In recent years, pampering oneself has risen to an art form. It has gotten to the point that there seems to be a luxury manicurist or day spa on virtually every corner. If you want yours to rise above your many competitors, you may want to consider investing in the creation of a business app for your beauty establishment.
Examine Your Priorities
It doesn’t matter if you are running a hair salon, a barber shop or a full-service day spa; most business priorities are the same. For one thing, you want a steady stream of new customers. In addition, you need return business from regular patrons. Finally, your ongoing goal should always be to increase your revenue while keeping your customers excited and happy.
Get Online and Go Digital
Your first foray into the world of business apps will likely come in the form of a website. On your web pages, you can introduce yourself to potential clients, highlight the various services you offer, give visitors a chance to get to know your staff members and their work, and provide a way for people to sign up and get on your mailing list.
Of course, your site should also provide easy links to your social media pages where people can read reviews and look at customer-generated photos. Furthermore, your site can give your current customers a way to book future appointments and check on the status of those they have made in the past.
If you are keen about e-commerce, you could set up a shopping area where you could sell your favorite beauty products. Last but not least, your website can contain a link to the store where clients can download your mobile app.
As tablets and mobile phones quickly usurp old-school desktops and laptops, it is increasingly important for businesses to make their presence known via mobile-friendly applications. One way to do this is to sign up with one of the already existing promotion applications. For a fee, these prefabricated programs will do all the work for you as you attract and build your loyal customer base.
Another option is to develop your own unique app. Doing so is not as difficult as you might think, and there are plenty of options to hire someone to come up with the app for you.
Once your customers download your business’ unique app, it’s as if they have an instantaneous passport to your full range of services and benefits. These can include:
• Easy booking via the app with rapid-fire email responses to confirm that the appointment has been put in place.
• Email blasts and push notifications informing customers about flash sales and today-only specials.
• Handy appointment reminders that not only jog a customer’s memory about upcoming bookings but also encourage them to take care of a need they may have neglected. This strategy is even more effective if you can take a few minutes to send a personalized email to the customer.
• Location-sensitive alerts that are activated when a customer is nearby. These encourage customers to stop by your shop for a quick nail touch-up, blow-dry or chair massage if they have a break.
• Customer loyalty programs that reward customers each time they purchase one of your services. Many shop owners prefer a virtual card punch system that provides a free service after a number of punches.
• Handy features such as a style library that customers can view before they receive one of your services. You can also expand this to include photos of some of your and your staff’s best work.
• A gallery of your favorite products and how they are used. Not only can this provide a client with great ideas for how to maintain the hairstyle or manicure appearance they received at your shop, but having this type of gallery also gives you the perfect setting to market your favorite products. Considering that these items can definitely be some of your biggest revenue generators, having this capability is a win-win for both you and your clients.
• Referral rewards. Word of mouth is the most tried-and-true way for you to spread the positive word about your beauty business. Although people will naturally want to tell their friends if they are happy about a new look they received from you, they will be even more motivated if you provide them incentives such as discounted services or free products. While it might appear that you lose money by providing these incentives, they actually can pay for themselves many times over.
• Reviews engine. Similar to referral incentives, you can also use your app to encourage your best customers to give you positive reviews and, for all practical purposes, give you free advertising.
Believe it or not, your salon’s mobile app could catapult your sales exponentially. Do you remember when you were hesitant to adopt another form of technology, perhaps a mobile card reader or a cutting-edge styling wand? Taking the plunge and setting up a salon business app is no different. Soon, your customers will come to see you as a constant, friendly presence on their smartphones. In today’s digital age, that’s about as good as it gets.