Great Ideas on How to Start and Run a Successful Pet Grooming Business in Singapore
Starting a pet grooming business is a bit easier than setting up any other business because:
- you don’t need a degree to be a pet groomer,
- the set-up cost is relatively low,
- you can do it part-time or full-time and
- you can do it from home too.
Basically, you only need to love animals to become a pet groomer.
With celebrities adopting pets and showing them off proudly in public, fully accessorized and groomed perfectly, more and more people are being encouraged to go on the same route. No wonder, the pet grooming business is booming and you have a great opportunity to make a good income out of it.
Let’s see now, how you can start a pet grooming business and run it successfully.
Know the Basics
As with any business, the primary step is researching about your particular industry. You can start with knowing more about all animals so that you have a wider client base. Most pet grooming businesses take up only dogs, but there are many other animals that people prefer pets. The more you know about various animals, the more you can earn.
Cats are generally overlooked because they clean themselves thoroughly and are quite fussy. But if you are a cat person, you can win them over and they bring in quite a good income.
Build a Business Model
You have to decide how you will run your pet grooming business – whether from a store or your home, where pet owners drop their pets and pick them up after you’re done, or a mobile service, where you go to a pet owner’s place and do the grooming job.
A great advantage of running the business at your place is that you get to work in your own familiar environment and have access to a greater number of utilities and services. A mobile service is cheaper for you money wise, but involves travelling extensively and significantly reduces the number of pets you groom per day.
If you wish to go all out, you can go for a full-service pet grooming business. It brings in a huge lot of customers and correspondingly more income, but you may end up spending more too on rent suppliers and employees.
Another amazing option for a budding pet groomer is to get into a five-star hotel as a management trainee. Hotels like Marriott have a separate section for grooming animals, and you can learn the ropes of the trade there like nowhere else. The more you know the basics, the easier it is for you to operate your own business.
Create a Business Plan
The biggest mistake most start-up owners do is to start a business without a concrete plan in place. Every business needs a plan, and a pet grooming business is no exception. A business plan does not necessarily mean a plan of corporate level precision. But you must know where you will be heading once you start before you start the business. The things you need to consider are:
- Type of business
- Target customers
- Marketing and promotion
- Number of employees
If you are not clear about any of these points, you should not start your business.
Recognize Potential Earnings
It is a simple formula; your earnings are directly proportional to the number of customers you manage to bring in. The more the number of animals you handle per day, the more you earn.
You can start off small, by handling 2-3 animals at a time and increase the number gradually. If you charge $50 per animal and it takes you an hour to get their grooming done, you can earn $100-$150 per hour. And this is just the beginning.
As you make a name for yourself and become more proficient in handling more and more animals at a time, you can go on increasing your hourly earnings. Plus $50 is just a ballpark figure. Some services cost more while some services take very little time. After a while, you will get an idea about how much you can take in and which type of customer brings you more profits.
Make a Budget and Stick to it
Just so that you don’t get carried away by the flash advertising sales that pop up in print media or on the radio and TV, you need to set a realistic budget and stick to it. While you may feel it is a major constraint, a budget is actually your friend because it tells you that you need to be more creative with your promotional strategy rather than running away with an advert module which could empty your pockets.
To create a budget, you need to know exactly how much it costs to start a pet grooming business. Accordingly, you can decide whether you would like to operate full-time or part-time and whether you would like to work from home or set up a salon. Even if you wish to work from home, you need to envisage future growth and the need for an office area and more employees.
Decide Which Services You Would Like to Offer
Here comes the most tricky part – deciding services. Some services may not seem worthwhile to you, even if they bring in huge revenue. You can consider offering the following services:
- Clipping nails
- Brushing fur
- Eye and ear cleaning
- Flea and tick treatment
- Trim paw pads
- De-shedding treatment
- Moisturizing for skin and coat
- Brushing teeth
- Puppy cuts
- Therapeutic shampoo and massage
You have the freedom to decide which products you will use. All natural products have a high demand for pet owners. Do a basic search of what other pet grooming businesses around you offer and price your services accordingly.
Decide a Location
A location is just not about what you like, it is about which areas will bring in you more business. Look for areas in which animals tend to get dirty. Setting up shop in a pet-friendly area will help too. The most popular locations are near the shopping centres or malls, though you may have to spend quite a bit on rent.
Look for Good Suppliers
Good products make or break a business. Only if you use the best products you can form a loyal customer base. You must also ensure that you never run out of supplies. This is the most basic mistake a business owner can make and can result in your client never returning again. Find a supplier who provides quality products at a reasonable price. If the supplier agrees to ship you the products, it would be another great advantage.
For any business to be successful, brand marketing is important. And you have to spend money on marketing, especially if you wish to make the pet grooming business your main income source.
Get involved with local pet shops and pet events to get ample visibility. This is also a great way to connect directly with your target audience. Go to dog parks and talk to the owners or give out pamphlets. Vet clinics and kennels are other great places where you can directly contact pet owners and lobby your business to them.
Get Your Accounts Sorted
Your income decides your taxes and if you are anything less than meticulous in maintaining your incomes and expenditures, you are going to face a tough time while filing taxes. If you feel you are not good with numbers, you can appoint an accountant to do the work for you.
Starting and running a pet grooming business is hard work. But it is a great way to turn your passion into a profitable career. Animals give you so much love that a bad day for you can turn into an awesome day when they are around you. So if you feel you are up to the job, go for it! We really hope this guide helps you through the process and you set up a really successful pet grooming business in Singapore.