Expert Advice: Maximising Christmas sales in the salon

Ruth Atkins shares her thoughts on how salons can get the most out of the festive season. 

Ruth AtkinsWhy is retailing so important for nail & beauty businesses? 
Retailing is essential for a nail and beauty business, as not only does it bring in significant extra revenue, but it gives personalised expert recommendations, which results in client retention. 

A therapist/nail tech who knows their brand will talk enthusiastically about it and know which product line will suit each client. It's the ultimate in personal shopping that will continue to prolong the client's salon results and is sometimes crucial in a treatments aftercare.

Do you offer any extra services during the Christmas period?
Christmas is a great time to go that little bit further when it comes to customer service. Offering little extras like complimentary gift wrapping with certain purchases is a nice touch and gives you the edge over your competitors.

Buying gifts in the salon should be a treat, so invest in quality wrapping, gift bags and ribbon, so the client enjoys the whole buying experience. 

Gift vouchers, too, should be readily available and printed elaborately for Christmas, and make sure these come inclusive of envelopes along with the salon menu/pricelist. 

Many salons might offer traditional treats like mini mince pies and prosecco at this time of year, but make sure beforehand that you're not breaking any licensing laws.

How do you market yourself/your salon before Christmas? And what marketing techniques are most beneficial across the festive season?
The first thing to look at coming up to Christmas will be the salon décor and window display. Salons and retail shops seem to start putting up the Christmas tree every year, but make sure you buy your Christmas retail items early and get them on display – chances are they will sell, and you will have time to re-stock. A product that doesn't sell can always be split and sold in a January sale or sold in February for Valentine's Day. 

Choose items for a variety of budgets and offer bespoke beauty hampers following complimentary pre-Christmas consultations. This could be in hair, skin, nails, or make-up. Create ready-made gift boxes like a ‘going out ‘staying in,' ‘lashes and brows', ‘hands and feet' hampers. 

Choose retail items for a variety of budgets and offer bespoke beauty hampers following complimentary pre-Christmas consultations. Create ready-made gift boxes like a ‘going out ‘staying in,' ‘lashes and brows', or ‘hands and feet' hampers.
Post regularly on social media platforms highlighting your work and offer advice during this busy time. Make sure you respond to all comments positively and engage with your followers as often as possible. Run competitions, exclusive online discounts or free add on services and encourage your clients to post their Christmas selfies.

Post a retail product or treatment every day on the ‘12 days of Christmas' theme. This is a great way to tell your followers about the fabulous items or services you have on offer and available to purchase.

Local Christmas fayres are also a great way to market your business and promote your product lines in the local community. Decide whom you want to target demographically and look out for dates and costs. Prep school Christmas luncheons, Christmas craft fayres or charity events are a great way to move stock and promote your business.

When/how can techs encourage clients to buy their Christmas gifts from them?
Techs need to remember that the retail opportunity starts even before the client steps foot through the door so make sure the window dressing is festive, fun, and full of ideas which will also encourage passing trade. 

The counter area needs to mirror this without clutter giving paying clients time to muse over offers at the till. 

While your client has a treatment, this is a golden opportunity to discuss the products used and explain what is so good about them and the results they've witnessed. 

Make sure to use the products yourselves, and you'll be able to give genuine feedback, clients can always tell if someone is not being truthful or just being ‘sold' to, and no one likes that, and you won't get many sales. 

Even though the tech will know the products inside out, they must sell the benefits and not the ingredients as most clients won't care about the inky list. 

Be consistent too with each client; assume everyone wants the opportunity to buy from you, so ask and don't be afraid if they say no, no need to be pushy or sales, just enthusiastic, confident, a matter of fact and positive.

Ruth Atkins is a Lash &and Brow Expert and Salon System Educator.