Salon Spa Customer Feedback Tips

CLIENT SURVEY: Top 50 Customer Service Tips for Salon Spas
Coyle Hospitality
Salon & Spa Customer Service Tips on
Clients were asked “What should all spas do to enhance your experience?” …and here’s what they said!

Make sure that the Massage Therapist asks the customer if they would like talking or silence during their massage.
Staff must be sensitive to the client’s needs by asking questions prior to beginning.
Advise clients on needed products without being high pressure.
Ask clients about pressure levels during massages and facials.
Ask about oil/lotion preferences- sometimes scents do not sit well with customers.
Most places just need to be friendlier, as spas can intimidate new clients.
Say thank you.
Train staff on the newest innovations and treatments.
Offer host service in the beginning- water, coffee, tea, and light snack.
Provide a relaxing waiting area.
Give samples or trials.
Remember customer’s preferences.
Offer feedback/satisfaction surveys.
Provide clients direct interaction with management.
Offer loyalty programs and perks.
Simplify the booking process.
Provide hand and foot massages during manicure and pedicure.
Keep a tight schedule so clients do not end up waiting.
Hire the best people in the field.
Make the entrance of the spa as inviting as the private rooms in the back.
Play relaxing light music.
Provide lots of magazine options.
Offer a variety of treatment choices.
Discount or “freeze” prices for regular clients.
Always fully explain the process of the service that is being provided.
Let the clients know you are grateful for their patronage and wish to see them again.
Subtle fragrances.
Soft fabrics.
Robes that fit all sizes.
Move the check in or check out area away from the door, as it gets busy there.
Offer a choice of music in the therapy room.
Offer upgrades on certain services (aromatherapy with massage, for instance).
Incorporate aromatherapy into all services.
Greet guests with open delight at their arrival.
Provide flavored water.
Keep a well stocked bathroom and locker room.
Provide thick robes and comfortable slippers.
Pay extra attention to the cleanliness of the facilities and employees.
Do not allow cell phones.
Have several yoga and meditation classes.
Provide lounge chairs.
Have staff work on and evaluate each other on a regular basis and give honest feedback.
Discount when guests have more than one service done.
Stay open late during the week and longer hours on busy weekend days.
Make sure the treatment rooms are warm enough
Respect the need for privacy.
No gossip, jokes, or arguments.
Offer alternative therapies such as Ayurvedic treatments.
Clients should not feel crowded or in a hurry.
Offer an opportunity to spend additional time in a relaxation room environment.

Salon & Spa Recovery Checklist

Salon & Spa RECOVERY Checklist
Christopher Brazy
Salon & Spa Recovery Checklist on
This “Quick-Fix & Turnaround” Salon & Spa marketing and compensation recovery plan comes from a recent question a member asked who had to save her business and fast!

This plan also works for those who really don’t know where to start or what to do. Here are the top areas of concern and progression you should consider taking ASAP.

1st Look at your numbers. Know what your monthly fixed, variable and periodic expenses are so you know what you need to do. A simple “plus” and “minus” column for each sale and each expense will be a good start.

2nd Set a goal using specific numbers and write it down. Keep this DAILY goal in view, up front. We even write what we need to do daily down so we can keep track throughout the day where we are.

3rd FIX your highest expense (compensation) immediately. Are you paying over 42% for your staffs’ pay (massage therapists, aestheticians, front desk and management WITH taxes included)? If so it’s highly unlikely you’ll ever see a penny for yourself. MANY of our members HAVE made the switchover and are now profitable. Tackle it on your own, solicit help from the forums, hire us and our “compensation switchover” package, whatever, just do it!

4th Look at other expenses and fix them. MANY of your expenses can be lowered. Renegotiate your rent. Get smart with your advertising. Do you need 3 phone lines? What can and should you do about your open hours?

5th Look at other places your leaving money on the table (rescheduling, retail and esthetics). This takes implementing systems and training (do you have our dvds?). Put a system in place on how to answer the phone, book clients, handle upsells and add-ons, recommend retail and reschedule.

6th Only making money with half of your sales? Retail should be a high markup line like Alexandra. If 50% pay for staff leaves you with nothing, why do we think 50% for skin and bodycare (plus 10% commission & 5% shipping) will work?

