Would you pay $2 more for your mani/pedi/haircut services?

View Results

In case you were trapped in a cave the past couple of days, you know that Apple once again set the bar on innovation with their new Apple Watch, NFC payment system called Apple Pay and introduced two new iPhones that do everything except print money. At the same time, Radio Shack announced it most likely will file bankruptcy shortly.

McDonald’s is having it’s most difficult time in 10 years while Chipolte keep rolling along even as it recently raised prices. McCafe isn’t hot while Starbucks keeps climbing even with its new pricing scheme and hand-brewed “French Press” style coffees for $2.50 a cup. Those businesses with a focus on quality can charge more money and make more money. Those businesses with a focus on the lowest price have to compete with Amazon.com and the dollar stores. Even Walmart can attest that is no fun.

The one thing Tim Cook did not mention on stage this week was that his Apple devices can cut hair or color hair; perform a mani or pedi; or complete a facial or massage treatment. Consumers are king and make all the decisions now. So when it comes to beauty services, they have one decision to make: Home or salon?

If they pick salon, that means they see value and are willing to pay for value. So why are so many salons and booth renters practically giving away their services? Top end destination spas learned long ago that their clients are willing to pay for pampering. Go to Vegas and the average price of a 50 minute massage is $150 before tip. And they are busy. Very busy. Mani’s are $40 and pedi’s are $75.

Right now I pay $16 for a mani, $29 for a pedi and $35 for a haircut. The salons I visit are very busy and the prices are very low. If the prices were raised to $17 or $18 for a mani, $38 for a pedi and $38 for a haircut, do you think the business would go down? Of course not. Just as consumers are comfortable and habit-driven to get their coffee, lunch, groceries and so forth, they are habit-driven to get their personal services. When Lifetime Fitness opened its new Executive club and took the #1 yoga place with them, members went along for the ride and paid.

The salon/spa business is tough like every other business today. Now is the perfect time to access pricing and raise prices based on the services, amenities and experience offered. The race to the bottom is one that no one wins.

Happy Thursday!