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Cost of Dog Grooming: How Much Should I Charge?

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Cost of Dog Grooming

The right pricing strategy is vital to your pet grooming business. So how much should you charge? Here’s everything you need to know about dog grooming prices.

An important part of setting up your business model will be establishing your prices. Yet, it can often be tricky to determine exactly how much to charge your clients. Do you offer a single price that covers all services, or upcharge depending on the specific treatment? Do you charge more for different sized dogs, and if so, how do you set the pay scale? These are just a few of the questions you may have.

Today, we’re discussing how to set your dog grooming prices. This way, you can rest assured you’re charging your customers a fair and balanced rate. Interested in learning more? Let’s dive in!

Check Out Local Dog Grooming Prices

It goes without saying that as a dog groomer, you’ll want to research your local competition. It might be tempting to offer prices lower than the “going rate” in your area. Yet, keep in mind that this research is primarily intended to give you an idea of what’s out there.

Check the local online reviews, hop on the competing social media pages, and, if you can visit the shops to check out what they’re offering and how much they’re charging. Then, use this comprehensive knowledge to help guide your strategy. But remember, successful groomers stand out by their quality, professionalism, and technique, not always their price point.

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Calculating the Value You Bring

When determining how to set your dog grooming prices, it’s important to consider exactly what you bring to the table as a groomer. Also, think about how much your customers are willing to spend for the solutions you provide.

Not sure where to start? Think first about what sets you apart. Are you an expert at small breeds, able to get them to look show-worthy in a matter of hours? Or maybe you offer a de-shed that can save homeowners tons of time and money cleaning their house? You might also specialize in deep-cleaning canine teeth, or a homemade oatmeal bath treatment, or a long line of spa options that customers can’t get anywhere else.

Now think about how much those services are worth to the people who call on you to pamper their pooch. You’ll obviously need to calculate your personal costs to gather the supplies and provide the labor to make sure you turn a profit. Yet, it’s just as important to think about the services in terms of perceived value.

In other words, how much do you think your customers believe your services are worth? How much time are you saving them? What about energy and other resources? Working from here can be a valuable place to start.

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Critical Price Factors to Consider

To ensure your time and effort are appropriately compensated, you’ll likely want to charge more depending on specific price factors. Common considerations include breed size, temperament, and the number of services to be performed.

Let’s start with breed size. A groom for a Great Dane would typically cost more than one for a poodle, though this might not always be the case. You’ll also want to factor in the actual services provided. Some dogs may be more high maintenance than others and will carry a bigger charge regardless of size. Concerning temperament, you may want to consider charging more for dogs that are aggressive or extremely timid, as these dogs will require extra attention and care and can take longer to groom.

Lastly, the number of services to be performed is perhaps the most important factor when developing dog grooming prices. Is the dog coming in for a routine wash and nail trim? Or does he require teeth brushing, gland expression, and de-shedding? What about a deep moisturizing treatment or a specialty shampoo soak? You may want to consider establishing set packages that cover the basic, mid-range, and premium levels of care. Then, adjust from there depending on the other two factors (breed size and temperament).

Basic grooming packages are typically set at between $30 and $90 depending on your region and the price of living. You can establish a percentage upcharge for the mid-range and premium levels, or offer these services à la carte if desired.

Setting Pricing Standards

As you’re setting up the packages and upcharges described above, consider whether your prices will be set as a per dog fee, or as an hourly rate. Payment by the hour will guarantee that you’ll at least get a set amount of money for your time. As such, it is a desirable option. The primary issue with charging by the dog is that there could be unexpected delays or issues that may cause you to work overtime on a particular animal for no extra pay (think of working extra hours as a salaried employee versus an hourly one).

If you opt to charge by the dog, be sure to take into consideration its weight and the condition of its coat. For example, a young dalmatian might cost less for a basic package than a medium-sized cocker spaniel, though both are receiving the same services.

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Perks and Discounts

When brainstorming your dog grooming prices, you may want to include some rewards and perks that can be extended to your return clients. This type of incentive is great for building a client base (especially for new groomers). It also encourages your clients to share your business with their friends.

One of the most common rewards is a frequent customer appreciation discount. For example, if a client sets a standing appointment each month, you can extend a 5% discount on return services. This type of offer won’t be too hard on your bottom line, and could actually work wonders to boost it.

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Smart Software: Helping Your Pet Business Thrive

As you prepare your grooming business for launch, chances are that pricing and payments aren’t your only considerations. You’ll also be thinking about operations, marketing, logistics, booking, and more. As you take this next step forward, we’d love to help. We offer comprehensive software solutions designed to make owning a pet-centric business easy and effortless.

Feel free to take a look at some of our main features, as well as the valuable add-ons we offer. If you have any questions or would like more information, feel free to contact us or leave a comment below and let’s connect!

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