As business owners we wonder on a daily basis what attracts or detracts customers from coming into our salon; so this time we had a discussion over a glass of wine at a much more civilised hour of the day. The following are our personal opinions and we’d love to hear if you have any other thoughts on the subject.
Recommendation: This is the ultimate for any business to gain clients. For an existing client to recommend the business to others speaks volumes. Word of mouth is always the best way to build and grow the business.
The salon decor environment: Of paramount importance to most visitors is cleanliness and tidiness of the salon. There doesn’t need to be a distinct style of decor/theme, but it needs to be functional, fit for the purpose, in good repair and pleasing to the eye. There also needs to be a pleasant or suitable aroma wafting through; and the windows should be clean!
Staff: Would you want to visit a hair salon to get your hair done by someone who has really bad hair? You’d worry that if they can’t look after their own why should you trust them to create a flattering style for you? Do they know you and greet you by name on arrival, or look you up and down because you don’t quite fit in with the salon fashionistas’? Do they listen to you and show interest in what you have to say? Are they continually checking their phone? Do they forget you have a colour on and decide to go and get lunch? Positive body language and great people skills are necessary to keep a client – being professional but on a personal level.
Price offers: As the saying goes, you get what you pay for, so if the price is amazingly cheap there’s usually a reason and you may get a service from a junior or inexperienced member of staff who may still be in training. Information needs to be given freely about the level of service you will receive.
Consultation: Does your hairdresser do a consultation with you every-time you visit the salon? You should be asked how you managed with your style/cut/colour since your last visit, if you want to change anything and if you didn’t like anything about your last service. This is the only way your stylist can endeavour to meet your needs; without knowing your expectations there is no way they can create satisfaction, so be honest and chat about how you enjoy wearing your hair. If you really only want a trim, make sure you talk it through about what you and your stylist consider to be a ‘trim’! Remember you’re the one it affects on a daily basis, so you need to know how to manage it to get the best from the style.
Lifestyle: Your stylist should really find out about the time you have to commit to your hairstyle before making recommendations. They will consider the texture, styling techniques available,as well as your level of skill and patience!
Drinks: It’s customary to offer complimentary drinks to the clients. Remember that a salon isn’t a cafe, so you might be disappointed in the quality and presentation. In recent years this part of a salon visit is now something that is high on the agenda for some and is seen as a little luxury. If the drinks are served in clean cups (don’t you hate it when you can see coffee stains in the cup along with a couple of chips in the crockery?), and with a little something to nibble on the side scores some brownie points.
Your stylist: Are they well presented, clean, tidy and genuinely interested in their work? Do they try to educate you with styling tips, product knowledge and how to create different looks with your hair? The best stylists keep their interest and skills fresh by constantly updating knowledge and trying new trends. If you feel they’re not giving their best and just giving you the same thing over and over, start to ask questions on how you can change, take in pictures of styles you like – and if they don’t up their game, maybe search out another one. Watch how they interact with colleagues and the team to ensure that the whole of the salon is enjoying a postive experience.
The industry is full of competetion, and what one person looks for will differ greatly to another; but one thing every one wants is great service and a haircut/style/colour they really like and can manage! Training in all aspects of hairdressing should be continuous and gaps in skill need to be identified quickly so a standard of service is synonymous with the salon. It allows a team to support each other and know that if they ever need to pass a client on to a colleague they will enjoy the same level of service and results. Randle & Randle is still new and evolving, but one thing we care about is building a reputation built on solid, consistent service levels, which is why we aim to train our workforce to a standard that college and some salons may not. We welcome feedback and aim to work with every client to achieve their goals. We also know that sometimes you expect us to have a magic wand – on these occasions we need to give sound advice about what is possible and make sure that you know it might take more than one visit to get you to where you want to be. Everyone is learning everyday!