How to Open a Nail Salon & Proven Tips

How to Open a Nail Salon & Proven Tips

Do you have a dream to own a nail salon but don’t know how to open a nail salon? You are not alone. In this guide, you can learn how to open a nail salon in eleven steps.

Each day, more people are looking for a place to make their nails beautiful, well-kempt, and pampered. A nail salon is a choice destination for this sort of people. They provide manicures, pedicures, and other essential nail treatments to make customers’ nails look better and more beautiful. Do you have a dream to own a nail salon but don’t know how to open a nail salon? You are not alone. In this guide, you can learn how to open a nail salon in eleven steps.


Step 1: Map Out A Business Plan

The very first step to take before opening a nail salon is to create a clear plan. A salon business plan will help you outline the specifics of your business and discover what it entails.


A few important considerations are:


Financial plan or budget: You cannot start a business successfully without having a clear, honest financial plan. “How much does it cost to open a nail salon?” is the most FAQ in this business? Luckily for you, we’ve answered that question in the latter part of this guide. For now, we will highlight other important factors besides how much to open a nail salon.


First, when opening a nail salon, don’t try to do what others are doing especially when you are incapable.


Secondly, we recommend that you start small and then scale up as the business grows. Starting small will help you make fewer mistakes and lower risks. Doing this will help you accumulate a wealth of experience needed to build a bigger brand.


Thirdly, find an estimate of what it will cost to run your salon based on your budget. Seeking counsel from experienced mentors can be helpful. You can also do personal research online; this will give you an estimate of what it would cost to start up your own salon business.


When preparing your financial budget, you need to understand the concepts of money, spending, and record-keeping. This entails knowing how, what, who, and when of money.


NOTE: The key component to starting any business is to be debt-free. Never start your nail salon business if you still have debts. Clear those debts first before moving forward.


Who is the target market? A major part of your salon business plan is to know your ideal customers. An ideal customer is one who put so much attention to their looks and appearance. They are people who appreciate fashion and can put in some monetary investment on parts of their bodies just to look good. Primarily, women mostly fit this category, but salons also serve men.


How does a nail salon make money? Primarily, a nail salon makes money by offering manicures, pedicures, and similar treatment services. Some incorporate a store where they sell nail care products.


How much profit can a nail salon make? The profit depends on so many factors including location, service, marketing, etc. Estimated, a nail salon business can earn between $40,000 and $75,000 per annum.


Check competitors for SWOT analysis: Another essential part of planning for your nail salon business is to check for your competitors’ weaknesses and strengths. Doing this will help you understand their winning strategies (which you can imbibe) and their weaknesses (which you can work on) to make your business stand out. It will also give you an idea of how much they charge – this is crucial when deciding your own pricing strategy.


What will you name your business? Choosing the right name is essential for the growth and progress of your nail salon. This can be a challenging task, I must tell you. There are two ways to go about finding the perfect business name ideas. They are:

  1. Brainstorming: Take your time to write random names that come to your brain. This might take days, weeks, or sometimes months.
  2. Use a nail salon name generator: This is a tool that can help you think of the perfect name for your nail salon business. All you need to do is to input your niche and get hundreds of results. Using a nail salon generator is faster than brainstorming.

NOTE: After searching for a befitting name, ensure that the domain name, trademark records, and social media names are available for security purposes.


Step 2: Register Your Business As A Legal Entity

Business name registration follows after mapping out your salon business plan. There are three major business structures, including:

  1. Sole proprietorship – a one-man business where you are the CEO
  2. Partnership – involves two or more individuals coming to gather to set up a business
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC)
  1. Corporation

You can hire an attorney to offer expert tips and counsel.


Step 3: Choose The Perfect Location

One important thing to note is that there are strategic locations to set up a nail salon business for maximizing profits. Based on research and understudies, the ideal places to set up your nail salon businesses are:

  • Residential areas
  • Office buildings
  • College localities

However, certain parameters need to be looked into also, including:

  • Budget – low budget may restrict you from getting a space in buzzing areas
  • Traffic condition – should be an area where people are moving in and around
  • Peak times of the location
  • Parking availability – there should be parking lots around the area
  • The age range of people within the locality – the younger generations care more about their looks than the older ones

There is no one-location-fits-all when it comes to choosing the ideal location for your nail salon business. We recommend playing the math with these parameters to decide which location will have a higher ROI for your newly established business.


Step 4: Decide On Your Nail Salon’S Aesthetic

How attractive do you want your salon to be? The nail salon is a niche in the beauty industry. As such, your nail salon business must depict beauty, comfort, and excellence. Reading this post means you have vision to own a salon. Good! But, while bringing your vision to reality makes a lot of sense, aligning your vision to the present demand of your target market makes more sense.


Let’s say, you have vision to buy the most sophisticated nail salon equipment, you need to align your vision to the fact that people are easily attracted to nail salons where they can get full-round experience and pampering. Therefore, you don’t just buy sophisticated nail salon equipment; you buy the ones that offer comfort and beauty that will impress your customers.


Other helpful tips are:

  • Pick a color that resonates with your salon name.
  • Your interior spaces should complement your vision. Along with your professional services, this is the best way to create a good experience for your customer
  • In case you run out of ideas, simply visit Pinterest for nail salon décor ideas.


