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The Ultimate Vagaro Review 2021: The Best Salon Software?

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Are you on the hunt for an all-in-one appointment and business management software for your salon, spa, or health & fitness business?

Then this is probably not the first time you hear about Vagaro Pro.

Vagaro is a top rated salon software that comes with complete support to manage your total business. It’s incredible how they have managed to include so many features into this platform while still keeping pricing very affordable.

In this Vagaro software review, I’ll be breaking down everything about this platform so that you have full visibility on strengths, limitations, and pricing.

Let’s dive into the Vagaro Pro review!

Vagaro Review at a Glance

Description

Vagaro is a complete system for salons, spas, barbershops, health and fitness business.

It’s one of the most feature rich platform on the market and comes with POS, online appointment scheduling, email/SMS marketing, credit card processing, subscription payments, video streaming, website builder, eCommerce, payroll, hardware and advanced business reporting just to name a few.

In fact, they even offer agency type services (like logo design) for their customers.

Despite the incredible amount of built-in features, they are keeping their pricing affordable and allow for further integration with other popular software such as QuickBooks.

Vagaro salon software logo

Overall Score

4.7

Vagaro Pricing

I really like the transparent and modular Vagaro Pro pricing. The base rate is very affordable and you choose what add-ons you want to activate.

Below is a summary of all the costs you can expect with Vagaro so that you can plan out what the total cost would come to for you.

  • Free 30 day trial
  • Monthly subscription fee: $25 for individuals, $35 for 2 employees, and $10 extra per additional employee up to 7+ employees at $85.
  • Add-on features
    • Automated text marketing: $20/month
    • Website builder: $10/month
    • Forms: $10/month
    • Cloud storage: $10/month
    • Check-in app: $10/month
    • Additional visibility at the Vagaro client marketplace: $10/month
    • Branded app (pretty cool huh..): $200/month
    • SMS marketing: $20/mo for 500 sms and they offer plans up to $400/mo for 20,000 sms.
    • Email marketing: 1000 emails/mo are included in your plan. If you need more, you pay $10/mo for 5 000 emails up to $90/mo for 100 000 emails.
  • Credit card processing fees
    • Small merchants (less than $4000/month): 2.75% per swipe, 3.5% + $0.15 per keyed in transaction.
    • Large merchants (more than $4000/month): 2.2% + $0.19 per swipe, 3% + $0.19 per keyed in transaction. American Express swipe 2.75% + $0.19 and type 3.5% + $0.19. Monthly cost $10.

Vagaro Review Breakdown

Appointment Management (5.0)

Online Booking (5.0)

Ease of Use (4.0)

Client Data Management (5.0)

Point of Sale (5.0)

Customer Service (5.0)

Inventory Management (5.0)

Mobile Apps (5.0)

Pricing (5.0)

As expected, I’m giving Vagaro top review scores on almost everything.

The platform has a nice interface that is easy to use. However, the sheer number of features and customisation options available makes the learning curve when getting started with Vagaro slightly higher than other options. You may also experience some page load time when navigating around the tool.

Review Summary

My first impression with Vagaro was..

WOW.

In particular the number of features available under one roof while I’m also able to customise the tool and integrate with other platforms.

You can really tell that they have been around for a while and are constantly adding new features to the platform. I’ve really been trying to identify missing features without success.

Everything is there.

You’ll also find find a lot of non-standard, advanced features, like live video streaming, membership/ subscription payments, advanced client history tracking (including SOAP forms), eCommerce, and done-for-you design services.

And, of course, a client marketplace which allow you to market your salon to potential new clients.

I would be highly surprised if you found features to be a limitation. If anything, the many features and customisation options makes the learning curve a little bit bigger than if you were to use a more “locked down” and limited salon software.

The features you’ll find in Vagaro are rich and well developed and my impression is that it will be more than enough for 99% of businesses.

However, the one area I found a bit limiting is the website builder. It’s a good solution if you want to spin up a site quickly using information that is already store in Vagaro. But my recommendation for most salons would be to use a dedicated website builder like Squarespace and then embed a Vagaro widget whenever you want to allow for bookings or show other information stored in Vagaro on your website.

