When it comes to growth of a salon there are only
3 ways to grow: More clients – More spend – More visits
The 3 simplest ways to leverage these 3 areas for growth using the 3 R’s are:
Referrals – Revenue – Returns
We’ve covered referrals and revenue and now we’ll look at returns and rebooking – how do you get your clients to visit more often? Often salons will focus on getting new clients through the door as opposed to really concentrating on how to get current clients visiting more often. This is actually the best and fastest ways to grow your business – to get more visits.
If you think of it in the way of, if you have 100 clients and they visit once more each year at an average bill of £50 pounds, that’s an additional £5000 in the till without any extra marketing costs.
We have to get obsessed as salon owners on how we can create that habit with our clients, that they visit regularly.
One of the biggest mistakes in rebooking is asking the customer as an afterthought at the desk, ‘would you like to rebook?’ At this point of service, the customer is focused on thinking about what else they have to do that day, and have switched off from thinking of when they next want to visit.
They will be more likely to say they don’t have their diary, ‘I’m busy’ or that they’ll give you a call.
Instead, what we really want to be doing as salon owners is making a plan with them during their visit of when they can return by naturally advising or telling them when you want to see them again.
This could be saying, “I recommend that you return on this specific date” and discussing with them when they are available to be rebooked. You should also give them the reasons for why they should rebook that day instead of calling up.
It could be that you let them know how busy you are and want to ensure you have a time slot carved out to guarantee you can fit them in.
You have to see this as an extra service that you’re giving them. Let’s say a certain amount of time passes and they realise their hair is in desperate need of a cut so they ring the salon and they can’t get booked in for another 2-3 weeks.
That is extremely disappointing for them, but if you encourage them to book during their visit, you are providing them with great customer service. There are many reasons why doing this is fantastic; for example, they can get the stylist that they want and at the time that most suits them.
This saves a huge amount of customer disappointment and also sets them into a routine of how often they need to return to the salon to maintain their hair without roots outgrowing or hair starting to be hard to manage.
You can also offer your clients block bookings as an extra value-added service where they can book their services into the year ahead based on their schedule, treatment and how often you advise them to return.
Much like before, this saves customer disappointment by guaranteeing they are booked in with their preferred stylists and not left with outgrown, unmanageable hair. You have to look at this not only as a way to increase profit, but also as an added way to keep your clients happy.
In current society, life is extremely busy, and people aren’t as on top of their errands are they were, with rebooking in the hair industry declining. We need to strive to bring this habit back, especially after the detrimental effect the past year has had on salons. Due to lockdowns, some clients have gone upwards of five months without having their hair tended to.
Once lasting this long without a salon treatment it is easier to do again so we want to get them back into loving a fresh hair cut or colour that is done regularly again.
So, make sure throughout their treatment you are discussing a plan of what you will do on their next visit and when they can be booked in. If they come back with the objection that they don’t have their diary, explain that you can book them in anyway and if they need to change it they can give the salon a call prior to the cancellation policy time.
Often clients won’t realise how busy you are in salon and respond with the objection that they will book in nearer the time. It is important to let your clients know you are a busy salon and you recommend they rebook for their benefit.
Make it part of your new client system to get new clients returning to the salon three times as quickly as you possibly can, so they come for their first visit, what can you give them that gets them back in your chair as quickly as possible?
For example, we give out new client welcome packs that give them reasons to return. It might be an offer or voucher that expires within a short amount of time, or a discussion about further treatments on top of their booking you can offer them.
It might be that you provide hair and beauty services so encourage them to try another service, such as free mini treatments or at a discounted price. These are all incentives to help guarantee the return of new clients due to the time limit in which they can receive these great offers.
Once you get a new client in your chair three times they are more likely to stay with you as a long term, ongoing customer. This builds up a client relationship; only things such as a bad service or complacency would affect their return.
In the last two columns we spoke about referrals, getting your current clients to recommend you to new customers, revenue, how to increase your average bill and now finally, returns. Focusing on these three elements within your salon in 2021 has the ability to grow your business extremely fast without large marketing costs.