Since 1985, Salon Lujon has been serving Orange County as a full-service salon and day spa. Staffed by top stylists in a booth rental-style business model, Salon Lujon has strived to provide high quality services to its loyal customers. However, the business was not always in the position to thrive, and it experienced many of the same challenges most small businesses face related to time management and organization. Owner of Salon Lujon, David Arnold explains the process:
"When I purchased the salon with my wife five years ago, I immediately adopted the past owner’s emphasis on creating a productive, creative work environment for all. But with the business growing at a rapid pace, I realized that this would no longer be attainable through the all-paper appointment book structure that had been implemented. I knew we needed a facelift and decided to turn to technology so I could worry about my employees’ success and happiness, rather than time-intensive, day-to-day tasks. In my research for a business management software that would be the best fit for Salon Lujon, I decided we required a tool that would encompass all the features necessary to manage booth rental employees and to help me run the salon on a daily basis. That’s when I found Salon Iris, a salon management software created by DaySmart Software.
"As we made the transition to a paperless business, I saw immediate improvement in the salon’s processes. With features such as integrated POS system, website and marketing management, online booking, sales reporting, gift card services, membership programs, inventory management and remote web access, my business became increasingly more collaborative and simpler to maintain. The booth renters were happy too, as they were able to access their schedule from home instead of calling into the front desk to determine the next day’s appointments. Not only did this make my employees’ lives easier, but it also gave me a significant amount of time back in my day not having to track each individual stylist’s schedule. Additionally, late nights finishing payroll are now an at-home task, allowing me to better manage my work-life balance."
If Salon Lujon’s story sounds anything like your own, it may be time to step back and see how salon management software could change your operations for the better. Here are a few ways software can improve your small business, just as it did for Arnold:
- It automates communications to clients. As a business owner, trying to deliver on customer and employee demands simultaneously can prove to be a major undertaking, especially as the business continues to grow. To solve for this, invest in a software that can automate digital communication to clients. A regular cadence of communication can help keep your services on your customers’ radars, so consider using a business management and scheduling tool that automatically checks in with your customers to schedule appointments, send appointment reminders, suggest rebooking, share business news or follow up after an appointment. Not only will this take away the burden of maintaining constant lines of communication, but it will also go a long way in keeping customers engaged (and reduce the number of missed appointments!).
- It consolidates data to highlight main takeaways. Being an all-paper business can mean having to consistently update large volumes of client data by hand. From contact information to treatment preferences, tracking data manually can drain energy and waste time that would be better spent servicing customers. With the right software tool, you can consolidate customer records and purchase history into a single database, making it easier for your employees to create more personalized customer experiences across the board. Not only does this improve customer and stylist relationships, but having real-time access to purchase history can also help you forecast inventory more accurately and target customers for future sales/promotions.
- It makes scheduling simple and easy to access. If your business operates like us, you book client appointments well in advance, sometimes all the way through the end of the year. With the right tool, you can book recurring appointments based on a customer’s previous cadence (every Friday, every 4 weeks, etc.). Having software allows users to instantaneously schedule an appointment, compare it with the client’s previous visits and print out an upcoming calendar. Software with online booking is a must have as it is a huge time saver. With that feature, clients enjoy the flexibility of booking appointments over the weekend and when the salon is closed, a luxury that is not attainable with a written appointment book.
While strategizing and planning can feel like a burden on top of all your other day-to-day tasks, assessing the needs of the salon can guide you towards the most efficient and effective solution, and ultimately save you time, money and future headaches. With the right technology partner, applied discipline and a proactive approach, you can make the most of even limited resources to focus on growing your business. If you’re faced with the same challenges Salon Lujon had, find a tool that can help solve for all the challenges that come with running a small business. Start exploring your options and find a tool that is right for your business, with a vendor that will support and guide you every step of the way.