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Are bookings a little slow? Here are some ideas

We are all subject to those dreaded slow weeks at some point… But don’t despair! The fact that there are a few ways in which you can turn these weeks to your benefit is cause for praise, so hallelujah!

  • Put some effort into managing your social media accounts.

Any lash artist worth their salt should have a strong presence on social media. Not only will it generate an online portfolio of your work, but it will also allow others to post testimonials regarding your company. If you’ve been neglecting your social media accounts as of late, put that extra time to good use by editing and scheduling some posts, interacting with representatives of other lash businesses, and networking, networking, networking!

  • Sales, promotions, competitions.

One-time offers are the most effective way to quickly attract customers to your business. (After all, who doesn’t enjoy a good deal?) You could offer a discount on a full set of lashes or a bonus for customers who book an appointment with you. For instance, you could say, “Receive a free brow wax with any full set booked.” Always remember the importance of instilling a sense of urgency by stating phrases such as “only for a limited time” or “only limited spots available.”

Organizing contests is a fantastic strategy for expanding one’s fan base and spreading one’s message further. You can also work with other companies to create even larger competition and market your goods or services to their customers.

For instance, you could work with a hairdresser around the corner to offer a full set of lash extensions and a half head of foils. That will subsequently be promoted to the hairdresser’s clients, which brings the potential for more clients to you, and vice versa.

  • Be prepared to…

You can better manage slow weeks by preparing for them in advance, which is one of the best things you can do. If you notice that some weeks are busier than others, set aside some of your earnings to be prepared if you experience a slower week in the future. When your schedule starts to look sparse, you won’t have to worry about being unable to pay the bills or the rent because you’ll have a plan in place.

  • Time devoted solely to you.

There are some advantages to working for oneself. If you have been working extremely hard lately, taking advantage of these perks will allow you to take a break occasionally, whether to put your feet up, grab a cup of coffee, or do something else just for you. Do not get down on yourself because you are experiencing a slow week; try to remain calm and remember that busier times will come again.

Why Is It Important for Your Salon Business to Use an Online Booking System?

You have many responsibilities as a salon owner, including managing the staff, the customers, and the administrative work. The atmosphere is extremely difficult. Concurrently, to satisfy the ever-increasing requirements of your customers, you will need to continuously broaden the scope of the services you offer. Taking appointments over the phone can be quite time-consuming, especially when factored into the general chaos of daily life. You can depend on an online salon booking system to help you successfully run a business. This is something that you can do. It is one of the most straightforward methods for regaining command of a difficult setting. Suppose you allow your customers to schedule their appointments through your salon’s online booking system. In that case, you will not only relieve your front desk manager of a significant burden but also make it easier to synchronize your employees’ schedules.

Online salon booking system:

There is reluctance among a good number of beauty salons to implement an online booking system. The fact that many individuals view it as being technically difficult is one of the most common explanations for this phenomenon. On the other hand, this is a myth. Booking appointments at a spa or salon using an online booking system is very simple. When you rely on automation, your business’s day-to-day processes will appear less daunting. Additionally, it helps improve the percentage of customers who remain loyal to your business.

There are many advantages to incorporating an online booking system into your eyelash extension company.

Have you ever made a mistake in your diaries? Have you ever accidentally scheduled someone for the wrong time or even had two different clients show up for the same appointment? Regarding your lash salon or business, we provide you with all the information to simplify your life so you can better run it.

As lash artists who run our businesses, we can wear various hats. If there is only one of you, you will have to perform the duties of a manager, cleaner, photographer, social media manager, receptionist, and many more responsibilities! Who, then, has the right to criticize you for slipping up every once in a while? You might be able to cut down on one of the most time-consuming tasks you have to complete and relieve some of the strain on your shoulders if you establish an online booking service for your company.

We are aware that some individuals may be hesitant to set one up because you will no longer have complete control and we will be able to create a smooth schedule for ourselves; however, a booking system can handle all of these responsibilities on your behalf.

1. Determining which service will provide you with the most value

A straightforward booking service like Simply Book is all you will require to get your business off the ground. It is only a one-person operation, whether you are working alone from home or the salon only has one employee.

