Close
Management Practices

Productivity vs. More Clients

Scott Missad | May 3, 2012 | 8:13 AM

Productivity vs. More ClientsFor a salon business, continually gaining new clients is important, but the simplest, cleanest, most profitable way to really grow your company is to maximize your existing client base. When your current client base participates in more of your service and retail offerings, that’s productivity.

Unfortunately, too many salons operate under the old beauty school wash-andset mentality that dictates the only way to make more money is to speed up your services and jam more people in the door. Too many salon owners don’t consider the extra cost that comes with servicing those extra bodies—whether that’s in hiring and training more staff or the utilities used to provide more services or in the building out of more salon space. And, continually cramming more and more clients into your operation just isn’t a sustainable business model—eventually something’s going to break down, either the quality of your service is going to erode and your clients will disappear or you and your staff members are going to burn out.

When we’re talking about productivity, we’re talking about giving your clients an experience they can’t get anywhere else and charging them extra for it, because people will pay for the experience.

The Value of Productivity

The simplest way to show you the value of productivity is to boil it down to the actual dollars it could mean for your business. For example, let’s say your salon sees 2,000 clients per month. What if you could get each one of them to spend an additional $4 average per month by either purchasing retail or additional services. Not too challenging, right? That would mean an additional $96,000 in sales per year for your salon. And, you added that without the expense of building out your salon or adding and training new staff.

If you have the proper infrastructure in place to provide a quality experience for your clients that allows you to charge more, two things are going to happen. First, you’ll be a more profitable business because you’re more productive. But second, you’ll also be more sustainable. As your top clients try more services in the salon or spa areas of your business, they will become familiar with different service providers, so now their loyalty subtly shifts from the individual to your business. Gradually you are taking them out of the market for another salon or day spa.

The other interesting caveat of focusing on productivity is the better you take care of the clients you have, then the process of getting new clients takes care of itself because your clients talk about you to their friends and family.

Locking Up the Loyalty

The simplest way of turning your clients onto new services or products in your salon is to gift it to them the first time. For example, during the holidays, instead of giving your top 100 clients a gift card to a local restaurant, gift them with a service you know they’ve never had before. Or reward your top salon clients who you know have never visited your day spa with a manicure, pedicure or mini-facial.

This also is a very good strategy for measuring the value of a new service or product you’re considering adding to your menu. If you sample or give it away to a core group of your trusted clients, you can measure how many come back and pay full price for it. It’s a way to measure the value of the service to your specific marketplace or test a specific price point.

To see how gifting a service can work toward the bottom line, let’s look at a specific example from Salon Visage in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Frank Gambuzza’s salon.) During a specific time period, for every single process color service that was booked, service providers offered to upgrade clients with a face-framing packet of highlights at no additional charge, by saying something like, “Susie, it just so happens that today, and today only, I’m willing to upgrade you from a single process with some face-framing highlights that I think will be a little bit more personal for you and will bring out the color in your eyes. I’m willing to do that today for no additional charge, but if you have this done in the future, it will cost $50. Would you be interested today at no additional charge?”

During that time period, approximately eight out of 10 accepted the face-framing complimentary offer, and of those, 50 percent came back and purchased the highlights at the new rate. Over an 18-week span, it equated to about 400 clients converting to the new service and an additional $100,000 in revenue without adding any new clients to the salon’s roster.

Related Articles and podcasts:

The Profitability Project

The Profitability Project: Brand Vs. Individual

Stacey Soble with Frank Gambuzza and Scott Missad

Facebook Comments

More from Management Practices

Salon Today 200 The open concept reception table at Lavish in Webster, TX.
Salon Today 200

2017 Salon Today 200: Customer Service

Stacey Soble | December 1, 2016

When it comes to a client building a long-term relationship with a salon, the level of service a guest receives can be more important than the precision of the haircut of the quality of the color. Customer service impacts the client's overall experience, and the salons and spas who deliver it during each and every visit boost their overall sales along with their client retention figures. Find out who made this year's Salon Today 200 list in Customer Service.

Salon Today 200 The team at Rock Paper Scissor SalonSpa in Santa Fe, NM.
Salon Today 200

2017 Salon Today 200: Employee Education

Stacey Soble | December 3, 2016

For the most successful service providers, education is a career-long process. The best salons develop systems to strengthen the skills and confidnece of their newest team members, whicle encouraging their seasoned staff to continually stretch by brining education into the salon or supporting those who venture out to seek new skills. Find out which salons received top honors in the Salon Today 200 by developing strong education programs.

Salon Today 200 When Ayla lost her hair during treatment for a rare form of leukemia, her sister and several members of her Brownie troop decided they wanted to donate hair to Wigs for Kids. The team at Impressions in Mequon, WI, made that happen, and here Ayla makes the first cut.
Salon Today 200

2017 Salon Today 200: Philanthropy

Stacey Soble | December 5, 2016

When salons and spas participate in community charities or organize their own philanthropic activity, the often are acting from the heart. But the goodwill generated from these activities serves as a powerful marketing tool and can propel both personal and professional growth. Here are our 2017 Salon Today 200 honorees in the category of Philanthropy.

Career Denise Avallone and Donna Huston, owners of Adagio for Hair in El Dorado Hills, CA.
Career

The Healthy Workplace Checklist

Rosanne Ullman | October 4, 2016

When salons encourage their stylists to make health and fitness a priority, the team is better able to take care of the salon's clients. Healthy Hairdresser Editor Rosanne Ullman compiled this Healthy Workplace Checklist to help owners with specific action items they can implement to begin developing a culture of wellness.

Load More