Your Salon Guide to an Effective Consultation

Consultations offer hairdressers much more than simply the opportunity to discover which style the client is hoping to achieve. They also offer the chance to develop rapport and assure customers they are in capable hands.

In this blog, the ASK team outline some helpful ways to provide effective communications for every step of a clients salon experience.

A Positive Start
From the moment your clients step into the salon communication begins and the correct greeting is essential to help put the customer at ease and set the right tone for their time in your salon. We look at some ways to help take your customer from the door and into the salon chair, seamlessly:

  • Greet the client with a smile and if known, by name. If their name is unknown, introduce yourself
  • If you are not ready to attend to the client immediately, acknowledge their presence with a nod or a smile. Indicate approximately how long you may be and where they can wait

The Salon Chair
Once you have the client seated, now is your chance to explore your clients needs in depth. Every client is different and some will need more encouragement than others to express their requirements. Having some strong opening questions ready, which encourage clients to define their needs, can be really useful to spark conversation. Here are a few of our favourites:

What are you hoping to achieve with your hair today?
Does the client want the same service or a completely different style? This question also sets expectations, which you can work to achieve.

What styles and colours really appeal to you?
This helps discover client aspirations and options, which they may not be confident enough to suggest for their own hair.

Shall we look through some styles together to get some inspiration?
Working through an Essential Looks trend book can be a real ice-breaker and offers the opportunity to be involved in the process of finding inspiration, together.

Would it help you to fill in a questionnaire?
Some clients may feel more at ease with a structured questionnaire. This can take the pressure out of a consultation if a customer is struggling to answer questions face to face. Remember every client is unique.

How often do you shampoo your hair?

Gives the stylist useful feedback on hair type and care routine.

Questions are a vital tool to help establish requirements but what’s more important is an ability to listen and absorb the information your client gives you. The more you can understand, the more able to reassure your client and make recommendations which really meet their expectation. We’ve put together some techniques to help you build understanding:

  • Sit preferably face-to-face and at eye level. This will convey a sense of openness and reassure a client that they have your full attention
  • Repeat back to the client the key requirement they have previously outlined to assure them you have listened properly
  • Analyse the client's hair type, personality, style requirements and physique. (These non verbal cues can offer a wealth of information to the savvy hairdresser)

A New Look
If you have a firm understanding of client needs, making recommendations becomes a much simpler process. Matching their requirements with the benefits of a different cut or colour ensures that you are still keeping their needs at the centre of their salon experience.

Keeping A Record
Maintaining a record of your clients visit is an excellent way to continually build and improve your customers experience as well as provide a useful reference source for other salon team members. Record cards offer the following benefits:

  • A record card can be referred to in case of any complaint
  • You can continually build a deeper understanding of client requirements with each visit from the customer
  • Should the regular stylist be away, a new stylist would be able to take over.
  • Special skin and scalp conditions can be recorded

The consultation doesn't end with the first visit but is a continuous process that ensures you are constantly meeting your clients needs and maximising product and services opportunites, whilst importantly building the loyalty of that client.