NOW that your machine is well oiled, running smoothly and not leaving money on the table, it’s time to ramp up the marketing. Some of these items can begin immediately, but the more expensive advertising should wait until you’ve cleaned house with the above items.

Work your back-end existing clients first ( for new and regular clients, open houses, special events, etc).
Utilize to collect emails and send updates automatically. Call me when you sign up so I can help you get it setup right (if you miss one step you’ll regret it for life) … you should do this TODAY.
Send direct mail via to attract new clients.
Setup PPC campaigns on google, yahoo, bing and facebook.
Create a google/lbc listing.
Revamp your website so it’s web 2.0 using our services.
Start gathering video testimonials, and smother youtube with them.
Implement a HUGE referral program.
TV is great if you’ve got a budget, it ALWAYS pays for itself month after month with us (call for details).
Social media is good (youtube, facebook, twitter and a blog).

LASTLY? Consider joining our VIP program. The movers and shakers on there are making a BIG difference in their business.
So print this out and begin where you feel would be most beneficial for your salon or day spa.

“Take Action”

How To Make the Most from your Salon Spa Gift Certificate Sales

How To Make the Most from your Salon Spa Gift Certificate Sales
Douglas Preston
salon gift certificate sales
Many of you experience high holiday gift certificate sales. This happily means lines of customers at the front desk ready to deck your halls with piles of money!

It’s a windfall that helps your business finish the year on a bright note, swelling your bank account and guaranteeing a fresh stock of new customers for the coming year. Many spas virtually depend on this last-minute infusion of cash to catch up financially and add a little financial padding when flat spots in sales occur. And as good a thing as the gift certificate rush is there may be plenty of opportunities for the savvy spa operator to make it even better.

Here’s how you can pull the maximum value from holiday gift certificate and package sales:

Smart spa package programs

• Keep your packages at 4 hours or less. This makes them easier to schedule and limits the impact of sudden cancellations. The more packages you sell the more trouble you’ll have fulfilling them they way clients will want you to. Be prepared!

• Offer no more than 3 or 4 packages total. Gift certificate purchasers are happy to buy according to your suggestions and don’t need or demand lots of options. With fewer packages it’s easier for you to manage your programs, requiring less training and specialty products.

• Include slower selling services in some of your packages. Wet room treatments or your more exotic services may do better when sold as a special experience than they do as part of the regular menu.

• Put your high retailing services at the end of the package. That means facial or makeup services–the easier ones to generate a sale from. The closer these services are to client departure, the higher the retail result.

• Don’t discount your packages! Most customers won’t expect a discount when they’re buying a special gift. A holiday, just like a wedding, is a time when the wallets are looser than usual. Create your packages from “special” services not found priced individually on the spa menu. Design unique body, facial, and nail services that are much like, but slightly different than, your standard offerings. This can be done without adding cost or time. Give these services an alluring name and then build your spa packages with them. Now, charge more for the package (at least 10-15%) than you would for standard services grouped together as a package. This way you profit from package sales (as you should). The client can’t add them up as separate services since they aren’t sold outside of the package. This works amazingly well!

• We all know that gift certificate customers are not the most reliable product shoppers so why not build some retail items into at least one of your packages? Select fun products that reflect the package themes but aren’t specific to skin type or require regimental use. A stress relief packages can come with an aromatherapy candle, room spray, and eye pillows. Body treatments can be sold with body or massage lotion, bath gel, and heated neck roll. This is a great opportunity to thin out slower sellers, ones that you simply change as stocks run out. Build the price into the package itself. And hey, no retail commission to pay!

Package sales tips
Most spa packages are sold as gift certificates for someone else to receive and use. But did you know that the average purchaser isn’t set on any particular package or price when making their selection? Instead of handing the customer a spa menu and waiting for their decision, direct them to the most popular programs you offer. Instruct employees to recommend a certain package first, or to suggest only your higher priced packages–describing them by the wonderful experience they’ll produce. Remember, your customer is buying a gift–something intended to please a friend or loved one. Sell the pleasure, not the price–the price will look smaller to your customer as the desire for it increases.

And don’t overlook online and fax sales. Whatever you do, the easier it is for customers to purchase gifts from your spa the better your sales will be.

