Spring cleaning your salon business during lockdown
Beauty business expert, Liz McKeon, says that the current lockdown is the perfect time to improve your company’s performance.
Spring is a time of renewal and regeneration. This Spring, we face an unusual situation of delightful weather, while our businesses are closed due to lockdown. This presents many opportunities and is an idea time to spring clean your salon business. It's rare to have the time and head space to devote to reviewing your business practices, checking your finances and reviewing and refreshing your marketing, web presence, database and tax affairs (to name a few).
There is no time like the present to run a business check to improve your company's performance and service your clients. Here is my guide to sprucing up your salon:
Clean up your finances
The first place to tidy up a business is to get all your finances in order, making sure that you have been managing your cash flow on a daily and weekly basis. Were there any gaps? Can you identify what the problem was? And how can you resolve this when you reopen.
Clean up the Web
Go online and objectively assess how fresh your salon website is. It doesn't have to be an extreme makeover, but you can review and refresh stale and out of date material. Determine the key goals for the site – is it to direct sales and enquiries to your salon? Gather salon news, media articles and relevant links to upload immediately, based on your salon's new priorities.
Clean up your database
Your salon's database is one of your company's most important assets. Use it to your full advantage; record every single client's details, keep it up to date and use it to stay regular touch with your clients.
With your website in order and a solid database, it might be worth investing some time in a free digital marketing course. This can teach you how to set your online goals and objectives, learn about key word search and SEO (amongst other things). The Google Digital Garage has a range of free online learning tools that can help you boost your business.
Keep your tax affairs in order
This is an unavoidable spring-cleaning chore. Lodge paperwork on time. If the business cannot meet its tax obligations, get in touch with Revenue quickly. This is especially important at this time. Check what government support might be available in terms of loans, grants and VAT payment deferment.
Get much closer to your clients
Review your business through your clients' eyes, prioritise issues for improvement and gain competitive advantage by giving clients what they really want. You can do this by this by running a ‘client survey report' which:
- Provides feedback on how they see your salon
- Highlights areas for improvement
- Shows clients that you care about their opinions
- Helps you listen to your clients
- Keeps you up to date with competitor's strengths and weaknesses
Naturally, with your customers at home in lockdown, the last thing they will want to do is a client or customer survey. Get this set up, ready to instigate when your business opens again. You could use a free tool such as Survey Monkey to facilitate this.
Create a clear vision for your salon
Vision is so much more than management jargon, it really does help to drive the salon forward because it provides energy and direction, a common understanding of where the business is going and enables all staff members to work out how they can personally add value to the salon.
Clean up your image
‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression'. Take an objective look at your business: what image do you portray to both regular and potential new clients and is that image in keeping with your vision for the salon? If it is, great, and if not, then it's time to improve your standards in every aspect of the business from the exterior, to the look of your treatment rooms to the image of your therapists, to the layout of your reception and to the quality of each and every service your provide. Remember your long term goals for your salon.
All business is cyclical, use Springtime to spruce up all your business strategies and your salon, and get ready to capitalise on a fantastic Summer season.
Liz McKeon is a successful Business Coach, Trainer, Author and Mentor, whose expertise lies in growing small businesses from scratch and taking existing companies to profitability.