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Top tips for writing a spa business plan

Spa business owner holding clipboard while on the phone
August 15, 2022
Written by Nextdoor Editorial Team
August 15, 2022 | Written by Nextdoor Editorial Team

Have you been dreaming about opening up your own medical spa? Do you already have the perfect name and location in mind? 

That’s a good start. Turn your dream into reality by following the steps on how to start a spa. First, you’ll need to write a business plan. Crafted properly, this document can act as a roadmap that informs your strategic business decisions going forward.  

Ready to write your spa business plan? Let’s break it down.  

The standard business plan

Starting a new venture can be risky.

But a business plan can help you minimize risk by helping you determine whether your idea is viable or just a pipe dream. 

The most common business plan template is the standardized version. This in-depth document has two primary purposes: 

  1. Outline the business, its goals, and plans to achieve them throughout each stage.

  2. Persuade potential investors or creditors that the business has merit and will provide a return on investment.  

Although there is some flexibility as to what aspects this document focuses on, usually, it will consist of six key sections: 

The executive summary

The executive summary is a two- to three-page document that briefly overviews the fundamental concepts of the spa and serves as the backbone for the rest of the business plan. It functions as the introduction. Use it to capture the reader’s attention immediately and then convince them how you’ll be filling a specific need.  

For a spa, it can include:

  • Business overview – Who are you as a business? What would be your basic profile or business overview? This acts as the abstract for the entire business plan. It typically will cover the following information:  
    • The name of the spa  
    • The area of operation
    • The owner’s background
    • The services the spa will provide
    • The ethos and differentiating factors
  • Service offerings – Different spas provide different treatments and experiences. Will you include massage? Facial treatments? Focus on eyebrows?  This section can help you list the expected spa services you’d provide customers.  
  • Customer focus – Who is your target customer? The customer focus section will briefly describe the demographics and socioeconomic status of your ideal patron. 
  • Management team – A Business tends to have a greater chance of success if there are other talented people who will support its mission. But if you are starting solo, then you should briefly review how you’ll be managing accounting, taxes, payroll, and advertising. 
  • Differentiating factors – Chances are there are several other spas in your area that are already operating. What will you bring to the table that’s different? What are the key differentiating factors that will provide you with a competitive advantage? 
  • Financial highlights – Are you seeking a loan or outside investment? If so, you should address how much money you need, how you would allocate your spending, and how much revenue you project to make. 

Company description

This is generally the follow-up to the introductory section. It goes into further detail about the essentials of your spa. If you’re just starting, you may not have all the answers but do your best to fill out each section as accurately as possible. 

Elements may include:

  • Company name – Although the name is subject to change, you should at least have a few potential ideas for what you’ll call the spa. Once you have chosen a clear winner, you’ll need to register the business name with the state and federal government as well as claim a related domain name. 
  • The business entity - Have you thought about your business structure? As the business owner, what you decide can significantly impact your tax burdens and legal liability. That said, most spas will form a limited liability company (LLC),  which combines the pass-through taxation of a partnership or sole proprietorship with the limited liability of a corporation.
  • Company history This goes into greater detail about the business owner, their team, and aspirations for the business. If the business has already been in service, it will detail what it has done, who was involved, its growth trajectory, plans for the future, etc.  
  • Mission and vision statements - What special qualities will your spa have? For instance, the Blue Giraffe Day Spa and Salon in Ashland Oregon wrote the following as their mission statement: “Our goal is to provide a world-class spa experience, for both our guests and employees; a place where beauty, comfort, knowledge, and personalized attention, combine to create a totally memorable and rejuvenating experience.” Whatever makes your business unique, include that in your mission and vision statements.
  • Goals What do you hope to accomplish? Are there specific metrics you’re aiming for? Setting benchmarks in both the short- and long-term makes it possible to chart your progress as you pursue them. 

Services 

Spas are service based-industries. While you may sell some spa products, most of your revenue will come from treatments. To that end, you should know the primary services you’ll be providing clients. This will section will include the following: 

  • Services rendered – What specific treatments will be made available to clients? Do you have spa packages or individual treatments? 
  • Market comparison – Do your competitors already offer these services? If so, what makes your spa treatment unique? How do they compare by price point, quality, time, products, etc?
  • Benefits – Why would clients select a certain spa treatment? What should they hope to gain from that exchange? 