Scheduling your packages
Here’s the dark side of package sales: your obligation to schedule and perform them. Suddenly the tide of demand is rushing in and you quickly find your schedule and schedulers inundated with appointment requests. There’s a real danger that you’ll run out of the most coveted time slots, forcing you to offer appointments unacceptably far into the future, and irritating customers. They all seem to want the same thing–evening and weekend hours–but there are only so many of them to go around. Worse, your important regular clients want those same limited appointment times as well, so you’re risking their loyalty with an over-packed schedule. Try this–not only with your package clients but also those who are scheduling anew or returning: offer your low-demand appointment time first, before suggesting any others. You’ll discover that a remarkable percentage of customers will accept them, and probably would have all along had they been proactively suggested before. One of the costliest questions at reception can be, “When would you like to come in?” Change that to, “We have an opening on Tuesday at 3:00. How would that work for you?” You won’t know if you don’t ask.

If you have the courage to do it, drop your spa packages altogether and, instead, sell smart cards and gift cards for spa credit. They’re easier to manage, free you from the package glut trap (the card doesn’t guarantee a spa package on demand), and customers tend to use them in smaller installments. This is good because a returning customer is more likely to develop a habit for your spa than one who gulps down a big dose of services in a single visit. The retail potential is also better when the client is spending spa dollars rather than being assigned to a package. My former spa made the switch to smart card-only gift sales years ago with very positive results. We were thrilled to be out of the package business and made more money in the long haul!

Best of luck to you!

Are You Losing Your Salon Spa Clients?

Are You Losing Your Salon Spa Clients?
Jennia Noble
salon spa customer service checklist
It’s happened to all of us. We pay $$$ to get our phone to ring. When it does, we score and get a booking. THEN the client no-shows! Now what?

First, thank your receptionist.
Getting a caller to book is great! They called to find out about us, they had an interest, and we didn’t let them get away. What if they DIDN’T book? Will they call again? Unlikely. So if we didn’t waste the money spent to get the phone to ring and got them on the books, Hooray! Or if they didn’t book but you got them on your email list or sent them some follow up information that’s great too.

So what happened?
The client was booked, then didn’t show. Poof! They’re gone. Were they rushed into the booking? Were they not given a reminder call the night before? Were they not given directions? Perhaps they just don’t know proper spa etiquette and forgot to cancel. Or maybe they’re just flaky. If so, asking “what credit card would you like to hold your appointment with” will scare away those who can’t keep appointments and lower the number of no-shows you have. Regardless, the client is now LOST.

The situation.
When the client doesn’t show for whatever reason, theirs or ours, we’re back to basically the same as not booking them the first time they called in. Even worse so now actually, since we either dropped the ball causing them to not make their appointment OR it’s their fault for not making it and now they are embarrassed to show up and admit their mishap. What are the chances of them coming back? Somewhere between slim and none. So they called in, we did our job and booked them, but it fell apart and now there are other issues interfering with them calling again. So we have a serious lead, but with no experience or relationship with us. Since they don’t really know us, they have no obligation to us and probably don’t even feel bad for their no-show (or cancellation). So what do we do?

The Solution.
This is so simple, yet hardly ever acted upon. We find them. Or in other words we go get our client. How so? Simple, we contact them to let them know we value their business (in case we messed up) and would like to see them (making them feel welcome and that “it’s ok” if they happened to have messed up). This also builds the relationship you have with them and THAT is how you keep clients from straying.

So how do we do this exactly? Like this. First, it starts with a call. Not the call at 5 minutes after to see if they’re lost, but the call later that day or the next to see what happened. Most likely you’ll be leaving a message, but the point is to show concern for what could’ve happened to make them miss their appointment. Sometimes you’ll find out about some emergency that came up such as a sickness or God forbid, a death in the family. Usually it’s just us reaching out. Then (and here’s the kicker) we send them a thank you card. We say thanks for choosing our spa and we’re sorry we missed meeting them. We also say we’d love to meet them in person and they’re always welcome (if we know what happened we’ll offer our condolences). Sometimes we’ll even toss in a small discount coupon/card to offer a little incentive to get them back in.

Take Action.
So FIND your clients. They already cost us by no-showing, so let’s turn that around and make them a welcome addition to our spas. Often this can even turn around flaky clients and teach them about proper spa etiquette. Take 5 minutes now to get together with your staff and let them know how to handle lost clients and improve your cash flow.

