10 Essential Traits You’ll Need to Become a Successful Pet Groomer

Pet Groomer

Becoming a pet groomer and successful business owner can be one of the most stressful things you’ll ever do, but if you’ve decided to move forward and fulfill your dream of opening a grooming salon, here are 10 qualities you’ll need to succeed.

Successful Pet Groomer Traits:

Passion

It’s the foundation for every successful entrepreneur. You need to have it for the full experience of being a pet groomer. It will get you out of bed in the morning even if you’ve only had a few hours of sleep because you were up late taking inventory. Passion gets you through bad days and makes good days much more meaningful.

Organization

As a small business owner, you are required to juggle personal life, clients, employees, finances, and more. Being organized helps you focus on the task at hand and still have time for some fun. Find a system to keep you and your staff in order and stick with it.

Motivation

Drive, being a self-starter – whatever you call it, it’s a must for the successful pet groomer. The important thing to remember is it’s not a finite thing. Increase it through simple everyday things like completing your to-do lists. By completing smaller tasks, you start to build momentum to conquer bigger tasks and challenges throughout the day.

Independence

Telling your family and friends you’re opening a grooming salon is a big step in your entrepreneurial journey. Whether the advice they’ll inevitably give is positive or negative, have a clear vision of what you want from your business and how to get there. Be open while remaining true to yourself and vision.

Thirst for Knowledge

Ask any small business owner how they spend their day, their answer would most likely sound exhausting. As owner, you’re responsible for every aspect of the business. HR, finance, guest services, marketing, management, and sales are just a few of the areas you will need to be knowledgeable. Being a lifelong learner prepares you to wear all of these hats, and not always at the same time. Understanding the interconnected nature of your business is what will make yours a lasting success.

Confidence

Confidence will help you to “bring it all together.” Being confident is more than just being sure of yourself. Confidence comes from knowing you’re prepared, you’ve done the best you can, and you are prepared to take on any challenge you might face.

Selfishness

You probably didn’t expect to see selfishness on this list, but as a small business owner, you need to be selfish with your time and resources. There are only so many hours in a day, and you need to be mindful of how you use them. Don’t be afraid to say no. Your time is valuable, treat it so.

Delegation

You can’t be everywhere. The ability to effectively delegate tasks and manage your team provides you the most valuable resource of all: time. Remember to let go. Your team members might not complete tasks the same as you, so if you want something done a certain way, coach (don’t command!) on what to do instead.

Self-Promotion

Talking to others about yourself can be one of the most difficult parts of building your business. We’re taught from a young age talking about yourself too much is rude. Instead of thinking of self-promotion as a sales pitch, think of it as your way to share your passion with those around you. Grooming is a big part of your life, be proud of it!

Resilience

The life of pet groomer can be a roller coaster ride. Some days you’ll feel like you’ve made the biggest mistake of your life, but it’s important to remember bad days will pass and tomorrow holds the potential for greatness.

For more tips and tricks for pet groomers, visit our blog!

Tips for Expanding Your Pet Business

women run-businesses

The pet industry in America made over $72 billion last year. You can increase your share of those profits with easy pet business ideas such as expanding your services and broadening your marketing channels.

What services and channels will make your pet business more profitable?

This industry is constantly expanding with new products and services. Pet owners want their animals to have the best of the best, from food to massages. Adding one new element to your business can help meet more pet needs.

With so many potential pet business ideas, how do you choose? Keep reading for seven ways to take your pet business to the next level

Grooming

Dogs of all sizes and fur lengths need grooming. Some are trickier than others, which is why certification is key. Learn how to groom every type of hair or fur and you can add grooming to your roster.

Most community colleges offer dog grooming courses. You can also find hundreds online. Ensure that you practice and take pictures to use in your portfolio.

Being more knowledgeable about grooming for different breeds builds your reputation. Consider getting certified in grooming, nail cutting, and common animal skin conditions.

Different Types of Training

Do you have a knack for obedience, dominance, or agility training? This could be very profitable as one of your pet business ideas.

Pet owners need basic training for their pups. Some dogs come with their own set of issues that make them harder to train. If you become an expert on training, you can charge more for difficult cases.

There’s also a whole world of training for other types of animals. Some trainers specialize in training pets for commercials, movies, and TV.

As you probably know, training a pet can also mean training its owner. If you enjoy working with animals and interacting with their owners, then this could be for you.

pet business ideas

Sitting and Walking

Pet businesses that revolve around boarding can easily offer walking as well. It’s a natural expansion for businesses with these services.

Likewise, offering doggy daycare when you’re already a walking business.

Pet boarding is an awesome feature to add to your roster if you’re a trainer. Owners can leave their dog with you for a week of training. When they pick them up, their pup has improved behaviors.

