ike many Americans, you whip out your credit card to pay for your fabulous new look from your favorite salon. But the salon won’t let you add a tip, and you forgot to get cash.
What to do? Jump on the Tippy app on the salon’s iPad at the checkout counter to thank your stylist with a generous tip.
Tippy, a new app by a Fort Lauderdale startup, makes it convenient for customers to leave tips for their hair stylists and spa workers when they don’t have cash and can’t add them to their credit-card tab.
The app, launched in early December, is already being used in 60 salons, according to parent company DirectTips, which has raised more than $3 million. It’s in support of the company’s nationwide rollout of placing an iPad featuring the app in salons.
The idea for Tippy came from conversations between two brothers-in-law, David Tashjian and Terry McKim.
“The salon and spa industry has been slow in catching up in the money-processing business and payment-processing business,” Tashjian said. “The app is solving a huge problem in the industry.”
DirectTips was co-founded in 2015 by Tashjian, CEO and president, an entrepreneur who founded Atlanta-based company Linq3, which allows consumers to buy lottery tickets along with their groceries. Other co-founders are McKim, chief information officer, who founded Digitizing, a digital advertising company; and Terry Derr, founder of Pennsylvania salon chain, Lords & Ladies.
Of course, there are other tipping apps available to consumers, such as Venmo and Square Cash that transfer money via a cellphone. But Tashjian said Tippy offers the convenience of being part of the salon checkout.
Jasen William, owner of the Jasen William Salon in Coral Springs, said customers immediately liked Tippy because of its “ease of use.”
“The customer has something visual to look at to add a gratuity,” he said.
Making it a breeze
Stylists like it because they can see the tip on their cellphone app, and they get a direct deposit into their checking or savings by the next day, he said.
The app is also making a difference in the size of tips, according to the salon owner and one of his hair stylists, Christine Justice.
“My tips have never been this high,” said Justice, 21, who has worked at the salon for two years. She said many stylists live “paycheck to paycheck,” so Tippy helps manage tip money. “When I have cash, it disappears. Now it’s a little more controlled,” she added.