destination.

Do I need a license to operate a barber shop?

Yes, in most regions, you and your barbers will need to obtain barber licenses to provide hair-cutting and grooming services legally. Check with your local licensing authority for specific requirements.

How can I finance my barber shop startup?

You can finance your barber shop through personal savings, small business loans, grants, or investors. Explore the options available and choose the one that best suits your financial situation.
3. What equipment do I need for a barber shop?

Essential equipment includes barber chairs, mirrors, clippers, scissors, combs, styling products, sanitization equipment, and waiting area furniture. Invest in high-quality tools to ensure customer satisfaction.

How do I attract clients to my barber shop?

Effective marketing strategies include creating an online presence with a professional website and social media profiles, offering promotions or discounts for first-time clients, and building a loyal customer base through exceptional service.

What are some common challenges in the barbershop business?

Competition from other barbershops or salons, finding and retaining skilled barbers, maintaining high sanitation standards, and staying updated with industry trends are common challenges.

How can I stay updated with the latest hairstyle trends and techniques?

Attend barbering workshops, seminars, and trade shows. Follow industry publications and social media accounts of renowned barbers to stay informed about trends and techniques.

How should I set pricing for my services?

Consider factors like location, competition, your level of expertise, and the cost of operation when determining your pricing. Research local market rates to remain competitive.

What safety and hygiene measures should I implement in my barber shop?

Ensure that your barbers and staff follow strict sanitation and hygiene practices, including disinfecting tools and workstations between clients, using clean and sterilized equipment, and following local health guidelines.

How can I build a loyal customer base for my barber shop?

Provide excellent customer service, maintain a clean and inviting atmosphere, offer loyalty programs or discounts for returning customers, and encourage word-of-mouth referrals through satisfied clients.

Should I offer online booking for appointments?

Offering online appointment scheduling can enhance customer convenience. Consider using scheduling software or apps that allow clients to book appointments easily.