We live in an age of on-demand services like ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft. But is the beauty industry moving to on-demand as well?
Turns out patrons still prefer going to beautiful salons, like those with Ceriotti salon furniture from Italy, rather than using an app to summon a stylist to their home, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Experts have found that people still enjoy the experience of going to a salon for a blowout or haircut, not summoning a stylist to their home on-demand. Only a small segment of the population wants to go the on-demand route, while most people still want to treat themselves to the full salon ambience and experience.
On-demand mobile beauty services promise low overhead and that the paton can enjoy services in the comfort of their own home. The promise was that salons didn’t need a physical location, but could just come to the consumer yet still provide a consistent brand.
But companies found that brand awareness and customer acquisition costs were obstacles to their success. And the lack of a physical salon space meant stylists had to spend time traveling and could not have as many appointments in a day, which limited their earning potential.
That led to mobile stylists having to charge more than stylists with a physical salon space to make up for the travel expense and limited appointments. And salon apps that undercut competitor prices to build a customer base weren’t able to sustain that model and become profitable.
There are also liability issues to consider when someone is in a private home and, because of the nature of the work, touching a client.
The field is very competitive, and people like to develop a personal relationship with the person who’s doing their hair once a month. An on-demand app may not allow patrons to choose who shows up at their house to give them that monthly haircut, just like a customer can’t choose their Uber or Lyft driver.