Jan 18, 2024

How to build a website like Fresha

Fresha is an online marketplace that connects customers with local beauty and wellness businesses. Build your own marketplace like Fresha with this helpful guide.

Introduction: Why build a website like Fresha

Online marketplaces are great for sellers as they offer a venue to reach a broader audience, boost sales, and diminish marketing expenses. Buyers gain from the convenience of shopping from any location, accessing a vast array of products, and relishing competitive prices. Marketplace owners profit from transaction charges, augmented traffic, and a varied product selection, establishing a mutually beneficial situation for all parties involved.

The success of the online marketplace Fresha can be attributed to several key factors. Firstly, Fresha offers a user-friendly platform that allows customers to easily browse and book appointments with local beauty and wellness businesses. This convenience and accessibility have attracted a large customer base. Additionally, Fresha provides a comprehensive range of services, from haircuts to massages, catering to a diverse set of customer needs. Furthermore, Fresha has built a strong network of partner businesses, ensuring a wide selection of high-quality service providers. Lastly, Fresha's commitment to customer satisfaction, with features like easy rescheduling and transparent pricing, has fostered trust and loyalty among its users. Overall, these factors have contributed to the success of Fresha as a leading online marketplace in the beauty and wellness industry.

How does a website like Fresha work?

For buyers, Fresha is a convenient marketplace that simplifies the process of finding and booking beauty and wellness services. With just a few clicks, buyers can explore a wide range of services, compare prices, read reviews, and book appointments instantly. It offers a seamless and user-friendly experience, ensuring buyers find the perfect service provider to meet their needs.

For sellers, Fresha is a user-friendly marketplace that simplifies the process of managing appointments and attracting new customers. Sellers can create a profile, showcase their services, and set their availability. The platform also enables sellers to accept online bookings, process payments, and send automated reminders, ensuring a seamless experience for both sellers and customers.

What is Fresha's business model?

Fresha is an online marketplace that operates on a commission-based business model. It connects customers with various service providers in the beauty, wellness, and fitness industries, such as salons, spas, and personal trainers. The platform allows customers to book appointments, browse services, and make payments online, providing convenience and accessibility. Fresha earns revenue by charging a commission fee on each transaction made through its platform, ensuring a sustainable and profitable business model for both the company and its service providers.

Fresha makes money through a commission-based model where it charges a percentage fee on each transaction made through its online marketplace. When customers book appointments or purchase services from salons, spas, or beauty professionals listed on Fresha, the platform takes a small cut from the total amount paid. This revenue model allows Fresha to generate income while providing a convenient and user-friendly platform for businesses and customers to connect and transact seamlessly.

Key features of Fresha

The most important functionality of a marketplace like Fresha is the ability to connect service providers (such as salons, spas, and beauty professionals) with customers in a seamless and efficient manner. This includes features such as:

  1. Online Booking: The marketplace should allow customers to easily browse through available services, view real-time availability, and book appointments online. This eliminates the need for phone calls or in-person bookings, providing convenience for both customers and service providers.

  2. Scheduling and Calendar Management: The marketplace should provide a comprehensive scheduling system that allows service providers to manage their availability, block off time slots, and handle multiple appointments simultaneously. It should also sync with their personal calendars to avoid any scheduling conflicts.

  3. Reviews and Ratings: Customers should be able to leave reviews and ratings for the services they receive, helping other potential customers make informed decisions. This feature promotes transparency and accountability among service providers.

  4. Payment Processing: The marketplace should offer secure and seamless payment processing, allowing customers to pay for services online. It should support various payment methods and ensure the privacy and security of customer information.

  5. Notifications and Reminders: The marketplace should send automated notifications and reminders to both customers and service providers regarding upcoming appointments, changes, or cancellations. This helps reduce no-shows and keeps everyone informed.

  6. Business Management Tools: Service providers should have access to tools that help them manage their business efficiently. This may include features like inventory management, employee scheduling, sales reporting, and customer relationship management.

  7. Mobile App: A mobile app version of the marketplace is crucial, as it allows customers to easily access and book services on the go. It also enables service providers to manage their business and appointments from anywhere, enhancing flexibility and accessibility.

Overall, the most important functionality of a marketplace like Fresha is to create a user-friendly and efficient platform that connects service providers and customers, streamlines the booking process, and enhances the overall experience for both parties.