Customers likely already trust you with one aspect of their pet’s life. Boarding and walking are great pet business ideas to make some extra money from existing clients.

Make Healthy Pet Food

Have you ever looked at the ingredient list of mainstream dog food brands? It’s not pretty. Today, there’s a larger market than ever for healthy, natural pet food.

Many owners resort to preparing their pet’s food at home. Take a load off their plate by offering homemade pet food from your business.

You can customize the meals you offer based on the client’s needs. If Rover is allergic to turkey, make options with chicken and beef. Pet owners want the best for their pets, including the quality of their food.

pet business ideas

Offer Cleaning Services

Let’s be honest: no one enjoys scooping poop. That’s why so many backyards are disastrous when the snow melts.

Remove that burden from pet owners by offering a poop scooping service. Once a week, go to their home to remove the debris from their yard.

Your cleaning service doesn’t only have to apply to the yard. Consider all the pets that use a cage, tank, or litter box. You could offer a weekly or monthly cleaning service of all pet-related accessories.

Take or Make Pet Portraits

What’s the best present you could give to a pet owner? A professional portrait of their pet. If you have photography or art skills, this could be perfect for you.

If you work with animals hands-on, adding photographer services wouldn’t be much of a change. Simply take pictures as you play, train, and babysit pets. These high-quality photos could then get purchased by the owner as an add-on to the main service.

Or, if you’re good at drawing and painting, create portraits of their pet. You could sell custom painted prints of customer’s pets on sites like Etsy.

pet business ideas

Creative Marketing Strategies

Adding new services isn’t the only pet business ideas we have though. By improving your marketing strategies, you can reach more clients. More clients equal more profit.

Flyers and word of mouth marketing are both great methods. But, to reach your potential, you need to be online. Here are some effective ways to market your business digitally.

Local SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) allows your target clients to find you online. By using keywords, optimized images, and user-friendly web design, you attract your people.

If your business relies on local clients and customers, focus on local SEO tactics.

This means using keywords that are specific to your city. Include your address on all business profiles, like your Google My Business Page.

Write content that targets “near me” searches. People searching for pet services near where they are will find yours first.

Social Media

If you’re not on social media yet, what are you waiting for? Social media platforms, like Instagram and Facebook, are excellent marketing channels.

People like to share what they find with their networks. If a client had a good experience with you, they’ll recommend you to their peers. They do this by sharing your page on social media.

You can also use social media to engage with your potential clients. Post valuable content that shows you’re an authority in the industry.

Run promotions and deals that are only available to social media followers. Offer giveaways and contests to attract new followers.

How to Grow Your Business with Instagram

how to grow on Instagram

Social media today is not what it was 10 years ago. It is no longer a place exclusively for connecting with old friends from high school or sharing your most recent vacation photos. Today’s social media landscape has evolved into a legitimate channel for brand-building, marketing, and even sales—with Instagram emerging at the head of the pack. According to the platform itself, Instagram now hosts more than 25 million business profiles and 80 percent of its users say they follow at least one business on the app.

Mind you, Instagram business profiles are being used for much more than window shopping. According to Instagram, 71 percent of its users are taking action, such as visiting a company’s website after viewing a post, or calling, emailing or direct messaging the business. With newer features such as Instagram shopping—where users can view products on Instagram Stories and purchase them directly—people are increasingly seeing Instagram as a place for consumerism.

Your grooming business can and should take advantage of this platform to grow your business. If used strategically, Instagram can increase revenue alongside brand awareness. Read on to find out how to grow on Instagram:

  1. Share content that represents your grooming business

You run a high-quality grooming shop, so your photos should be high-quality. While camera focus and lighting may not be as important on personal Instagram profiles where photos are for the memories, you want to represent your space and your services accurately and professionally. This does not mean you need to invest in a multi-thousand-dollar camera. A modern smartphone should do the trick.

Share photos that show users what it would be like to walk into your shop. From photos of the workplace to your groomers, to your furry clients with fresh cuts—Instagram provides users with a preview of the experience they will have at your grooming shop. It can even be the deciding factor of whether you win their business. Showcase your best work, any and all promotions, and don’t be afraid to incorporate your business’s personality into the content.

Most important is to match quality with quantity. 70 percent of Instagram posts aren’t seen by users due to the sheer volume of content in their feeds, so it’s important to post consistently.

how to grow on Instagram

 

  1. Start a social media contest

Incentivize followers to do your work for you by designing social media contests that engage customers and encourage foot traffic. Contests are fun and everyone likes a prize. Check out a few examples:

  • After a visit to your shop, customers who post a photo of their pet’s newest hairdo and tag your business on Instagram get 10% off their next purchase.
  • Customers who share your latest Instagram post will be entered to win a free nail trimming on top of their next haircut.
  • If you have business profiles on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, encourage your audience to follow you on Instagram, too—they may get a $5 coupon for one of your retail products!