How To Get More Repeat Salon Spa Clients

How To Get More Repeat Salon Spa Clients
Christopher Brazy
repeat salon clients
Rebooking a client is CRUCIAL to any spas survival. Services are where the bulk of our money is and with all the costs associated with getting a new client in, we let them walk out without rescheduling them. We probably won’t see them again for another year, if they haven’t been stolen away by another spa that’s more on the ball by then. No wonder so many spas are having a tough time at it.

Importance of Regulars
Let’s start with some motivation and what a “regular” means. Most spa visitors come what, once a year or once a quarter if we’re lucky. And it often costs us $$$ to get that new client into the door. Imagine how much we’d $ave if we got a client to visit sooner instead of finding a new one. Well, we’d first save on that $$$ to get them in the door and if they came 4x as often, that’s 4 times the income! Could you imagine if we took all our yearly clients (probably 80% of your list) and made them into regulars that came 4 to 12 times/year? A spa that would normally do $240,000/year would be doing $800,000/year. That’s a jump! So how do you turn a yearly visitor to a monthly regular (our lifeblood!)? Much of it is done BEFORE the service even starts.

The Three P’s
A consultation in advance will help you achieve your rebooking goals. DO NOT hand a new client a pile of forms and ask them to fill them out. That’s a waste of their time and an insult when the caregiver walks in and asks the same questions they just took 15 minutes writing down answers to. INSTEAD, try this:
Have the receptionist get all the basic info (name, addy, phone, credit info, etc) upon booking the appointment.
Have the caregiver’s consultation focus on three things. Finding out their preferences, uncovering their problem/concerns and preparing a plan to fix it.

A consultation that focuses on the three P’s (preferences, problem & plan) will help the client take action on achieving their health care goals instead of procrastinating them away. People rarely take care of themselves so we need to help them prioritize their health care goals. After all, why are they getting a service anyway? Because their skin/body NEEDS it. The thing is we’re lucky that they’re here at all, let alone back in a month to continue working on their needs. Find their concern/problem AND GET THEM INVOLVED WITH IT and you’ll find a new regular. Nothing has a magical fix that can be taken care of in one treatment and then ignored. Multiple visits are required. But that will never happen if the client isn’t emotionally involved. They don’t just come in and say “oh my God! I hate my skin, please fix me!” They come in and say “oh I just got a gift certificate and thought this would be nice.” It’s up to you to find out their real concerns which takes some probing… actually, a lot of probing. We’ll go over this deeper in our “consultation” article.

Exclusive, Limited & Yummy!
What if the client just didn’t open up and your staff can’t get people on board with a treatment plan to meet their goals? Try something else. Sell to the “yummy-ness!” People love the personal touch spas offer and if you can give them a good enough excuse to be back in, they will. Setup a series of limited, exotic treatments that are just to die for. Since they’re only available for a month or two you should have good luck getting them back in to try them out. When the client is checking out have a little promo/sign by the register and mention “Ohhhh, you’ve GOT to get back in to try this. It’s only here until next month.” Since you’ve got to order special product in just for a limited time you could price it $20 more and then hand out $20 coupons for it. People take action better with deadlines.

What if they say there are money issues? Really, that means we didn’t educate them enough to create enough desire, but we can still work with it. We’ll work with their desire of money by setting up a membership plan or series special. Offer a steep discount for a year commitment on a plan or a series of “buy 5 get 1 free.” You could also have a reward program in place. Let them know that they get X for their visit(s) and even for rescheduling before they leave. People love these things, Jennia will drive across town to get a gas stamp in her book for free milk.

Lastly, ATTITUDE IS KEY. Here you can tag-team with the receptionist (just like with retail sales) to take the pressure off the caregiver. Have the caregiver walk the client up, recommend the product, ask for referrals/pass out their card, mention they’ll touch base with them shortly to see how their doing and TO GET BACK ON THE BOOK IN 4 WEEKS SO WE CAN CONTINUE WORKING ON THAT PROBLEM. Now the caregiver can WALK AWAY.

The receptionist picks up the ball and ASSUMES THE SALE. That is she says “same time 4 weeks out?” or “is 4 weeks good for you?” Or if you don’t have luck with that try “Isn’t she just awesome! She books up well in advance. When did she say to come back in?”

