Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, That girl in the red coat

Holidaze

I know the calendar reads September. For yours truly, it’s read December since about May. My final Christmas orders have been placed, shipping dates have been strategically chosen, requests have been approved to have invoicing split into separate months for larger orders. Plans are being made on how products will be displayed and what shelves will be moved where. The shop’s holiday draws are being planned and packaged. Advertising idea’s are in the works. Parties are being planned.

Today’s tale is for Salon owners, Managers and Stylists. The holiday season is upon us and we are entering crunch time for ensuring that the next few months are as profitable as possible. When planned and executed properly, the potential profits from retail during the October – December months can reach the thousands, even the tens of thousands. Yes, you read that correctly, and yes, it is possible. I know it is possible because I have done it. Think of what that could do for your staff, yourself and your business. I’ll give you a minute to visualize.

Before the panic sets in once you realize it’s October in a few days, take a breath, and another. You still have time to make this your Salon’s best holiday retail season ever. (until next year). For many Salon owners, Managers and Stylists that aren’t used to retailing products, it can seem overwhelming and you may feel like you are in a daze and have no idea how to begin your adventures in Holiday/Christmas retail. Being me, I have compiled a little list for you, a “how to holiday” for your Salon if you will. You’re welcome.

  • Call your Sales Rep’s. They all have copies of their distributor’s Christmas/Holiday flyers containing all the deals available
  • Request an email of all sales and deals available – in case a deal in no longer available or a change needs to be added, it can be done A.S.A.P. from wherever you may be, at any time. As the holiday season approaches, and product availability starts to dwindle – it is first come, first serve.
  • Speak to your Sales Rep. about splitting up larger orders into two shipments, one for October and one November. With two shipments comes two invoices = larger orders aren’t such a hit to your pocket book. *If retailing is done properly, once November’s order arrives, you have sold out of October’s shipment which will now pay for November’s.
  • All distributor’s offer net 30 days for payment. Many will change payment terms to net 60 days – another way to give yourself some breathing room and give you the ability to bring in more product.
  • Ask for samples of products that you can add to all your customer’s and client’s bags. A foil sample of a shampoo or a conditioner goes a long way.
  • Request retail bags with every order. Distributor’s will add them to your order at little or no cost to you. It’s a win/win – your clients and customers get a pretty bag for their purchase and the distributor and your Sales Rep. get free advertising for their products.
  • Offer free gift wrapping with every retail purchase. With the free bags you’ve received from the distributor’s and your Sales Rep., all it will cost is a few dollars of tissue paper and ribbon from the dollar store.
  • Check your reward points! Matrix, Joico and Goldwell/KMS, to name a few, have an excellent rewards program. You can redeem your reward points for free products that you can in turn use as daily/weekly holiday draws. Psstt…you can redeem points for FAB! full size products, curling irons, purses, jewelry and electronics.
  • Get your Salon on Facebook. Keep your page professional – only post new product arrivals, new sales or Salon specials. Post pictures of before and after pictures of your client’s new colour’s and cuts (with their permission). Start a Facebook contest – once a certain amount of likes have been reached, a gift card/gift certificate will be awarded to a lucky Facebook page “liker”. In my personal experience, our shop’s Facebook page has brought in new retail customers and new clients for the salon. Our Facebook page has also introduced me to new community organizations that we have donated to and local businesses that I now cross promote with. Pssst….a Facebook page = free advertising!
  • To keep your shelves looking full, separate some of your holiday packs to use as open stock. Sell them for $1.00 – $1.50 less than suggested retail – your clients/customers get a deal and you make a profit, again, its a win/win. *Many holiday packs come with a complimentary product – do not sell the complimentary product, put it aside to give as a free gift with large purchases, or to brighten someone’s day.
  • Many hand cream’s come with a complimentary tester. Keep the tester at the front counter, right by the register, or while your client’s color is processing -ask her if she likes the scent, then offer for her to try some. 8 out of 10 times, she will be purchasing some on her way out. Again, I know because I see it happen everyday. Yes. Everyday.
Retail is vital for the success of a  Salon. Not only does it add revenue to your Salon, it adds integrity to your Salon’s reputation and adds to every client and customer experience. It adds integrity to your Salon’s reputation because it shows you stand behind and are confident in the products your Salon uses. Selling the product you use on your client ensures that their new color will stay vibrant and that your client can achieve their style on their own. 9 out of 10 times, taking the time to teach your client about the products being used and how to apply them will guarantee the sale. Once you see the rewards to your Salon, your clientele and your customers of adding retail to your Salon during the Holiday/Christmas season, I can guarantee that retail will become a year ’round event.