The most effective contests will encourage followers to promote your business on their own profiles, allowing you to tap into their networks for greater exposure.

how to grow on Instagram

  1. Use hashtags to gain visibility

Hashtags are the best way to help raise your brand awareness on Instagram. By tagging #groomers, you become part of a social media community of pet groomers. You also become more discoverable for users searching that term. According to Instagram, 60 percent of users say they have heard about a product or service for the first time through the app. The easier users can find your grooming business, the easier it will be for you to convert virtual followers into actual foot traffic.

That said, you want to use hashtags selectively and strategically. According to studies on this topic, the optimal number of hashtags per Instagram post is 11, though you can use up to 30 at a time.

how to grow on Instagram

  1. Make it easy for users to book appointments on Instagram

With a beautifully curated array of Instagram photos, strategic hashtags, and catchy captions, your followers may be sold on your brand—but how do you make sure they book an appointment instead of scrolling to the next image in their feed? Consumers’ attention spans are shrinking, so it’s important for businesses to close the deal while they are still top of mind. Having a “Book Now” feature is helpful for converting social media scrollers into paying patrons. Or, make sure you link to your business’s website in your Instagram bio, so users can explore appointment options, commit to a time and check out your grooming business for themselves.

Social media is a valuable part of any modern business’s marketing strategy. It can bring in new customers, raise your brand awareness and give customers more touchpoints so they feel connected to your brand. Check out this blog post for more ideas to enhance your marketing strategies in 2019, and follow 123Pet on Instagram!

If Pets Had Thumbs Day is March 3rd: What Would Your Dog Do?

Dogs

We have all seen some bizzare holidays pop up in our calendars, but this one really tickled me – “If Pets Had Thumbs Day”.

This holiday is the perfect day, for all dog owners, to imagine what life would be like if our dogs actually had opposable thumbs!

Here’s some PAWsome things I think they would get up to:

 

Open The Fridge

Bottomline, there would be no food left.

If pets had thumbs

Text You To Ask You To Bring Him Back a Bone

If dogs have thumbs, they would have phones too!

dogs

Take a Selfie

I mean who doesn’t like taking selfies, they would probably use Snapchat filters too *sigh

dogs

Actually, Clean Up After Himself

If only this was true.

dogs

Use the Computer

Be careful they don’t sell the cat on ebay.

dogsHog The Remote

Next thing you know – they will be signing up for DOGTV.

dogs

 

 

Hitch Hike To The Park

Dogs love the park and I’m positive, if they could, they would hitchhike there everyday.

dogs

Read The Newspaper

The ‘Daily Dog’ would be a hit!

dog newspaper

So there’s all the wacky things we think dogs would do if they had thumbs, but the possibilities are endless! What do you think your dog would do? Comment below.

 

Protect Your Reputation & Manage Customer Satisfaction With 123Pet Reputation Management!

Reputation Management, dog grooming reviews

The internet has dramatically changed the way people choose where they spend their time and money. Long gone are the days where people had to choose a pet groomers through suggestions from family and friends.

With the rise of Yelp, Google and Facebook – 75% of consumers now search online to discover a business, and 84% trust online reviews as much as friends! Those stats are scary, but in reality this gives you the opportunity to outmaneuver the competition and gain clients that were difficult to reach in the past.

There are so many potential online locations that your clients could leave dog grooming reviews  – this makes managing your online reputation tricky. That’s where 123Pet Reputation Management can help!

Get Proactive – Protect Your Business Online

Your reputation is everything and with customers posting dog grooming reviews on a variety of different platforms, we understand – it’s tough and time consuming to stay on top of everything!

123Pet Reputation Management will help you manage customer satisfaction all in one spot, so you can identify and address issues before they can boil over and transform into a potential threat to your business.

Responding quickly to both good and bad dog grooming reviews is very important, as you show all prospective clients reading your response that you care about delivering a great pet grooming experience.

Reputation Management, dog grooming reviews

 

Monitor Your Dog Grooming Reviews & Respond Easily

When a client reviews your groomers, how long does it take you to see and/or respond? A quick response is especially vital when it comes to an unhappy customer, a dissatisfied customer will tell between 9-15 people about their experience.

Some businesses will even offer unhappy customers a special discount or promotion as an apology. Offering a customer 50% off their pets groom, because they were dissatisfied, will give you the chance to make their next experience a positive one and possibly win them back as a client.

123Pet Reputation Management allows you to respond to positive & negative comments from one simple dashboard. See a detailed overview of your online reputation so that you can see at a glance: how many reviews you have received from Facebook, Yelp & Google, when the reviews were received and how many were approved or disapproved.

Reputation Management, dog grooming reviews

 

Encourage The People Who Love You To Tell The World

Dealing with negative reviews is one thing, but how do you persuade your best customers to leave a great review of your business?