Step 5: Get Licensing And Permits

Once you have reached these checkpoints, it is time to process the permits and licenses for your business. Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can mar your newly established nail salon. Note that the legal requirements vary by location. Visit your local government or contact a business attorney if you are unsure. However, there are universal basic requirements. They are business licensing and permits.


What permits do you need to open a nail salon? Here are a few legal requirements that applies to most parts of the world:


Employment Identification Number (EIN): This is important for any business owner.

Tax registration: Before you open any business, you will need to register for taxes. You will need to apply for an EIN before registering for taxes.

Music Licensing: Every salon business thrives with music. Before playing music in your business, you need to obtain a license from ASCAP, BMI, or PRO. Music licensing can be obtained from individual composers or a large catalogue of artists.

Certificate of Occupancy (CO): Since your nail salon is situated in a physical location, you will require a Certificate of Occupancy (CO). This certificate confirms that all building codes, zoning laws, and government regulations have been met.


If you plan to lease a retail location, confirm that your landlord has obtained a valid CO that applies to a nail salon before making any payment, else you will be responsible for obtaining a valid CO from a local government authority. Even after verifying that your landlord has a valid CO, put in the work to verify that all building codes and zoning requirements align with your business’ location.


Other permits may include health, standard organization, business association directory, etc.


Step 6: Get Business Insurance

Business insurance protects a company’s financial health in the event of a catastrophic event that will lead to loss, e.g. fire outbreak, demolition, etc. Insurance is important to operate safely and lawfully.


Step 7: Open A Business Bank Account And Obtain A Credit Card

Using a personal bank account for your business doesn’t sound professional. A business account increases the value of the business. It also ensures personal asset protection for your business in the event your business is sued. More so, a business bank account will help you get credit cards and other financing bonuses including, better interest rates and higher lines of credit.


Step 8: Decide On Pricing Strategy

Your pricing strategy is hugely dependent on a lot of factors including demand, location, and competitor’s pricing. Analyzing the aforementioned parameters will help you understand how and when your customers are spending. Again, there is no one-size-fits-all; the pricing strategy has to be subjective. Remember to keep your pricing strategy clean and simple. See what your competitors are doing to avoid complicated pricing plans.


Step 9: Get The Best Nail Salon Equipment & Furniture

When opening a nail salon, deciding on the equipment to be used is crucial. The best nail salon equipment and furniture should give both you and your customers the comfort and best experience. Professional nail salon equipment is easy to use and can help your business grow, and is only supplied by reputable suppliers.


A reputable nail salon furniture and equipment supplier sells premium quality, professional and durable salon furniture and equipment at a competitive price. OmySalon is one of those reliable wholesale salon furniture manufacturers that have a reputation for providing high-quality nail salon equipment that will suit your style and preference.


Discover thousands of high-quality products from pedicures, manicures, spas, barbers, nail shops, and skincare businesses. They sell cheap salon furniture and equipment for salon owners with a low budget – covered with a warranty. OmySalon has consistently supplied many nail salons across the country with products that keep their customers returning.


Feel free to contact OmySalon today for the best hair/nail/beauty/salon equipment & furniture.



Step 10: Create Your Business Website

Creating a website for your business is a crucial step when creating your nail salon business. Every popular business you know has a website. As good as social media accounts, they cannot replace a business website. The good thing is that building a website for your nail salon business is simple and stress-free. With website builders like WordPress, GoDaddy, Wix, and Shopify, you can build a website within 2-3 hours. Use this website building guide to learn how to create a website as a beginner.


Step 11: Build A Nail Clientele

Now you are almost set. Getting your name out there is essential for building your initial clientele.


How can you build a nail clientele?

List your nail salon business on Google: Does Google My Business sound familiar? GMB is a free listing platform where you can list your business for people to see. Listing your nail business on GMB can help you improve local search ranking and build an audience base. Start by adding a brief description of your nail salon, contact information, business logo or images, the type of nail salon services that you offer, and a call to action button to link to your website.

Register your nail salon on online marketing directories: Online marketing directories like Yelp, Beauty Seeker, Who Do You, Groupon, etc. can help customers find your business and reach out via phone numbers, email, address, etc.

Social media: A large percentage of your customers are on social media. This makes social media an effective marketing tool for any business, including yours. You could get started by creating a business account on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Proceed by posting nail galleries, your nail salon interior, and your previous nail works consistently. To get better results, make sure to write a clear & concise business description, business address, contact information, visiting hours, and so on. You could easily get ideas from the popular nail salon businesses in your locality.


How much does it cost to open a nail salon?

The standard measurement for building a salon costs between $75 and $125 per square foot. Most nail salons are at least 1,000 square feet. For a 1,000 square feet nail salon, the estimated building cost is between $75,000 and $125,000.


However, costs can be reduced in various ways, including:

  • Leasing a previously-housed salon space
  • Purchasing used equipment
  • Finding a location where the owner already built a salon suit


What are the ongoing expenses for a nail salon?

  • Supply costs (usually 2-8% of sales)
  • Employee’s wages (whether salaries or commissions)
  • Rent
  • Taxes
  • Maintenance of equipment and insurance


Can I open a nail salon without a license?

Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.


Are You Ready To Kick-Start Your Nail Salon Business?

In this guide, you have learned how to open a nail salon business. Opening a nail salon isn’t rocket science; with these handy tips, you are closer to setting up your dream business.


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