Archive for March, 2009

Get off the phone!

Posted on March 16, 2009. Filed under: customer service, management |

The 21st Century Business Traveller
Image by Noonch via Flickr

Are you spending time on the phone booking appointments that you could be spending pampering the clients in the salon?  It is time to join the 21st century and get an online appointment system!

An online appointment system works 24/7.  It doesn’t call in sick and it never comes to work with a hangover.  We have used online appointment services in my salon for years.  If I tried to take it away, the customers would string me up by my toes!  Whenever they think about their hair, they can get an appointment.  It doesn’t matter if you are open or closed, or where the client is when they get the idea.  If they have an internet connection, they can make an appointment.

Reasons salons are afraid of online appointments:

  1. Clients can’t be trusted to book the right thing.  Most of your clients are smart enough to know whether they get a highlight or a brow wax.  Most systems are easy enough for even the most obtuse clients.
  2. I want to pre-book my clients while they are in the salon.  Web based systems are live all the time. You can make the appointment just like you would on paper, but now your clients have access, too.
  3. I don’t want my clients to know what or who else I am doing.  Clients will only see slots that are available for the service they select.  Some systems even have a “smart booking” feature that directs clients into the most effective slot so that you have tighter booking.

So, what are you waiting for?  These companies are safe, effective, and affordable.  Plus, they will let you set up a trial account to make sure the system works for you before you have to pay!

(By the way, last week I had a client make an appointment while she was on a work trip in Mozambique.  If I didn’t have online appointments, she would have had to wait until she was back home to make that appointment, but instead, she came straight from the airport.  How cool is that?)

I even found a company that has a complete online system that integrates your appointments, client records,  inventory and point of sale!  If you need a full solution, you really need to check out Rosy.  It’s all that (and a bag of chips!)  I spoke to them in depth today and they walked me through the system.  I have not seen a better, more affordable solution for small salons.

When you get yourself up and running, let me know who you chose, and why.  We’d all love to hear!

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