See related: How to Start a Medical Spa

Market analysis 

Performing a market analysis allows you to better understand the industry outlook, your local market, and the competitors operating within it. It gives you the opportunity to compare your operation to theirs—to see where they succeed or fall short. As you perform this review, search for themes and trends that you can learn from or incorporate into your existing plans.

You can break the market analysis down into three categories: 

  • Industry analysis – This looks at the overall macro picture for the spa industry as a whole. For instance, the global spa market is valued at $47.5 billion and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12.1% going into 2027. Factors driving growth expectation include:
    • Lifting of COVID restrictions 
    • Increase in hyperactive urban lifestyles 
    • The intertwining of tourism with the health and wellness industry
    • Greater awareness 
  • Customer analysis – Who is your target market? Have you leveraged web analytics, research, and personal experience to create consumer personas? These semi-fictional archetypes represent key traits of your target market, including demographics, background, and identifiers. For example, if you provide facial treatments, you may target women in the 22-40 age bracket like working professionals, housewives, or bridal parties.  
  • Competitive analysis – Who are your main direct and indirect competitors? You should build profiles that include the following information: 
    • Their location
    • Size of their physical building
    • Number of employees
    • Customer base
    • Services offered and pricing

Marketing plan

Marketing is incredibly important for new spas, which tend to be heavily reliant on word-of-mouth. And since you need to first build up a clientele, your digital marketing will function as the digital grapevine. 

You should start a spa marketing plan by listing your brand and value propositions. Describe what makes your spa unique. This messaging will play a central role in all of your messaging campaigns. From there, you should detail your promotions plan, which will ideally include a range of digital marketing strategies, including: 

  • Building a website - The website will serve as your digital storefront. It will be the first thing customers research when they hear about your spa. A modern website should be mobile-responsive, have fast load times, and have a tasteful aesthetic that echoes your physical location. Want inspiration? Check out Body Sense Beauty Clinic for an example of what a modern spa website should look and feel like. Their site is clean and easy to navigate, making for a positive user experience. It uses bright colors and clear photos to draw users in.
  • Conducting SEO Search engine optimization (SEO) best practices help boost your website or Google ads to the top of the search. Blogging is very beneficial because it will bring in new users and drive traffic to introduce people to your brand. Your homepage and web pages will also be important to optimize to ensure people land on your website when searching for spa services in their area. 
  • Social media – Social media sites offer some of the best ROI when it comes to digital marketing, and this is especially true for spas. Although you should create a profile on all of the major social media platforms, pay extra attention to your neighborhood and find ways to connect with your community. Nextdoor’s platform allows you to connect with the neighbors in your local area—the people most likely to visit your spa. 

Financial plan 

This is arguably the most important section of the entire spa business plan, particularly if you’re attempting to convince potential investors or creditors to help finance the venture. Either party will want hard evidence that indicates the business will be profitable and provide a return. 

You can break the financial plan into parts, including: 

  • Current financials If you’ve already been in operation, you’ll need to provide financial details about your three primary statements: 
    • Income statement
    • Balance sheet
    • Cash flow statement
  •   Financial projections – What is your forecast? What growth do you expect to achieve? 
  • Budget How will you allocate your spending throughout the business? Where would raised capital be directed? 

Start prepping with Nextdoor

After all of the work on your spa business plan is complete, you should have a 15- to 20-page long document that sets a specific structure and growth strategy, outlines your future financial needs, and demonstrates the spa’s long-term viability. Armed with this information, you’ll be better prepared to navigate the market and persuade others to invest in the venture. 

Once your spa is open, be sure to create a Business Page on Nextdoor. It’s free and provides an easy avenue for reaching and interacting with locals in your area. 

Nextdoor can help you shine a spotlight on your new spa. 

Claim your free Business Page


Claim your free Business Page to get started on Nextdoor. For resources on how to use Nextdoor to stay connected with your local customers, pertinent news affecting business, and more, follow us at @nextdoorbusiness on Facebook

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