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Survey Shows Growth in Spa Visits

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The spa industry had a good first-quarter this year, as the majority reported a jump in gross revenue, gross profits, spa visits and retail performance as compared to 2016, according to a recent survey by the International Spa Association (ISPA).

These positive sustained growth trends in the data provided showed the spa industry continuing to thrive as wellness increasingly becomes a top priority in people's lives. The results of the ISPA survey include answers from all respondents who took the "Snapshot Survey" in an eight-day period from Friday, April 21, 2017 to Friday, April 28, 2017. During this time period, 206 ISPA members responded to the survey (day, resort/hotel, medical and destination spas).

Spa Visits Up 

An encouraging trend found in the data is that spa visits were up for the ninth consecutive quarter across all segments of spa respondents. Seventy-two percent of all spa respondents reported that visits were up, with 76% of day spa respondents and 69% of resort/hotel spa respondents reporting an increase.

Gross Revenue Growth

In terms of gross revenue change for the first quarter of 2017, the survey found that 78% of all spa respondents reported growth at some level. The number increased for 84% of day spa respondents and 72% of resort/hotel spa respondents. The majority of resource partner respondents also reported at least some growth, at 79% of respondents.

A Profitable Quarter  

Gross profit change showed promising trends as well for both segments of respondents, according to the ISPA survey. Seventy-seven percent of all spa respondents reported growth in their gross profit change for the first quarter of 2017 compared to the first quarter of 2016. The majority of resource partner respondents also reported growth in their gross profit change at 68%.

Jobs Wanted 

Despite the health of the spa industry, employment has shown mixed results.

On a positive note, 46% of respondents added new positions at their spas in the first quarter of 2017, which is up from a year ago when 40% of those surveyed added new positions. Also, the amount of respondents who laid off employees fell to zero in the current first quarter as compared to 3% a year ago.

However, there was a slight increase in respondents who put hiring freezes in place in the first quarter of 2017, up 7%, as compared to zero a year ago. Also, the number of those surveyed who made no change to their workforce rose to 36% in the most recent quarter, up slightly from 33% reported a year ago, which could indicate that jobs growth has yet to catch up with the growth in the industry and that business owners took a wait-and-see approach amid the politico-economic climate during the first quarter of 2017. 

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