There is at least one pet in 60% of American households, and increasingly American families are spending money on grooming and other pet services.  A mobile grooming salon is an appealing way to turn your passion for pets into a fun and unfettered business. But like any small pet care business, a successful mobile salon requires more than an ardent love for pets and some dog-washing skills.  Before taking the leap into this pet grooming model, consider the following core ingredients you will need to be successful.

1. Great grooming services

Of course, as with any pet grooming business, you should have some solid grooming skills to build upon for your mobile salon. It is also possible to hire an experienced groomer while you concentrate on logistics and polish your own grooming skills  There are many grooming programs that will certify groomers and offer professional development services. The National Dog Groomers Association of America certifies dog groomers and holds ongoing professional development seminars and workshops.   Working with industry certified courses improves your grooming skills and adds value to your services.  Pet owners who take the time and expense to groom their cats and dogs will generally appreciate more options than a bath and tidy-up for their pets; so staying on top of the latest and greatest will make your mobile salon the trendy one in town.

2. A functioning mobile shop

  Whether you decide to launch your own brand or buy an existing franchise your mobile grooming vehicle should function in two ways:   it should be a comfortable and inviting place to work and a primary marketing tool for your business. Not everyone can be a savvy graphic designer, so work with a professional to create memorable and catchy logos that will get customers calling your cell phone at stoplights as you travel to service clients.   Make sure your contact and website information are incorporated into your vehicle graphics.   And on the inside, your mobile grooming van should always be clean, organized, and well-ventilated.   While your furry clients might not notice, their owners will.

3. Excellent customer service

In the competitive pet grooming business, excellent customer service will distinguish you from your competitors and generate the valuable and coveted word-of-mouth business. Here are a few customer service tips in the pet grooming business that will keep customers talking and coming back:

   * Always answer your cell phone and return calls .  A missed call is potentially a missed opportunity, and potential customers will move on to contact the next groomer quickly.
   * Keep records of all clients and their contact information – ask for their emails when possible.  This is a recurring service business, and an email list will help you nurture regular customers.
   * Show up on time for your appointments. One benefit of a mobile grooming business is customer convenience. Your arrival at a client’s doorstep eliminates two trips he or she will have to make to get a pet groomed. One way to ensure a smooth appointment schedule is to limit your services to a small geographic area; your time between clients will be reduced, and you will arrive promptly for your appointments.

4. A solid marketing strategy

Your unique name and logo will build brand awareness in your area as you travel to service your clients, but that’s not enough to keep your pet grooming business name out there.  Don’t ignore the power of the internet – your customers are accustomed to doing online research before they buy any product or service and local map search makes it easy to find services in their area – make sure your business is among those services!    Building a website, joining social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, or using an Internet marketing company, are great ways to build a presence, create a buzz, and grow your business on the web.

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