Instead of just selling haircuts and beauty treatments, salons often turn to retail products as a way to keep their clients happy and increase profit margins.

Mo money, mo products: How to sell out your salon’s products

Many growing salons looking to make more money focus on getting the right clients through the door and providing solutions for many of their customer needs. Instead of just selling haircuts and beauty treatments, salons often turn to retail products as a way to keep their clients happy and increase profit margins.

Your customers go home happy when you sell them a product that will keep them looking on point while they’re away. And in 5 minutes, you can make a nice profit by adding some retail to a customer visit. Everybody wins!

Larissa Macleman, a salon owner of 20 years, says that salons should aim for 15-25% of their revenue to be from product sales, but there are many “ifs” and “buts” to this. If your business is in a shopping mall, on the street, or in a non-traffic situation, results will be very different. Different countries have different retail expectations too.

For every 10 customers who come into your business, you should be aiming to sell half of them one product unit.

“There is another way to measure sales,” Larissa says, “and that is units. For every 10 customers who come into your business, you should be aiming to sell half of them one product unit. So a staff member should sell 5 units for every 10 customers.”

Unless you work with stylists who are already trained to sell products, you may need to provide some training and incentives to get your staff started with sales.

Larissa found that educating clients, instead of selling to them, worked best. “I used to tell my staff to never put a product on a customer without telling them what it is, what it does, and why they are using it,” she said, and it was those conversations with customers that resulted in sales.

Simon Langford, owner of the trendy Cherrybomb Hair salon in Australia, motivates his staff to talk about the products they use by giving them a reason to do so. CherryBomb Hair is located in the “heart of the hippest district in Melbourne,” and while they also sell products online, in-store sales make a considerable part of their revenue. Every year, there is a performance bonus up for grabs where one of CherryBomb Hair’s eight staff get the opportunity to go on a return trip to the US.

Simon has also put all of his core staff on percentage-based contracts so that when they have a good sales day, it’s a win for the stylist and the salon. “They used to be on salary and they were very slack,” he said, “but now they earn more, work less and are extremely motivated.”

Of course the products you sell have a whole lot to do with the volume of stock you can move. Your staff, who will be selling the products most of the time, will always recommend their favourites, so it may be worth asking them which products they like before deciding what to sell. Both Simon and Larissa agree, saying that if staff don’t like and use the products themselves, they wont push them.

It goes without saying that you must take into consideration what your customers want too. Some products, like organic and natural ones, might appeal to your regulars depending on who your client-base is. Other products, like the L’Oreal range, are well known everywhere and will sell themselves.

It might take a while for you to figure out what products work well and how to steadily increase your sales each month. That’s to be expected! Experienced salon owners say that listening to your staff and your customers, and coaching your stylists to talk about the products they use with their clients is what has gotten them the best results.

To know whether or not your sales efforts are going well, you need to be able to measure how much you’re selling! The reports in Timely booking software will keep track of all of your sales, show you which products are popular, and which staff sell the most. It’s free for 30 days, so give it a try!

Do you have any tips to share? Let us know in the comments below.