If you’re looking to get into business ownership and are looking for a customer facing, owner-operated role, there are many opportunities within franchising in the beauty sector.
Beauty covers a wide range of different sub sectors. You’ve got hair salon businesses, of which can either be mobile or premises based, you’ve also got massage and spa, there are a lot of opportunities to explore.
Is There Demand for Beauty and Salon Franchises?
The beauty sector is massive. Year on year the beauty and hair salon sector grows. The hair and beauty industry generates more than £7.5bn to the UK economy and this figure continues to rise in light of the fact that around 1,000 new beauty businesses set up every year. Although this figure sounds bittersweet in that there is clearly success yet competition for anyone looking to get involved, many of these businesses are single non-franchise units. Therefore they do not carry as much power and reputation as an otherwise franchise brand would.
How Much Do Beauty Franchises Cost?
How much a beauty franchise costs depends on a number of factors. Statistically, two thirds of hair and beauty businesses employ fewer than five people, whilst 94% employ fewer than 10 people. Having these numbers minimal means you’re keeping overheads low. However when it comes to the franchise investment, factors like brand name, franchise package and whether the business is mobile or premises based all come in to play. You also need to look at what type of beauty franchise you’re investing in, too.
Franchises that trade in massage and spa will either be your-home, client-home or premises based. In your home, overheads will be minimal. A home based massage franchise works because in a local setting, you’ve got the power of Google Maps and Facebook that work wonders. The same can be said for a mobile based and premises based unit, however with mobile you will factor in fuel costs and time, and with premises you will need to factor in the cost of rent, water etc. All of this will form part of the analysis you carry out with the franchisor. Mobile beauty franchises shouldn’t cost more than £50,000 total investment, with a similar figure in working capital (to cover ongoing costs and staff wages). Again, profits and losses will be analysed once you’ve signed an NDA.
Beauty Franchises contribute over £7.5bn to the UK economy, and franchising itself contributes £17.2bn according to the British Franchise Association
Top Types of Beauty Franchises – Which Beauty Franchises See Best Demand?
Despite being a strong sector which is able to withstand recession and remains resilient during times of economic stress, there are certain businesses which perform better than others either in client numbers or cost per booking. Here are some of the most lucrative beauty franchises.
Massage and Spa franchises are great for Turnover
Massage and spa days are a treat for anyone and a popular gift decision when a birthday is coming up. Not necessarily cheap, massages and spa businesses can turn over fantastic figures. Massage businesses can often be run from home, or as an owner operated setup. Either way, your franchisor will provide you (or your staff) with the necessary training and qualifications. Local massage therapy franchises can charge clients anywhere from £50 to several hundred depending on treatment, and with several bookings a week it is easy to see how turnover could exceed five thousand a month once the business is established.
Salon Franchises are Resilient
Research has found that hair salons have remained resilient throughout the years and have demonstrated higher survival rates compared to other sectors. Coupled with the supportive framework of franchising, a hair salon business is a fantastic investment. From barbershop franchises to mobile hairdressing franchises, there are many opportunities to be a part of this £7.5bn sector.
Merchandising Franchises offer great Flexibility
Merchandising franchises are a sub sector of retail franchises where franchisees will purchase goods and resell them for a higher price. Reselling wholesale goods direct from manufacturers brings product closer to the client but is very much based on supply and demand. Beauty is a great example of resale merchandising. Beauty products can be bought and sold locally as a distribution business. Fantastic for those looking to run a part time beauty business alongside other commitments…
Reasons to Invest in a Franchise in the Beauty Sector
Here are ten reasons why franchising is a great choice for anyone looking to get into business ownership in the beauty sector.
1. A High Demand, Recession Proof and Resilient Sector
Franchising has demonstrated strong resilience over the years and across all sectors, not just health and beauty. According to the British Franchise Association, 93% franchisees claim profitability and this is a statistic that has retained its reputation putting franchising high up on the list of many entrepreneurs.
According to the BFA, “There are more younger people than ever taking up a career in franchising as a franchisee” and this bodes very well for the beauty sector because the National Hair and Beauty Federation reports that “almost half of people working in hairdressing & barbering and over 60% of people working in beauty are aged 16 to 34”. Not necessarily a young person’s game, as beauty is one which appeals to more people now than ever, but these statistics go hand in hand.
Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic of 2020, beauty franchises demonstrated resilience and many franchisees are still trading as of this day.