Pros

  • VERY rich in features
  • Affordable price
  • Integration with other software (e.g. QuickBook, Xerox, Facebook, Zoom)
  • Integrated payments (inc. recurring subscriptions)
  • Client marketplace that help you attract more new clients

Cons

  • Slight learning curve in the beginning
  • Pages could load faster
  • Clients need to create a Vagaro account when booking (could also be a pro if they already have a Vagaro account)

Who is Vagaro For?

Vagaro is ideal for busy salons with a team who needs rich support but still the simplicity of managing everything in one place.

Even if you are not tech savvy, you will be able to get marketing campaigns, online booking, and a lot of more advanced features up and running without having to integrate a whole bunch of different tools.

Which Countries is Vagaro Pro Available in?

Vagaro is available with all features in the US, Canada, Australia, and UK. As the software is cloud based, people from other countries also uses but will not be able to benefit from integrated payments and local support.

Vagaro Features

Vagaro truly shines with its richness of features. The remainder of this review will walk you through more details of how things works inside Vagaro

Appointment ManagementEasy to use, drag and drop appointment schedule

Create recurring appointments

Color appointments for easy overview

Sync with Google, Apple or Outlook Calendar
Online BookingCreate a full website using Vagaro website builder

Embed a booking widget or popup on your existing website

Let clients can find and book you on the Vagaro client marketplace

Facebook and Instagram integration
Appointment NotificationsEmail, SMS, and App notifications

Notify client ahead of appointment, after appointment, or if any changes to appointment

Notify responsible staff for new appointments or changes to existing ones.
    Client Data ManagementStore information, photos, PDF, video on each client

    Track client history and store SOAP notes (Subjective, Objective, Assessment, and Plan)
    Inventory ManagementStore all needed information and images about products and services

    Setup categories and product/service variations to effectively manage a large inventory

    Receive low stock alerts
      Point of Sale SystemManage check out in dedicate Pay Desk, web interface, iPad app, iPhone app, or Android app

      Support of all type of payments
        Appointment AppsAndroid App

        iOS App (iPhone/ iPad)

        Cloud hosted (access from any web browser)

        Vagaro POS, Checkout & Payments

        You can access the POS using the Vagaro hardware, web browser, Android or iOS app.

        Their “Pay Desk” is beautifully designed and comes with dual screens – one for the client and one for you. This is something you need to purchase separately to your Vagaro plan.

        However, you get the card reader (which you see next to the screen below) for free when you sign up for their merchant service.

        You can check out the customer directly from the calendar or by going to check out in the top navigation. Below image shows an overview of what the check out looks like.

        Vagaro checkout

        Vagaro supports all the major credit cards as well as Apple Pay, Google Pay and other contactless payments.

        Vagaro Credit Card Processing Fees

        Small merchants (less than $4000/month): 2.75% per swipe, 3.5% + $0.15 per keyed in transaction.

        Large merchants (more than $4000/month): 2.2% + $0.19 per swipe, 3% + $0.19 per keyed in transaction. American Express swipe 2.75% + $0.19 and type 3.5% + $0.19. Monthly cost $10.

        Vagaro Appointments Calendar Management

        The Vagaro calendar is intuitive and easy to navigate. You can drag and drop appointments to change time.

        Hover an appointment with the mouse for more details. Color code the appointments for an easy overview. Switch between team view, day view, week view, or month view.

        You can also use the new agenda view which gives you a simple list of all your upcoming appointments.

        Vagaro Online Booking

        Vagaro offer multiple ways for clients to book you. You can create a full website using the Vagaro website builder, embed a booking widget on your existing website, integrate appointment scheduling with Facebook, and allow clients to find and book you on the Vagaro market place.

        You’ll find rich website embedding options. You can choose if you want it on your website, in a separate pop-up or if you want booking to open in a new browser tab.

        Vagaro website booking widget options

        You can also customise multiple widgets that you can embed on different pages. For example, you can have you services bookable on your service page, show products on your product page, and show reviews on your home page.

        This gives you more options than most other online appointment scheduling apps. However, design customisation is current limited to color changes.