With 123Pet Reputation Management you can send automated texts and emails to clients (of your choice) asking them to review their experience with you. Don’t panic – if the review is not good you can disapprove and send a quick response to show them you acknowledge the issue and are outlining the steps to rectify the situation.

Client sends a great review? Encourage them to tell the world with our automated tool that post them to Yelp, Facebook and/or Google. Grow your likes, shares, reviews and social media engagement!  

Reputation Management, dog grooming reviews

Combining an excellent reputation online and using powerful software to manage that reputation will help you secure more pets, reach a wider audience and keep your groomers a ‘bark’ above the rest.

Want to learn more about how 123Pet Reputation Management works? Call our pet experts at (800) 376-0123 to find out more!

National Mentoring Month: Meet the Owners of Mucky Pup

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National Mentoring Month is dedicated to raising mindfulness around the importance of mentorship, which is particularly powerful in the world of small business. Young entrepreneurs and professionals can benefit greatly from the guidance of a seasoned pro who has succeeded in their desired career track.

Yet finding a mentor—or the right mentor—can be difficult as an up-and-comer. That’s why DaySmart Software, the makers of 123Pet, is committed to supporting and educating entrepreneurs.

In the spirit of National Mentoring Month, we sat down with 123Pet customers Jackie Boulton and Deb Cameron, sisters and co-owners of Mucky Pups, to discuss their careers. Jackie and Deb opened Mucky Pups in 1996 and have grown from up-and-coming entrepreneurs to grooming business experts. Here is the story of their careers and how they transitioned from mentees to mentors.

 

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Q: What is your favorite part about running a grooming shop?

A: First and foremost, we enjoy the dogs and the clients, and doing what we love every day. There are pros and cons, but it’s nice to have the control and flexibility we have as owners. I started grooming at a local shop in 1986 and Deb followed two or three years later. We grew up with animals, horses and tons of dogs, so it was in our blood. Once Deb saw how much I was enjoying grooming, she followed along. We get along really well, obviously.

When she chose to leave the salon where we both worked in the winter of 1995, we got talking about what we wanted to do. We didn’t want to leave pet grooming but didn’t want to work for anybody else. Starting our own grooming shop was something we could do together.

Q: What are some the biggest challenges you face as a small business owner?

A: The biggest thing that comes to mind is staffing. Finding dog groomers is difficult, but finding good dog groomers is even more difficult. There aren’t a lot of schools in Canada. Once you find a skilled groomer, the biggest challenge is hanging on to them.

Q: So, how do you attract and retain talent?

A: What separates us is that we pay better than a lot of local grooming shops. Our employees work hard, so we like to reward them and make sure everyone can make a decent living. We are also very busy; there’s always work for them to do. The harder they work and the more motivated they are, the more money they can make. That’s something we have above other salons that seem to struggle financially.

We didn’t start a business to get rich. After 23 years, we are still in the shop doing the same things that our employees are doing, including cleaning kennels and doing shampoo jobs. We do the mundane tasks, and that’s what gives us incentive to succeed.

Jackie

Q: Who is/was your business mentor? How did they become your mentor?

A: We discussed this and decided our mentors were our parents. Our dad got Jackie a job grooming at a local place, Barking Lot, in 1986. He knew the business owner and kept telling her how good I would be at the job. The owner ended up taking a chance on me and the rest is history.

Our parents were small business owners. They had a little bakery called the Daffodil in Calgary for a long time. We grew up watching them, and they instilled their morals of working hard, being honest and being ethical. Our dad never got to see how our careers in grooming grew, but he would be so proud of us. The biggest thing our mom gave us was moral support. She was someone to lean on and talk to; she shared advice on day-to-day issues and would tell it to us straight.

Q: Why is it so important for small business owners to have mentors?

A: It’s really helpful to have guidance, advice and support—not necessarily from another groomer, but just a small business owner. How would they handle certain situations?

In the past, there were times we didn’t like the way our superiors handled things. It’s a big reason why we left the previous business we worked at. We poured our soul into the shop for 10 years as if it was our own, but there was a lack of respect in the workplace. In this case, our past experiences taught us what not to do. We thought, when we had our own business, we would treat people the way we want to be treated. We would be helpful and understanding. Hopefully we have stuck to that—we think we have.

When our employees do something that isn’t quite right with a customer or dog, we show them the best way to do it. We teach them how to speak to customers, even when they’re upset, so they can handle those situations and make them better for those customers, their dogs and for each other.

Debbie

Q: What advice would you offer to aspiring groomers?

A: The advice we give our employees is the advice we tell ourselves every day: work hard, love what you do and be dedicated. Many aspiring groomers think that they will get to play with dogs all day, but ironically, that’s the last thing we have time to do. Most people are very surprised by how physically and emotionally draining it is.

