We’ve heard whispers on the street that some of you LOVE online booking doing all the hard-yards for your salon, spa or barbershop. And for others, there’s a few more sceptical feels. For those of you who are feelin’ a little nervy, can we offer a fresh perspective? What if we told you a lot of the concerns you may have are just pesky myths? Myths that are 100% bustable.
Allow us to bust ‘em up 👊 for you.
I’ll lose control of my appointment book
This is the number 1 fear we’ve heard from salon owners who haven’t taken up online booking yet. Their concern is that as soon as you hit the big red button and turn on online booking that it will open your entire appointment book so clients can go in and book whatever, whenever they like. Bit spooky!
In reality – it’s the opposite. You have just as much control as if you’re taking bookings over the phone. In Shortcuts online booking platform, you have complete control over which of your stylists or therapists can be booked for which services, so you won’t have to worry about an apprentice being booked for a colour correction.
You can also control how soon, or how far in advance a client can book their appointment in. Whether they can book 1 hour, 1 day or 1 month in advance – it’s totally up to you!
With these safeguards in place, you can rest easy in giving your clients the flexibility to book their own appointments. Your salon appointment book will start to run itself, leaving you with more time to do what you love.
Competitors will book my appointment slots
What a snakey move! Realistically, we hope everyone can be adults and play nicely when it comes to this. There’s always going to be a bad egg out there, but this shouldn’t hold you back from trying new, innovative ways to get more bookings for your salon.
If you’re truly worried about your competitors booking up appointments, start taking online booking deposits (Shortcuts has a handy automated feature to help you with this!). Your competitors won’t risk losing their cash just to inconvenience you. Deposits will help you out with pesky no-shows too.
I’ll fall victim to more no-shows
Quaking in your high-top Connies at the thought of no-shows? Online booking will deter no-shows for good!
For a client to book an appointment via online booking, they will need to make an upfront payment (essentially a deposit). This could be a set amount or a percentage of the service – it’s up to you. Taking an upfront payment means that the client must financially commit to the service, and are therefore less likely to no-show. We all know there’s nothing worse than clients who choose to mess with your time!
I NEED to see new clients for consults first
So for new clients, you have a strict consult-first policy before any appointments can be made. Totally fair! You need to get an idea of their aspirations, hair or skin type and concerns, and get an idea for any contraindications before you can perform your service.
In online booking, you can create a service called “new client consult” and add a customised message asking that new clients’ book in for the consult first. This way, you won’t need to worry about a new face rocking up for a complex appointment.
My clients will book the wrong service
Are you concerned your clients will book in for the wrong service, either accidentally or even knowingly? For those sneaky clients who knowingly book a half-head of foils, rock up expecting you to be a miracle worker and do a full-head instead, it’s best to say good-bye and wish them all the best. But for your genuine clients who need a helping hand booking their more complex services, it’s all about educating them ahead of time so they know what to book.
Thanks to online booking, you can use service descriptions to add some detail around what the service is, so the client understands what they’re booking in for. Likewise, your online booking works with your appointment book to work out the correct sequencing for the appointment. For example, a client’s colour service happens before their cut, and there are appropriate breaks for colour processing.
Feeling more at ease with the idea of trying online booking in your salon now? Good! You can learn more about it and how to implement it in your salon TODAY right here.