The most important issue before starting a mobile hairdressing business you must be a hairdresser.
How to become a hairdresser or a barber
There are three ways of qualifying as a hairdresser.
- Become an apprentice in a salon.
Being an apprentice means you can learn the trade and also make money. You get to spend time and watch skilled and experienced people on the job, ask questions and get answers on the spot. If you need any kind of help you have a support system to rely on. To find out more on apprenticeships please visit the gov.uk website or click here.
- Gain an NVQ
An NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) is recognised qualification which attests to your skill set. NVQs have different levels. If you have no experience in hairdressing you should start with a Level 1 and build up from there. A Level 1 NVQ in Hairdressing and Barbering covers areas oh health & safety , maintaining work areas, preparing for hair services and how to shampoo and condition hair. The Level 1 Certificate is a great way to start which can lead to a hairdressing assistant job. There are 4 Levels to be gained. If you want to find out more on the qualification please visit the City & Guilds website or click here.
- Foundation degree in Hairdressing
Foundation degrees are usually designed in partnerships with potential employers. This means you get up to date information and practices and upon completion you should be armed with the latest skills and trends. There are multiple degrees and certificates and you can specialise in either hairdressing or barbering. Have a look on the Cornwall College website for their courses.
You have the qualification or you have the experience you just need to know if a mobile hairdressing business is a good idea.
Is mobile hairdressing for you?
- Being a mobile hairdresser means you are self employed therefore you work for yourself. There is no one to rely on to cover shifts or fix any mistakes. You must have confidence in your hairdressing skills and also in your time management skills.
- You have flexibility! There is no 9AM-5PM schedule.
- You can build strong relationships with your customers.
- No rent or bills to pay for an actual location.
- Travel might be expensive depending on the areas you cover.
- Must have a car.
- No constant workflow. You may have really busy days and then some quiet periods.
If the positives above over-weigh the negatives you might as well give it a try.
The boring stuff: self-employment, bookkeeping, insurance etc.
- Registering as a self-employed person is easy and can be done online. It takes less then 5 minutes. Click here to go to gov.uk to register.
- Bookkeeping is not as hard as it used to be since the ‘invention’ of cash accounting. Cash accounting is basically money in minus money out equals profit. You can hire someone to get this done for you or if you want to keep your costs down you could just do it yourself. There are apps that can help you keep track of all your payments and expenses which automatically create the self-assessment report when it needs submitting. The best app so far is Quickbooks Self-Employed. You can easily manage everything on the go.
- You must have public liability insurance. This usually covers any legal fees and compensation in case you injure or cause any loss to a client. Also, you may add equipment cover to protect your hairdressing tools in case of theft or damage.
The technical stuff: website, advertising, social media and SEO
Starting your own website can be a challenge if you are not IT savvy. You have to consider website hosting, website building and indexing. If you have the skills you could do it yourself however if it feels daunting just thinking about it you will have to pay someone to do it for you.
A good website should have your services, your price list, testimonials, contact information and if possible, a way to book your services. It is quite an investment for a start-up mobile hairdressing business. If this is too much for you, you can start by creating an account on our platform and list your services here free of charge. We don’t charge membership or set up fees either. We only charge a small percentage per appointment received through our platform.
Your listing could look like this:
To register for an account with please click here.
Word of mouth can only go so far. You need to print leaflets and business cards. A cheap way of getting these done is through VistaPrint. You can design your own flyers using their templates, pay and have them delivered to your door. Afterwards there is a bit of legwork needed. Go to your local shops or local businesses with an advertising board and ask if you can put some up. You can also have a little wonder and just put some through the mailbox in your surrounding area.
Online adverts are OK however if you are thinking of Google Ads or Bing Ads and Facebook Adverts they will cost you some £££.
Social Media: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
What is a business without social media?
Create social media accounts for your mobile business. Keep the pages updated with your availability and any recent work. You have to get followers and likes to your pages so ask invite your friends to like and follow you. From time to time you can also ask them to share your posts. This is how you build a network of people.
SEO : What is that? Search Engine Optimisation
SEO is all to do with your website. It is how a search engine ranks your website when customers input a search query. Using the right keywords means your website will show in the search results for the right customers.
With a Bargains Finder listing we manage the SEO for you and ensure your listing is SEO friendly and relevant to the right audience.
The fun stuff: equipment, products, brands etc.
We can’t add much here as this is your area of expertise however here are a couple of things to remember when shopping for your business:
- Your equipment must be professional quality
- Ensure you are comfortable with using the equipment
- You need to have a stock of hair products: shampoo, conditioner, hairspray etc. Ensure these are trustworthy brands especially if you provide services as bleaching, dyeing or perms. These can cause serious damage to hair in general.
- Don’t start buying randomly. Check out your competition or your nearest salon. Take inventory of what they use, write down your shopping list and search for the best prices.
We hope this article is a helpful guide to all motivated hairdressers or barbers in Cornwall looking to expand their customer base and to those looking to start a mobile hairdressing business.