For some people, “retail sales” is one of the scariest phrases in the beauty industry. Salon owners can put a big emphasis on retail sales and as business owners, purchasing inventory and setting prices can be overwhelming. Without some guidance, many will just opt out of selling retail altogether.
In my opinion, not selling retail is a mistake, for a few reasons.
- Educating clients on products not only keeps them informed on what to use, it helps to brand You as an authority and a professional who cares about their well being.
- Making sure your clients have the option to buy from you leaves very little wiggle room for poor aftercare practices.
- Providing retail ensures your clients are using the right products to maintain their investment in your work.
- Retail sales are low to no effort money coming into your business.
Education Is Key
Sending a client home without aftercare is kinda like your car breaking down because you’re not changing the oil regularly.
You can’t be mad at a client who has dirty lashes if you don’t educate them on why they need to clean them.
Unless your client is another lash artist, never assume they have any education on aftercare. New clients who’ve been wearing lashes for a decade, have come into my studio and been shocked when I tell them they have to clean their lashes daily. Their previous artist had never mentioned cleaning or worse, had instructed their clients to never get their lashes wet. Just 5min of sharing why a client needs to clean boosts their opinion of my expertise and creates a stronger client/artist relationship.
Dude! It’s Right Here!
Having all of the products you want them to use, right in front of them, promotes a desire to care for their brand new lashes. Not having anything on display can leave clients feeling like it really doesn’t matter. They’re likely to just forget about it when they leave.
Having products you’ve tried, enjoy using and know work with the lashes you apply gives you confidence to recommend those products which increases the confidence your client has in using them.
Letting a client just buy random products at the drug store or on Amazon might just result in poor retention because they’re buying what’s available and not necessarily what’s best to use on their investment.
Who Doesn’t Like Free Money?
Seriously? I’m asking. Because retail products require no real “effort” on your part after the display is in place. Look at Sephora. You can walk in there to buy 1 lipstick and without a word from a sales person, you’re walking out with 2 shadow palettes and a new foundation. Oh, and that cute unicorn brush that caught your eye on the way to the register, too.
Having related products, and even a few random ones, available is one of the easiest ways to make money available to us. Have a local small biz that specializes in body lotions? See if you can feature them in your shop. You found the perfect pocket sized fan that would not only be perfect for drying lashes but would also be great for back yard summer lounging? Buy 10 and share the joy of a multiuse product with your clients. If they don’t all sell, you’ve still got a cute stocking stuffer item for Christmas retail! You fell in love with a local artist’s or photographer’s work and have an empty wall? Offer them that space for a couple of their pieces, in exchange for a commission if it sells and a stack of each other’s business cards or brochures in your respective studios.
Retail Doesn’t Have to Be Pushy
Retail doesn’t have to mean a full on sales pitch at the end of an appointment. You can soft sell from the moment someone clicks onto your website or walks through your door.
Many brands offer marketing materials like display stands, wall art and website banners to distributors of their product. Ask if you can get a slick 16×20 for your window or an 8×10 to put in a groovy frame by your checkout or in your client bathroom. Ask for a branded banner to add to your website.
Conversational selling is the best, in my opinion. We do it every day with our friends and don’t even realize it. While using products on your clients, do you talk about why you love them? One of my favorite products to tell clients about is the Sinful Lashes One and Done Lash Bath. It’s extremely gentle, even on my over-sensitized skin and it cleans away waterproof eye makeup like a dream! I love the clean scent, too. All I do is talk to them about what I love about it or why I use it as I am using it on them.
A complimentary aftercare kit to new clients is another option. I want them to try the products for themselves and want to keep using them, so the items that I retail are included in the kit. Travel sized instead of full sized or plain instead of flashy in an aftercare kit can inspire clients to want to upgrade.
BTW, did you click the link? Cause in case you missed it…that was me soft selling you on checking it out, my friend.
Closing the deal
The hardest part of selling a product, for many, is the putting yourself out there and waiting for that “Sure, I’ll take it!” or “Nah, no thanks.” moment. Nobody loves rejection and having someone say no is just that. Emotionally, we can take it as a rejection of US in some way, rather than the product. So we will shy away from putting ourselves in that position.
Here’s how I look at it. I know that what I am offering my client has value. I wouldn’t have it in my studio if it didn’t. If I’ve given them all the information I can about it and they still don’t want it. That’s okay. When they come back in with poor retention, I can offer it again while we are troubleshooting. When their bestie has beautiful fluffy lashes at 3 weeks and theirs are all clumpy, I’ve got a solution for them.
Every “No” can teach us how to better promote our products. Several no’s can inspire us to learn from others who sell something to every client at every single appointment. Don’t be discouraged by a No. Use it to make your business better.
Have questions? Want more tips? Have a great retail strategy that works for you?
I’d love to hear from you! Comment, reach out on social media or email me below!