Updated: Mar 10, 2021
Our goal for this blog post is to give you the best introduction possible on everything you need to know as a new salon owner, especially if you are not tech savvy, we are going to educate you on what your competitors know so you can be up to date during the startup phase of your hair salon. We are going to talk about how to market your salon, how to manage your customers, how to establish credibility and so much more. We bolded out all the topics, so feel free to skip ahead and read about the topics that are most interesting to you. Let’s get started.
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THIS POST
· Best marketing strategy to keep your salon chairs busy
· How to choose a name for your salon
· Best software to use for your salon
· How to get the right website
· How to price your services
· And much more!
HOW TO GET THE RIGHT WEBSITE FOR YOUR SALON
This is by far the most important part of your business. Your website is the number one asset you will have, when it comes to your online marketing strategy. So it’s important that you get it right the first time. Don’t just shop around for price, look for value. You need a website that will look amazing so that your brand makes a good first impression online. If you are not impressed by your website to the point that you wanna show off to your friends and family. Chances are your website is not good enough. If your website looks fancy and high end, people will treat your brand as high end. If your website looks cheap. Customers will treat you as a cheap brand. Apart from having a good looking website, it’s important to have good content. Ask your website designer to create a services drop down page and have one page dedicated to each service. Let’s say you have a page for hair extension and another for eyelash extensions. Make sure each service has it’s own page so that you can write enough content to describe each service for your future website visitors.
Hair salon is one of the most competitive businesses to start, make sure your website looks better than your competitors. You want to outdo them in every category so that your business can thrive and be successful. If you need help getting a website done, reach out to us and our team of website designers will help you get started.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU HAVE NO PORTFOLIO
As a new hair salon owner, you probably have no portfolio to add on your website. The best thing you can do is to buy some professional stock photos and use it on your website. Don’t go to Google images and copy and paste every photo you find onto your website. This is not allowed, and you can run into legal trouble in the future. Buy professional stock photos which you can use on your website without any royalty fees. You pay a one-time small fee, and you can use it on your website. Below this paragraph, we will have links to all the best stock photo websites on the internet. We will give you free websites and paid websites. The paid websites tend to have a better variety of photos. Once your business grows, and you start taking professional before and after photos of your work, slowly start replacing all the stock photos with your own photos.
PAID STOCK PHOTO WEBSITES
FREE STOCK PHOTO WEBSITES
HAVE A GREAT NAME FOR YOUR SALON
Spend a lot of time into naming your business, one day you may turn into a worldwide brand or potentially franchise your salon all over the country. You want to be proud of the name you come up with. We actually go more in-depth on this subject in our blog post titled “how to choose a domain name for your business.” You will learn how to check and see if there are any competitors that are using the name you want, if there are trademarks and if the name is available on all the social media sites.
HOW TO PRICE YOUR SERVICES
Write down a list of all the services you offer in your hair salon. This can include, hair cut & color, hair texture treatments, eyelash extensions, microblading, etc. Go to Google and type in those services + your city name. See all the websites of competing hair salons on the first page of Google. See what all the salons in your area are charging and decide if you want to match their prices or charge higher for the same services. At the beginning of your start-up phase, charge the same as your competitors and as you get really busy and you want to be more exclusive, then start charging more if you are able to deliver great value for what you are charging.
HAVE A BRAND STORY VIDEO
Hire a videographer to have a video introduction of your salon; this will make your website stand out when people visit your site for the first time. Use this opportunity to tell your story of how you got started. Below this paragraph are some examples of great brand story videos from some of the best salons we found online, we did not make any of these videos, but we thought we should include them for inspirational purposes.
GET NEW CLIENTS WITH GOOGLE ADS
One of the best advertising strategies you can use for your salon is Google ads. Chances are some of your top competitors are using this strategy to generate new clients for their hair salon. No matter which city you are located, all you have to do is search “hair salon + your city name,” and you will find the top hair salons in your city. It’s time for you to join the party. Here is a screenshot of what Google ads look like. We are going to use Toronto as an example. If you want to get clients for more specialized services like eyelash extensions, hair extensions or wedding hair services, Google ads can help you get qualified customers for your business. Qualified, meaning they are actively looking for your specific services. However, you will need a really good looking website so that all of those visitors turn into customers. You can send a million dollars worth of traffic to your site, if your site does not look good, you're not going to get any customers. Make sure your site is in tip-top shape.