You need physical support to wrangle struggling dogs, and you need emotional support when the job gets tough. Many of our clients are on their third or fourth dog with us, so you go through their lifecycles together, and we get very attached.

In addition to loving what you do, you need to understand why you like it. Grooming requires enormous amounts of patience. You’re dealing with dogs, and each have their own little quirks or may have behavioral problems. You need “dog sense,” which many people don’t have. We recommend shadowing a groomer before paying money to go to school. You need to be a strong person to be a groomer—it’s a high-burnout job.

You also need to continuously educate yourself. Don’t get stuck in ruts for the way you do things or the equipment you use. In fact, always upgrade your equipment! When we first started, we used one big calendar and a pencil to keep track of scheduling. Many groomers are still doing this, or using a 5×4 index card to keep track of client information, which requires a lot of manual work and filing.

Once our business scaled, we saw a need for software. Today, we use 123Pet software across two processors, monitors, tablets and our phones—anytime, anywhere. We use many of the software’s features—such as text and email reminders, which save a ton of time—and there are still more we’re learning about to gain visibility and raise or lower our bottom line. If groomers want to be busier, they should invest in software.

 

Pets with Purpose: Why Is Training Your Dog So Important?

training for dogs

Owning a dog can bring lots of joy to your life. But obedience training for dogs is a vital part of socializing them. Without the right training, your dog will struggle to integrate with your friends and family, as well as other dogs.

In some cases, this can be stressful or embarrassing. And in serious cases, it could have devastating consequences.

As a good dog owner, it’s your responsibility to ensure your dog is properly trained. Ideally, you should bring your dog to obedience classes when it’s still a puppy. During this time in your dog’s life, your dog will be a lot more receptive to training and will have a greater capacity for learning.

Obedience classes are also a great place for your dog to get some experience interacting with other dogs. In this article, we give you all the reasons why training your dog is important.

It Teaches Your Dog Life Skills

When you properly train your dog, you’re giving it the skills it needs to live peacefully among humans and other animals. You might think that domestic dogs have easy lives compared to how they’d live in the wild. But living in a human household puts pressure on your dog that it needs to learn to deal with.

Failure to properly train your dog could result in destructive behaviors. For example, they could become anxious and chew up your furniture when you’re not around. Or they could also behave aggressively towards people or other pets.

dog training

Alleviate Stress

If you don’t properly train your dog, you’re doing it a lot of harm in the long-run. Well-trained dogs can integrate well with humans and are generally calm and relaxed.

On the other hand, if your dog hasn’t been properly trained, it could be aggressive and scared. If your dog displays anxious behaviors, you can help them by making them feel more secure.

If they’re fearful of visitors, you could set up a baby gate that can separate them from the visitors. You could also simply put them in another room.

On the flip side, if your dog is over-excitable and jumps up at visitors, you should train them to greet people properly without being so boisterous. It’s important that these kinds of things are addressed early on, as they could cause the dog or other people to be harmed.

It Helps Avoid Conflict

It’s important that your dog gets experience socializing with other people and other animals. If your dog is uncomfortable with others, it could lead to conflict and perhaps even injury to your dog or someone else’s pet.

It simply isn’t practical to keep your dog away from other animals permanently. Inevitably, your dog will be approached by another at some point in time. In order to avoid anxiety or aggression around other animals, your dog should interact with others regularly.

Taking your dog to obedience training for puppies when they’re still young is a great way to do this. This doesn’t necessarily mean your dog needs to be enthusiastic about playing with other pets. Some dogs would rather not play with others.

Your dog just needs to be comfortable around other animals, without showing any signs of aggression or anxiety. If your dog doesn’t get this kind of exposure, there’s a chance that they’ll react aggressively when they run into another animal.

dog training

It Can Help You Understand Your Dog Better

Obedience training is about much more than just educating your dog. It can also help you to gain an understanding of your dog’s needs.

When it comes to training dogs, there’s a lot of misinformation out there. Many people inadvertently make their dogs anxious without even realizing it.

When you go to obedience training for dogs, you can be sure you’re getting good advice.

Your Dog Will Behave When Left Alone

One of the most difficult parts of owning a dog can be leaving them on their own. It’s inevitable that you’ll have to leave your dog home alone at some point. When that time comes, you need to be able to trust that they’ll behave properly.

Dogs that haven’t been properly trained might bark and howl for hours on end or they might chew up anything they can get their paws on. Not only can this sort of behavior be very costly, but it can also result in noise complaints being filed against you.

When a dog engages in these kinds of behaviors, it means they’re not in a good state of mind. When you train your dog well from an early age, it reinforces good patterns of behavior and reduces separation anxiety.

