Can I be brutally honest about something…. If you want to have a successful salon, or indeed a successful business, you need to have a website.
Whenever there are questions about salon websites on social media, a well-meaning person always pops up and says ‘you don’t need to have a website, I get loads of clients through Instagram’.
That’s all very well, but:
- You may get clients from Instagram (or Facebook, or TikTok), BUT you don’t own the platform, the social media company does. If they change their algorithm (ut’s happened before), your clients may stop seeing your content. If they decide to delete your account (you wouldn’t be the first), you lose all your hard work over night. If they decide to start to charge (it’s been talked about for years, but is yet to happen!).
- Not all your clients, or potential clients, are on social media, especially if your dream clients are an older clientele.
- A survey by KOR Digital found that 58% of people would visit a salon’s website when trying to choose a new salon, compared to 17% who said Instagram would be the first place they’d go.
So, if you don’t have a salon website, you need to get yourself one (if you have an old out-dated one, you should consider an upgrade too, more of that another time though!).
How much does a salon website cost?
Websites can come in at anything from about £400 (read the small print before you sign up!) up to over £2,000, or a lot more than that for a really high spec site. It rather depends on the functionality that you have.
Before you start work, you should also check what the on-going costs are.This could be:
- An annual hosting charge – Anything from £60 – £200 is realistic.
- A monthly hosting charge (with or without technical updates) – Likely to be £20pcm upwards with technical updates.
- A monthly management fee, including content updates. – This could be anything from £50 to £300 pcm.
Again, these will charges will always vary from company to company and it’s worth shopping around and talking to multiple companies.
Whatever you do, make sure that you own the site and would be able to move the hosting at any time if you want to.
This is important because I have spoken to many salon owners who have found themselves stuck when the initial period finished.
You should also check that you are able to update the website yourself.
Can I build a salon website myself?
If you are reasonably tech savvy i.e you can find your way around a computer, can manage things like Facebook without going into a meltdown and are relatively competent at using Word you can absolutely build your own website.
To build your own site you will need to:
- Choose your platform (options are wix, weebly, squarespace or wordpress)
- Sort out your hosting (this is included with wix or squarespace)
- Plan your site
- Write the content
- Choose your images
- Build your site
- Test your site
- Publish your site.
It will take time and probably a little trial and error, but many salon owners have successfully built really good salon websites.
The pros and cons of building your own website
Professionals invest significant time and training in learning to build a website. Therefore there are many advantages of working with a professional. These include:
- They will consider search engine optimisation and know how to get your salon appearing at the top of the search results pages
- They should be able to integrate clever things like landing pages, newsletter sign-up, stores, late bookings, the Facebook pixel with ease.
- Sites built by pros tend to look that little bit more professional
- They will be able to iron out all of the little quirks and template issues that can many self-built sites have to settle for
- They should be up to date with the latest trends and techniques and make recommendation to you
- Over-time functionality on websites can break, having a developer means that’s their problem not yours!
- Hackers attack all sorts of sites. A developer should do everything to reduce the chances of an attack, but they will also know what to do if you do get hacked.
The advantages of doing it yourself
- The cost. The upfront costs are cheaper if you build your own salon website. There can be hidden costs and on-going costs, such as the cost of paying for a theme, the costs of hosting, the costs of paying for support if there are any issues.
- You’ll avoid the awkward techie conversations. Web developers sometimes speak a different language?
- You’ll be able to get the site you visualised, not someone else’s interpretation of it.
Are there other options?
If you want to DSY (do some yourself) there are a couple of options. You could
1) Hire a copywriter to write some SEO-friendly copy
2) Do what you could do what you can and then use a site like upwork.co.uk to find someone to do the fine tuning.
WANT THE BEST SALON WEBSITE POSSIBLE?
Whether you already have a salon website or are thinking of building one, check out my guide to the 50 ways to create a kickass salon website e-book.