There are many challenges to gaining and keeping customers with you. In today’s world we are bombarded with choices. When you get a chance do some research and find out how many places within a 5 minute drive from where you work you can get a haircut. In the United States alone there are about 225,000 licensed barbers and about 2,250,000 cosmetologists. Still think you are irreplaceable?
Barbershop customer service tips that work really well is keeping the wife, girlfriend, or mother of your customer happy. Make sure to ask your customer as well as their significant other their opinion when they are present. This will go a long way to showing you really care and are committed to keeping your customer happy. I know sometimes it can be difficult concentrating with someone watching closely over you when you are giving a haircut but take it as a challenge. They are just there because they want a good haircut for the man in their life or their child. Any of their anxiety will go away with a good haircut which will become obvious well before you are finished.
One of the things I try to do is find humor in the situation. I had a couple come into the shop that were getting married that weekend and the wife to be asked me if I could do a flat top. I told her it was my specialty. She looked at me and said, “That is what everyone has told me and he hasn’t gotten a good one yet.” I almost started to panick but remembered I can give a good flat top. She stood so close to me while I was working I barely had enough room to work. Within a few minutes of starting the haircut she left the shop to go wait in the car. Just like I said in previous posts the customer will gain or lose confidence in you long before you finish the haircut.
There was no way I was going to let her off that easy. When I finished the haircut I walked out and told her she had to come back in to look at my masterpiece. I worked hard on this haircut and wanted at least half of a smile from her which I was not sure was possible based on the way she acted when they first walked in. She was all smiles when she saw her husband to be and they became repeat customers for as long as long as they lived in the area.
I could go on forever writing about barbershop customer service. Creating customer loyalty is the key to long term success in the barber industry. Short haircuts are back in a big way and are here to stay. Classic barber tapered haircuts are also back in a big way and are here to stay. Fortunately for barbers these customers need there haircut every 1-4 weeks to maintain these styles.
The topic for this blog is how to greet your customer. This is more than just asking them how they want their haircut. It starts when they walk in the door.
– Is the barbershop or salon reception/waiting area clean?
– Is the receptionist or the first face the customer sees smiling when they walk in the door?
– Is the customer greeted with a good morning/afternoon/evening?
– Is the next question “How are you doing today?”
If you look at these questions closely you will notice that I haven’t even talked about the customer’s barber greeting them yet. It is so important that the customer walks into a clean environment, is greeted with a welcoming smile, and asked how they are doing. Customers notice everything and are forming an opinion about the barbershop and you long before you pick up a scissor or clipper.
Next is the final part to greeting the customer and making them feel welcome no matter how long you have been cutting their hair. Do this every time you cut their hair. Look them in the eye, shake their hand, and greet them by name with a “How are you doing today?, How have you been?, or It is nice/good/great to see you today.”
Everyone likes to feel important and welcome. Let your customer know you care about them and you will have a customer for life.
How should a barber dress is one of my favorite topics and a major contributing factor to a long profitable barbering career. This article is going to cover what I feel is one of the most important things you can do in the barbershop to increase your clientele and make more money:
These are the most common questions I hear when teaching:
– How can I charge more for a haircut?
– How do I get more requests or appointments?
– How do I increase my tips?
– What can I do to get my customers to interact with me on a more professional level?
I have been cutting hair in the barbershop for 20 years and have felt like this myself many times throughout my career.
I am going to answer these questions with more questions:
– Do you dress like you are worth more for a haircut?
– Do you dress like you take pride in being a barber?
– Do you dress as well as if not better than other professionals?
We are in a grooming business. Customers come to us because they want to look better so we have to make sure we look our best at all times.
I highly recommend wearing a nice pair of dress pants with a freshly ironed, long sleeve dress shirt with a collar. A knee length skirt is also very professional for female barbers. For both men and women if you really want to impress you can never go wrong with a tie. Make sure to finish off with a pair of comfortable, shined, dress shoes. If you are going to wear a barber smock I still recommend wearing the professional attire underneath. Look at any turn of the century barbershop photos and this is exactly what you will see.
If you follow these guidelines you will be amazed at the difference in the way your customers interact with you and the increase in your tips. Demand for your services will increase and you will in turn be able to raise your prices.
Give Yourself a Raise!!!
This is a great question and one every employee of a barbershop or hair salon should think about. That’s right – employees. Even if you work for someone you are in your own business. The fact that this is a commission and gratuity based business means the more haircuts or services you provide the more money you will make. It’s that simple. Build your your clientele and you will build your income.
I would like you to imagine a 5 foot circle around your barber chair or beauty chair. This is your space. You have control over everything in it. You have no control over what goes on outside of that circle. Wasting time on what goes on outside of your circle takes away from all of the things you can do to build YOUR personal barbershop clientele. There are too many distractions to list but probably the number one to avoid is barbershop or hair salon gossip. It creates a negative energy/atmosphere even if the customers do not witness it in person.
To make the most out of your space treat it as your home. Just like your home is a reflection of you so is your work space. Keep it as clean as you would when you are home. Treat your customers the same way you treat invited guests. Whenever my family has invited guests over to our house it is always clean and we are on our best behavior. What do you think the results would be if you conducted your business in the same manner?