In the majority of cases, a dog that misbehaves when it’s left on its own can be taught to act correctly with the right kind of obedience training.

training for dogs

It’ll Help Make Your Dog Safer

A dog that doesn’t listen to commands is in danger. The world is full of hazards that dogs might not necessarily understand.

For example, a dog doesn’t have an understanding of what a road is. If your dog doesn’t listen to commands, they could run into the road and get hit by a car.

When a dog is well-trained, they’re safe from the majority of danger, as they can be directed to avoid it. It’s good practice to teach your dog to sit and wait before crossing the road. When this behavior is ingrained into your dog, they’ll even do it if they get separated from you.

Obedience Training for Dogs: Better Late Than Never

Of course, the best time to train your dog is when it’s still a puppy. But it’s never too late to train your dog. Despite what conventional wisdom might suggest, you can teach an old dog new tricks!

If your furry friend is having behavioral issues, obedience training for dogs might just be the answer. Training your dog can be a challenge, but the rewards are worth it. When your dog is properly trained, you can take it on all kinds of adventures without worrying about their behavior.

Want to find out more about good places to take your dog? Then read our blog post!

Dog Grooming Prices: How Much Should I Charge?

dog groomer prices

Dog Grooming Prices

The right pricing strategy is vital to your pet grooming business. So how much should you charge? Here’s everything you need to know about dog grooming prices.

An important part of setting up your business model will be establishing your prices. Yet, it can often be tricky to determine exactly how much to charge your clients. Do you offer a single price that covers all services, or upcharge depending on the specific treatment? Do you charge more for different sized dogs, and if so, how do you set the pay scale? These are just a few of the questions you may have.

Today, we’re discussing how to set your dog grooming prices. This way, you can rest assured you’re charging your customers a fair and balanced rate. Interested in learning more? Let’s dive in!

Check Out Local Dog Grooming Prices

It goes without saying that as a dog groomer, you’ll want to research your local competition. It might be tempting to offer prices lower than the “going rate” in your area. Yet, keep in mind that this research is primarily intended to give you an idea of what’s out there.

Check the local online reviews, hop on the competing social media pages, and, if you can visit the shops to check out what they’re offering and how much they’re charging. Then, use this comprehensive knowledge to help guide your strategy. But remember, successful groomers stand out by their quality, professionalism, and technique, not always their price point.

Calculating the Value You Bring

When determining how to set your dog grooming prices, it’s important to consider exactly what you bring to the table as a groomer. Also, think about how much your customers are willing to spend for the solutions you provide.

Not sure where to start? Think first about what sets you apart. Are you an expert at small breeds, able to get them to look show-worthy in a matter of hours? Or maybe you offer a de-shed that can save homeowners tons of time and money cleaning their house? You might also specialize in deep-cleaning canine teeth, or a homemade oatmeal bath treatment, or a long line of spa options that customers can’t get anywhere else.

Now think about how much those services are worth to the people who call on you to pamper their pooch. You’ll obviously need to calculate your personal costs to gather the supplies and provide the labor to make sure you turn a profit. Yet, it’s just as important to think about the services in terms of perceived value.

In other words, how much do you think your customers believe your services are worth? How much time are you saving them? What about energy and other resources? Working from here can be a valuable place to start.

animal groomer , dog groomer prices , cost of dog grooming , pet grooming prices

Critical Price Factors to Consider

To ensure your time and effort are appropriately compensated, you’ll likely want to charge more depending on specific price factors. Common considerations include breed size, temperament, and the number of services to be performed.

Let’s start with breed size. A groom for a Great Dane would typically cost more than one for a poodle, though this might not always be the case. You’ll also want to factor in the actual services provided. Some dogs may be more high maintenance than others and will carry a bigger charge regardless of size. Concerning temperament, you may want to consider charging more for dogs that are aggressive or extremely timid, as these dogs will require extra attention and care and can take longer to groom.

Lastly, the number of services to be performed is perhaps the most important factor when developing dog grooming prices. Is the dog coming in for a routine wash and nail trim? Or does he require teeth brushing, gland expression, and de-shedding? What about a deep moisturizing treatment or a specialty shampoo soak? You may want to consider establishing set packages that cover the basic, mid-range, and premium levels of care. Then, adjust from there depending on the other two factors (breed size and temperament).

Basic grooming packages are typically set at between $30 and $90 depending on your region and the price of living. You can establish a percentage upcharge for the mid-range and premium levels, or offer these services à la carte if desired.

Setting Pricing Standards

As you’re setting up the packages and upcharges described above, consider whether your prices will be set as a per dog fee, or as an hourly rate. Payment by the hour will guarantee that you’ll at least get a set amount of money for your time. As such, it is a desirable option. The primary issue with charging by the dog is that there could be unexpected delays or issues that may cause you to work overtime on a particular animal for no extra pay (think of working extra hours as a salaried employee versus an hourly one).