If your lash salon is larger and offers clients a wider selection of lash technicians from which to choose, you will require a booking service that is more comprehensive, such as Forest or Fresha.

2. Reduced the number of phone calls

How can I automate the booking of salon appointments online rather than taking phone calls?

It can be very frustrating when the telephone in your salon rings continuously throughout the day. It is even possible to annoy customers who are currently receiving a service. When you switch to software that allows clients to book appointments online for your salon, you will receive fewer calls. It is time-consuming and annoying to correspond multiple times with a suitable date and time. It may result in the utmost confusion because there is so little clarity. Taking reservations over the phone comes with some drawbacks, one of which is that you must employ a full-time receptionist, which can drive up the costs of running your company. Instead, your customers will be able to schedule their appointments whenever it is convenient for them by using online booking software. Even during off-hours, it maintains the availability of your company. If you’re still using the same antiquated approach to scheduling appointments, you’re probably wasting significant revenue. Studies have shown that customers who book an appointment through your website are more likely to spend more because they can look through your salon’s menu and retail products.

3. The Setup

Beginning an online service from scratch can appear to be an impossible challenge, but expanding your business is a productive way to spend that time when we have extra time due to national restrictions or lockdowns.

If you have any experience using an online booking system, it will make your life a little easier when setting up one for yourself because all these systems are similar. However, if you have never worked with one, it is best to exercise patience and allow some time for the initial setup. This is also an excellent place to begin if you do not consider yourself very knowledgeable about information technology but have someone to assist you.

The only thing that will happen if you give yourself a time frame or deadline for setting up your online booking service is that the process will become more stressful. We suggest that you get started by gathering all the information you will need to include, such as the length of time it takes for each of your lash services, their names, pricing, descriptions, and any imagery you want. When you finally have all of this information compiled in a single location, it will be very simple and quick to transfer it to the booking system. Remember that the fewer questions, calls, and messages you get from customers are directly proportional to the amount of information you give them about what you offer.

4. Significantly cuts down on the number of no-shows.

How to reduce the number of “no-shows” at the salon?

The problem of clients not showing up for their appointments can be challenging for a salon or spa. To begin, it indicates a loss of revenue for that particular day, and the hairdresser or technician who would service the client may now be idle because the client has canceled their appointment. No-shows and missed appointments are significantly less likely to happen when using an online booking system for hair salon appointments. You can schedule automated notifications sent to the client to remind them of their upcoming appointment once the appointment has been confirmed and up until a few days before it takes place. A great way to cut down on no-shows and cancellations is to send out reminders via email and text messages. You can also send a client a reminder when it is time for them to receive a service if you do things the same way. For instance, if a customer gets their hair colored once every two months, you can use the online booking software to notify the customer whenever it is time for them to receive the service again. It is a foolproof method for boosting revenue while simultaneously retaining existing customers at the same time.

5. Schedules of employees are managed

How can the schedules of salon employees be managed in conjunction with appointment times?

It has been reported by a significant number of proprietors of beauty salons and spas that one of the most common issues they face with reservations made via telephone is double-booking. The possibility of double booking is completely eradicated when using software designed for hair salons. Customers can check the availability of their hairdressers and technicians through the user-friendly and accurate online booking system, at which point they can make an appointment as needed. The ability to manage employee availability is provided by the fact that it synchronizes itself automatically with your calendar. This indicates that a client can only take advantage of the online salon scheduling option when the stylist of their choice is available.

6. Management of Databases for Customers

How can you ensure that the client database at your salon is always up to date?

The majority of proprietors of beauty parlors and spas have a singular objective, and that is to maintain accurate client information. On the other hand, the most effective online booking system for beauty salons makes the process noticeably less difficult. When customers schedule an appointment online, they will be asked to provide personal information, including their contact details, phone numbers, and email addresses. This information is immediately stored in your database, which can be retrieved and modified anytime. When formulating a marketing strategy, having these client profiles at your disposal is extremely helpful. You can personalize marketing campaigns according to customer preferences because it stores customer data and the history of previous services provided.

