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A guide to beauty bank membership programs

Learn how beauty bank membership programs can help spas, salons, tattoo shops, and medical spas book more big-ticket services.

A guide to beauty bank membership programs
Emily Holzer
By Emily Holzer

Content Marketing Manager

If your business wants a simple and universal membership program, the beauty bank method may be for you. Let's unpack what these memberships involve and how to leverage them in your salon or spa.

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Overview of bank-style membership

You might be wondering, "What are bank-style membership programs?" Also called beauty banks, wellness banks, accrual-based, or savings memberships, they are seamless monthly contract structures that are flexible enough to accommodate most business types.

Think of savings memberships like a payment plan in reverse — except with extra savings instead of potential fees. As the name suggests, customers pay a monthly charge to fill their beauty bank (and often unlock exclusive perks). Clients can spend this money on services every month or save up over time for more expensive options.

This membership style is often found in businesses with large ticket items, like tattoo shops, hair salons, medical spas, and day spas. Customers can save up for the services they want and enjoy member-exclusive discounts. Meanwhile, your business secures a more stable income and enhanced customer loyalty.

6 Benefits of beauty banks

I have heard salon and spa owners ask, "What is the point of a beauty bank membership?"

Admittedly, bank-style memberships aren't for every business. However, they can offer benefits for your finances, client satisfaction, and retention rates:

  • Sell more big-ticket services: Your most valuable services can leave customers feeling overwhelmed and hesitant about the bottom line. Beauty bank memberships break these down into bite-sized payments, helping you sell more big-ticket offerings.

  • Overcome payment plan challenges: Buy now, pay later (BNPL) and other payment plans are growing in popularity. However, potential fees and overspending can drag customers underwater, making many hesitant to switch. Data from C + R Research suggests that 57% of consumers regretted a BNPL purchase because it enabled them to buy something they could not afford. Meanwhile, beauty banks offer the best of both worlds: more sales for you and fewer financial woes for your clients.

  • Stable revenue: The beauty and wellness industry can be unpredictable. However, bank-style memberships add a more reliable and predictable layer to your monthly income.

  • Attracting and keeping your clients: Beauty bank memberships give customers a reason to choose your business over your competitors, and it can make loyalty second nature.

  • Shut down pricing conversations: We have all had clients who treat service prices like a negotiation or a chance to complain. While you don't owe anyone an explanation for your prices, these memberships make challenging conversations easy (especially for new providers). If a client complains about pricing, you can say, "Our memberships can help you save up for the services you are interested in!" Or, "You can save 10% by signing up for our monthly membership!"

Bank-style membership ideas and examples

Beauty bank memberships are easy to customize for your business and its services. Let's explore three ways you can create seamless bank-style memberships:

1) Set pricing structure

Depending on your services and preferences, you might offer a universal membership structure that applies to all services. This system often involves one set monthly charge that can build a client's beauty bank or be redeemed for a variety of services at a discounted rate.

For example, let's say you set a monthly $150 membership charge. This money can be redeemed like cash for any service, with a 10% membership discount incentive. You might also enforce a waiting period, like "Cancel any time after your first 90 days," to avoid one-time customers taking advantage of the membership discount.

2) Pricing tiers for beauty bank memberships

Some beauty bank memberships are tailored to accommodate specific clients and services. In these cases, you might consider adding pricing tiers. Rather than enforcing a single price, it can be helpful to offer different rates.

Let's take a tattoo shop, for example. Some clients may want to save up quickly and in bigger increments for a larger service. Others may be more casual, wanting to set aside money for smaller tattoo options.

  • Silver membership: $90 per month charged to your tattoo savings account and 5% off our traditional prices. This amount can often cover one 1-2 inch tattoo each month or build up in your bank to save for more extensive services. Silver memberships are perfect for clients looking for an affordable way to extend their tattoo options.

  • Gold membership: $150 per month charged to your tattoo savings account and 10% off our traditional prices. This amount can cover one 2-3 inch tattoo each month or one shading session. Gold memberships are ideal for any client, whether you have short-term or big-picture ideas.

  • Platinum membership: $225 per month charged to your tattoo savings account and 10% off our traditional prices. This membership can cover one 3-4 inch tattoo each month or one extended shading session. Platinum memberships are perfect for clients interested in breaking up more sizable services to achieve a big vision. Let's make your full-sleeve dream a reality.

This same structure could apply for piercings, permanent makeup, medical spa services, and more.

3) Service and beauty bank memberships

There are easy ways to strike a balance between traditional service-based memberships and beauty bank memberships.

Auroraflow's massage and facial membership is a perfect example of this balance. The membership features a $100 set fee each month. Members can redeem this credit for a select facial or massage service, much like a traditional spa membership.

However, the client may also forgo these pre-selected services. In that case, they can use the money in their wellness bank to pay for any other treatments, from fire cupping to acupuncture and reflexology.

While the pre-selected treatments have an extra discount, Auroraflow still offers a 10% member promotion on alternative treatment options paid with the wellness bank. Of course, clients can also roll over and build up credit for larger services or an extra luxurious month down the line.

You can find additional membership examples and inspiration here.

How to create and manage a beauty bank membership

You can easily manage beauty bank memberships in Mangomint's salon and spa software system. Alongside our membership services, you can find tailor-made tools for your business, including payroll processing, email marketing, online booking, client management, staff management, and so much more.

We welcome you to start your free trial or schedule a live demo to get started today!

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Emily Holzer
Emily Holzer is a Content Marketing Manager at Mangomint. She has a master’s degree in English and a passion for helping salons, spas, and other local beauty businesses thrive. When she is not writing, you can find her playing chess or tending to her houseplants. Fun fact: Emily has donated 8 ponytails (so far) across 5 hair loss charities in the U.S.

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