By following these steps, this simple routine, you’ll see a nice increase in pre-bookings.
YOU MUST TRAIN your staff.
YOU MUST EVALUATE them performing it.
IF you fail to instruct them, practice or check up on them they will take the easier of roads and just say “goodbye” which is the last time they’ll get to speak to that client again.

Now, write up your training plan, schedule it, demonstrate it, practice it, evaluate it …and be the one to reap the rewards for your persistence in completing it.

Remember, you have to TAKE ACTION to make change.

New Salon Spa Services

New Salon Spa Services
Christopher Brazy
new salon spa services
“Je t’adore” is the BEST SERVICE EVER. It is the MOST incredible experience that will have clients talking about it for weeks. They be so amazed that they’ll send their friends in to experience it …and it doesn’t really exist.

Although we all wish there was some magical service that if we put on the menu people would beat down our doors for it (MYTH: whatever Oprah says is good)… there isn’t. I’ve seen medspas jump on the big O bandwagon and run out to buy a “Thermage: as seen on Oprah” and throw thousands and thousands into promoting it, only to have such little response they end up offering it for half off to see any action. HOWEVER you can turn ANY service into a feeding frenzy if you wish. We’ll show you how here and to top it off we’ll even create that “magical” service for you.

So what’s the secret? HYPE. That’s obvious, so how do we get hype for a particular service? We create it. Really, it’s that simple. ~Whatever we talk about will come to be.~ We talk about it in our sleep and to anyone and everyone we know. And I’m not saying you have to go all over town spreading the word, I’m saying do so with your existing clients. Whenever someone comes in, gets a tour, calls to book… you say “our new service is to die for, it’s simply AMAZING” and people will book it. You can even add in “social proof” (proof showing that others are already on board) with statements like “we’re scheduling them a week out they’re so popular” or “the last client who had it was so relaxed she fell asleep in the room and we had to wake her twice before she was coherent enough to get dressed!” Whatever is true, just spread the word.

Make sure your front desk is on board with this as well so they can recommend “the service everyone is just RAVING about.” If you offer it, people will try it. The more you offer it to, the more will take you up on it. It’s simply a numbers game, and the more times you speak about it, that’s just another chance for you to win. It’s like a lottery where every third ticket is a winner and you print tickets with your voice.

Now, wouldn’t it be even better if this was an EXCLUSIVE service? You bet it would! So let’s create one. Decide what you’re known for, what ties in with you USP and make something in line with that. I’m going to go with a massage since they’re the most common service, so better odds of people taking it (but if you can do this with facials, you’ll also win with skin care sales!). I want it to be deluxe, so that means an extra half hour, 80 minutes. Ok, what can we do for some serious WOW factor? Maybe a hot-oil scalp massage (if you’ve got a salon) or raindrop aromatherapy (if you’re more holistic), perhaps hypnotherapy or some paraffin or muscle relief creme if you’re known for deep tissue work. You get the idea, whatever is in line with your spa and that no one else is doing. You can even theme it with yummy scented products like coconut (Hawaiian) or grape seed (Tuscan). So what do we have, an 80 minute WOW (or double wow) service. Let’s not stop there, let’s add in value. What can we do that won’t cost extra but adds value. A glass of wine? A foot bath? Slimming creme? Serum application? Special finish such as tea, or relaxation/sauna time, or chocolates? Now THAT’S a service. Charge for the deluxe service, the wow and the value is a bonus. That should put you well over the $100 mark, but you can mention that the value is $X more or offer a $20 discount this first month only that it’s on your menu, or better yet, put your guarantee on it! Say “If you try it and aren’t amazed, it’s on me.”

Remember, the secret here isn’t the service, it’s the HYPE. Now take these steps today. Create the service and then more importantly write down the sentences you’ll be saying so you can memorize it and model to your staff. PRACTICE with your staff answering the phone and giving tours, role play (really), and see how they can work it in. For caregivers that can’t perform that new service, have them choose an existing high-end service and do nothing but talk about that. Follow these steps today and you WILL see results starting tomorrow. Download our “Custom Service Worksheet” (below) to get started.

10 Website Tweaks for your Salon Spa

10 Website Must-Dos
Christopher Brazy

Would you like your website to be a cash-cow? We’ve all seen the top 10 website mistakes, but they don’t get into purpose. We put up sites as glorified business cards without considering the reason and potential of our sites.