You can also tailor offers to customers when they visit your establishment, participate in membership programs, etc. It also allows you to make their birthday or anniversary memorable by giving them discount coupons as a gift. When you have access to information about your customers at the touch of a button, you can provide better service to your customers, which in turn leads to higher levels of customer satisfaction.

7. Contributes to the Overall Bottom line

The beauty industry is highly come you need to implement an online booking system in your salon if you wish to thrive in this industry. Customers who visit your website or social media page to schedule an appointment using internet reservations can be presented with information about supplementary services and what is pertinent to their reservation. This increases the likelihood that they will book another service, such as a pedicure after they book a manicure at your establishment. In-ad booking bookings online ensure that your retail store is open around the clock, enabling customers to buy shampoos and other personal care items without visiting your location. Online booking is a foolproof way to sell more products and services to your customers because it streamlines the appointment booking process, contributing to your overall bottom line and making the process more convenient for your customers.

8. Aids in the Monitoring of Core KPIs

How should core KPIs for the salon be managed?

A comprehensive view of a company’s operations can be provided to the beauty salon proprietor by using a salon booking system that includes modules for integrated reporting and analysis. These systems give owners of beauty parlors access to critical data like the revenue generated by each employee, the number of new bookings made, and the average monthly rate charged by each specialist. The owners of salons can manage staff commissions and monitor key performance indicators now that they have access to this information. In addition, these systems can assist owners of beauty salons in making decisions based on data, locating areas in which they can improve, and maximizing the performance of their businesses. Salon booking systems that include reporting and analysis modules are indispensable resources for business owners who want to improve their profitability while streamlining their operations.

9. Pre-paid Bookings

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many clients prefer pre-paying for their appointments to ensure cashless and contactless transactions. In this situation, the benefit of an online appointment booking system is invaluable. It makes it easy for a client to pay for their appointment while making the booking. It also helps in improving the cash flow of your business. Another advantage of paying before the appointment is that clients won’t miss or skip it.

Five Features of Using an Online Booking System for Your Salon

Concerning the Traditionalists, moving your salon appointments to the digital age is time. We have listed the five most important ones below, in no particular order. I’ve worked in the beauty industry for decades, so I’ve seen and evaluated almost everything that’s come down the pike regarding products, trends, and technology. Booking a salon appointment online has yet to disappoint me.

Here are some advantages of making your salon appointments online rather than in a book:

1. Primarily Ease

Everything can be found on the internet now. Pew Research found that 8 out of 10 Americans shop online, so it’s safe to assume that most of your clientele are already accustomed to using their credit cards to purchase online or over the phone.

You’re missing out on many potential businesses by making customers call the salon to make an appointment. More importantly, you risk losing business. Americans are moving away from landlines as their preferred method of communication. Phone calls account for only about six minutes per day for smartphone users in the United States, while texting accounts for about 26 minutes daily. Seventy-five percent of millennials prefer texting to talking when given the option. Online salon booking can cater to this preference for digital interaction by eliminating the need to make a phone call.

Clients can simply log in to their private accounts, find their stylist’s availability, and book an appointment at their convenience. Discontinue sending voice mails. You will no longer have to hold on for a callback.

The convenience of online booking means customers need not wait until business hours to make reservations or rush to call before you close.

Social media at its finest: a “Book Now” button that directs people to your online salon booking through your Facebook business page.

2. You’ll avoid wasting time

I mean, time is money. Relieving the front desk of the burden of taking phone bookings allows them to devote more time to other, more valuable salon duties. Consider keeping track of stock, generating reports, implementing marketing strategies, posting regularly on social media, providing support to employees, and most importantly…

3. Boost Service to Customers

How often does a customer get put on hold when they call in? We’ve all had to get up from our seats to answer the phone and observed customers waiting to pay and check out at the front desk while the receptionists deal with a booking made over the phone.

Eliminating (or significantly reducing) the distraction of a ringing phone allows you to give your full attention to the customer in front of you.

Improved customer service leads to happier repeat customers. That gets down to the nitty-gritty.

4. Get rid of the potential for mistakes to be made by people

There are a lot of people in the beauty parlor. The phones are ringing off the hook. There is a constant flow of customers. Amid all that chaos, one of your employees or the receptionist is probably writing names and phone numbers in a worn appointment book. Can you read it? Is that what you got?

