Thriving in a competitive pet-care market requires you to stay on-top and ahead of the key trends in professional pet-care. Help ensure your professional and business' success by anticipating and acting on important trends in dog daycare, boarding, grooming and training industry.
Yes, we all know that pet-ownership is on the rise, and that 'millennials' are driving pet ownership trends, but we noted a couple key pet-care business specific trends mentioned by Compiantia (a retail audit software company) and others that are worth reviewing.
Pet Owners are Increasingly Tech-Savvy
It's no secret those so-called millennials are driving pet ownership, and those potential customers of yours are also 'tech-savvy'. Millennials aside, most pet owners today expect easy online interaction with your business and services - even 'boomers'! If you don't have a user-friendly integrated online reservation system and software, you are losing business. Simple as that.
Online booking, automated sms reminders, digital report cards and other online digital interactions enhance your customer-service experience, and demonstrate to your customers that you are up-to-date on technology. This helps instill trust that you are up-to-date in other areas of your business as well.
Brick and Mortar Matters
Compliantia notes that, even as "(o)nline pet-supply retailers are quick to capitalize on the pet food segment ... veterinary care remains second in spending categories. Moreover, the tendency to treat pets a family has consumers seeking out new and better services." (Source)
The way to compete is to provide great facility-based services that can never be replaced by online or in-home services. Pet's deserve to get out of the house and socialize, and need that steady attention and care that only brick-and-mortar pet care businesses can provide.
Capitalize on this trend by creating the best 'in-store' experience you possibly can for your customers. This includes ensuring your facility has great 'curb appeal'. Educate your staff so that they are knowledgeable not only about their jobs, but about current pet-care issues so they can help your customers. This helps build trust and goodwill for your company.
FranchiseHelp.com reminds us that premium services do well in pet-care. "Organic and natural treats and foods, high-tech medical therapies and medicines, luxury services and even spas – nothing is too good! Businesses that cater to these niche products and services are booming!" (Source). Indeed, may successful dog daycare and boarding facilities target the 'premium service' model with premium lodging units, extra add-on services (either included in premium pricing, or as a la carte services). The "premium experience" is further supported by the other items in this article: good technology, outstanding facility customer experiences and professional development of your staff.
Many pet-care business consultants and industry organizations can help you with your business model in developing premium service models for your customers' pets. Contact IBPSA to get started!
Professional Development and Certification in Pet-Care Services
If 2018 is the year of anything in professional pet care, it's the year of professional development and certification of facility-based pet-care professionals. The Professional Animal Care Certification Council (PACCC) is offering up an ambitious schedule of staff training and certification programs this year, and expects to award a record number of certificates to professionals who demonstrate excellence in pet-care.
Professional certification is one of the leading trends that sets facility-based pet-care apart from random 'pet-sitters' and 'dog-walkers' competing to deliver quality pet-care. Helping your staff obtain professional 3rd-party training and certification will help establish your business as a superior service to any in-home service option, and will help set you apart from any other facility in your market.
We make no predictions with these trends, but that the future is bright for any pet-care facility that continues to update operating systems and technology, while offering the best customer- and pet-experiences possible, and while investing in staff training and certifications.
Have a great 2018!
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