How To Cut Down On No Shows

Let’s face it, no-shows are the ugly side of the beauty business.

It might be a common occurrence, but still, there’s nothing more annoying than when a booked appointment bites the dust. It’s a waste of your time and money.

That slot could’ve gone to a paying client instead!

Now it’s time to do something about it. Nobody likes the no-shows, so how do you cut down on them?

Here are some tips to :

1. Build a Relationship

People feel more guilty when canceling on someone they know, so get to know your clients.

If they see you as yet another beautician without a name, they probably won’t think twice before skipping that appointment for something else.

The more you get them to talk - making them feel connected and special - the less likely they are to fall into that no-show category.

2. Reminders

Don’t be too afraid of ringing up your clients to give them a heads up.

This way, they won’t miss out on their upcoming appointment - unless they really mean to.

And if something else has come up, this will remind them to tell you beforehand!

Give your clients a 24-hour heads up, followed by a reminder an hour or so before the appointment, but don’t go around bombarding their phone with calls/texts.

Know your limits, because there’s a thin line between annoying and helpful.

If you have an online booking system, it can do this for you! Check out our post about online booking for more information.

3. Forgive and Forget - to a point

Despite all your efforts, there are still clients who fail to show up.

When this happens, the first thing you need to check is whether this is the first time or the 10th time they’ve done so. Keep a record of such things to help you out.

If it’s the first time your client has missed an appointment, try contacting them and asking if everything is alright. This shows that you care - after all, life is unpredictable and things do happen.

On the other hand, if this is a regular thing, it’s time to bring out the big guns! And what are these? Read on to find out!

4. Lay the Rules (or Fake Them!)

A sign saying, ‘No-Shows Charged Full Price’ goes a long way.

This will encourage people to give you a heads up if they won’t be dropping by.

If you’re uncomfortable charging clients full-price, you could always impose a penalty fee instead.

And if you’re not doing any of these, just put up that sign anyway. This will spare you the waiting game - for the most part.

However, you’re in trouble if someone calls you out on your bluff.

5. Follow Up on Your Word

Once you have all the rules laid out, make them count.

The next time a client doesn’t turn up, charge them a penalty or the full price. If it’s their first time, let them off gently, but don’t do the same for that repeat offender.

Many salons have a ‘three strikes or you’re out’ rule. After all, it’s not too difficult to just call and cancel!

If a client seems completely unwilling to cooperate, it’s time to hold up your end of the deal.

6. Ditch the Ditchers

What happens if someone just isn’t willing to learn? After their 10th time missing the appointment, here are your options:

If you’re charging a penalty fee and would still like to accommodate these clients, you could try booking them towards the end of the day.

That way, you can go home early when they fail to show up (again!)

If, on the other hand, you aren’t charging them anything, you might want to tell them - as nicely as you can - that perhaps it’s better for them to book an appointment on the spot.

However, this might not go over well with everyone -- so sometimes you need to know when it’s time to let go.

As difficult as it may be, tell the client that perhaps they’re better off with some other salon as politely as you can.

To avoid a scene, Salon Beat doesn’t recommend doing this this in person - that’s what cell phones are for!

Salons are heavily reliant on their customers. But not all customers are good for your enterprise.

Since no-shows are a part of the beauty business, each salon has to devise its own tricks to deal with them.

Tell us how you handle these customers in the comments below!