How can we prepare our salons to open again after Lockdown 3.0?
So here we are again! After yet another lockdown, planning for our salons and businesses to reopen but why does this time feel so much more stressful than last!?
We have put together some key points that we think will help you all simplify getting back to it. Whether you own a large salon or you are home based this is a task for us all so we hope this can help.
Firstly, planning your booking system:
We know we are all going to be inundated with clients waiting for us to open our doors but how do we prioritise those that should come first? Think about the services you offer and which of those services are most important on the maintenance side, hair extensions, hair replacement systems or colours, these are all services that need maintenance and as allot of our hair extension clients have had to remove their hair at home it may be a good thing to see to these clients and check they have done so without causing further damage to their natural hair.
Maybe you don’t offer these kinds of services so in this case think about your clients who already had appointments booked in with you but were unable to attend due to lockdown, maybe consider booking these clients in before others.
Remember we also need to think about timings and how we book our appointments, keeping the salon a safe environment by making sure it’s not overcrowded. This is going to be hard for those larger salons with higher numbers of stylists but there are ways around this. If you do have larger numbers of staff maybe consider adjusting their hours so you do not have all of them in at once, you can also extend your hours and days to make this work.
Also a couple of things we may not of considered before but as we are going to be so busy, are we going to have the time for the constant phone calls or online messages from customers trying to book in etc., if maybe we know it isn’t going to be possible to avoid those desperate clients then putting the phone down after you have not answered and calling the next nearest salon how about leaving them a polite answer machine message explaining how busy you are and that you are trying your best and if they could leave their name and number you will get back to them and get them booked in asap. Another one to think about for reception, do you offer contactless payments, if not now is the best time to start, this will allow less contact in your salon by not handling cash etc.
Safety tips to keep your salon COVID safe for your customers and staff
We are all pretty used to stocking up on the PPE by now but just as a reminder of some of the useful PPE available to us for our salons. Obviously, we have masks, try keep your staff in reusable masks of their own to save all the extra waste. Maybe consider moving your sterilizing equipment or barbicide etc. on display for clients’ reassurance.
Another thing we need to consider to keep our salons safe is of course social distancing which we know is harder than it sounds so give this a think through before you open. Can you remove your waiting area and adjust your salon layout to ensure your customers are socially distanced? Not all of us can make this work, we don’t always have the room but remember you can purchase screens for your sections and also for your reception, these can be brought online.
Remind your clients regularly about the safety precautions you are taking in the salon to keep them safe, keep them updated on social media and also remind them when they book their appointments and most importantly don’t forget to let your clients know that if they start to show symptoms they need to cancel their appointment asap and give you as much notice as possible.
New pricing structures
Now is the perfect time to think about your prices, we all have extra costs that we didn’t have before. So, think about your prices and see if there is room to raise them, make sure they are covering for extra costs of PPE. Also remember you are in demand, your clients have gone nearly 4 months without visiting you and they are going to need you and your services. We are lucky enough to be in a trade that cannot be replaced, clients cannot buy services online and lets face it home hair jobs will never compare. You are also making changes to your booking arrangements and with all the new rules we may not be able to serve as many clients in the same time we used to so this another reason why you should raise your prices.
Using your spare time between now and opening wisely
Obviously between now and opening our salon doors is going to be a very busy time and we have lots to do but maybe you are one of those who is very organised and maybe you have some spare time to yourself.
This could be by researching products that can save time in the salon or looking at other product ranges that are available (there are some amazing start up offers at the moment and this could be a great time to make the switch.)
Why not make the most of this time, sit back and relax and do some extra online learning? Maybe there is a service you could be more confident in or maybe you want to learn something new and offer your clients something you do not already. There are so many online learning platforms available for you to make the most of. Here are a few of our personal favourites by independent businesses that are absolutely smashing it!
Sophia Hilton - Crazy colour perfect bleed course
Hollie Williams & Nikita Doherty - exclusive members only tutorial page
Maddi Cook - Money mindset masterclass (this is free and highly recommended!)
Maddi Cook - Boss your profits pricing calculator
Emma Fowler - Online Freehand Masterclass 24th March- use the code FREEHAND50 for 50% off.
Get organised and make yourself a tick list
Lets face it this is a lot to take in, don’t stress we are all in the same boat why not make yourself a Mrs. Hinch themed tick list and take it step by step. Remember to keep clients in the loop as you take each step, they love to see what you’re doing and what great reassurance for them. This may also attract new clients to your business.
Most importantly try to stay positive during this time, look forward and remember you are apart of a successful ever-growing industry that contributes 7billion to the economy each year!! You are in demand, you have got this!
Written by Kelsey Hardwicke