If you opt to charge by the dog, be sure to take into consideration its weight and the condition of its coat. For example, a young dalmatian might cost less for a basic package than a medium-sized cocker spaniel, though both are receiving the same services.

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Perks and Discounts

When brainstorming your dog grooming prices, you may want to include some rewards and perks that can be extended to your return clients. This type of incentive is great for building a client base (especially for new groomers). It also encourages your clients to share your business with their friends.

One of the most common rewards is a frequent customer appreciation discount. For example, if a client sets a standing appointment each month, you can extend a 5% discount on return services. This type of offer won’t be too hard on your bottom line, and could actually work wonders to boost it.

Smart Software: Helping Your Pet Business Thrive

As you prepare your grooming business for launch, chances are that pricing and payments aren’t your only considerations. You’ll also be thinking about operations, marketing, logistics, booking, and more. As you take this next step forward, we’d love to help. We offer comprehensive software solutions designed to make owning a pet-centric business easy and effortless.

Feel free to take a look at some of our main features, as well as the valuable add-ons we offer. If you have any questions or would like more information, feel free to contact us or leave a comment below and let’s connect!

National Dress Up Your Pet Day: The Best Pet Costumes!

If you’re like so many animal lovers out there, there’s nothing you like more than an opportunity to dress up your dog in costume and show it off. That’s where National Dress Up Your Pet Day comes in. Let your pet show off their inner Fashionista while you celebrate your love for them and pay homage to the pet fashion community.

dog in costume

What Is National Dress Up Your Pet Day?

National Dress Up Your Pet Day was founded in 2009 by Celebrity Pet Lifestyle and Animal Behavior Expert, Colleen Paige. Celebrated on January 14th, it’s an opportunity to have fun with pet fashion while giving your dog in costume some extra attention and drawing awareness to pet adoption.

How to Observe National Dress Up Your Pet Day

Observing National Dress Up Your Pet Day is super easy. It’s all about having fun while celebrating your pet. Here are some great ways to mark the holiday:

Dress Up Your Pet – Whether you’re going for a full-on costume or just a tasteful accessory, dress them up and take lots of pictures so you can remember the day fondly and compare pictures year after year.

Adopt A Pet – Don’t own a pet? This holiday is the perfect time to adopt one. One of the reasons for the holiday is to bring more attention to shelters and find homes for more pets. Take the opportunity to welcome a new fur baby into your life.

Volunteer At a Local Shelter – There are so many pets that need homes, along with love and attention. Taking the time to volunteer can ensure that you’ll brighten a lonely pet’s day. While you’re there, donate some money in your pet’s name to help other animals in need.

Plan A Pet Parade – Organize a pet parade in your community as a way for people to show off their pets in their fanciest attire.

Have a Party – Why celebrate alone with your pet when you can make it a festive occasion. Invite all of your pet loving friends to attend and consider giving out a prize for the best costume.

Post On Social Media – Let the world see how important your furry friend is by posting their pictures in their costumes on social media. Be sure to use the hashtag #DressUpYourPetDay.

dog in costume

Cute Costumes for Your Furry Friend

Having trouble coming up with costume ideas? We’ve got you covered. Here are the best costume ideas to help your pet go the extra mile and show off their inner diva.

Punk Rocker – Find a mohawk elasticized hairpiece and put it on your pet’s head. For an extra splash of excitement opt for a neon color like green or pink.

dog in costume

Eighties Superstar – A big hairpiece along with lots of colorful accessories will ensure that your pet shows off their ’80s sense of style. Lots of tulle and a big hair bow can give off a Madonna or Cyndi Lauper vibe.

Bride Or Groom – A black and white tuxedo style bib and a bow tie will suffice for the groom. Your pet can show off their bridal best with a small tulle veil.

dog in costume

Astronaut – If your pet is out of this world, consider taking some poster board and fashioning a spaceship out of it. A few red and orange pipe cleaners near the bottom will give it more of a rocket man vibe.

Unicorn – If your pet is feeling magical dress them in a white sweater with a hood. Add an iridescent horn to the hood and add some pipe cleaners in the back for a whimsical tail.

dog in costume

Business Man/Woman – Take an old dress shirt and remove both the collar and the cuffs. Put them on your pet and add a tie to give their look a corporate feel.

dog in costume

Dog In Costume Safety Tips

National Dress Up Your Pet Day is all about fun. The last thing you want to do is cause any harm or injury to your pet. To ensure that your furry friend stays safe during all of the festivities, follow these tips:

Don’t Force The Issue – If your pet doesn’t enjoy being dressed up, don’t make them participate. Instead, opt for something easy like an extra fancy collar.