DOMINATE YOUR LOCAL AREA WITH SEO
At some point, you’ve come across the term SEO. Most online marketing companies try and sell SEO to small business owners. We believe this is a mistake. All businesses should start with Google Ads first. The benefit of Google ads is that we can start getting you traffic immediately, once the campaign goes live. With SEO, it can take several months of work before you start getting traffic to your website. As an added benefit, we can test multiple variations of keywords and see which ones get you the best customers for your business. Over the course of the next few months, we will test multiple keywords and see which ones generate high-quality customers for your salon. Once we eliminate the underperforming keywords, we will start planning the right SEO strategy that will help you rank for your most important and high converting keywords.
POST BEFORE AND AFTER ON FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM
As you get more happy customers start posting before and after photos of how you transformed your customers image with a fresh cut and style. Tag them in your posts and share it on Facebook & Instagram. This will help you get additional customers who are in your customer's social circle. As you grow your following on social media, post lots of content that educates your audience about all of your amazing services. I’m sure you know of famous YouTubers that became world famous by posting hair and makeup tutorials on YouTube. See if you can creatively use YouTube to bring in more customers by posting informative content. For example, you can create a video that talks about your various hair texture treatments. You can go in-depth about which treatments are best suited for certain types of hair and how it benefits your client.
Guess which famous coffee shop gives you a gift on your birthday, that’s right its Starbucks. Perhaps you can implement something like this in your own hair salon? We obviously don’t want you to give away your services for free, you’re not a fortune 500, but maybe you can give your loyal customers a discount on their favorite products or services in your salon. They will definitely appreciate the fact that you remembered their birthday. Both men and women will typically visit their barbershop or salon for a fresh cut so that they celebrate their big day while looking good. They are also going to visit a lot of friends, if their hair looks extra nice, guess who's going to get the credit? You are. Most hair salon CRM software will have this feature built in that allows you to enter birthday data for your customers and it will automatically send out a promo for their birthday. Try to schedule the automated birthday three days before, just so you give them time to reserve their date on your calendar, especially if you are in busy peak season for your salon.
BLOG EVERY MONTH
Blogging is an important part of SEO, as you start posting more and more content on your blog. Eventually your website will start ranking higher on Google, and as a result, you will get more traffic and customers. Create blog posts about all of your services in great detail. For example, if you specialize in hair texture treatments for curly hair, make sure you write a blog post about that. If you have hair extension services, create a blog post about all the different types of hair extensions you do, what the difference is between them. If you don’t have the time to update your blog, our team of writers can certainly help you with that.
CREATE VIDEO CONTENT
You probably have the newest smartphone and chances are it has a really great camera on it. As you do more hair cut & color for your clients, create a before and after video clip and post these short clips on your YouTube channel. Remember that YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world and Google owns it. The more content you can contribute to Google’s ecosystem, the more authoritative you appear in the eyes of the search engines. Give Google another reason to rank you at the top of Google. You are only limited by your own creativity when it comes to creative content. Feel free to create as many pieces of content as you want. As the face of your company, you have the opportunity to share your knowledge and experience with a global and local audience. Create lots of content that keeps them engaged so that when they are ready to make a buying decision, they come to you. We see lots of other successful hair salons post before and after transformations on their Facebook, Instagram and even YouTube Channel. This is a great way to generate free clients, set a few hours a week to do this for your hair salon.
BUILD AN EMAIL LIST
You as a hair salon owner are fortunate to be in the business of recurring transactions. Customers don’t just buy once from you. They come to you at least 4-5 times a year for life, and they could potentially refer a friend to your salon. On your website make sure you have an opt-in form that allows your website visitors to sign up to your email newsletter, make sure you have the legal disclaimers on your form depending on which country you are located in and start collecting and building an email list of your client base. An email list is your way of bookmarking all of your current customers, and this provides you with a fast and easy way to send promo messages to all your clients and start filling up your calendar with all of your salon staff. One blast email to promote your eyelash extensions package to all 500-1000 email database can help you generate a boost in sales especially if you are having a slow month. Your email database is an important asset in your business, make sure you start building it today. If you need help with this, reach out to our email marketing team for more info.
