The Pros and Cons of Owning a Beauty Salon Franchise

By Dean Laming on January 2nd, 2024

If your entrepreneurial dreams include opening a beauty salon, you may be trying to decide between launching as an independent shop and joining an established brand’s franchise network.

And while buying into proven beauty franchises UK like Toni & Guy brings tempting perks around scaled systems, marketing and leverage power, they also have downsides to carefully evaluate before committing. Understanding pros and cons of owning a beauty salon franchise helps determine if it’s right for you.

Top Pros of Beauty Salon Franchising

What drives stylists, colourists, nail technicians and investors toward recognised beauty names?

Established Brand Equity

Joining a large franchise beauty brand means immediately tapping into the well-established reputation, authority, and trust. New salon owners don’t have to spend years building local awareness from scratch; they gain instant credibility by association.

Turnkey Business Operations

Reputable salon franchisors have perfected playbooks that outline all the operational processes needed for success. Owners can implement these proven recipes for success without having to create complex systems independently. This includes optimised software stacks, guidelines for retail displays, sanitisation protocols, and staff training programs.

Comprehensive Training and Support

Franchise agreements ensure ongoing training in branded best practices. Dedicated field personnel offer oversight in areas such as compliance, marketing, IT, and more, providing crucial support when challenges arise. This approach prevents owners from having to tackle issues in isolation.

Pooled Buying Power

Leveraging shared distribution networks and cumulative supplier relationships unlocks group discounts on bulk product costs that independent salons may struggle to match. This results in higher profit margins on resale.

Choosing a franchise offers a shortcut for those interested in owning a beauty business. It allows them to bypass steep learning curves and operational hurdles, avoiding the need for trial and error in the process.

Notable Cons to Consider

While franchising offers advantages, it may not be the right choice for all beauty entrepreneurs due to certain limitations that require careful consideration:

Upfront Investment

Joining respected salon chains often demands a significant financial investment, including franchise licences, salon construction, technology, and more. For those who are still establishing their careers in the industry, relying solely on personal savings may not be feasible.

Ongoing Royalties

Franchisees commit to paying set monthly or quarterly royalties to the brand, based on their location’s revenue, in addition to covering their operational expenses. These royalties divert a portion of the location’s profits to the parent company, compensating for the branding and backend infrastructure provided.

Mandatory Compliance

Franchise outlets are required to adhere to specific standards, including branded colour palettes that dictate salon aesthetics and the assortment of products carried. This lack of flexibility can be frustrating for owners who prefer to apply their personal preferences or unique approaches, even with access to turnkey business guidance.

Restricted Locations

Franchisors may limit new location approvals in areas deemed oversaturated after analysing geographic coverage. Unfortunately, interested owners have no recourse to appeal these decisions, despite investing significant time and effort in identifying preferred, high-visibility sites.

For individuals who value greater creative or operational control, independent salon ownership may be a more suitable choice that aligns with their individual working styles.

Protect Your Livelihood Through Salon Insurance

When considering beauty franchise options in the UK, it’s essential to analyse the benefits and trade-offs within legal franchise agreements. This will empower you to make well-informed decisions regarding the most suitable path to salon ownership.

At Salon Saver, we specialise in offering beauty salon insurance policies that are tailored to address the unique risks faced by modern beauty businesses. With our extensive experience, we are well-equipped to guide you in making informed insurance decisions.

Reach out to us today to assess any protection gaps in your business and explore coverage options that align with the direction of your vision.

Dean Laming

Dean Laming is a Chartered Insurance Broker with more than 25 years insurance experience. Through various underwriting, operational and management roles, Dean has built up extensive knowledge of the hair and beauty sector and is now Managing Director of Salon Saver, part of the wider Henry Seymour Group.

All articles by Dean Laming

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