Building functionality like Fresha from scratch would require significant time, effort, and resources. The cost would depend on various factors such as the complexity of the features, the number of platforms it needs to be developed for (web, mobile, etc.), the size of the development team, and the hourly rates of the developers involved. Additionally, costs would include designing the user interface, backend infrastructure, integrating payment gateways, and ensuring security measures. Considering all these factors, it is difficult to provide an exact cost estimate, but it could range from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

How to create a successful alternative to Fresha

  • Conduct thorough market research to identify gaps and opportunities in the beauty and wellness industry.
  • Develop a user-friendly and visually appealing mobile application and website platform.
  • Offer a wide range of services including hair, nails, spa, and wellness treatments.
  • Implement a seamless booking system that allows users to easily schedule appointments with their preferred service providers.
  • Provide a comprehensive database of verified and highly skilled beauty professionals.
  • Offer flexible payment options, including online payment and cashless transactions.
  • Incorporate a rating and review system to build trust and credibility among users.
  • Implement a loyalty program to incentivize repeat bookings and referrals.
  • Collaborate with local businesses and salons to expand the service provider network.
  • Offer personalized recommendations and tailored promotions based on user preferences and previous bookings.
  • Provide a customer support team that is readily available to address any queries or concerns.
  • Continuously update and improve the platform based on user feedback and changing industry trends.
  • Implement effective marketing strategies to increase brand awareness and attract a large user base.
  • Foster partnerships with beauty influencers and bloggers to promote the platform.
  • Ensure data privacy and security measures are in place to protect user information.
  • Expand the platform to include additional features such as virtual consultations, home services, and exclusive deals.

Successful Fresha competitors

  1. Mindbody: Mindbody is a leading competitor to Fresha in the online marketplace for salon and spa services. While Fresha focuses primarily on appointment scheduling and management, Mindbody offers a more comprehensive suite of features including client management, marketing tools, and payment processing. However, Fresha stands out with its user-friendly interface and seamless integration with social media platforms.

  2. Vagaro: Vagaro is another strong competitor to Fresha, offering a similar range of services for salon and spa businesses. Both platforms provide online booking, appointment management, and marketing tools. However, Fresha differentiates itself by offering a completely free platform for businesses, while Vagaro has a tiered pricing structure that may not be as appealing to smaller businesses.

  3. Square Appointments: Square Appointments is a popular competitor to Fresha, particularly for small businesses in various industries. While both platforms offer online booking and appointment management, Fresha has a more specialized focus on the beauty and wellness industry. Square Appointments, on the other hand, provides a broader range of features, including point-of-sale capabilities and inventory management, making it a more versatile option for businesses outside the beauty industry.

  4. Booker: Booker is a comprehensive online booking and management platform that competes with Fresha in the salon and spa industry. Both platforms offer similar features, such as online booking, appointment management, and marketing tools. However, Fresha's standout feature is its zero-cost model for businesses, while Booker requires a subscription fee, making Fresha a more cost-effective choice for smaller businesses.

  5. Timely: Timely is a competitor to Fresha that caters to the salon and spa industry with its online booking and management platform. Both platforms offer similar features, including online booking, appointment management, and marketing tools. However, Fresha's integration with social media platforms and its ability to attract new clients through its marketplace give it an edge over Timely in terms of visibility and customer acquisition.

Options to develop a website similar to Fresha

Developing a Fresha-style online marketplace from scratch is a significant, costly endeavor. However, nowadays, there are numerous ways to construct a marketplace that do not necessitate a substantial budget.

The option you should select depends on:

  • The features you believe your marketplace requires
  • Your technical abilities (or the skills within your team)
  • Your budget
  • The available time.

The various methods to construct a marketplace are:

  • Utilizing WordPress and plugins
  • Building on existing open-source software
  • Employing a combination of no-code tools
  • Utilizing a specialized no-code marketplace SaaS tool
  • Developing on a foundation of an API-based marketplace SaaS tool

In addition to your skill and budget limitations, you should also consider the speed of learning. Launching your Fresha-style platform quickly enables you to rapidly understand your audience. These insights assist in creating a platform that users prefer over any other existing solution.

Sharetribe's marketplace software is designed with this iterative learning process in mind.

Initially, we assist you in launching a platform similar to Fresha in just one day without any coding. The building stage is permanently free, and all the essential functionality is pre-built.

Once you have launched, you can discover the additional features and functionality your platform needs to cater to your audience. You may want to completely change the design and workflow, integrate various third-party services, or develop a mobile app. With Sharetribe, you can easily customize all these modifications and much more, either independently or with assistance from our Expert partners.

At Sharetribe, we have been constructing marketplaces for over ten years. Our experience and expertise are available to you through our content resources, which you can access and utilize regardless of your chosen platform-building method.

Best of luck with your Fresha-style business!

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