Currently, the nail care market in the United States is estimated at a whopping $2.7 billion. This means that competition is high and you need to use every tool available to you to run your salon smoothly.
Nail care is an important part of any beauty regimen, which means people are looking for skilled technicians and artists to work on their nails. So if you promote your salon effectively, you’ll undoubtedly see an influx of customers. To handle your customers and employees, you’ll also need a series of operational techniques to help you.
In this article, we’ve compiled for you a list of strategies for operating and promoting your nail salon. A smooth operating and marketing plan is essential to keep you in businesses, and we’ve got all the answers you need.
How to operate your nail salon
1. Schedule appointments online
Streamline your business by taking your appointments online. This will save you time, prevent any scheduling mistakes, and it will also make you look more professional in front of your customers.
There are plenty of online scheduling tools you can use for this. For instance, Picktime is a free website that allows you to book your appointments online and also send email or text reminders to your clients before each appointment.
Similarly, Waitlist Me is a site that promises a hassle-free scheduling process. It also lets customers leave reviews after the appointment so you can get an idea of how you did.
2. Have an online point-of-sale system
An online point-of-sale system is like an online cash register that you can use to keep track of payments, inventory, tips, and overall sales. It’s a one stop solution for all your accounting needs.
It also greatly streamlines the financial and logistical side of your business. So if you’re new to business or don’t have the budget for an entire accounting team, consider adopting an online point-of-sale system.
A recent small business survey showed that 50% of small businesses believe the data they get from online POS systems are crucial for their business.
You’ll find sites online that can function as your point-of-sale system. For instance, eHopper is a free POS system that you can integrate into your business, and make operations a lot smoother.
3. Track employee attendance efficiently
One marker of a good business is how dedicated and hardworking the employees are. This is why you need to keep a check on your nail technicians and other staff that works for you. After all, these are the people who will be interacting and working with your customers. Hence, you need them to be at their best.
Have an efficient online system to track employee activity. As the owner or administrator, only you will have access to this activity, and you can use it to monitor, streamline, and improve employee performance.
Use a single website to meet all your employee accountability needs. Sites like TrackSmart allow you to track an employee’s time worked and requests for days off all on one platform.
How to promote your nail salon
Now that you know what the best strategies are to run your salon effectively, let’s take a look at some key marketing strategies.
1. Use social media to promote your salon
Facebook and Instagram are amazing platforms for online promotion. Collectively, they have over 3 billion active users. This means that having a marketing strategy for these platforms is crucial for your nail salon.
Make some flyers and infographics and post them on both platforms. As a small business, you might not have the budget to hire designers to make your online promotional content. Luckily, there are plenty of online tools that can help you. Sites like PosterMyWall have tons of salon flyer templates that you can customize to promote your services on social media.
Pictures are 120 percent more likely to be viewed than text, which means your promotion should be filled with visuals. Post pictures of your nail art. Also put up before and after pictures to show people the magic that your nail technicians can do.
Increase your reach on Instagram by hosting giveaways online. Tell people to share a post showcasing the work you do with three friends, or post it on their stories to get a chance to win a free nail treatment. This will help you reach your customers’ followers, and if they like your work, you’ll get some new customers.
Take inspiration from Spa Utopia and offer special discounts on days like Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day. People are always looking for special promotions on festive occasions. An effective spa flyer will immediately bring in eager customers and boost brand awareness.
Or, feel free to go the route Ta-Dah Fashions did by offering themed nail art for special holidays like Easter, St. Patrick’s Day, 4th of July, etc.
2. List your salon on Google and in local directories
As a young business, your primary goal has to be to increase visibility. Let people know that you exist, especially people in your community. If someone in your locale searches for “nail salons near me”, your salon should show up as an option.
Use Google My Business to list your salon on Google. Add your address, contact information, and any pictures of your salon. Give people the option to leave reviews. Positive reviews will help you get more customers. Negative reviews will be a way for your salon to improve and meet customer needs.
Apart from this, add your nail salon to local directories, specifically health and beauty directories. Your locale will also have its own directory, so make sure you add your salon to that as well. Remember that the more approachable you are, the more likely you’ll be to attract clients.
3. Use SMS marketing
You always need SMS marketing if you’re running a business that relies on appointments, such as a nail salon.
Imagine you’re a potential client, within the target audience of the salon. You get a text telling you about a particular nail salon, and the services they provide, including price packages. Right below the promotional text, you see an option to set up an appointment immediately via call, text, or a website. Because this is so easy and accessible, you’ll immediately see an influx of new customers.
Through text, you can also send pictures of manicured nails with trendy nail art to entice people to get the same.
Use sites like Appointfix to help you set up SMS marketing for your salon.
4. Create a portfolio
A portfolio allows you to show your customers what you can do, and how well you can do it. It also acts as a reference point for customers who are looking for a particular service.
If you have multiple technicians on your staff, have each of them create their own online portfolio. Post these on your social media pages, or better yet, on your website. This way, if people want a particular technician to help them out, they can do that too. Having the freedom to choose their technician will boost customer loyalty and keep them coming back.
Your portfolio should include details about each service, high quality pictures, your process, and anything else that would sell the customer on your salon.
If you’re not particularly tech savvy, use a portfolio template and simply add your pictures and text.
Take this example of a nail salon, Figaro London. On their website, they’ve uploaded the complete portfolio of their technician, Monica, so that people have an idea of what to expect at their salon.
These are just some of the strategies you’ll need to successfully run and promote your nail salon. Remember the key takeaways – for efficiency, have an online scheduling system, a one stop point-of-sale system, and a system for employee accountability.
As far as promotion is concerned, remember that visibility is key. Use social media, Google, and SMS to get the word out. Also, make a portfolio to show people what your salon is capable of.