The Salon Industry Shift Toward Hourly Pricing

Many salon owners and stylists are evaluating outdated practices that in truth, never really worked well anyways. One of those is how service pricing is structured – an age-old dispute in the industry.

More salons are now shifting towards hourly pricing and moving away from the traditional a la carte model. Few and far between are the days of clients walking in with thick, waist-length hair and paying the same price as someone with the exact opposite. Salon owners, stylists, and clients alike are all seeing the benefits of hourly pricing. Read on to see for yourself.

How Stylists and Salons Win

Switching over to an hourly model allows both the stylists freedom without hurting salon revenue, explains Bounce Hair Boutique owner Jennessa Couture. After being forced to close for 11 months during the pandemic, Couture decided to rethink her salon and ways to future-proof it moving forward. Switching over to hourly not only affords her more control over the salon revenue but gives her stylists more freedom to make the money they want.

“Stylists are validated and in control of each service they provide, being more present for each client in the day.”

-Jennessa Couture, Owner of Bounce Salon

Moving to hourly pricing is really just simple math. Stylists decide what they want to make for a year, how many days a week they want to work, and work back from there to decide their hourly rate. Couture tells us their pricing is inclusive of gratuity, so this should be factored in when deciding on rates, and clients are made aware the salon is “gratuity-free”. This not only takes away from the stylist’s feeling they need to work for tips but also the feeling of go, go – trying to jam as many clients into the day as possible.

How the Clients Win

At first glance, clients might see this as a major price hike. While stylists know techniques to achieve the desired look can be lengthy and extensive, many clients might not realize that walking in the door. In order to achieve a look, it could include numerous a la carte services, which quickly add up oftentimes more than an hourly rate. Educating them further on the change will allow them to see they’ll actually walk out getting the results they want at the price they agreed on before walking through the door. Couture explains the concept further,

“Make sure clients don’t think this is a start and stop the clock. Clients should have a full quote before sitting in the chair and it shouldn’t change unless less time is used.”

-Jennessa Couture, Owner of Bounce Salon

Instead of having an uncomfortable and often surprising conversation in the middle of what is supposed to be an enjoyable service, all the money talk can be forgotten once the client is in the chair. Clients may use Aura’s client application to text back and forth with their stylist to explain their hair goals with the help of attaching photos, and they can have a conversation around the timing and cost to achieve the look they want.

Aura then guides clients to book the amount of time required, agreeing to a price before walking in the door with all the services included to get the look they want to achieve. Even more, they can use a card on file to place a deposit or pay in full so they don’t need to worry about it the day of. That means stylists never have to skip steps, guests get the results they want, and neither party has to be uncomfortable during a service dreading to pay more or bear the bad news that even more money is needed. It’s a win-win!

Future-Proof Your Salon

Is your salon ready to start reaping the benefits and convenience of hourly service pricing? Contact the Aura team to learn more about the concept of hourly pricing and get a demo of how Aura Salonware can easily guide clients, stylists, and salon owners alike through online booking, back bar, and time tracking.

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