Taking your salon’s scheduling process online will reduce the likelihood of mistakes. Names, emails, and credit card numbers are safely stored in the cloud, and every worker’s schedule is mapped out in advance. The salon can set up text and/or email reminders to cut down on no-shows or last-minute cancellations, and rescheduling an appointment takes just a few clicks.

5. Keep things in order

With an online appointment booking and scheduling system, there is less paperwork at the front desk, and everyone is on the same page. Salon owners and managers can quickly and easily view employee schedules cancellations and confirmations from their computers or mobile devices. All you need is a device with internet access.

The Benefits

When you get home from work, do you check Instagram, Facebook, and every other form of social media to respond to messages? You just want to kick back and relax, but you know you have to respond to the messages asking about rates, availability of appointments, and list of services. Fortunately, this time-consuming task can be automated with the help of an online booking system, giving you more free time in the evenings.

Providing an online booking option will simplify bringing in new customers and add credibility to your lash business. As Julija points out, customers can book at any time without contacting you first; she has even had customers book as late as 10 or 11 o’clock tonight after they have finished their shifts or have more time in the evening after work.

When switching from paper diaries to an online service, there is less room for human error. It’s easy to make mistakes when we have a lot of things to keep in mind at once. The booking process will be more convenient for you and your customers if you have a system to keep track of reservations. It’s a huge weight off my shoulders.

In recent years, reserving flights has become much easier. Things come up, and life gets in the way of lash appointments, we’ve all had to reschedule before, but rebooking can be stressful for any lash artist. Finding time in your schedule may seem impossible, but an online service can show your clients when you are next available for rescheduling. This allows you to concentrate on other aspects of your business instead of spending time coordinating alternate meeting dates via phone or email.

It’s important to recognize that a booking system is more than just a convenience for your business. When used effectively, it can serve as a traffic light system, alerting you to your busiest and quietest appointment times. You’ll be able to spot problem areas or times when new promotions would help easily boost slow periods. A clear pattern of customers’ average spending per appointment will emerge once you have all your clients and the services they book in one place. Since you won’t have to schedule every appointment individually, you’ll have more time to use this data to strategize how to best serve your customers, whether offering discounts to regulars or introducing new lines of merchandise. You can use this data to better monitor your company’s finances.

Many of these online booking services also allow you to communicate with customers via text message or email, quickly and easily informing them of any specials or appointment openings that have arisen due to cancellations or reschedules.

While the initial setup may be time-consuming, it will allow you to spend more time on strategic initiatives that ultimately benefit your business. If you can free up some time, you can develop your skills as a lash artist. Your evenings will once again be yours to spend with friends and family, relaxing, and whatever else you enjoy doing when you’re not at work, allowing you to balance your professional and personal lives better. Consider how you’d like to invest your time and effort during this period.

The Disadvantages

Providing a convenient online booking option for customers has a few drawbacks. We acknowledge, however, that if this is your first time using such a service, the initial setup could take a while. It’s up to you to weigh the time it would take to make it against the time you spend on your own communicating with customers via text or phone to schedule their appointments. We think it will be worth it for you to put that effort into growing your company in the long run.

You might also feel like you don’t have as much say over your schedule as you did when you hand-wrote it, but if you set up your system so that you only have appointments when you want to work, you can still strike a good work-life balance. If you check your online calendar every morning, you can see the upcoming day and the upcoming week, allowing you to better organize your life.

Final Thoughts

Online booking is an excellent option for smaller salons or independent stylists who do not have or cannot afford to hire an administrative staff to help with client communication and booking. This is not to say that larger, more established salons cannot benefit from online booking software; however, smaller businesses are often more hesitant to commit to this level of automation.

If you’re still concerned about the potential drawbacks of online booking, consider automating scheduling for simple, less time-consuming services like haircuts and root touch-ups. This is one method for easing into salon automation without relinquishing complete control over your company’s communication and branding.

So, now that you’ve learned everything you need to know, what will you do? Restore balance in your life and relieve some of the stress on your shoulders!

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