Every salon wants more clients booking more appointments. Excellent customer service and effective marketing can help attract business. But if a potential client can’t figure out how to book a service with you in the first place, you’re likely to lose them.
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Why would you spend time combing through an unorganized website or waiting on hold for a salon you’ve never been to when there are plenty of salons to choose from, instantly, right at your fingertips?
Once you acquire a client, you want to keep them. The key to getting new business and improving client retention is making the customer experience as seamless as possible. How can you do this? Make your booking process easy.
Read on for six ways to make your booking process that much easier & effective. Learn what information you need to communicate to your clients and what tools can help make booking an appointment as simple as possible.
Make Your Website Informational
Whether you design your website from scratch or use a page builder like the one from Vagaro, your website needs some essential information.
1. Where are you located?
Include the address of your salon, as well as images to help new clients recognize your venue.
2. What are your hours?
Share days of the week and operating hours so clients know when they can come in for an appointment.
3. Who works at your salon?
An “About Us” page can help potential clients get to know your staff and it’s the perfect place to tell your salon’s story.
4. What services do you offer?
Have a list of salon services with transparent pricing models so clients know the range of costs per service. Attach descriptions and images with each service to ensure customers know what to expect while showing off your talents.
With these points on your website, any client will clearly understand what they are booking.
Have a Clear Booking Widget
Your website visitors shouldn’t have to hunt through pages to find booking options. Have a clear button, or booking widget, that they can click to take them to your booking page. This button can simply say, “BOOK NOW.” Every page on your website should somehow link to your booking page. You can opt to keep this in the header bar of your website, or you may choose to customize each call-to-action depending on the page content.
If you do not offer online booking, give them clear instructions on how to book. However, you’ll increase bookings if you do decide to integrate online options. Customers like having ease of convenience. You’re likely to lose more customers if they have to wait to schedule an appointment. Consider using a booking software that can also function as a webpage, like Vagaro, to make this process easy.
Establish a Cancellation Policy
Life happens. Inevitably, clients will cancel their appointments from time to time. However, as a salon owner, you must protect your business from financial losses caused by no-shows or last-minute cancellations.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to implement a cancellation policy that, for example, will charge a client 50% of the service if they cancel within 24 hours of an appointment. If you do not communicate this information before someone books a service, and they do cancel within this window, you’ll have a very dissatisfied client on your hands.
Whatever your cancellation or no-show policy is, make sure that you have informed the client before AND immediately after they book. You may consider having them check a box that acknowledges your policy before booking to ensure they understand.
Send an Appointment Confirmation
After a client books an appointment, your booking system should be set up to send a confirmation. This will let the client know that their service is secure and scheduled. You can also deliver any instructions they should follow prior to their appointment.
If you don’t send an appointment confirmation, a client may try to book again, thinking their request didn’t go through, resulting in duplicate appointment requests and confused clientele. Give yourself and your clients peace of mind when you send an appointment confirmation.
Send Appointment Reminders
Some clients may schedule a service well in advance. To reduce the chance of a no-show or a last-minute cancellation, be courteous and send a quick reminder! Send this reminder outside of your cancellation window.
If you send it within the cancellation window and have a fee associated with any cancellation, you may have some unhappy clients. An appointment reminder can also serve as a way for the client to confirm their attendance so you both know that they’re still on for the service.
Follow-Up With Clients
Want to keep your customers? Remind them to come back! Send a follow-up thank-you message immediately after their appointment. Then, send a reminder to reschedule a few weeks later. In any follow-up messages, be sure to have a booking call-to-action that can take your client to the booking page where they can quickly schedule their next appointment.
Make Booking Easy with Vagaro
Now, you know what it takes to streamline the booking process for both yourself & your clients. And if you use Vagaro, the best all-in-one salon software solution, booking is easy and intuitive.
Once a client is on your salon’s Vagaro page, they can quickly find the service they want, choose a date & time and book! From a business perspective, Vagaro makes it easy to give clients all the info they need to schedule.
With Vagaro, you can set the time intervals between appointments, automate notifications and send appointment reminders. Once you have a Vagaro account, potential clients can easily find your business through a simple search for salon services in their area. And if you’d like even more exposure, simply add the option to get featured.
Vagaro makes booking a service easy. Focus on what you love. We’ll take care of the rest. Sign up for Vagaro today and get a FREE 30-day trial to see how seamless running your salon can be!
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Vagaro is a cloud-based scheduling software commonly used by beauty, fitness, and wellness businesses to manage booking, credit card payments and processing, marketing, payroll, inventory management, reporting, and much more.