Mary Hope Kramer
With more and more pet parents opting to work from home, businesses are adjusting to bring their services directly to doorsteps. Mobile dog grooming has rapidly increased in popularity over the past decade and is a growing trend in the industry.
Why should you consider hitting the road with your own mobile dog grooming service? Let’s take a look at a few key benefits of grooming on the go:
Convenience for customers
Busy owners want to save time and are willing to pay a premium to eliminate the hassle of shuttling their pets to and from the salon. Mobile grooming is also a great option for owners who are elderly, have mobility issues, or don’t have easy access to a vehicle. You’re offering the ultimate level of customer service when you travel to the client.
As a premium convenience service, mobile groomers are able to charge higher rates than traditional salons and can afford to work on fewer dogs per day. Sarah Cranmer, owner of Fresh Mobile Dog Spa in Texas, says “we typically groom seven to eight dogs per day. In a salon you might take on eight to twelve depending on how fast you are. We start at $110 for full service grooming on dogs under 15 pounds, and most salons local to us start at $65.”
Because there is no lease or commercial storefront, going mobile can reduce the overhead of your business significantly. Though mobile grooming has its own set of costs to consider such as vehicle and equipment purchases, routine maintenance, fuel, and insurance, you will likely see noticeable cost savings over time compared with those operating brick-and-mortar salons.
Mobile groomers are able to tailor their work schedule to suit their needs. It’s truly a business where you can be your own boss and work when and where you want to. You can also restrict your schedule to provide services in certain areas on specific days, minimizing your travel expenses and maximizing your availability for appointments.
A mobile grooming business advertises itself, since the logo and contact information can be prominently displayed on the sides of the vehicle. Potential customers in your targeted service area will see this advertising as you travel to appointments throughout the day. In this way, something as simple as running errands in a new area can help build your business following!
Less stress for pets and the groomer
The one-on-one nature of mobile grooming means that the dogs can have a more relaxed and personalized experience. Instead of waiting in kennels surrounded by unfamiliar noises, they go from their home, to the grooming table and back to their home reducing stress and anxiety.
As Cranmer points out, she is able to offer “a quiet space for a dog to really relax in.” Mobile grooming is also ideal for dogs that can’t travel by car due to anxiety, car sickness, or mobility issues. Mobile grooming is also less stressful for the groomer, who can focus on one dog without interruption while enjoying the quiet, low-key environment.
A mobile grooming set up has no fixed location, which means you can travel to new areas with significant demand to test those markets, even if they aren’t particularly close to home. A brick-and-mortar salon can only attract clients within a limited radius and changing locations involves significant expense and effort. As a mobile groomer you can set up shop in any location you choose.
Cranmer also commented on mobile grooming as a networking opportunity, “the mobile grooming community is super friendly, and one thing I didn’t expect when going mobile was how many connections I’d make with local and out of state mobile groomers. Some of my best friends are other mobile groomers I connected with to help grow my business and these connections are priceless.”
Hit the road
While you do need to consider the major operational changes of switching to a mobile dog grooming business model which can include factors like traffic delays, finding parking in downtown locations, extreme weather, and having to schedule your own appointments, the benefits have the potential to outweigh the risks. With considerations for pets, pet parents and your bottom line, it’s worth looking into to see if going mobile is right for you!