Stay safe and maintain the connection between you and your client...The new salon reality is going touch-free!
The salon industry has been turned on its head. A few weeks of quarantine has turned into months away from our livelihood and the clients who give us all reason to get up in the morning. And now, with some salons still closed and others in the process of reopening, there’s a new reality that’s setting in.
Whether you are a salon owner trying desperately to balance schedules, keep your clients and staff happy, and stay safe – or an independent stylist looking to make it on your own, the question is, how does the new normal affect you?
The New Salon Reality
To open for business, salons are finding a multitude of restrictions in place. Between face masks, gloves, and other personal protection equipment (PPE), removing every other workstation, and hazmat-level cleaning between clients, it’s clear that the new norm for doing business is anything but. It comes down to operating a low contact business with touch-free options for processes, including checking in and out, performing services without amenities, and helping their clients purchase professional retail products.
Top it all off with needing to quell the fears of clients who worry about their health at various levels. They find themselves torn between their safety and receiving the personalized beauty services for which they have become accustomed. For an industry built upon trust and personal contact, clients want to feel safe in our chairs, not stressed or conflicted.
Here’s are some of the key considerations for creating a touch-free experience for your clients:
APPOINTMENTS: Make online booking a priority
REMINDERS: Send automated confirmations & reminders – no more appointment cards
CHECK-IN: Offer Curbside Check-in using text
SALON LAYOUT: Remove all extra seating in the salon and remove magazines and amenities from common areas
YOUR WORKSTATION: Clear off your workstation counter, masks, and screens
CLIENT CLOTHING: Remove the option to change into a smock – drape over existing clothing
CHECK OUT: Make checking out and payment processing contact-free
RETAIL: Offer your client touch-free shopping opportunities before, during and after their service – and between services
Retail – More Critical than Ever
Even with a waiting list full of clients clamoring to get in – offering extended hours, opening seven days a week, and splitting shifts for service providers, is likely not enough. Working at partial capacity makes it difficult to sustain your business.
In the middle of your balancing act, it’s critical to think about retail – which can be your saving grace. Here’s why…
Your clients need products for home care and styling. And you know – now more than ever – that if they don’t buy them from you, they’ll buy them elsewhere. However, with cash tight and most beauty businesses currently ordering mostly back bar, investing in inventory may not be an option for some salons, even more so for independent operators.
Add the fear factor to the mix: even with linger-free lobbies, the thought of touching bottles on your shelves may be a bit scary for some clients, even if you are regularly sanitizing products. Whether or not your clients are buying products in your salon, you can also offer them a touch-free online shopping experience – before, during and after their service – where products are delivered to the safety of their homes.
Either way, step up and make sure that your clients are able to purchase retail from you. You are, after all, their trusted beauty expert and know and can recommend what’s best for their specific needs.
Help your clients have a Touch-Free Shopping experience by offering retail through your salon’s own online store. It’s fast and easy for them and there’s no need for inventory or shipping for you. Your online store can help offset the expense of your business and provide additional revenue 24/7 – even if your salon is closed.
Your client’s Touch-Free Shopping experience all starts with you making virtual product recommendations. It’s easy …
SET UP: If you don’t already have one, you can set up an online store here in 15 minutes or less.
PERSONALIZED PRODUCT RECOMMENDATIONS: Send Product Recommendations: Your clients will love getting personalized recommendations from you – it only takes a few moments. Consider sending product recommendations:
While your team is cleaning between clients
After each appointment
At the end of each shift
While your client’s color is processing
From home (because you’re just THAT busy)
IN-SALON QR CODES: You can use a QR code to quickly and easily send clients visiting your salon to your online store. Create your QR code and place it on signs:
At your station
On your front desk
In the retail area, perhaps with specific QR codes for each of the products
On your front door or in the windows
You can also promote individual products or gift sets:
Create a QR code for each top-selling product. Add it to one of these easy templates and place the signage in your retail area.
Promote gift sets using a QR code, add signage at your station
Add a link or QR code on client receipts promoting your online store
Promote Touch-Free Shopping on your website
Send direct messages to clients with the link to your store
Use email marketing to spread the word. Here’s how to get started.
Shout out about Touch-Free Shopping on social
Post to your wall or salon page, and in any groups
Here are some great templates to get you started
Here’s how to have the touch-free shopping conversion with your clients:
Start the conversation with your clients about your new online store with any of these best practices:
Introduce that you/your salon has an online store and point to any signage with your QR code. Show your client how to scan the code (if needed). You can also text, direct message, or email the link to your online store and invite them to browse.
While your client’s color is processing, have them pull up your store on their own phone and help them add the products you recommend for the proper home care of their color service. While waiting, they can review the products and even watch videos that confirm your recommendations.
When styling your client’s hair, explain what you are using, and help your client add the products to their cart using their phone. Your client can purchase the products then and there, or go home and watch videos and review the order.
After your client’s service, if you have not approached your client about the products you used, do so by sending a quick product recommendation
When it comes to approaching clients about your new store, practice makes perfect. If you’re a solo artist, ask a friend to stand in as a client while you try different ways of stating things. If you’re a salon, roleplay with your staff the different ways of approaching the subject with clients. Have your team practice with each other first and make the experience a fun one for them. If you can get your team excited about recommending your salon’s online store, your business will be that much more successful.
Here are some suggested statements:
For your safety and convenience, we’re thrilled to bring you Touch-Free Shopping with our online store. Browse for yourself through the Shop Now button on our website!
While you’re waiting, feel free to enjoy Touch-Free Shopping. Just scan this QR Code and browse as you see fit!
To maintain your investment, you can order these same products and tools through our online store. Just scan this QR code with your phone and I’ll show you what to order.
For your safety and convenience, we’re thrilled to bring you Touch-Free Shopping through our online store. Browse for yourself here (insert link).
Touch-Free Shopping is just a click/tap away at (insert link).
Discover Touch-Free Shopping @ (insert link)
Shop Touch-Free here (insert link)
Did you know? We offer Touch-Free Shopping
Discover Touch-Free Shopping at (insert your salon/logo)
Browse your favorite products on the safety of your own phone…Enjoy Touch-Free Shopping!
Your Touch-Free Retail Opportunity Checklist
Let Touch-Free Retail make a critical contribution to your new reality at every step of the client journey. Here’s how to offer Touch-Free Shopping to your clients.
Connect with Client:
Open for business – new rules
Guidelines for visit
Let them know you offer Touch-Free Shopping
Schedule an Appointment:
Online client scheduling
Invite them to discover Touch-Free Shopping
Automated email – add a message on email
By Text Automated Text
Mention Touch-Free Shopping
Client Arrives at the Salon:
At the front desk
Suggest browsing your online store
Client Waits for Services – until called/texted:
Waits in lobby
Waits in the car
Link to online store – browse while waiting
Signage/QR code at the station for Touch-Free Shopping
Make product recommendations during service
Send a personalized product recommendation
Chairside: Support contact-free checkout
At front desk
Signage for touch-free shopping with QR code
On a receipt that is mailed or given to them
Thank you message
Send personal product recommendations to each client to protect their service
Ongoing / Between Services:
Replenishment – Set up automated running low reminders and include a link to the products in your online store.
Regular communications and recommendations
Mass Email, Text Message Marketing & Social Media
Seasonal and other promotions
Referrals – Friends & Family
Tell a friend about Touch-Free Shopping
There’s a new reality for the salon industry and strong online retail will be a critical part of your success. Offer your clients a Touch-Free Shopping experience, here!