Silent Walkers | Penny Etheridge

June 28, 2023

Did you know that instead of complaining after a negative experience in the salon, 91% of clients simply don’t come back?

The issue of “silent walkers” is a leading contributor to low client retention rates, with a significant number of dissatisfied customers choosing to leave a salon for good over actively making a complaint.

To learn how to combat this growing issue, Pro Hair sat down with Penny Etheridge, owner of Penny Etheridge Creative Business Consultancy. With over 35 years’ experience in the industry, Penny explains what it takes to start, grow and maintain a successful business with a high client retention rate.

According to Penny, the optimum way to prevent losing business through “silent walkers” – and instead turn new clients into loyal clients – is through maximising your use of salon software. Using your software system to its full potential allows you to evaluate and nurture your client relationships through regular, constructive conversations.

A client courtesy call is a unique opportunity to discover the little things you may have missed during the appointment. It is a friendly, personal gesture that can establish your client’s satisfaction – or dissatisfaction – with the appointment, potentially even preventing them from falling into the dreaded black hole of “silent walkers”.

However, before you pick up the phone, ensure you have easy access to a full client service history; remember this is a professional call, not a chat with a friend. Enter: salon software.

Your salon software system is a personal guide into the behaviour and opinions of all your clients. Used correctly, it is an invaluable tool that will build a complete picture of your clients’ loyalty and buying habits.

As well as sending automated text messages to clients – whether that be reminders of upcoming appointments, personalised birthday messages or promotional offers – salon software is a sure-fire way of following up with a client post-appointment and discovering how your services can be improved.

On top of this, many software brands are also able to run targeted marketing campaigns and newsletters to clients. iSalon Software, for example, promotes a ‘Salon Spy’ feature that directly encourages customers to leave a rating and review after their appointment. Through requesting feedback in this manner, you will be able to build trust, credibility and confidence in your brand – and prevent any pesky “silent walkers”!

For further information on iSalon, visit