A thriving salon is a busy salon. If you are running a profitable salon, there is no way you have enough time in a day to complete your daily to-do list. You have a stock cupboard to organize, products to order, deliveries to make, walk-in clients to create time for, marketing campaigns to strategize for, and a team of professionals to manage. It is almost mandatory that you be in multiple places at the same time and perform multiple tasks simultaneously. That is why salon management necessitates impeccable time management skills. You also need to invest in salon technology that helps you automate some of your repetitive tasks, freeing time for you to focus on the core aspects of a successful beauty salon business. One such technology is salon management software.
Investing in salon software will help you save time in so many ways. Some of these ways are:
- Enabling online booking
One of the key features of any salon management system is hair salon online booking. Your software will enable clients to check slot availability in your salon, pick their most preferred appointment dates and times, and book appointments all from your social media profiles or website. Clients are also able to add and manage their personal details and make all necessary payments without your direct assistance. The online booking platform makes clients so independent that they can even book appointments as you sleep. That means fewer phone reservations, fewer unannounced walk-in clients, and more efficient record keeping, all of which results in reduced time wastage at the front desk.
- And digital payments
You waste a lot of time counting cash, writing checks, double-checking tills, and taking money to the bank. Digital payments will cut that time by up to 70 percent. Your software should support most of the major digital payment gateways including Google Pay, Apple Pay, PayPal, Square, and almost all credit cards. Clients can make payments long before they come to the salon. So, instead of spending time looking for cash at the front desk, they could use that time to book subsequent appointments, record testimonials, or enroll in one of your loyalty programs. What’s more, making payments through your salon software is secure, so clients don’t have to worry about digital money fraud.
Extra bonus: With digital payments, you don’t have to worry about clients forgetting their dollar bills at home.
- Automated reminders and reduced no-shows
No-shows and late-coming are some of the biggest time-wasters in any service-based business. We all know the pain of spending 20-30 minutes preparing for an appointment, only for the client to not show up. Sometimes the client will show up too late after you have moved on to the next client. Because you don’t want to lose any of the clients, you end up overstretching your limits just to accommodate the latecomer in your already overstretched schedule. Overstretching your limits often leads to burnouts, burnouts lead to inefficiency, and inefficiency leads to lost time and revenue. That is why appointment reminders are almost mandatory in this business.
But as important as appointment reminders are, they also can be time-consuming when done manually. That is where your software comes in to help. With quality booking software, you don’t need to manually type or send appointment confirmation or reminder messages to clients. The software can do that on your behalf. All you need to do is draft one message, feed it into the system, and then the system will be automatically customizing and sending those messages to clients. The system does this by collecting and saving clients’ contact information during the booking process.
Another way your software will help you reduce no-shows is by requiring clients who book online to pay a non-refundable deposit. You legally keep hold onto the deposit for late cancellation or if a client doesn’t show up on the appointment day. That does not only save you time but also cushions your salon business against lost opportunities due to no-shows.
- All your data in one place
You can use your software to create as many databases as you need, from client databases, inventory reports, to employee performance records. You can then manage all these databases from the same location. This eliminates the need for multiple data storage systems, which then means you won’t need to spend hours trying to reconcile differences in different systems. Take a case where you have an inventory management system and a separate CRM system. You have to record each sale on both systems lest money gets lost somewhere between the two systems. The good thing is that you don’t have to worry about that if all your data is housed in one system. You save at least 50% of the time needed to keep business records. Besides, with data stored in the same system, you can access it easily from anywhere with internet connectivity. You don’t have to drive all the way to the salon just to confirm a small payment detail. Also, you can review appointments and prepare for upcoming appointments at home or when stuck in traffic. More time saved!
- Automated inventory management
Your software will provide you with up-to-date inventory reports with as much regularity as you command it to. You get real-time updates on the inventory you have on hand, quantities of each product in the cupboard, and the stock nearing expiry. The system will even send out orders to your suppliers in case there is a looming inventory shortage. All these are tasks that would take a significant amount of your time if you had to do them manually.
- Faster revenue tracking
Your system will record clients’ payment records as soon as they make payments. This allows you to track your finances with just a few quick clicks. It will also track and keep records of all the payments you make to your suppliers. Most importantly, the system will track the commissions and bonuses each employee earns in a month and generate accurate payrolls. All these are time-consuming tasks that you don’t need to perform manually anymore.
- Multi-location management
If you run multiple salons in different locations, a lot of your time is lost driving between the salons. You can save yourself all that driving and commuting trouble by centralizing all your locations in one software. The software will collect payment data, employee performance records, and inventory status in all your salons, and then store all that information in a centralized server. It will then enable you to perform accurate comparative analyses between your salons, all in a few quick clicks.
Your software does more than save time. It will improve accuracy in record-keeping and efficiency in customer service. That leads to more customer satisfaction. Most importantly, it will give you the peace of mind that you need for optimal mental and physical health.