Liz McKeon's guide to increasing repeat custom in your salon
Business expert Liz show you how to keep profitable clients coming back for more.
Many salon managers and owners don't know who their most profitable clients are, let alone how to keep them coming back regularly.
Knowing who they are and what motivates them is vital for your business. Having a good understanding of your customer base, especially the most profitable clients will help you to increase the footfall of repeat customers in your salon and boost beauty retail sales.
Maintaining and developing client loyalty can become one of your greatest business weapons. It is much cheaper to retain a current customer on your books than it costs to invest to seek and secure new customers for your business. Excellent service and incentives, such as a customer loyalty scheme are two things I will cover in this feature.
It's also important to remember, when looking into how to make money in the beauty and hair business, profitability isn't simply about measuring their level of spend, it is also about assessing the client's level of expectation and ensuring you can deliver on this. It is crucial to profile your clients and understand which ones are profitable and if any are actually costing you money.
Consider your client's price sensitivity
Clients are sensitive to price when making buying decisions. They need to consider whether they can really justify their spend. Beauty and hair salons need to ensure they are delivering good value and excellent customer service. This should be taken into account when you are developing your own salon pricing strategy.
Excellent levels of customer service can make a huge difference to clients, with them potentially paying a slightly higher price just to have the confidence that they will be looked after much better by you. Your salon's competitive advantage could be your high-quality attentive service. It's important to remember that.
Make your clients your sales team!
Word of mouth recommendations continue to be the best form of advertising available. Making clients feel special is by far the best way to help them become even more loyal – the service you provide is the foundation to this.
Many salon owners appreciate the importance of attracting new clients. But, many under estimate the advantages of increasing client loyalty: research indicates that a 5% improvement in client retention could add between 25% and 125% to the bottom line.
How to increase customer loyalty with a Loyalty Card Scheme
Client Loyalty Card Schemes are an effective way to increase your client retention levels and improve your profitability. This can be a huge competitive advantage of a salon. And yet, many salons are missing this obvious trick when it comes to building client loyalty.
In a very competitive market place, clients find it very easy to switch salons and keeping them satisfied isn't always enough.
To increase loyalty, start to recognise and reward your best clients. Start to use a loyalty card scheme to incentivise and delight your most valued clients. Loyalty initiatives allow you to focus on your best clients and improve client satisfaction levels. Loyal clients buy more and are often willing to spend more, boosting your cash flow. By increasing loyalty, you increase profitability.
Devise a loyalty scheme with profit in mind
Focus on specific goals – you are aiming to reward clients for behaving in the way that you want. For example, are you looking for repeat business or do you want your clients to spend more?
Above all, your loyalty card scheme must be simple to use and the rewards should be attractive and attainable.
Ways to reward loyal clients:
Offer cumulative discounts on selected lines. For example, this could be 10% off their next purchase if they spend £100. Limited time offers can encourage prompt purchases.
Give away free items with multiple purchases. “Buy one, get one free” is a tried and tested method of encouraging short-term repeat sales.
Invite clients to trial products and services for free. Asking trusted clients to give you feedback before you launch a new product or service will give them a sense of ownership over the product which is likely to increase sales in beauty and hair retail later on, and good word-of-mouth recommendation.
Hold a preview event. If you are launching a new service or product line, invite your best clients to a preview event where they can buy first. Make sure the event has an exclusive feel and that clients have lots of networking time.
Reward introductions and referrals. Give clients a reason to recommend you to friends by offering them a gift in return for every new client they introduce to your business.
Liz McKeon is a successful Author, Mentor, Business Coach and Trainer, who's expertise lies in growing small businesses from scratch and taking existing companies to quick profitability.