How OFF-CUT became South London’s go-to barbershop for stylish cuts

Having grown from a single walk-in venue to three fully booked out locations across South London in just a few years, the team at OFF-CUT knows a thing or two about scaling successful barbershops and giving high-quality, contemporary haircuts for trendsetters. 

We interviewed Harry Dye, manager of Off-Cut’s Camberwell venue, for insider tips on how to run a barbershop like clockwork using Fresha, and what barbershop owners can do to reliably grow their client base. 

Tell us a bit how OFF-CUT began, and how it’s grown.

Off-cut was born in 2018, with the goal of offering guaranteed high quality cuts to style-conscious South Londoners. We started with a small shop in Camberwell, and now we’ve grown to a total of three venues that are fully booked every day. 

How do you make sure your barbershop stands out?

We offer much more than your average haircut. Our barbers put in the time and effort to make sure each cut is done to perfection, leaving our clients feeling confident and looking sharp with styles inspired by South London’s vibrant, diverse culture.

What do clients love most about Off-Cut?

Clients know that they’ll get a personalised and professional service when they visit us. People from all walks of life come to us for different haircuts, and our barbers are trained to cater to each of them. Plus, we’re based in South London, where style is very important; so whether they get a classic service or a trending new look, our clients always leave with a stylish cut that sets them apart from the crowd.


What’s the secret to your success?

Putting client care first. That’s how we earned our reputation for great service and great results. We design our barbershops to be fairly small and minimalist, so we can fully focus on the clients in the chair. And we manage our schedules tightly so our barbers have enough time to give clients their full attention, along with time for breaks so the team can recharge and stay sharp. 

What’s been your biggest challenge so far as a barbershop manager?

At one point, time management was our biggest challenge. We used to be walk-in only, with no booking platform; sometimes we’d have up to ten people waiting to get their haircut, which meant a total wait time of over an hour for people at the back of the queue. Setting up a smooth booking process with Fresha took a lot of stress out of the atmosphere – clients can get seen almost immediately, and staff don’t need to worry about being overbooked.

What led you to start using Fresha?

To safely operate during the pandemic, we needed a way to streamline our calendars and minimise unnecessary contact. So we gave Fresha a try; now, it’s a vital part of our operation. All of our bookings come through Fresha, and each of our staff members has Fresha on their phones, so they can clearly see their schedules and prepare for the day accordingly. 

How easy was it to get started with Fresha?

Really easy. Since Fresha is subscription-free, we could try out its calendar management tools and use the app at our own pace before investing in the optional paid features – which we now also use to grow the business. Our clients and team members got very comfortable with the app in no time. Even running multiple locations is simple with Fresha; we can manage any of our three venues from anywhere, anytime. 

How has Fresha helped you grow the business?

Having a profile on Fresha’s marketplace has brought us plenty of new clients, and a big part of that is Fresha’s review system. Most people decide to try a new barbershop based on its positive reviews, and Fresha prompts our clients to leave a review after each booking – which shows up on our profile and proves to potential clients that they can trust us with their hair.

Plus, we get lots of bookings from Instagram thanks to Fresha’s social media integration. We have a “Book Now” button displayed on our Instagram profile that lets you make an appointment then and there, which clients find very convenient. 


What’s your all-time favourite Fresha feature?

Fresha’s payment system is a game changer. By taking payment details when bookings are made, we’re able to charge a no-show and late cancellation fee of 30% of the booking value and protect our revenue. It’s also convenient for clients who forget their wallets, or prefer to pay via the app, as their bank details are securely stored in the platform.

We also take tips through Fresha’s payment system, which is really important for our staff. Tips are a big part of a barber’s income, and incentivise them to do a great job. Fresha makes it easy for clients to tip with a clear reminder right after they pay for their service. 

One word of advice barbershop owners need to hear?

Don’t underestimate the power of a great online reputation. New clients are far more likely to give your shop a try if you’ve got plenty of solid social proof: so ask clients to share feedback, make sure to display positive reviews, and post pictures of happy clients on your social channels. 

Choose an online booking platform that will help you build a strong online reputation. Having a profile on a popular marketplace like Fresha’s will get more eyes on your brand and more clients through your doors.   

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