USE CRM IN YOUR SALON
Don’t you wish there was a way to organize all of your clients and keep notes of their preferences, allergies, favorite products, schedules, manage your payments and pretty much everything else? Well, there’s CRM for that, CRM means “customer relationship management software” think of it as an operating system for your business, a centralized piece of software which you can buy for a few bucks a month can help you keep your business organized an running smoothly. Most large hair salons that have multiple locations and lots of staff use a CRM software. Below this paragraph, we are going to link all of the top hair salons CRM's that we know of. We are not affiliated with any of them, feel free to take their free trial to see if it has the right requirements for your business. By checking out their website, you can easily find a “features” page which lists all of the capabilities each of them have, along with different packages. CRM software, in general, are very affordable, and it’s not something that’s going to break the bank. Consider using one for your salon.
GET LOTS OF REVIEWS ON GOOGLE
The best thing you can do for your brand is to earn lots of great reviews from all your happy customers. Ask your happy customers to leave you reviews on Google. Why do you ask? Having lots of reviews is actually a ranking factor when Google decides which salon should show up number one on Google. Having 200-300 5-star reviews will definitely make it easier for us as SEO experts to help your salon rank higher on Google. Another great benefit of having lots of reviews is trust. When a new customer that comes across three hair salon websites, she is going to decide which salon to get her hair done. The number 1 factor that will make the biggest difference is not the price of the service, but who can guarantee a great job. Women are afraid if they try a new salon, they might risk having a bad stylist that will ruin her hair. But if you have hundreds of 5-star reviews on your Google maps page, you will literally get calls of clients wanting to book an appointment without you having to convince them or make any special effort to have them show up in your salon. Your salon reputation is everything, and it can make or break your business, protect it with care. Make sure you only hire stylists that can deliver a high level of service. Make sure they are well trained, and you can trust them with your clients. Remember most employees at the end of the day don’t care about your brand the same way you do. Make sure you hire the right people with good ethics that will honor your brand.
OFFER WEDDING HAIR AND MAKEUP
Lot’s of hair salons offer wedding hair and makeup services to all the local brides. Both in salon and as a mobile business. This can be another great revenue stream for your business and another great way to bring new clientele to your salon for future business. When a bride hires you to do her hair and makeup, she will most likely bring her bridesmaids & groomsmen to your salon as well. Make sure you have the right staff that are skilled at hair and makeup so that you can sell both packages to your clients. If you only offer hair but not makeup, most of the time they will want someone that can do both. If you are interested in booking more wedding hair and makeup clients, our marketing team can definitely help you market this part of your business as well.
JOIN LOCAL FB WEDDING GROUPS
If you live in a big city anywhere around the world, chances are there are local wedding groups that are catered towards wedding business owners. Join these groups and make friends with other fellow wedding vendors. Especially wedding planners, florists, and photographers. These are the people that can refer business to you in the future and you can also refer them as well to your wedding clients. Build a good relationship with them and start recommending each other. Make sure that they are trustworthy and super reliable so that customers are not disappointed in any way. This is not a problem, most small business owners care about their customers but be on the lookout and avoid those that give off a bad vibe. Check their reviews on Google and see if they have any negative reviews. Minor bad reviews are understandable in any business, however, if it is consistent and the owner shows no sign of care. Make sure you don’t do any business with them.
Regardless of where you are located in the world, simply go on facebook and type in “wedding vendors + city name” you will definitely find lots of groups in your city for wedding vendors, if for some reason you don’t find any, check for a nearby city or start one on your own. You can be the first which gives you another great advantage. Facebook groups take 5-min to create, and it’s well worth your time.
HOST WOMEN ENTREPRENEUR NETWORKING EVENTS
One of the local hair salon owners in our area hosts monthly networking events that encourage women entrepreneurs to come and network inside the salon. She invites all of the clients at her salon who are business owners and allows them to invite their friends as well. They all meet at the salon and network with each other. The event is hosted for free, and it helps to bring in additional clients to the salon which works out really well for her. We think this is a great marketing idea and it allows customers to interact on a personal level. Try it out, and it may work wonders for your business. The networking event is usually hosted on off-peak days like Mondays where the salon is usually closed so that it does not disrupt regular business hours. Even if the event is for 1-2 hours, it can still be a great marketing idea that can add new clients to your salon on a monthly basis.
REACH OUT TO OUR MARKETING TEAM
We hope you found this blog post useful and informative, if you have any questions about marketing your hair salon or if you would like us to help you with your marketing campaigns, feel free to reach out to us. If you have any ideas on what topics you would like us to cover on our next blog, feel free to send us an email and we will add it to our suggestion list. Have a wonderful day!