“There are more younger people than ever taking up a career in franchising as a franchisee”The British Franchise Association 2018 bfa Natwest Survey
2. Do Something You Love
If you enjoy making a difference and providing great customer service, the beauty sector is a fantastic choice. Even if you have no experience within health and beauty, full training and support is provided by the franchisor. You may not need to carry out treatments yourself, as in many cases franchises can be run either on an owner-operator basis or as a management franchise.
If you enjoy what you do and are willing to put in effort and be enthusiastic about it, you’re already on your way to success.
3. A Business in a Box
Everything you need is provided for the investment when you become a franchisee. Depending on the franchise, this might include beauty salon shop fitting, or the simple things like starting stock of products and consumables. This does include training and support as well. Get in touch with a beauty franchise to learn more about the franchise package.
You’d only be buying this equipment and stock yourself if you were to start up a business from scratch, and with group purchasing power (more on that later) franchises may end up cheaper to set up and invest in, than starting up a business from scratch.
4. A Proven Business Model and a Brand that Works
Joining a franchise network means you’ll be trading as a proven, established and recognised brand name. One which your prospective customers may already know of. Bringing a new brand name into a local market has less of an impact than one people already know of, and hopefully one people associate positively with. Despite a franchise being new to a new area, the brand name still carries the reputation that has been built up by countless other franchisees. Not to mention the fact that the business model works and you’re less likely to make mistakes that you would starting up alone.
5. Better Flexibility & Work Life Balance
Franchising isn’t employment and you as a franchisee take full responsibility of the business you own. But that said, the direction is yours to control provided it is within the bounds of the franchise agreement and ops manual. Many beauty franchises – both owner operated and management – offer the flexibility to run a franchise part time.
6. Diverse Opportunities to Suit Everyone’s Budget
Because the beauty industry is so diverse, there are many franchising opportunities within it and some cost from a few thousand to others costing six figure investment.
Your straightforward owner operated mobile massage franchise could cost up to £50,000 and with cashflow from day one you won’t need too much working capital. Taking into consideration the fact that many banks can support financially you may only need £20,000 of your own money if not less.
Moving upwards, you’ve got management type businesses and then there is salons in a brick and mortar premises which with fitting can cost anywhere up to £400,000 total investment.
Explore the market and see which opportunity is best for you. There are many out there.
7. Fully supported from the minute you enquire
You don’t need to look very hard to find a wide range of businesses that support the franchising sector. Before you make an enquiry, there are a wealth of resources available to you before you even consider enquiring about a beauty franchise for sale.
Franchise exhibitions happen at least 3 times a year across the country, from London to Birmingham and online, plus there are numerous franchise directories advertising a range of opportunities.
Every country has a franchise association and in the UK the British Franchise Association has hundreds of members who abide by ethical franchising regulations. Banks and lenders also favour franchising for those looking for help funding their dream beauty franchise.
After enquiring, you’ll have the opportunity to attend discovery days and meet with the franchisor. Support and training is provided to you when you become a franchisee, so you’re in business “for yourself, but not by yourself”.
8. Benefit from Group Purchasing Power
Beauty products such as shampoos, conditioners, and equipment used for therapy purposes will all come at a cost, either ongoing once consumed or as part of the franchise investment.
Franchisors will have – in most cases – agreements in place with partners and suppliers. Sometimes the franchise agreement will enforce you to use a certain supplier, for the benefit of the franchise network. This is a benefit because if the entire franchise network uses the same supplier this results in good relationship between franchisee, franchisor and supplier. In return the supplier offers a better rate or price on their goods and services, resulting in what’s known as group purchasing power. Franchisees can purchase goods at a more competitive price compared to their solo operator, non-franchised competition.
9. Scale Your Earnings
If you choose to operate the beauty business on a management basis, it will be within your control how many staff you employ. In the case of massage franchises, how many therapists you take on will determine how many clients you can serve, and the final turnover of the business. In a similar manner, as an owner operated setup, how many hours and clients you serve will determine your take home figure. Scale your earnings and achieve a turnover in line your ambitions.
10. An Asset You Can Later Sell On
As with anything, once you have built up the business and have reaped the rewards you can later sell the franchise. You should expect to pay several types of fees from valuation to franchise resale advertising but even still, the final cost you sell the business for will be a lot more than what you initially invested. Building up the local reputation and client base all adds value to the business and you’ll be in line to make a profitable retirement.
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