18 June 2021
Creating a set of protocols for welcoming your clients into the salon is integral to ensuring your business thrives. Good customer service is a key factor to any salons success and so this blog will discuss some tips and tricks for ensuring your salon’s welcome will bring your customers back year after year.
When you welcome clients into your salon, first impressions matter a lot. A single glance at a person’s face for just 33 to 100 milliseconds is often enough for someone to form their first impression.
The same is often true of your business, but most of the time the impression you make on salon clients doesn’t start on the day they arrive for their first appointment. Your client’s relationship with your salon often begins when they start looking for a salon to book their treatments in. The first interaction customers have with your business will be when they encounter your salon website, your shop window, or even your advertising or social media platforms. Your future relationship with your new customer often depends on how positive that first interaction was.
When we consider what makes a great welcome for your clients, we are not only talking about new clients, but existing clients too. In fact, isn’t it even more important to create a good relationship with existing clients that have been coming to your salon for years and years? Whether you are welcoming new or existing clients, creating a streamlined brand image and set of welcome protocols is essential to maintaining your client base.
Have you ever…?
Have you ever walked into a restaurant or up to the till to pay for some clothes in a shop to be faced with 3 or 4 people all staring at you as you walk towards them to pay? It feels pretty daunting doesn’t it?
That’s exactly how you clients feel when they walk into your salon and your team are hovering around the reception desk and stop talking when they see you. Putting in place some protocols for your staff to follow can prevent this issue and help customers feel relaxed.
There are a variety of ways to make sure customers feel welcomed as soon as they walk through your salon door. Here are a few rules that could help your salon improve their client welcome:
Do you have a waiting area for your clients to unwind and relax while they wait for the stylist or therapist? Simple changes to your salon, such as creating a waiting area can be a great way for clients to start relaxing and familiarise themselves with your salon, before they jump straight into the seat.
Remember that your customers may have just run in straight from the car park or had a stressful hour directly before seeing you. When your clients walk through the door, offering them a drink and allowing them a couple of minutes for them to gather their thoughts will make the experience far more enjoyable. A calm atmosphere for the customer to sort their thoughts out can be a great way to begin their time with you.
It can be very daunting for a new client to walk into your salon for the first time. Giving a warm and friendly welcome and guiding them to their seat will help them to start to relax and feel comfortable. Before you get started with the treatment, make sure to show your clients the salon and go through what will happen at each stage of their appointment with them.
Cultivating a relaxed atmosphere and mood in your salon is key to ensuring your premises has a welcoming feel. I am sure that at some point you have been in a shop when there are two people in heated conversation or walked in on a big debate going on. When you walk into a salon you can just feel the mood!
When you are decorating and setting up the different stations your salon, pay close attention to how your salon feels. Taking in the mood of your salon is hard to do yourself, so ask a family member or friend to pop into the salon and give you some constructive criticism on your salons mood.
Offering a complimentary treatment so that your friend can experience your salons atmosphere throughout your client journey, can give you a good idea about what is working for your salon and what needs to change. Small alterations, such as moving your seating so it is near a window to look out of, or making sure your staff room has a specific cleaning schedule can completely change the customer experience in a very positive way.
Asking friend to visit and review your salon is a fantastic exercise to do a few times per year to make sure you stay on top of the mood and atmosphere in your salon. Leaving out little questionnaires about the customer experience for your clients to fill in will also give you valuable feedback about the customer experience of your salon.
Salon software can play a huge part in how you welcome your clients to your salon. There are a wide range of ways to use salon software from appointment reminders, to a warm welcome message for new clients via SMS or email. While you can do many of these things via your salon software it is important to ensure your messages still retain a personal feel by creating your own templates and brand style.
The key to using automated marketing is to keep it as personable as possible, many of us know when we receive a message from a company that it is a pre-programmed system creating message after message. Make sure you change the wording of your messages every so often, to keep your messages current and on point.
Merge fields are also a great tool to use as they allow you to include personal details like your clients first name, your salon name, telephone and so much more. You have the option to add multiple merge fields when using SalonIQ software when sending SMS messages and emails to your salon clients.
Save your clients date of birthday to treat them to a birthday gift or better yet if you see them on or around their birthday wish them a Happy Birthday and treat them to a little something if you can. People’s date of birth can be quite a sensitive subject, so approach with care when requesting this information, you do not really need the year they were born so the day and month will do just the trick.
Ensure each client has their own record card on your salon system, this enables you to make personal messages or leave memo’s about your client such as their favourite drink or that they prefer 2 sugars and no milk with their coffee. These small TNT’s (tiny noticeable things) make such a difference to how your client feels when in your presence.