This is the question that everyone asks? There are several different ways to look at this and make the best decision for you. Most have self-doubt in what they are offering, especially if you are new to the beauty industry. The confidence will come over time. You almost must fake the confidence until it finds you. I don’t always recommend charging for how long you have been in the industry. Charge the value of the service and the experience provide. If you have been in the industry a long time and have had continuing education, then you may be able to charge above the average amount. In the meantime, do not undercharge because you have less experience.
What to Consider When Setting Prices
When setting your price there are a few things to take into consideration. What does it cost you to perform the service, including booth rent and products? What do others around you charge for a similar service? What do you want to make in a day, week, month, and year? All these things need to be taken into consideration. The most important is your cost and income goals. If your prices start out too low because you are new it could be hard to raise your prices and may run the risk of undercharging much longer than you should. Its better to start at market level and do as many models as needed to feel comfortable charging your worth.
There is a new way of charging that is quickly spreading across the country. It is charging per the hour not itemizing every service you do. There are pros and cons to this trend. If you think about it, you already charge by the hour. You just don’t promote it that way.
Breaking Down the Costs
Let’s say it takes you 2 hours to perform a full lash application and you charge $150 for that service then you technically are charging $75 an hour. Your customer will know if they book for a 3-hour time it will be $225 or a fill that can be done is less than an hour is $75. You know your revenue is $75 an hour.
PRO: It is easier to plan your business and personal goal based off an hourly revenue rate, rather than an individual service price menu. You can easily know if you work 20 hours per week you will bring in revenue of $1500, 30 hour $2250 or 40 hours at $3000.
Your customers know if I am booking a 2-hour time slot, they will know their expected amount owed at the end. This may take a little time to help acclimate your customers to this way of pricing, but after they have it figured out it is so much easier.
Making the Switch
If you are considering making the switch, consider getting your entire salon to make the switch or find a mentor that already is charging that way to help guide you. If you are the only one in the salon that is going to charge that way, it can still be done. You may get others in the salon to follow your lead. It doesn’t matter what services you offer either. This can be done with a full esthetician menu, hair stylist, lash artist, permanent make up artist, makeup artist and let’s be real the list can go on and on.
It helps alleviate the pressure of having to add on services to your customer each appointment. You have a menu of what can be done in each service, and it is all included with that amount of time.
Cons: You must be very efficient with time management. If you are someone that is inconsistent with running on time this may not be the best way to charge for you. If you like to double book and have a fun party in your salon with multiple guests at one time, this probably is not the best way for you either. IF you would like to focus on the full experience and only have one guest at a time then this is a perfect way to charge your guests. It is easy for your guest to predictably know what their total will be at the end of the service. Some charge by 30 min increments or 60 mins. Either one can be done effectively.
Things to consider in your personal behaviors to give the appearance of 100% dedicated time they are paying for. Don’t answer the phone in the middle of the appointment. Do not respond to emails or text messages for that matter too. If there is processing times, make sure your guest knows the expected time they will be sitting for. If you are one that steps outside for fresh air, only do it during appropriate times. Any of the above behaviors could give your guest the impression they are paying for more time that what is really needed, or you are extending the time to make more money.
Different Ways to Charge for Services
Charging by hourly or itemizing your services are both great options for you. The biggest thing to take into consideration is communicating with your client. Your client should know prior to the service what the total will be. There should not be any surprises. If the client is aware upfront what they are going to pay it makes it so much easier for you when you check them out at the end. It is very awkward for both you and your customer if they do not have enough money to pay and must run to the bank to get more or their card is declined, and they are scrambling to figure out how to pay you. This can all be avoided by simply quoting them prior to starting the service.
When setting your prices do not set them on what you would be willing to pay. You do not know what someone else’s budget is and what they will pay to receive an amazing experience with you. You went to school and educated yourself on a skill. Be proud of that and charge your worth.