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Posted on: February 26, 2018

Beauty Salon Case Study – It’s The Small Things That Make The Biggest Difference

I’m not sure about you guys, but  for me taking time out for myself is very rare and only ever happens if I make a real concious effort to do so.

So today I had booked in for an Elemis Facial at my local beauty salon. This wasn’t just any facial either it was an Elemis Superfood Facial with a complimentary gift to take home. Sounds lush, right?

I had been to this salon before so knew roughly what to expect.

Salon Welcome

I was about 20 minutes early as it was so cold outside and knew they had a waiting area so I went straight in. I was greeted, asked how they could help, taken to the waiting area and was offered refreshments. Peppermint Tea is one of my favourites so opted for the refreshing option.

They did ask if I had been before? I thought they would have known this from my record card…hmmm!

From my last visit I had booked to see Hannah the same therapist as before as she was really good. But when I was greeted to go the room a therapist Amy introduced herself as my therapist for the treatment.

The Treatment Room

Amy showed me to the treatment room.

We then both stood in the middle of the room while she asked me questions about my skin (This did feel slightly awkward as I didn’t really know what to do with myself standing there) Amy also asked what skin care I was currently using at home? (I thought this was fab)

I was asked if I had any areas of concern? As the answer was no that only thing I really wanted her to do was slow down (or stop completely) the ageing process around my eyes and forehead…lol

Amy asked me to take off my top and shoes, place them on the chair and leave my bag at the side. Slide under the sheet and blanket and leave my arms out. And she’d be back in a couple of minutes when I am ready.

The Facial

Once Amy was back in the room, she began the treatment.

“Ahhh…no I’m not going to be able to relax was all I was thinking” – the music was calm but so loud. Luckily Amy had realised as well and discreetly turned it down without saying anything. Phew!

With my racing head and my ‘voice 2’ going at 100mph I was aware I needed to try and quieten my mind and switch off a little, instead of being too observent to what was happening. Luckily you’ll be pleased to hear I didn’t wake myself up from snoring either… (this usually happens)

The products smelt different to the last facial I had before even though it was suppose to be the same one. The movements and routine also seemed a little different, maybe I didn’t have the Superfood facial last time, or maybe I wasn’t getting the super food facial this time?

As anything that is relaxing in life, the hour went very quickly. Amy finished off the facial by gently tapping my arm and saying that she will meet me downstairs in the waiting area with a glass of water.

As soon as I got downstairs, Amy said that my skin seemed quite dry and she had noticed that the oil absorbed very quickly into my skin. My first thought was “Great, that certainly isn’t going to help the ageing process of my skin”

Salon Home Care

Without even realising I was swiftly taken straight from the relaxation area to the huge array of home care on the shelves and display units. To a client that is unaware I find this always looks so daunting.

I had promised myself before I walked into the beauty salon that I was not going to buy any home care. Purely because I have so much to get through in my cupboards I just couldn’t justify the cost.

But with Amy saying my skin is very dry, the first thing I thought was right, well what do I need to do to ensure my skin is not dry” Trying to take in all the information you’ are being given on 5 different products I find sometimes slightly overwhelming and really couldn’t afford to buy everything.

I was told that if I bought one product today I would receive a complimentary gift. So that would be 2 complimentary gifts as I’d get one with the type of facial I had booked too. This tempted me further.

You guessed it, I ended up buying a product…but only one you’ll be pleased to hear!

The Salon Goodbye

This was done nice and smoothly. It wasn’t until after I’d said I wanted to rebook that Amy advised me of a 20% rebooking scheme they have. I didn’t know about this. I was also offered a loyalty card for both treatments and retail that I purchased but hadn’t been offered one of these before.

USP’s that I Experienced Today

1. Amy asked me to take off my necklace before we started. I guess so it didn’t get in the way
2. Amy asked what products I already use at home – good for gaging my price spend and what products I already have
3. Offering me water, meeting me in the waiting area and then taking me to the home care – was done effortlessly. There was no hesitation she knew exactly what she wanted to do (Even though I knew the routine of home care after a treatment, I still bought a product and spent an extra £40 that I said wouldn’t spend.) I value a professionals opinion and giving me advice on what will improve my concerns, I will not ignore and neither will your clients
4. Heated blanket on the bed was a dream…heaven!

Missed Opportunities

1. During the facial Amy did a massage across my chest and shoulders which was lovely, I could feel the tension and tissue breaking down which Amy would have felt too. Upgrade option: Back, neck and shoulder massage – I could have been persuaded to have this especially with a 20% off re-booking incentive as well.
2. I had to ask to rebook, I wasn’t prompted in any way
3. I was not made aware on the 20% rebooking incentive 
4. The waiting area could have been a little quieter a couple of the girls were shouting across the area asking if they needed any more retail bags at reception and if someone could help her clean out the cupboard as it was a mess

Possible Areas to go the eXtra Mile

I have been to this particular salon a few times now so was a little concerned when they asked if I had been before. Surely my history and/or notes should be on file? I feel they slightly lost the personal touch here.

Checking back on history, I feel shows you are interested in your clients past treatments. It also gives you room for upgrades and general concern for how they felt after their last treatment.

2. With many salons using salon software like Salon iQ I would have thought they knew who to expect at what time. To be greeted with “Hi, You must be Sam’ would have really given a personal edge to welcoming me.

3. Opening the door on the way out, also gives 5* customer service. Not that I’m not capable of opening the door but it is a nice little touch.

4. Having a stool or having us both seated on the bed during the consultation when asking about my skin before the facial I feel would have been less awkward and slightly more relaxing than standing in the middle of the room not knowing what to do with myself


Clients pick up on absolutely everything. In your daily surroundings you do not see the little mark on the side of the wall or the dust sitting on the shelf or the general chit chat going on in the salon. 

We don’t easily notice the dirty cups still sitting there or the half empty jug of water with a lemon looking shrivelled, but your clients do and they take note whether they intend to or not, they will remember. 

Take time to walk around and observe every area of your salon. Pay particular attention to the small things mentioned above.

Questions to ask Yourself as a Salon Manager or Salon Owner

  1. Do all of your therapists carry out the same routine for each treatment they do? Do you have consistency?
  2. Are the right products used for each part of the treatment?
  3. Are your clients all greeted in the same way?
  4. Could your receptionist greet clients into your salon differently?
  5. What is the process of clients leaving the treatment room to paying the bill?
  6. When did you last have a treatment to see how your therapiss are doing?
  7. Have your therapists experienced 5* service to know exactly what it is like? How could we expect our teams to cook a michelin-star meal when they have only had a McDonalds?
  8. When were your team last educated on the importance of using the right products for their hair or skin?
  9. When did you last do a workshop on customer service and what clients expect?
  10. Have you ever thought about having secret shoppers in your hair or beauty salon?

Alot of this we already know but we are all human and simply need refreshing on it now and again. Adding USP’s into your salon will also help you stand out from your competitors.