Ask any salon owner. Referrals drive our industry. It doesn’t matter how good you are at selling your business, word-of-mouth will always have a special power. It’s psychology. You have heard it a million times, humans are social creatures. Referrals and online reviews appeal to our very human need for trust and validation. They offer us an example of social proof. And now that a serious amount of our social life has migrated online, online reviews are more important than ever.
According to research by Phorest, 36% of Canadians were influenced by online reviews when choosing their current hair salon.
77% of respondents said they searched for hair salons on Google, while 23% searched on social media. They also searched specifically on Google Maps (18%) and Yelp (8%). When searching for spas, Google was also the top place to search (39%), followed by 30% going to social media and 13% using. Google Maps. Either way, you’ll want to give regular attention to your reputation across a range of channels. When a potential client Googles your business or searches on Facebook, your reviews will be staring them in the face. So monitoring these reviews is essential.
This means you need to:
- Make sure that you have an influx of fresh reviews coming in regularly
- Respond to the reviews you receive in a timely manner (positive or negative!)
However, putting in the work comes with its rewards:
- Improving your ranking in local search results–helping clients find you online in the first place.
- A strong first impression in that crucial moment before a new client books
- Ongoing validation for your current clients. Make them proud to be your client!
- Compelling marketing material–highlight the best ones on your website or Instagram.
There are many industry awards out there, but nothing is more important than what your clients think.
This is why, each year, Phorest is proud to present our Client Experience Award. The Client Experience award recognizes businesses using Phorest Salon Software that have received over 60 reviews and maintained above a 4-star average for the last 12 months.
Congratulations to all our 2022 winners!
You may make it look easy, but we know running a successful salon is far from it. Delivering a top-class client experience takes dedication and attention to detail. At Phorest, we understand there are countless hours of hard work behind every 4 or 5-star review you receive.
Listen to some of the 2020 winners discuss how they create magic for their clients every day.
We also know that many salons aren’t raking in their fair share of glowing reviews because they don’t have a system in place.
Online reviews have become such a staple in our culture. Nowadays, the average person consults them all the time, from booking a restaurant to ordering a new pair of shoes. Even still, many people don’t instinctively think to leave a review themselves. The easiest way to fix this? Ask!
This is where Phorest’s Online Reputation Manager comes in.
It benefits your salon by:
- Increasing the number of 5-Star reviews you receive through automated settings
- Monitoring & managing what clients say about your business on online
- Allowing you to respond to positive & negative comments from one clean and clear dashboard inside Phorest
Online Reputation Manager is one of the industry’s most advanced automation tools.
Online Reputation Manager saves you time and effort so you can focus on solidifying personal relationships with your clients rather than scrambling around the internet. Phorest packages all of your reviews in a single, convenient location.
This means you never have to worry about a negative review lurking on the internet unattended. Plus, expressing your gratitude for the positive ones has never been so simple.
Online Reputation Manager helps you get more 5-star reviews
Getting started is easy. First, you can set up Phorest’s Online Reputation Manager to automatically request feedback from your clients after their appointment via email or SMS. Next, you can customize when they will be prompted to post their review to Google or Facebook. Most salons choose to ask a client to make their review public only if it is 4 or 5 stars. Thereby filtering out the negative feedback to be handled privately.
There is inherent value in getting feedback from clients
Seeing the five-star reviews roll in will feel great, trust us. But you are human. Your staff is human. So it is very likely, at some point, you’ll have an off day, and someone will leave you a less-than-satisfactory review. Assuming the review isn’t overly antagonistic, consider it an opportunity. Without honest feedback, how would you identify the areas you need to improve?
Generally, a negative review is better than silent resentment. At least with a negative review, you open the door to productive conversation. By taking the initiative to hear and address their concerns, you can often turn a disappointed client into the most passionate advocate for your business.
“My favourite feature is the client feedback. I was worried about negative reviews, but it has actually been a real area of growth for us. The first thing I do with a 3 star is I get them on the phone, and usually, it’s something tiny to fix. And you turn that client who, maybe had been a little bit dissatisfied, to being a client who was wowed. And she’s straight back in.”Susan Roche, Owner of Newcastle Hair & Beauty Clinic in Newcastle UK
Set Your Sights on the Client Experience Award for 2023
Polishing your online presence is now key to your success as a business. Phorest designed the Online Reputation Manager to empower time-pressed salons to show the world what they are made of.
To learn more about joining the Phorest Family and all the ways Phorest can help grow your business, book a demo.
This article was originally published on September 30th, 2021 and has been updated.