Managing Salon Client Complaints.
Managing Salon client complaints can be an extremely challenging task for everyone involved. Emotions can run high, causing stress for both you and your client.
Learning ways to manage salon client complaints effectively is extremely important to preserve your business reputation and ensure your clients leave your salon happy.
In this article, you will learn simple but effective skills to use when dealing with a salon client complaint.
See the Value in Salon Client Complaints.
Looking for the value in clients complaints may seem counter-intuitive. However, complaints provide you with valuable insight into how you can improve your business, skills, or client service.
Moreover, when a client complains, you now have the opportunity to remedy the situation and avoid losing a valuable client.
Here are a few statistics to show the value of client complaints.
Only 1 out of 20 unhappy clients will complain. The other 19 will stop doing business with you without telling you why.
70% of complaining clients will do business with you again if their issues get resolved.
As quoted by bill gates, your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.
Keep this valuable quote in mind the next time you receive a client complaint, and you may even find your attitude towards client complaints will improve.
Listen, Listen, Listen.
Listen to your client with the intent to listen, not just to reply. Letting your client finish without interruption is important, as your client will feel heard and is less likely to become emotional or frustrated.
Always talk to your client in a calm and concerned manner, while clarifying that you have correctly understood their complaint.
Avoid getting defensive and try not to take the complaint as a personal attack.
Imagining yourself in your client’s situation can sometimes help you understand their perspective, and you will feel more empathetic.
Body language is also a powerful form of communication, so be mindful of your body language.
Most people unconsciously respond to emotional signals you display. So keep your posture positive and relaxed and use open hand gestures when talking.
Furthermore, avoid crossing your arms or placing your hands on hips as these positions can irritate your customer. To read more about body language in the salon, click here.
Remain tactful and respond kindly to diffuse any anger or frustration.
Another important note is to make sure the complaint is being dealt with by one person only. If other staff enter into the conversation, your client may feel ganged up on and bullied.
Apologise with sincerity.
Once the problem is defined, assure your client that you will be doing everything you can to rectify the issue.
When you make a mistake, there are four things you should do
- Admit it
- Apologise for it
- Learn from it
- Don’t repeat it
Providing a sincere apology without making excuses shows a client they are valuable to your salon.
Seek a Resolution.
Now it’s time for both you and the client to agree on a resolution.
Act quickly to rectify the complaint; however, if the problem will take more than one visit or take multiple stages to fix, clearly explain the steps and time needed.
Remain firm but polite when negotiating and provide compensation when necessary.
Compensation for clients is good business practice and is especially important for long-term valuable clients.
Compensation can be used to your advantage. By giving your client 50% off their next visit, they are happy, they rebook, and you get repeat business. Win, Win!
Remember, retaining old clients is much more cost-effective than finding new clients. Statistics show that it is 6-7 times more expensive to acquire a new client than to keep a current one.
So, now you see why learning to manage complaints efficiently is essential for your business and maintaining client retention.
Salon Clients Complaint Policy.
Deciding on a suitable resolution is a matter of your discretion and will depend on each individual situation. However, having a clear salon client complaints policy is an essential and valuable tool for you and your staff.
A pre-written policy provides a clear path for you and your staff to follow should the need arise.
Educate your staff on all complaint policy requirements so they can successfully manage complaints consistently across the salon.
Furthermore, a written policy also works to improve response times, as protocols are already in place, and more importantly, reduces staff stress.
Pick Your Battles.
Not all grievances are worth arguing about, and it is essential to identify which complaints are worth negotiating.
Unfortunately, we all come across the occasional client who complains regularly or are just out for a refund or freebie.
Even though we should always put the client first and find a resolution where possible, some people simply cannot be pleased.
Don’t be afraid to decide that a particular client is no longer worth your valuable time. Take a diplomatic approach, even when you know you are right and try to defuse any hairy situations.
Sometimes, offering the client a full refund and politely suggesting they choose another spa or salon more suited to their needs is a great way to rid yourself of ongoing problems.
It is also worth noting that it is never okay for a client to abuse you verbally. When a client crosses the line, don’t accept poor behaviour.
Calmly address the client and tell them you are happy to address the problem, but you will not proceed with a conversation until they calm down.
Terminate the conversation if you must and reconnect with the client at a later date.
Learn From Salon Client Complaints.
Thank your client for bringing their unhappiness to your attention as most will not bother to complain and just walk away from your salon, never to be seen again.
These genuine complaints provide you with valuable ways to improve your business and reflect on what needs to be changed to ensure better outcomes or service.
You might need to consider training for yourself or staff if the complaint was a skill-based problem. Improving skills are a positive way to reduce staff errors and eliminate unwanted outcomes.
Use examples of customer complaints to talk to staff and develop scenarios that improve resolutions. This way, your team are well equipped to handle customer complaints should they arise.
If time management is an issue in your salon, consider automating your business with time-saving software like Konnect.
Konnect provides you with all the amazing tools you need to streamline your day and stay organised.
Document all customer complaints and record the details on the client’s card.
The Konnect client card feature has unlimited space to record every detail.
Don’t rely on your memory, as you may need to look back on these records if things are taken further by the client.
You will not be able to please all clients, all the time. However, you can build a business based around kindness, patience and a willingness to provide excellent customer service.
So take a deep breath, deal with complaints with a positive attitude and embrace mistakes as an opportunity to flourish.
Konnect provides you with the simple, easy-to-use tools to successfully run day-to-day operations in your salon.
Not using Konnect Spa and Salon Software? Sign up for a free demonstration today.