Med spa services are gaining more traction as the beauty and wellness industry continues booming. Opening your own medical spa business is an excellent opportunity to take advantage of this upward trend in medical services. If you’re interested in learning how to open a medical spa, you’ve come to the right place.
Opening any type of business is tricky, but a medical practice has its own considerations. You must consider medical license requirements, insurance, legal advice, physician qualifications, medical spa industry standards, state laws, and more. Once you master all of these factors, you can open your medical spa facility to the public, and with enough traction, you may even create a physician-owned corporation.
At Weave, we specialize in helping medical spa businesses perfect their practice operations. Our advanced, all-in-one med spa software can alleviate many of your duties as a med spa owner by automating processes like appointment scheduling, payment collections, and more. Below, we cover everything you need to know about opening a medical spa business.
Conducting Market Research for Your Med Spa
Before creating your business plan, you should conduct thorough market research to understand how the medical spa service market operates in your area. A traditional spa in a rural area will likely provide varying procedure options to a different clientele than a corporate practice in Los Angeles. Understanding your target audience, their needs, and how you can set yourself apart from the competition will help you create a successful med spa.
We recommend researching and considering the following factors:
What is the average age of your target audience? Medical spas specializing in cosmetic procedures for 50-year-old women hoping to erase fine lines with dermal fillers will have a much different business model than wellness spas targeting young women interested in aesthetic treatments like hair removal and lip fillers. Your audience’s demographics will affect the medical spa treatments you provide, the aestheticians you must hire, and more.
By researching competitors, you can learn what other med spa businesses are doing right and locate any gaps in the market. For example, you may discover that a specific medical treatment is very popular in your area, though only a few businesses adequately market their treatment offerings for it.
Common services in your area
By locating the most common medical procedure and treatment offerings in your area, you can discover which medical aesthetics your practice should focus on. For example, will you become a day spa offering cosmetics or a traditional spa providing more medical treatments? The treatments you provide will dictate each healthcare professional you need on staff.
After researching competitors and offered services, you can begin considering price ranges. Depending on the audience you wish to target, you may choose to charge slightly above, below, or on par with the average price in your area. In general, you won’t want to vary too far from the average.
Creating a Med Spa Business Plan
Now that you know the type of med spa practice you want to run, the services you wish to provide, and who your clientele will be, you can begin creating your business plan.
Your business plan defines your goals, creates your investment vision, and dictates all future decisions you make as a practice, so you should spend time on it. Potential investors will consider your business plan, all designers, architects, and stakeholders will consult it throughout the development process, and it will act as the guiding light throughout every critical decision.
We recommend considering the following items:
Your med spa practice must adhere to complex legal requirements, so meeting with a legal advisor can help you understand your local, state, and federal regulations. You’ll need to create legal consent forms, adhere to OSHA guidelines, and build rules within the medicine doctrine, which your legal counsel can help with.
Your location, desired business size, and offered services will dictate your staffing needs. Consider licensed physician and registered nurse practitioner requirements, which we’ll cover more below.
You’ve already decided on your general practice area, so now you must list out specific services. For example, esthetician services may include chemical peels, light therapy, facials, laser resurfacing, and more.
Equipment and supplies
Now that you know which services you wish to offer, consider what equipment you’ll need. Your equipment and supply list should include large items like chairs, tech needs, and desks, plus small things like disposable syringes.
Marketing and advertising plans
Consider how you’ll pull clients in. Will you market your business on social media, practice search engine optimization, post flyers at local coffee shops, or pay for television commercials? You should create a clear marketing plan with a budget and realistic goals.
Financial projections and goals
Your business plan should include specific and measurable financial targets that you can realistically meet. Consider all expenses when defining finances.
Finally, think about how you’ll fund this endeavor. Are you seeking a business loan, funding it yourself, or working with multiple shareholders?
Considering Licenses and Certifications Required for Med Spas
The American Med Spa Association provides all the resources you need on local and federal requirements, including licensing and insurance regulations, for medical spas in the United States. In general, licensing requirements vary state by state, though the Texas, California, and Florida medical boards all require a medical license. In these states, only an approved medical director, like a physician, can open and own a practice.
