With the start of any new year, it’s always a great time to set fresh goals and assess how your business is performing to see whether it’s running as smoothly as possible. Are there areas that can be improved? Perhaps you would like to bring in more clients or bring your retail sales to new heights. Whatever your goal may be, it’s important to avoid some of the common roadblocks that can prevent your business from being successful!

In today’s tech-savvy world, there are a multitude of tools available to help you organize all aspects of your business, including, online booking, client management, point of sale, e-commerce, social marketing and more. Identifying mistakes early and learning what you can do to avoid them can make all the difference. Diarize Me can help you organize your business so you have more time to focus on doing what you truly love!

Mistake #1: Offering Discounts Without a Strategy

Businesses offer discounts to give their clients one more reason to keep coming back.The idea is simple: give a discount and get something in return—more clients, client loyalty, higher profits, or increased revenue.Having the time and resources to accurately measure the impact of discounting is a common challenge. Given the number of elements it takes to get it right—an organized pricing system, a good business analyst, and reporting tools for example—it’s not surprising that salon owners struggle with discounts.

Having the time and resources to accurately measure the impact of discounting is a common challenge. Given the number of elements it takes to get it right, an organized pricing system, a good business analyst, and reporting tools for example, it’s not surprising that business owners struggle with discounts.

What can you do?

Decide what the objective is in offering discounts or specials. Is it to keep clients coming back, or is it to promote a new service or product to attract fresh business? Once you know what your objective is, it will make reporting on your efforts much simpler!

  1. Use Appointment and Client Reports and look for increases in either if that is your objective.
  2. Make use of the Sales and Revenue Report to track increases in revenue over the duration of your special or discount period.
  3. Make sure that you utilize a discount functionality rather than simply lowering the price of your service or stock item. Doing this will make reporting much easier!

Mistake #2: Not Using Communication Tools To Drive Revenue

Communication is one of the most important tools you can use in your business.It helps to build lasting relationships with your clients and shows them that you care about their needs and are serious about customer service. Communicating with clients can be challenging for many businesses if they don’t have the right tools. Sending out client communications manually takes time and resources that could be better utilized elsewhere.

What can you do?

  1. Keep your client records in a secure, central, online location. By using Diarize Me, your client information is already kept secure and in a central location for you to access. You can draw a report of your clients in the Reports section or view individual client details in the Clients section.
  2. Send out automated SMS and email notifications to your clients. Enabling appointment reminders and notifications about new client appointments will save you hours of time by doing the hard work for you. Diarize Me offers FREE email and SMS client notifications.
  3. Send out social media notifications once for all your platforms. Use a tool such as Hootsuite to connect all of your social media accounts and send out scheduled posts from a central location.

Mistake #3: Letting a Receptionist Do All the Selling

It’s great if your receptionist can work some sales magic, but we know how busy the front desk can be. Hiring a team of receptionists can be expensive, so we recommend upskilling your staff and using your website. It works 24/7, costs a lot less, and never calls in sick.

What can you do?

  1. If you already have a website, consider updating it to display your products, updated services and specials you have running. The more useful information you have, the better.
  2. If you don’t have a website, get one! Over 80% of customers are searching online for service providers over other channels. Either enlist a website designer or contact us to assist you with this. We have a team of developers who specialize in creating beautiful websites.
  3. Use a tool such as Google Analytics to track your visitors and report on how popular your website is.
  4. Allow online bookings. Allowing clients to book online can create substantial growth in sales and relieve numerous stresses on the salon and its staff. Online bookings are a standard feature for all Diarize Me clients. Simply navigate to ‘My Business->Online Bookings’, give the code snippet to your web designer and you’re done! 🙂

Mistake #4: Not Sweating the Numbers

Managing a business using accurate financial performance reporting is absolutely critical for success. Extra credit goes to business owners who use the numbers to guide their growth strategy, not just to check the performance of the business.

What can you do?

  1. Make use of your Reports. Reports such as your Sales and Revenue Report or your Payments Report can be accessed at any time and provide a great insight to how your business is performing.
  2. Make sure your data can be accessed anytime, anywhere, and can be exported in multiple formats (Excel, etc.).
  3. Report on a regular basis and keep this in sync with promotions or specials that you have running to assess whether your marketing efforts are paying off.

Mistake #5: Resisting Online Booking

Think about the last time you booked a hotel room, made a reservation, or scheduled a doctor’s appointment. Chances are you booked online and were done in a matter of minutes. There’s no reason why any appointment based shouldn’t offer the same convenience for scheduling appointments. The biggest misconception amongst business owners is that allowing for online bookings takes control away from them. This simply isn’t true. If anything, gives the business owner more control than if they were to hire a receptionist.

What can you do?

Jump on the booking bandwagon. Online booking isn’t scary, especially when you can add it for a trial period for FREE. Here’s how online booking can simplify and benefit your business.

  1. Give clients the ability to book appointments from any device at any time, even when your business is closed.
  2. Control primetime bookings by only showing selected times and services.
  3. Avoid double-bookings since the calendar is updated in real time and synced with staff schedules.
  4. Make it easy for clients to book quickly instead of waiting to speak to a receptionist.