Surviving the New Normal: A Guide for the Wellness Industry


No one will know how the new normal will look like, least of all for the global wellness industry. As a whole, the wellness industry is in shambles with only a few surviving casualties. Spa resorts, therapy centers, and massage studies have to close their doors amid the pandemic last year. There is no assurance that their doors will open once more once the new normal sets in. Everywhere, business owners are making hard decisions about the future of their businesses, specifically on what they have to do to survive in the new normal.

Eliminate Unnecessary Contact

Even after the pandemic, people will not feel comfortable enough to sit side-by-side with strangers, not knowing if they are virus carriers. They are not going to be trusting of spa centers that tell them all their therapists have tested negative to COVID-19. So, what can a business do? The wellness industry has to eliminate unnecessary contact between the clients and the therapists.

It starts in the waiting room. Invest in virtual check-ins. There is no need for clients to share pens, clipboards, and tablets. If possible, the butlers should get the clients’ luggage at a designated place, so they won’t have to be in contact.

Of course, it’s quite different in the therapy room. An actual therapist must provide the service the clients want. But if that’s not something you’re comfortable with, you can invest in luxurious and high-quality full-body massage chairs that can provide a relaxing massage to the clients. They’re as good as a professional therapist.

Turn to Retail

Maybe you won’t be able to provide the services your business has been known for, but you can definitely offer retail products. Lotions, creams, scrubs, oils, and shampoo are just some of the products that spas can sell. Keep your online store open, so your loyal customers can still order these goods. Of course, you have to make an effort in attracting new clients, too, as they will keep your business afloat.

Accept Pre-booking

One of the most successful strategies in the past year is for spas and salons to accept pre-bookings. This means that clients will pre-book an appointment for the future. This has no specific date. This will keep the flow of income coming into your business while not necessarily forcing you to provide the services. You cannot set a pre-determined date and time when a pre-booking will be used, though you should give your clients an idea when they can start looking at the possibility of using it.

Streamline Your Operations

There are ways to continue running your spa business. Streamlining your services will provide a comfortable experience for the clients. For example, instead of offering full-service at the moment, you can ask your customers to come to the salon with newly-washed hair so the hair cutters can proceed to cut their hair. For a spa, you can offer to massage and treat certain parts of the body except for the head. A back or leg or foot massage is a good option compared to the full-body massage that you usually offer.

Waive the Cancellation Fees

A cancellation fee is acceptable under normal conditions. But there was nothing normal about the industry in the past year. People canceled their appointments because they aren’t sure about their safety. It is their right to put their health above others. They should not be penalized for that. Make sure to let your clients know that they can cancel their prior reservation if they feel uncomfortable with the recent surge in cases, for example. As for those who will keep their appointments, make sure to give them incentives.

Sanitize All the Time

sanitizing hands

What spaces could you be missing when you clean the spa or salon regularly? Cleaning the place is different from sanitizing it. Make sure that your clients know what protocols you are enforcing in your place of business. They need to feel comfortable going there and availing themselves of your services. A wellness industry works primarily for the relaxation of clients. If you cannot provide the same level of relaxation as before, then you will lose your clients.

Always stay connected with your clients. Know what they want and demand. Make sure that you can provide the answer to their questions about health protocols, cancellation, and pre-reservation. If possible, run a blog that will inform clients how to take care of themselves during a difficult time in the world today. The wellness industry has been booming for a few years now before the pandemic. And although the pandemic impacted it in so many ways, people understand, now more than ever, why they need to take care of themselves.

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