No-shows and late cancellations can really affect your cash flow and profit, so we’ve teamed up with international award winning Salon Business Coach, Jessica Crane, to talk about how to get started with deposits; the first in our Protecting Your Revenue series. Check out the video below 👇

With over 20 years industry experience, Jessica has helped hundreds of salon owners achieve their personal and professional goals using her signature Systemise for Success Coaching Programme. Starting at just 12 years old as a Saturday girl, Jessica worked her way up to managing multiple award winning salons, and it doesn’t end there. She worked as an educator and assessor for a top private training provider, holds a degree in consulting, and has spoken on multiple global stages for well known industry brands. There’s not a lot this power woman doesn’t do! 💪

“I hear time and time again from salon owners that no-shows and last minute cancellations are their biggest challenge. We’re a service based industry meaning we trade time & expertise for money, so we need to protect that time.” Jessica Crane

Why deposits are the bee’s knees

Clients are far more likely to attend an appointment if they’ve paid a deposit in advance, because it creates a financial repercussion for missing it, and they’re a great way for salons to get a tangible commitment from clients ensure they’re not out of pocket if they cancel (especially if it’s too late to fill the spot). 

Bonus! Because the client has paid some of the total bill already, they’re more likely to spend a little bit more with you in the salon. It’s the perfect way to upsell your retail products or treatment upgrades and add ons 🎉

“A booking fee or deposit dramatically reduces no-shows and last minute cancellations, weeding out those regular offenders who often no-show, which can cost your business thousands of pounds over the course of a year!” Jessica Crane

Getting your staff and clients on board

It’s important your staff understand why you’re introducing deposits, so they have the knowledge and feel more comfortable enforcing them. In Timely you can pull a report to show the number of no shows and their revenue value over a period of time to help back up your decision.


The key to getting your clients on board is advanced communication; giving them plenty of notice will help to prevent any objections when you finally roll them out. It’s a good idea to craft messaging for the different channels you might want to use to tell your clients; like Instagram, Facebook, email and SMS messages. A video can work well to help to help your personality shine through! 🤩   

Help guide:
How to use the Appointment reports

Working out what to charge

How much you charge for a deposit will depend on the services you offer; some salons only take deposits for higher value services while other salons choose to take them for all services, no matter the price. If you don’t want to ask for full payment for every appointment you can request a partial deposit, which might seem a little less scary. Don’t worry, it’s quite normal within the hair and beauty industry to take 50% upfront for all services! 

“I think a 50% deposit is appropriate, but it’s a personal choice. You and your team need to feel comfortable with it, so make sure to include them in the process if it’s new to your business.” Jessica Crane  

Getting deposits set up

You need to set up a payment gateway like TimelyPay before you can set up deposits. But fear not! TimelyPay is easy as pie to set up, and then you’ve got all the other amazing benefits too, like Cardless checkout and No-show protection (coming soon)! 🙌  Learn more about TimelyPay>

Set it up in Timely:
Payment gateway: Setup > Add-ons
Deposits: Setup > Online payments

Help guides:
How to set up your payment gateway
Taking online deposits
Using a client deposit

Watch the LIVE to learn more about deposits!

Keen to learn everything you need to introduce deposits into your business? Check out the video at the top of this blog!

More content to sink your teeth into

Next-level payments with TimelyPay
High Intensity Timely Training: Catch that cash!
Successful goal setting
7 Habits of Highly Successful Salon Owners