If you live in one of the above states and are not a medical professional, but still wish to open a medical spa, you have another option. You can opt for a management services organization (MSO) to create a relationship with a physician, formalized through an agreement.
If you live in a state like North Carolina that doesn’t have these requirements, you may not need to worry about creating this agreement, though keep in mind that regulations can vary based on the types of services you offer. Be sure to check with your attorney first.
You will also need business insurance. Insurance regulations vary between states, so you should research your local requirements. In general, you will likely need malpractice coverage, general liability, and property insurance.
Setting Up Your Clinic
Now you can begin thinking about your clinic’s physical requirements. We recommend considering the following items:
Location and design
The location of your practice will greatly impact its success. While a medical practice doesn’t need to be in the center of town, a day spa should be in a hip, popular area that builds word-of-mouth. Consider your competition’s location, zoning requirements, and what you’re providing when planning your location and building design.
Your business size will depend on what you provide. Are you specializing in a singular service or a wide variety of products and treatments? Do you want to expand into a corporate power with dozens of treatment rooms per building, or do you just want to keep it small, focusing on one thing?
Front desk needs
Consider how your front desk and waiting area will look, feel, and operate. The waiting area is the first impression clients will have of your office, so you want to display prestige and quality. Your front desk team should be equipped with advanced technology to make the check-in process smooth and pain-free.
The effectiveness of your medical spa’s operations, both internally and for your patients, hinges on your office software. To ensure seamless and efficient processes, it is crucial to opt for a comprehensive all-in-one solution, such as Weave, that streamlines and customizes essential functions such as phone calls, digital forms, payment processing, and online scheduling. This integrated approach will significantly enhance the patient experience and maximize productivity, allowing your medical spa to thrive in today’s digital landscape.
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Hiring Med Spa Staff
You must choose and train your staff wisely, as all med spa treatments require different education and certification levels.
For example, if you’re offering plastic surgery, you’ll need a plastic surgeon on your team with experience and knowledge in dealing with careful procedures involving tissues, skin, and other complications. Even simpler treatments, like facials, may require the knowledge of a professional dermatologist who understands how the different layers of skin interact with varying chemicals and products.
Spend time researching the required staff for the services you wish to offer. You can also up-train the people you hire. For example, to administer Botox injections, you can offer injection courses to your staff that may not already have the appropriate certifications.
We recommend consulting your legal counsel about med spa staffing requirements so you understand who to hire. You can recruit team members using various online platforms and social media outreach strategies. You can also conduct further competitive research to find some of the best med spa professionals in your area.
Upon hiring your team, create a consistent standard for training, reporting, and overall respect. Staffing competition in the med spa field can be fierce, so you want to create a positive work environment that encourages growth within your office.
You want your med spa clinic to run like a well-oiled machine, so you need to plan your operations adequately. Before opening your front door, we recommend considering the following items:
Policies and procedures
You must plan ahead for things like patient privacy protocols, biohazards, hygiene standards, equipment handling, medication storage and handling, risk management tactics, disinfection directions, incident reporting, and more. You can create legal documentation surrounding these policies and procedures with your legal counsel.
Health and safety protocols
To keep your staff and patients healthy and safe, you should create thorough protocols that outline disinfection policies adhering to all state and federal requirements.
Over-ordering and wasting products is a quick way to destroy your practice’s revenue. Creating a system for tracking, managing, and reordering inventory will help you stay on track so you can avoid unnecessary waste.
Quality and control measures
You should have systems in place that maintain the quality of all the services you offer. For example, consider placing each physician assistant in charge of obtaining consent forms from patients so that no one misses this step. You can assign roles for all critical quality steps in your business, from the products you receive and the equipment you use to the way your team operates.
Setting Your Med Spa Up for Success With Weave
Setting your med spa up for success doesn’t have to be hard. At Weave, we turn many of the complex challenges of running a medical business into simple, seamless solutions. Our all-in-one platform helps your team access comprehensive client information while helping patients complete simple tasks, like scheduling appointments online or paying their bills via text.
Schedule a Weave demo today to see how our platform can help you create the med spa business of your dreams.