Business Builders

What Makes a Hair Salon Successful?


Jordi Carne Sanchez |
Source: Jordi Carne Sanchez |

There’s some serious competition among salons, and standing out amongst them is ultimately what will make your salon rise to the top. We know that you’re busy as a salon owner though, and that as much as you want to stand out and rise to the top, there’s a lot to figure out! That’s why we’ve put in the legwork for you.

Your cosmetology license allowed you to pursue your profession, any continuing education may have tipped your skills over the top, a clear vision and business plan probably led you to your own salon… And improving the following aspects of your salon will make your salon stand out and solidify its success!

1.     Getting Hair in the Chair

Your client base might be an obvious aspect to work on, but if you’re just starting out and only have a few clients, then even getting word-of-mouth marketing going can be tricky. If this is the case for you, we suggest that you explore salon marketing ideas and start off with inexpensive initiatives that focus on:

  • Face-to-face marketing — because nothing should be easier or more enjoyable than simply talking to people about what you do!  
  • Social media marketing — because not only is it inexpensive, easy and enjoyable, but you can do it anytime you have a free hand! So post often with new products, tag the brands you use to create colors, showcase the styles you do and share your salon ownership experiences to get your salon’s social media presence more exposure and engagement!  
  • Email marketing — the hardest part is getting your client’s email address. But once you have it, there are plenty of email marketing campaigns you can send out. You can even have them refer a friend for a discount, so you get more hair in the chair!

2.     Improving Client Service

The last couple of years have seen uncertain times for salons, with many regulars thinking twice about where they go and how they spend their money. This means that you’ll need to offer them more than just a haircut. The client wants to feel cared about and feel the value of being there. From the moment they book an appointment to the moment they say goodbye and leave, you and your team should be showing the client that they are valued, respected and welcome anytime. Make eye contact as you welcome them in, be sure to smile lots and always listen!

Monkey Business Images |
Source: Monkey Business Images |

3.     Hiring and Training

You may have noticed this in the last section, but if not, it’s time to note that the beauty industry is all about creating relationships with customers — so hiring the perfect employees for your salon is essential. You’ll want to be particular, and along with creativity and other classic traits that make for a good hairdresser or stylist, look for team members who are loyal and engaged, as smooth operation of the salon will depend on their productivity. From here, training your employees to sharpen their sales and service skills can improve appointments as much as operations.

4.     Managing

Unrivaled salon management starts with clear systems and communication. After all, many hair salon team members tend to be highly creative, intelligent and free people — which also tend to be the type of people who are extra independent. This is why introducing them to a structured and reliable daily operation, being clear about their positions and building a healthy company culture with good communication is essential as a salon owner or manager. Not only will this limit trouble-shooting caused by miscommunications, but will encourage great energy and engagement, build a positive culture in your workplace, create accountability and allow your salon to run smoother than ever!

5.     Cleanliness

Nobody wants to sit somewhere for an extended amount of time if there’s hair all over the floor and in other places it shouldn’t be, used supplies left out all over, dirty bathrooms or otherwise — especially at a salon where they’ve come to spoil themselves! Not only will a dirty or untidy salon look unappealing to clients, but it will look unprofessional as well! Your hair salon should be spotless, and while staff doesn’t necessarily have to be spotless, they should be clean, polished and aesthetically pleasing in relation to the shop.

6.     Leading the Way

Innovation is key in any industry — people like and are loyal to brands that stay ahead of the curve, not the ones that are always behind it. This means that investing some money into the latest salon tech innovations (like software for booking appointments or sending automated emails) and investing some time into the latest TikTok trends and hair innovations (like trending styles or the most sought-after products) is best practice for any hair salon, beauty salon or salon supply store like us.

After the past couple of years that we’ve just had, we would be remiss if we didn’t also mention leading the way during the challenging times as much as the exciting and innovative ones. Whether it be by protecting the well-being of your staff and clients during a pandemic in immediate and innovative ways or fundraising for a fellow business in the community that’s burnt down, people will see that you are responsible and responsive by leading the way like this — and they will respect and remember it.

Iakov Filimonov |
Source: Iakov Filimonov |

Don’t Forget That Caring About the Client Is Key

Even days after the appointment, clients will still be thinking about your salon as they attempt to recreate the style you did or as they receive comments — so make sure what they’re thinking and saying is good at every stage! This will mean going the extra mile and doing things like talking to them about what products you’re using during the process and why, teaching them how they can apply products themselves, getting them enthused about other styles they could do with their new cut or making sure they know when they should come back to get their look refreshed. In other words, always make them feel cared about and welcome to come back!


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