The State of the Bridal Salon

Blog by: Cindie Reinhold Day of coordinator of VP Consulting

It’s never been easy to own a bridal salon. The hours are long, the work is really back breaking and you are constantly on with the public. You wear so many hats you need a rack!

An industry friend once told me, “We may be getting older but our demographic stays the same.” That means salon owners are engaging with women in their mid-twenties to early thirties. So what do these women want in a wedding gown and expect from a salon?

Some brides just want to buy off the rack, get a pretty dress, and feel confident that they can find something for a grand or less. They have no problem with big box stores or service. And there are those who really believe that the steal of a deal is out there on the Internet. Unfortunately, they often find themselves the victims of scams and knockoffs. The one thing these customers have in common is that the shopping “experience” is not a high priority.

But for those who see selecting a gown as a rite of wedding planning passage, they’re looking for not just the perfect dress but also a great shopping experience. Maybe they’ve watched a few too many episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress,” but they want this to be a memory-making occasion with family and close friends.

To survive in today’s bridal market, you must have a niche and provide a satisfying shopping experience. This should be reflected in every aspect and detail. It gives a clear business personality which attracts those “match made” clients. Take time to think about your niche – what makes doing business with you engaging and rewarding? And ask: If I were the customer, would I truly be satisfied with my shopping experience? Be honest – we all have room for improvement!

Come to think of it, the above is not bad advice for any wedding professional. 

Photo credit to Photos by Rodney Bailey