        Below is an example of what the booking experience would look like on a mobile phone.

        Vagaro online booking on mobile

        Vagaro Notifications & Alerts

        Vagaro can notify clients about new appointments, remind about upcoming bookings, and send appointment confirmation requests. Notifications are sent as SMS, e-mail, and as app notification (in case user has the Vagaro app installed).

        Note that sms notifications will be an add-on to the standard plan.

        Vagaro app notifications

        You can also choose to notify the staff member and business owner.

        The information included in the notification is set by Vagaro but you can add additional information to appointment notifications.

        Vagaro appointment notifications

        Vagaro Client Data Management

        The Vagaro client directory really sets Vagaro apart from most other platforms out there. The amount of information you can store and track on your client is incredibly extensive.

        You can store multiple notes on each client and upload PDF files and images to the client profile. Just be aware that you have to purchase additional cloud storage space for images and documents.

        Vagaro supports advanced SOAP forms which makes the tool very powerful for chiropractors and other similar practices.

        Vagaro SOAP Form Software

        Vagaro Inventory Management

        Vagaro allow you to manage vendors, brands, and products. You can setup inventory tracking and notifications so that you’re in control of any stock levels. Really, you’ll find all the support you need to effectively manage your product inventory.

        Vagaro products setup

        Vagaro Staff & Payroll Management

        Vagaro is a tool that I recommend firstly to salon businesses with a team as it comes with great support in this area.

        The Vagaro payroll software comes with complete support to simplify all aspects of paying your staff. For more advanced payroll services, it also integrates with QuickBooks, Xero, and Gusto.

        The payroll report allow you to configure commission rates down to service and product level. It supports both flat rate commission and percentage.

        You can also customise detailed user access levels for all the groups shown below.

        Vagaro Staff Settings

        Vagaro Email & SMS Marketing

        Vagaro offers advanced support for email and sms marketing.

        You can design rich HTML emails using the drag-and-drop email builder and you can target your campaigns to very specific segments of your clients. For example, you can send an email specifically to clients who haven’t visited you for a certain time.

        You can also leverage automated communication so that SMS/email is sent out on your client’s birthday or a certain number of weeks after their appointment.

        SMS & Email Marketing in Vagaro

        Cost for Vagaro SMS & Email Marketing

        Vagaro Text Marketing costs $20/mo for 500 sms and they offer plans up to $400/mo for 20,000 sms.

        You’ll get 1000 emails/mo included in your plan and pay $10/mo for 5 000 emails up to $90/mo for 100 000 emails.

        Vagaro Social Media Integration & Reputation Management

        Vagaro integrates with Facebook, Instagram, Yelp, and Google. These are the platforms all salon businesses should have some level of presence on.

        This means people can book you directly from these platforms and that you can feature your gift cards for sale directly on your Google My Business profile.

        Vagaro Instagram integrations example

        You can also have your users leave a review of their visit on your Vagaro marketplace profile. The website widget also allow you to show these reviews on your website in order to strengthen the credibility of your business.

        Of course, if you prefer to have reviews collected on your Google My Business profile, you can also change links in your emails etc. to go to your GMB profile instead of Vagaro.

        Vagaro Apps

        Vagaro offers two apps – one for professionals and one for clients. They are available for both iOS and Android devices. Unless you purchase the hardware from Vagaro, you’ll likely be using the professional app a lot 🙂

        The Vagaro Professional app holds a 4.5 (5.0) user rating on Apple App Store with close to 5000 reviews (as of writing this). It has the same 4.5 (5.0) user score on Android with close to 7000 reviews.

        Vagaro mobile payment
        Accept card payments via your phone and the Vagaro card reader
        Vagaro app calendar view
        Vagaro calendar view in iPhone App

        Summary & Conclusion

        I hope you found this Vagaro salon software review helpful.

        As you can tell, Vagaro is a very powerful salon software and appointment scheduler for salons and spas.

        The incredible amount of powerful features you get at a very affordable rate makes Vagaro stand out vs. any other competitors in the area.

        So if you’re looking an all-in-one business solution for your salon, spa, or health & fitness business, I highly recommend you sign up for a free trial of Vagaro.

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