Wasn't sure where to post this, but hope people don't mind I posted it in the "General Discussion"...
I am planning on opening my own grooming business! I want it to be the BEST grooming facility. I have worked at enough places to know what I want and what I DON'T want. BUT - it all boils down to what the CLIENT wants.
So, I'd like to "ask the client!" I made a list of questions I'm just DYING to ask people who use groomers! I wish all of you were my clients because you care so much about your dogs! I would really appreciate it if you took the time to answer these questions. You do not have to answer them all (there are 43 questions). Any suggestions would be helpful. I want to create the best grooming environment for the owner and their pet.
I'm sure this list will help other groomers out there who would like to improve their shop.
1) What do you expect when you walk into a grooming shop? What do you notice first?
it should be clean, not smell, not too noisy with barking dogs, and no cage dryers.
2) How does the noise level or smell affect your decision to frequent the business?
A lot. A smelly place is a dirty place and I don't want my dog there. A noisey place is stressful to my dog.
3) What do you think about a groomer’s level of experience? Based on number of years: 1, 3-4, 5, 10, 10+
I haven't asked. I stay and watch. If I don't like what they do, i wouldn't come back.
4) How do you feel about a groomer who owns the same breed or similar as you?
I don't care. I DO care that she knows what my breed should look like.
5) How important is it that the groomer knows handstripping techniques?
None. Havanese don't need stripping.
6) How do you feel about a groomer who attends trade shows and seminars to further his/her education? How about a groomer who does not do these things?
I assume that good groomers do these things.
7) Are you okay with the fact the groomer may not be available at certain times in order to attend trade shows and seminars?
Nobody is available all the time. I make appointments well in advance and can work around a groomer's schedule
8) How do you feel about a groomer who participates in competitive grooming? How about a groomer who did not participate in competing?
9) How important is it to you that the groomer is certified with the National Dog Groomers Association (NDGA), International Professional Groomers (IPG), and/or International Society of Canine Cosmetologists (ISCC)?
Never heard of them.
10) Does the fact that the groomer is involved in the show world affect your feelings towards them? (showing, handling, breeding etc)
No. I prefer a groomer who has some positive training experience.
11) Do you seek out groomers who can do show grooming? Or as close to the breed standard as possible?
12) How do you feel when you are not allowed to “look in the back” of the grooming shop? How do you feel when you are allowed a tour of the facility?
I wouldn't use a place where I wasn't allowed to stay with my dog.
13) Are you willing to pay higher grooming prices for the right groomer? What is a fair grooming price to you? (base this on the size of dog you have. Please indicate the size and breed)
Havanese. I pay $25 for feet and sanitary, $50 for bathe and blow dry also. I've paid the same amount to 3 different groomers in this area, so it seems to be the going rate.
14) How important is anal gland expression to you? Is this a must that the groomer must do?
I would never want a groomer to touch my dog's anal glands. IF they ever need to be done, I want it done by a vet.
15) Do you specifically look for groomers who have gentle handling skills?
16) Do you like when groomers give advice on pet food and nutrition?
17) Do you like when groomers give advice on skin and hair care?
Sure, especially if asked.
18) Does the fact that a grooming shop supports local rescues become a factor in how you feel about the groomer?
It's nice but wouldn't make or break the deal.
19) Do you like having a “puppy package” in a groom shop, where the price of a groom for a pup is less?
I have so little done usually, that I think it would be unfair to ask them to do it for less.
20) How does the size of the grooming business affect you? Does it matter if it’s a small mom & pop shop or big boarding/grooming/daycare facility?
21) What is your impression towards the different types of people working in a grooming facility? For example: teenagers, older people, family members, etc
I don't care about who else works there. I only have a specific person, one that I've checked out, work on my dog.
22) What is your scheduling preference? Do you like to pre-book ahead of time? Call when you feel like your dog needs grooming? Do you prefer walk-ins? Are you okay with facilities that do “by appointment only?”
I always make appointments. I know how long my dog can go between foot trimming.
23) What are the business hours you prefer as a client?
I can be flexible.
24) Is the fact a grooming facility DOES or DOES NOT provide daycare services, a deciding factor when choosing a business?
I never leave my dog, so I don't care.
25) What type of personality do you look for in a groomer?
Someone who is kind and gentle with my dog, and is fun to talk to while I'm there.
26) Would you like an online booking feature?
I don't care. I book the next one before I leave.
27) How important is it that a grooming business has a Facebook page and/or a website?
Not at all.
28) How do you feel about tipping?
I tip 20%.
29) How do you feel about kenneling vs. a cage-free environment?
again, I don't leave my dog, so it doesn't matter.
30) What is your biggest pet peeve about the groomer?
I 've been lucky to get referrals tovery good groomers.
31) How do you feel about a business that only accepts SMALL DOGS?
I don't care.
32) Does the type of shampoo brands affect your decision to use a groomer? For instance, does it matter that a groomer uses only high-end products like Chris Christensen vs. using generic products?
As long as they work well on my dog's coat, I don't care.
33) Do you expect to be asked about vaccination records?
Yes. But I also expect them to be open to titers and not require Bordatella.
34) What is the preferred turn-around time for grooming? For example, from the time you drop off your dog to the time they call you to pick up.
I don't drop off.
35) How do you feel about a groomer who shaves double coated breeds like labs and huskies? How do you feel about a groomer who refuses to shave double coated breeds?
I don't know enough about it to have an opinion.
36) What type of special promotions would you like to see being offered in a grooming business?
I don't care.
37) Does the exterior of the building and its looks affect your decision to visit a grooming facility?
38) What types of businesses surrounding a grooming business would turn you off from visiting that grooming business? For example, liquor store, check-cashing, etc.
I don't want to go to a bad neighborhood, but otherwise I don't care.
39) How do you feel about add-on services like hair coloring and nail polish?
40) What add-on services would you like to see being offered at a grooming business?
No dea what these would be.
41) What type of service do you feel should be included in a full-groom?
Not sure what a "full groom" is.
42) How important is it that a grooming business provides retail (food, treats, leashes, collars, toys, etc)?
Not at all.
43) What keeps you coming back to your current groomer?