1 – Your website should have a PURPOSE. What is it for? To define your difference (USP)? To sell GCs? To educate? To book appointments? To build your e- mail list? Decide what you want it to do and make sure it does it well.

2 – You contact info should be easily found on any page (i.e. your PHONE number).

3 – Your website can produce income by allowing for an instant GC purchase, take advantage of it.

4 – Your website should collect emails so you can market to online shoppers.

5 – Your website should promote your USP, what you do that no one else does.

6 – Testimonials should be showcased online (text, audio & video).

7 – Your guarantee should be showcased.

8 – You should personalize your site with pictures of yourself and your staff along with some history.

9 – Utilize a headline to prompt people to read more.

10 – Create an irresistible offer with a call to action.

So your website should be similar to your ads. Use headlines, differentiate yourself, use testimonials and pictures of yourself. Utilize it’s list building and GC sales capabilities. Let people know about your guarantee so they feel safe to purchase and put your phone number there so they know how to get ahold of you!

Now, set aside time on your calendar to take a good look at your site. Better yet, find someone good/cheap that can take your instruction and revamp it for you. Set a goal of THIS WEEK to spend 1 hour to get it started.

How to Make Your Salon Spa MORE Profitable

Stop the LEAKS (and keep your $$$)
Christopher Brazy

Feel like you’re on a sinking ship? Doing alright but would like more profit? I know of a spa that does over $800,000/year and ONLY takes home any money at all because she does services herself all day.

We’re so busy trying to get new clients we don’t even know if they’re helping us stay afloat. A bigger boat with more people/clients on it will still be sinking if it’s got leaks. What we should be focusing on is stopping the leaks. Streamline your business and make it as profitable as possible BEFORE you try to get one more client through the door. Don’t fixate on expanding your client base until you maximize your profitability. Below we’ve give you some ideas on proper mindset and how to start.

So what’s the best way to keep your profit? It’s not by making more sales. If you’re working for free or worst yet, LOSING 5% on each sale, more sales would be more loss! START by minimizing your expenses. If you’re only making 5% per dollar imagine how much easier and nicer it would be to make 25% per dollar. Every sale would go 5 times further since you’re keeping 5 times as much.

Fixed expenses you can look at, but there’s often little you can do with them. Perhaps you could renegotiate your rent, or try for a smaller lease payment, but that should be done after you’ve revamped your major expenses, which are most likely variable expenses. Start with this, create a list of your expenses and prioritize them from highest to lowest. Then get to work on the highest expenses.

In our industry, payroll will most likely be your highest expense. Others (including myself) have been blazing the way for you to be able to lower your staffs pay. The “salon model” of 50% is long gone. 50% AFTER expenses would be fine, but that’ be closer to 5% and quite a paycut! There’s other models to follow. There’s hourly, like the rest of the nation. Offer your staff $12+/-/hour and you’ll have no problem filling the positions. If you stay on commission, then try something that works out to around $12/hour (20-30%? it depends on how busy you are). After tips and retail commissions they should still be around $20/hour which is more than fair. There’s a related article link below on how to switch staff pay over if that’s where you choose to start.

Go through your list of expenses, high to low, and see what you can trim. Do you need 2 locations? Do you need to be open 7 days a week, 12 hours/day? Can your staff help out with cleaning and clerical duties? We’re all in this together, if you can’t make it they won’t have a place to work. There’s also other ways to keep more money aside from cutting your expenses. Rescheduling is key (that’s why membership plans are so nice). Retail is crucial. Motivating staff via monthly meetings, quarterly trainings and sales contests make a difference. Making sure the front desk is never saying “no” and always getting people in, or getting their information so you can build your list. Whoever answers your phone can literally make or break you.

Now hopefully you’ve got a better mindset. Get a pen, find some alone time and make your expense list. Pick out the top item and decide what you’re going to do about it. It’s up to YOU to start and WE can do it together.

Day Spa Association Coach to Fight the Recession

AUDIO: Fighting Recession
Special speaker Hannelore R. Leavy – Day Spa Assn.

Having day spa economy issues? Recession-proof your salon/spa/medspa from the economy with this 58 minute audio that goes over strategies and tactics to use during the down economy.

Go to our download section or use the link below to go directly to it here.