Sometimes it's easiest to overlook the things that you're used to seeing every day. However, don't let your spa menu be one of those things.

If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that we need to be prepared for change and to think on our feet. Many spas are dealing with restrictions on how many guests they are allowed to service in their space, and this is impacting the generation of revenue.

Take this opportunity to optimize your price list to make sure that it's working for you and not against you, in light of recent events in our industry.

1. It may be time to remove your lower priced items.

We don't know if or when we will be back to packed waiting rooms and walk-in appointments at our spas and the income that results from them. This means, logically, that clients who reserve appointments for lower-priced services are preventing higher-priced services from being scheduled, since clients must come in one at a time. It may be time to ask yourself if that $10 upper-lip wax or $25 makeup application is really worth your time and effort.

Can you survive and pay your expenses and staff with one-off, low priced services? Or perhaps you will keep some of these cheaper services and only allow them to be booked as add-ons to more substantially priced ones. Only you as the owner can know that. But keep in mind that it may be time to focus on your higher ticket items at the moment.

2. Edit unpopular treatments from your menu.

The next point to think about when super-charging your spa menu is recognizing unpopular or rarely booked services. Why hold onto offerings that don't sell? Why continue to purchase products or equipment to support those unrequested items on your price list?

Don't hold on to menu items for sentimental reasons or because you have just a handful of customers that book them. Make room for new and innovative services that will expand your reach to potential new clients and intrigue your existing ones.

3. Secure a deposit as often as possible.

As a business owner, there's nothing as disappointing as preparing space, staff and supplies for a service that gets canceled or rescheduled at the last minute. If you don't already, you may want to consider asking for deposits or a credit card number at the time of booking. Collect a portion of the cost of the service that will be held and applied to the client's balance at checkout.

Many spas and salons do this with great success and will never go back to old methods. Not only does it give you a modicum of economic stability, it also weeds out clients who are not fully committed to their scheduled appointments. Of course, there are times when emergencies come up and clients cannot be held to a strict policy. But, more often than not, it's crucial to set this as a standard.

4. Revamp your cancellation policy.

Another crucial aspect of an optimized spa menu is a clear and strongly enforced cancellation policy. You can have the best spa menu in the world and offer the greatest services but if your clients don't respect it, what good is it?

Most commonly, spas and salons should require 24 hours’ notice for cancellations and rescheduling appointments and if these criteria are not met, there must be a financial penalty. Sadly, paying a $25 or $50 cancellation fee is not incentive enough for some people to follow the rules. You may need to enact a policy where 50-100% of the service cost must be paid if cancellation guidelines aren't followed; especially if you do not collect a deposit, as noted above.

Furthermore, until those fees are paid, clients should not be able to rebook any appointments at your facility. It may seem strict, but in these uncertain times, it's more than reasonable to enforce professional boundaries with your clients. You may find that you retain the quality clients and drop the flaky ones with this practice.

5. Build retail products into service prices.

As skincare professionals, we know that professional services and spa-grade skincare go hand in hand. The best outcomes occur when clients regularly visit our spas for services and commit to using the retail products we suggest for them.

So, why not make sure that clients are getting top-notch results by designing menu offerings that include complementary product routines built into the price? For example, create chemical peel services that incorporate the price of the procedure and the retail items that clients will go home with to protect their results.

Why take a chance on whether a client has a proper sunscreen or face wash? Insist that products go home with your clients, so they get the best outcomes. Don't let unsold retail sit dusty on your shelves. Start to incorporate retail more actively into your services and it will be a win for you and your clients.

6. Sell packages.

Packaging services in larger quantities not only drives revenue in your spa, it helps the client to commit to a treatment plan. One-off treatments are OK in certain cases, but all in all, the best plan of action is for a client to commit to regular services at standardized frequencies.

Prime examples of this are hair removal services like waxing and laser. We know that ideal results don't come from one or two treatments but several! Not only that, but clients may enjoy a slight discount or incentive associated with their package price — it's up to you to work the numbers to create a great value.

In closing, it's important to optimize your spa menu so you can enjoy increased revenues and benefit from client commitment during these restrictive times.

Do this by removing lower-priced and unpopular items, collecting a deposit for bookings and enforcing your cancellation policy, beefing up your service prices by adding retail prices into them, and always offering packages. In a changing world, it's crucial that we modify aspects of our spa business — including our menu — so we can thrive and continue to grow.