4 Tips to Help Massage Therapists Deal With Inflation

As consumer prices continue to rise, small businesses are feeling the financial strain. Although inflation rates have started to slow in comparison to the last few years, many small businesses, including massage therapy practices continue to feel a financial pinch.

Below are four tips to help massage therapists navigate rising costs while taking the pressure off of their finances.

1. Cut Expenses

It can be easy to fall into a pattern of spending without being fully aware of where your money is going. Think about how many subscription services you may have in your personal life that you forget about on a monthly basis. Those costs add up. A good way to try and prevent unnecessary spending is to review expenses on a weekly basis, as opposed to a monthly basis, and make adjustments as necessary.

Rent increases are also a large source of increased expenses. “My rent has gone up 25%, and my business has slowed down,” says Landon Girvin, LMBT, owner of Waves to Palms Massage Therapy. This combination of increased rent and less business can be challenging, and may force some small businesses to consider changing locations or to look for alternatives with lower rent costs, like shared office spaces.

Other ways to cut expenses include reducing supply expenses and searching for new vendors when available, leveraging technology and automation options, and reviewing and adjusting your budget.

2. Diversify Your Supply Chain

Although supply chain issues have eased, there is still some uncertainty in the economy. Diversifying your supply chain will allow you to easily pivot if one product you rely on suddenly becomes too expensive or unavailable. When this happens, return on investment can be greatly affected. “My return on investment (ROI) has gone down as the products I use have gotten more expensive and my prices for services have stayed the same,” says Bre Daniels, licensed massage therapist and owner of Vera Massage. Identify your necessities and research back-up options for these products in the event of a supply chain disruption to try and keep your ROI as high as possible.

3. When Possible, Buy in Bulk

An unreliable supply chain often means that buying products you use in bulk is a good idea, when possible. The key is to identify products that are essential to your business, such as massage lotions and creams, and then purchase them in larger quantities. This allows you to “lock in” a price, which can help you manage costs during times when prices are more likely to rise than fall.

4. Menu Add-Ons

Offering short menu add-ons to sessions clients have already booked is one way massage therapists can increase value for their clients while also offsetting costs. “I have kept my prices the same in the hopes that clients will keep coming and appreciate that at least one thing has not gone up in price,” Girvin says. “I have added to my menu more $10 to $15 add-ons in the hopes of bringing in extra income that way.” Because these add-ons offer another service in addition to the base massage as opposed to an across-the-board increase in rates, clients may appreciate the choice and be more likely to spend more during a session. As part of this, it is important to communicate openly with clients so they fully understand your rates.