The Ultimate Salon Consultation Guide

The Ultimate Salon Consultation Guide

Effective consultations will make or break your salon.  Fact.  You know this – I know this. 

And 97% of us think ‘we do a great job’ with our consultations.

Yet 7 out of 10 salon clients surveyed felt that their consultation should have been more in depth.

Clearly, we have an opportunity for doing better here.  

In this three-part series, we will examine the best ways to connect and clinch a client for life with thorough and quality consultations.

Stylist checking the consultation details before her next appointment.

The New Client Consultation

Your client consultation starts when they arrive at the salon, right? Nope.  

A quality consultation starts when you book the appointment, well before they walk through your door.  Their loyalty to you starts from the first time you connect.

From the moment a client calls for an appointment, your professional consultation begins.  For example, when booking, do you know if they are a new client or an existing client?  

If they are new, then you will want to convey to them that you are going to book extra time with them as part of your new client process.  This tells them right away that they are dealing with a professional, and builds their trust with you.  

How much extra time should you allow for this? A minimum of 15 minutes is recommended for a client consultation. For a new client, this gives you time to get the information you need (service required, hair length, etc), while also allowing you both to get comfortable with each other.  

When they arrive, whether greeted by you or other salon staff, you will want to ensure that everyone is expecting them so they can be greeted enthusiastically.  Welcome them.  Show them where they can sit to wait if you aren’t able to get to them right away, letting them know they are a priority and how long they can expect before you can attend to them.  Perhaps offer them a beverage while they wait.  

Later, when you are able to meet with them, again welcome them in the lobby.  Introduce them to staff that are available.  Make them feel like this is THEIR new salon home.  Sit down with them, preferably in a space where you can sit across from them, face to face, like a professional meeting.

Remember, every aspect of our interaction with a new client is to build trust.  Receiving them, and walking them through your salon process as a professional communicates that they have absolutely come to the right place.  

Questions For A New Client Consultation

Whether electronically on a tablet, or on a salon intake form, be sure to capture your client’s answers to these trust-building questions from leading industry salons:

  • What salon were you going to before? Why did you leave?
  • What made you book me?
  • What do you like about your hair?  What do you hate about your hair?
  • On a scale of 1-10, how comfortable are you with styling tools and products?
  • What type of work do you do?
  • What celebrity hair looks do you love?
  • Do you have any allergies or sensitivities to products or scents we should be aware of?
  • What types of hair treatments have you had in the past? (chemicals, etc)
  • Would you prefer to have heads turn to you and be noticed when you walk in a room, or rather would you love to just be able to subtly slide in?
  • Do you have any important events coming up?
  • What are your plans after this appointment?

Next Week

Join us here again next week, when we cover existing client consultations – the start of a loyalty-building appointment.



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