Home' INSTYLE Magazine : INSTYLE MAYJUN 2016 Contents Rocket Internet Group has continued
to grow dramatically since it first went
live in March 2015, and since July 2015
Vaniday alone has raised 15 million Euro
in investment funds – substantially
increasing its salon inventory and
Today the company has over 100
employees in all six countries around
the world and its achievements after just
one year are a good indication that such
platforms are here to stay. Average monthly
growth of 3-40 per cent, across continental
presence and a constantly expanding
number of high quality salons listed – in
Australia we have big names like Wild Life
Salon and Franck Provost group using the
site since inception.
The diversity of skills on offer is similarly
on the increase including wellness
treatments, tanning and even yoga classes.
There are now more than 9,000 salons
who have joined the platform globally with
approximately 800 salons in Australia. Of
these 800 the majority are in New South
Wales and Victoria, largely Melbourne and
The majority of the current 500 odd
salons, in Melbourne and Sydney are
predominantly hair salons., with a
growing number of businesses also
offering more alternate services.
“The login process for users is very simple
it’s just a two-step process to create a
username and password or one click to
activate an account using the consumers
facebook profile,” Alexandre said.
“I’d say one of our biggest challenges
ahead is the growth of new salons – as we
continue to grow we have to look at new
ways to further assist our salon partners to
grow their business and recruit the right
partnerships,” he said
Recently Vaniday has rolled out their own
salon software tool called MyVaniday. This
software enables Vaniday to synchronise
with the local salon’s calendar for a true
and fuss-free online booking platform.
Considering there are a lot of ‘online
bookings’ out there for salons that aren’t
true online bookings – often many salons
aren’t embracing specific technology
for bookings to be added and managed
straight to the calendar, rather than just
via contacting the salon manager.
“This makes us not just a booking
platform but also a total solution – we also
help the salon to manage their appointments
and client database,” Alexandre said.
For some this may mark the end of blank
appointment spaces but for others, it’s
another way the customer and third parties
are having an increasing hold over the
individual business. In a matter of personal
opinion, it really is up to the salon to ensure
the relationship is working well with their
type of business, their objectives and their
own marketing strategy.
“Eventually we will be providing a
complete software system that is free to
use and can fully integrate with any salon
software program,” Alexandre said.
“We are hoping this disrupts the market
from just the established players – not
only from the client perspective with the
extra business we will bring them but also
increasing ease of use and trust for the
consumer that gets what they want, when
they want,” he said.
Alexandre says that 50 per cent of the
bookings made on Vaniday are made outside
of traditional opening hours – testament to
the ideology that salons may be missing out
on bookings and new clients for this reason.
It is believed that 40 per cent of
the customers return to the platform
for their next booking – this figure is
Not all sites are like Vaniday (it’s one
of the slickest we’ve seen). In America
for example there are a lot more players,
of which Prema salon owner Francesco
Ruggerino says a lot are new and very
discount. On the flipside, this brings
us to the realization that there are
different ways of looking at the advent of
these sites. Depending on what type of
businesses you have involved and who you
partner with, they certainly don’t need to
be based on discounting.
“I’m trying to look at the positives of it
and think openly about how it will benefit
our salons – not everyone has as much of
an online presence as us but I’m scared of
the power they will garner on the internet
with content and much more traffic that
may detract from consumers researching
us directly,” Francesco said.
For a partner like Vaniday for example
where discounting is not the name of the
game, the concern for salons should be
“In my opinion salons are already
struggling with margins and this is a short
term benefit for a long-term problem. In
some ways I see the value for the consumer
and for some salons, but I also see some
sites undermining the industry,” he said.
Sandy Chong from the AHC and Suki
Hairdressing believes that anything that
helps to get a consumer into a salon rather
than the backyard is a good thing.
“If you’re not in a major shopping area
nobody knows you-sites like Vaniday can
only be a good thing. For me, Suki is in a
tourist area and people don’t recognize we
are here so we are always looking at ways
to work with businesses nearby to bring us
customers,” Sandy said.
There’s no stopping the momentum of
online reviews and the way consumers
‘shop’ for their ultimate salon. The world
is now the customer’s oyster with buyer
reviews and online profiles extremely
prevalent and finding the right one
sometimes just as hard as finding the best
massage in Bali.
“A lot of our business in the US comes
from online now, not as many people just
walk in. In the Surry Hills salon people
are local, they go to different websites,”
Francesco said. Believing that a strong
culture attracts the right customer through
various marketing and online executions,
Francesco is passionate about the meaning
of his business to the customers, as most of
you are – the creativity and the numbers
can be a constant battle.
At the end of the day any traffic is good
traffic and for a lot of Australian salons
signing up to Vaniday, the 20 per cent cut
comes off the haircut only, so if a client
books in for a cut, colour and blow dry or
treatment for example, the salon has the
opportunity to sell-in full price for any
“It’s really up to the discretion of the
salon to re-book the client and give them
the ultimate experience,” Sandy said.
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