 

 

 

 

 

Beauty, Business, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized

It’s easier than you may think

It’s January. For the most part January is known as a slow period for Salons…picture a ghost town with a tumble weed tumbling down the middle of a dusty road. Today’s tale is for all the Beauties of the Salon industry, from the apprentices to the Salon owners. I am here to tell you that January, well, every month for that matter can be highly profitable from retail sales to waiting lists to get into the chair. How do I know? Well, I book appointments for our stylists and personally add names to our “call if there is a cancellation” list, and I see the rewards of retail, from profit for the Salon to smiling faces from our clients who now have the proper products and tools to achieve their new ‘do in between each pre-booked appointment.

A successful Salon is easier than you think. It really is. *To be clear – just because I said it was easy doesn’t mean that some consistent effort isn’t required. The most important aspect to a successful Salon as I see it begins with management. As Salon owners and managers we must be consistent with every aspect of our position, be it dress code, scheduling, payroll, inventory, employee relations, even how we answer the phone. We, as managers and owners need to set the pace, we need to set the example to adhere to. If we are not following dress code, how can we expect our staff to? If we wander in 20 minutes after the Salon opens with no call or reason why, how can we write up our staff for being late?

On any given day at our Salon, you will find me taking inventory, placing orders, talking to the reps and selling products to our clients and our customers. You may also find me looking up a product on the internet for a customer to either find her something I sell that is comparable, or to find a local Salon that sells that product so I can help her find it. You will also find me washing the floors, or dusting the retail products on our shelves, or taking out the garbage, or sweeping the floors or folding the towels. Hence why at our Salon we work as a team, because I do not ask one thing of my staff that I would not do myself.

Being me, I have compiled a little list for you. Seriously, it’s easier than you think.

– Pre-booking appointments is a must. Many stylists are shy about asking to pre-book. They don’t know how to bring it up. Next time your client is paying for their service, try this “Our total today is $100.00. Would you like to make your next appointment for 5 or 6 weeks from now?” – it’s a question that yes or no will not suffice as an answer, it gives you and your client a chance to have a conversation about their next appointment.

– Pre-booking shows your clients that your time and their time is valuable. It shows your clients that you want to be sure the love affair with their hair continues. It lets them know that you do not want to have to turn them away because you are booked.

– Make retail a part of your service. Think about it. While you are drying your client’s hair I am sure you have heard “That smells so good!” about the product you have used in their hair. A perfect time to tell your client the name of the product and to tell her you can have it put up at the front counter for her and she can purchase it as she pays for her service.

– For Salon owners hesitant to invest in retail – talk to your reps. Many times they can offer a small intro. package with a 30 days to pay policy. Many distributor’s offer a consignment program.

– Still hesitant to invest in retail? Remember your points programs! Many companies such as Joico, Matrix and Goldwell offer a points reward system and the great thing about that is you can redeem your points for retail product that you can in turn sell, either for full retail or a discounted price for your clients and customers.

– Keep your Salon clean. Keep your shelves tidy and dusted – no one wants to buy a product that has dust on it.

– Adhere to a dress code. Keep it professional. It is much easier to be taken seriously as a professional when you look like one. …I know your fuzzy boots are comfy-leave ’em at home. Ripped jeans are for the Bon Jovi concert, not the Salon.

– All staff and stylists must have their hair done. Come on people, you work in a Salon and their are brushes and flat irons at every turn. How do you expect to have a client trust you with their cut when your hair is a mess?

Being consistent in every aspect of your business will in turn make it successful. It will. I have the proof. I am the proof, as is our Salon/Retail team. Our head stylist books 2 months out. Our other stylists book 2-3 weeks out. My one stylist is returning from a maternity leave in 6 weeks and is already pre-booking appointments. Our retail revenue is very good. Awesome actually – as I am not the owner, it is not my place to tell you the exact dollar amount…but it is at least 70% higher than the industry average.

If you have a passion for hair and a drive for your business, keeping a plan in action and staying consistent with that plan, you will have a successful Salon every month. It’s easier than you may think.