Your Salon’s Front Desk-Less Future
You always want to improve customer service in your salon—because with better customer service comes higher retail rates and increased client retention. But how, in today’s I’d-rather-not-talk-to-you-if-I-don’t-have-to world, can you create the best customer service in your salon? We have an idea for you.
Ever thought about a front desk-less salon? Eric Hammond, the business manager from the John Roberts Spa, a salon/spa with four locations throughout the Cleveland area and award-winning customer service, has—and it works. Here’s an inside look at how a front desk-less salon would function and a few pointers if you’re thinking about making the switch.
The Clients: They’re Already Familiar With It
Chances are your client understands—and is super familiar with—the layout of an Apple store. They walk in, there are tables set up with iPads, iPhones and computers, and a customer service rep quickly approaches them to offer assistance. Now take that same idea and move it to your salon—boom, you now have a front desk-less space and more welcoming environment.
Tip: Transition Slowly
When making the switch, Eric suggests making the transition slowly. “You don’t want to catch people off guard when going front desk-less. Do it slowly and make sure your clientele understands the new layout.” Eric’s salon has one large table set up with a few iPads (for checking in), a cash drawer (needed for check out and product purchases) and minimal seating throughout the space to promote activity on the floor.
Tip: Make It Easy
When you take away the front desk, you have to approach the sign-in and check-out situation in a new way. For Eric’s salons, there is no question about it—they use the SalonBiz® app because it’s easy for everyone (clients, stylists and managers).
The coordinator will handle checking the client in when they arrive, and the stylist will immediately receive a notification on their phone (or Apple watch) that their client is there for the appointment. Interactions are more seamless and stylists can promptly greet their guest and start on time.
The Coordinator: They’re The Go-To Person
Just because you have a front desk-less salon doesn’t mean you don’t have someone working the reception area. Eric calls his employees who are working the floor a coordinator—and they are there to help the guests do everything including:
explaining new retail and promotions
Tip: Engagement Is Their Goal
“This layout calls for no hiding,” says Eric. “Your salon isn’t a doctor’s or dentist office, you want to create a different atmosphere—one that’s warm and inviting.” And now that the sign-in process is taken care of immediately, your coordinator can get to work organically pitching new products and promotions going on in the salon. Since making the front desk-less switch, Eric’s salon has seen a 30 percent increase in retail sales.
The Stylists: They’re Obsessed
It’s pretty simple, when the clients are happy, the stylists are happy. And, with this new salon layout and a great coordinator making sure everything runs smoothly up front, the stylists have been noticing at big difference in their guest’s overall salon experience. Plus, when you’re using the SalonBiz® app, the stylists are able to quickly see all relevant information for that specific guest, so when they sit down, there’s no guesswork. The stylist will know when their last appointment was, what they did during that last appointment and if they bought any retail product.
Tip: Create a Full-Circle Experience
With a front desk-less salon and a properly trained staff, you’re setting your entire salon up for success. “The environment just makes sense. When you take out the front desk, you take out that wall of bother,” says Eric. “And when you start the retail conversation at the beginning of the service and give your stylist an app that allows them to be more detailed with every client, the end of the service is seen more as a continuation of the beginning. And with SalonBiz®, it’s easier to make the customer experience better and the probability of a retail sale higher.”
More About SalonBiz®
The app was built with input from hundreds of stylists, colorists, spa therapists and nail techs, incorporating what’s really important and valuable in their daily routines. And the result is a system that makes it easier to track performance metrics, appointments and the clients coming in and out of your salon. Stylists and managers can take notes on client preferences, get alerted when a client checks in and see if the salon is hitting their benchmarks. Get more details here!