Make Sure It Fits – It’s important to make sure any outfit or costume fits properly. If it’s too tight it can restrict their breathing, which is not only uncomfortable, it’s downright dangerous.

Remove Loose Pieces – Loose and dangling pieces are pet costume no-nos. Pets love to chew and any loose pieces can pose a choking hazard, or even an intestinal issue if ingested.

Don’t Irritate Them – Some pets are allergic to certain fabrics, laundry detergents, and fabric softeners. If your pet shows any signs of irritation or itchiness, remove the costume immediately.

dog in costume

Get Ready For National Dress Up Your Pet Day

Whether you’re dressing them up in Halloween costumes or letting your inner DIY designer loose, National Dress Up Your Pet Day gives you an opportunity to bond with your furry friends while you help them let their personalities show through.

Get those costumes ready so you and your dog in costume can ring in the holiday in style. If you’re having trouble finding the perfect outfit for your pet, check with your local groomer for the latest trends in pet fashion and accessories.

If you’re a pet groomer, why not hold a ‘dog in costume’ event for National Dress Your Pet Up Day to bring in more groomers to your shop! Looking for a pet grooming software to help you run your shop? Look no further than 123Pet. Find out more HERE!

Customize Loyalty Programs to Reward & Retain Clients

Loyalty Points

Develop a Small Business Loyalty Program to Boost Client Retention

Your competitors are showering window shoppers, social media followers, and even (perhaps, especially) the city dog catcher with an innovative array of enticing special offers. Everyone is looking for the right groomer, so how do you make sure it’s you, get new regulars and grow your business while creating ongoing loyalty?

Tips from industry experts will help your patrons stay happy while scheduling recurring appointments and developing steadfast relationships that benefit both parties.

Identifying Satisfied and Regular Patrons

Contented visitors:

  • Might have been clients with no to minimal personal interactions and without forming genuine connections
  • Will come back until discovering other places they prefer
  • Consider your destination a convenience and like acceptable prices, sufficient products, adequate location, unexciting experiences

Continuous loyal clients:

  • Are repeat patrons who utilize your services and products regularly, enjoying built-in affiliations with their favorite groomer and other shop personnel
  • Serve as brand advocates who praise your shop to everyone they encounter, bringing in new clientele
  • Know your shop, management, and employees well enough to forgive occasional minor slipups, like running behind, since they enjoy doing business with you
  • Don’t defect to competitors with better offers or more perks. Instead, they honor their authentic relationships with your crew

Converting satisfied clients into loyal ones will gain their exclusive business while their free publicity will encourage family and friends to expand your customer base quickly. That involves gratifying treatment through exceptional guest service; gracious phone, text, e-mail, and in-person communications; plus persuasive incentives to frequent your shop each time Fido needs to freshen up!

Establishing Preferred Customer Status

Habitual clientele who bring in referrals deserves rewards to keep returning and building your business. Starting or upgrading your small business loyalty program involves determining what makes your parlor unique. Then, decide how you can forge lasting bonds that will dazzle your regulars enough to spread the news to their social circles.

To select plan types that fit your shop, answer these questions:

  • Which products and services are popular with your top customers?
  • How often do they request particular treatments or buy certain merchandise?
  • What specific new or underutilized menu items or retail goods would you like to promote?
  • Do those consumer purchases have low- or high-profit margins?

An organized system is necessary to document and sustain your reward programs. Start defining your own small business loyalty program points setup under Messaging & Marketing > Loyalty Rewards Points Setup in 123Pet. The handy application tracks each client’s status. It informs you when every person is eligible to receive a bonus, so redeeming it during checkout is easy. Start your free pet grooming software trial today to get these and numerous other timesaving customer management features.

Loyalty

Exploring Successful Plan Types

Welcome prizes are great ways to give back, show regulars how much your shop values them, and foster continuous patronage. Consider basing points and awards on these criteria:

Referrals and reviews: For new client referrals and positive online reviews, assign points toward discounts on services or products to existing patrons. Reward everyone who brings in five prospects a free full treatment, nail clipping, or merchandise package.

Frequent services: Apply thank-you points to customers’ accounts for pre-booking return appointments for any single treatment. Options might include baths, teeth brushing, and nail trims. After five, the sixth is free.

Select upscale purchases: Reward customers for repeat business involving any high-end menu and retail items you’d like to push. Gaining greater points will inspire patrons to indulge in costly buys more often to earn free full grooms and product packages.

Promoting Your Incentives

Provide fast, instant details via Internet marketing, social media postings, and e-mail blasts. Customers can review small business loyalty program features quickly to start earning points immediately. Feature in-shop signage for each prize method. Rewarding checkout moments can be prime influential opportunities as uninformed patrons watch regulars rejoicing over money-saving bonuses. Such observations encourage feelings of desire, so be ready to invite outsiders to join your special group that shares a devoted sense of community.