Running a business is not an easy job, and working towards being a successful salon owner takes time, effort, and a positive mindset (but don’t worry, you’ve got this!). As a salon owner, you are constantly looking for new avenues of growth and success, but the challenges are plenty - seasonal fluctuations, stock levels, staff shortages and unpredictable customer demand, to name a few.
In the chaos of constantly trying to wear so many different hats, from booking and rebooking appointments, chasing up last minute cancellations and no-shows, managing a team, working through your back-to-back appointments, and marketing your business by pushing social media outreach, you are probably overlooking a really simple business tactic that will help your revenue reach new heights - Retailing in the Salon!
Estimates suggest that 25-50% of your salon’s profits come from selling products to clients - that’s some serious earnings we’re talking here. As an eyebrow styling professional, chances are your average client is the brow-obsessed consumer who loves to flaunt their best brows everyday. Your clients are most likely looking for products that will keep their brows looking glamorous every day until their next salon visit. By retailing brow products, you are catering exactly to this demand.
Retailing in the salon not only has the benefit of profit maximization for your business, but also the important aspects of year-round client retention, building strong relationships with customers, and strengthening your reputation as a quality brow artist in the industry.
So if retailing is so great for your brow salon, why doesn’t everyone offer it? Well, there’s often the big salesperson equation that comes in. No one likes a pushy sales pitch. Or maybe the fear of piled up inventory stock that will become a nightmare for the books, if products don’t sell. Well, rest easy, whatever your doubts are, we are here to give you assurance (and hopefully change your mind on selling to your clients)! Read on for our complete guide on how to retail in your salon.
Choose the Right Products
Now, first things first - there’s no point retailing products in your salon that aren’t up to the standard your clients are after. Choosing the right products is EVERYTHING to ensure a successful retailing strategy.
Considering the large range of brands selling brow styling products today, how do you decide what products to stock and sell in your salon? Our recommendation? Sell what you love. Include products in your retail line that you have personally used and stand by. Believing in the products you sell makes the process of retailing in the salon comfortable, easy and genuine.
The easiest way to pick and choose products is by trialing them on your clients first-hand. For eyebrow styling, common salon staples include brow tint, wax, lamination and more. Buy these products in small quantities from your desired cosmetic brands, let your stylists trial them in the salon, and track the results and levels of client satisfaction. If your clients are in love with their brows and keep coming back for more, retailing them the same products is literally a no-brainer!
Don’t forget to listen to what your customers are saying about the products they love and what the brow industry best-sellers are. Make sure you sample these and sell them.
Pro tip: When choosing what beauty brand to buy brow products from, make sure you try to buy from salon suppliers not consumer-only brands. This will help you source products sold at a wholesale price on to which you can then add your own profit markup and maximize revenue from retail sales.
Make sure you check Brow Code’s dedicated line of brow products for professionals to retail in their salon. Oh, and did we mention you can purchase our range of cosmetics and luxurious at-home styling kit at a wholesale price? You're welcome!
Message from our founder, Melanie Marris:
Identify Your Customers
For your retailing strategy to be successful, it’s important that you understand and segment your target market. While styling your client’s brows, spend that time to get to know them and ask questions around their beauty and lifestyle habits. Once you’ve identified who your customer really is beyond their brow styling service in the salon, you will be able to make personalized and valuable product recommendations and boost your retailing game.
Why would customers want to buy eyebrow products from you in the first place? So that they can maintain their brows everyday, whether they’re at home, travelling or just too busy to make time for regular salon visits. If your customer is the repeat visitor who makes an appearance in your salon every couple of weeks, they probably prefer the professional expertise for a full eyebrow styling treatment. Sell them simple styling products like Brow Gels and Brow Soaps. On the other hand, if your customer is the type who swears by a beauty mantra or can name the hottest makeup products in the market without a second thought, they’re probably going to love trying out the best-sellers and take on board the products you recommend. Sell them your top-of-the-range brow products instead. Another big one is the travelling clients! The clients who are always jetting off for work or planning their next vacation, need (not want) an At-Home Styling Kit, to ensure their brows are kept looking fresh 24/7, 365 days a year. There’s nothing worse than coming back from a vacation with your brows left feeling unloved and uncared for. Brow Code's At-Home Kits are the perfect solution to this, and your clients will never look back.
The key here is to have a good mix of retailing products that you can tailor to the needs of your consumers. Getting a good grasp of your target market doesn’t happen overnight, but if you continue to actively listen, take in feedback, and implement change, you will progressively get a better understanding of what works for you and your salon.
Pro tip: Since 2020, DIY consumer culture has boomed and more people are now indulging in at-home beauty and skincare routines. There's no better time to get into salon retailing of brow products than right now, whether you're selling accessory add-ons, touch-up kits or complete brow collections.
Message from our founder Melanie Marris:
"The best-selling products within my boujee salon establishments were the DIY Tint and Henna Kits. I could never keep enough stock of this product. My clients would touch up with this kit on day 10 of their monthly appointments to ensure their brows were kept 'on fleek' all month round!"
Offer Affordable Options
It’s a common belief that it’s much more expensive to buy styling products from the salon than elsewhere, there’s no doubt about that. But often this is the case because professional stylists don’t understand that their products are in fact quite overpriced for the market they cater to. If you incorporate affordability into your retail range, success will follow.
In a typical situation, customers are probably thinking 'this is way out of my budget' while you, the salon owner, are thinking 'I'm not going to try pitching this product because they're not going to buy it anyway'. Here's where everyone's wrong - so let's get back on the right track!
We want you to be able to successfully increase your salon revenue through retail but this is never going to be possible if you don’t approach product pricing the right way. Before trying to make products more affordable for your customers, you need to believe in the value of your products yourself. The high quality brow products you stock and sell in your salon are always going to have a great competitive edge over cheap bargain finds, you just need to explain to your clients why.
Now the most important bit - offering affordable options for ALL your clients. The longer you’ve been in the salon business, the better idea you’re going to have about your customer demographic and spend capabilities. It’s really important to manage your retailing line in the salon based on how much your customers are willing to pay. When you purchase brow products, make sure you are putting yourself in your customer’s shoes and selling what they can afford.
Pro tip: Consider salon retail pricing the same way you determine pricing for your eyebrow styling services.
When it comes to the consumer buying decision process in the salon, the single biggest factor is trust. While deciding on the salon itself is determined by your online presence and more, buying products during the visit will only only happen if your customers trust you. They’re not spending a penny if they don’t. It’s simple.
Use every minute of your client’s time in the salon to build a quality customer experience and make your clients feel valued. In the 30 odd minutes you spend on transforming their eyebrows, get personable with them. Ask them about how their day has been, their weekend plans or what they like to do for fun! It really doesn’t matter, as long as you are establishing a friendly relationship. Once your clients trust you, they are going to be more open to trying out new products and your retail line will sell itself. And never forget, if you connect with your clients earnestly, you’ll directly increase client retention and repeat customers always spend more. Never underestimate the power of a good customer interaction, it makes all the difference.
Message from our founder Melanie Marris:
Bundle Products with Services
When you’re just starting out on retailing in the salon, you can find yourself lost in the sea of styling products available to choose from. Our suggestion? Have your retail product range replicate the professional brow styling services you offer in the salon. Think of these products as an extension of your professional skill set.
By selling products that achieve the same result as your professional brow services, your sales approach becomes largely customer-centric and is bound to succeed. Always recommend at-home brow products for your clients in line with the treatment you’ve done for them or if you’ve done your research well, go for the stretch goal of cross-selling products that perform better when paired. An easy one is a Touch Up Tint Kit if you've just tinted your client's brows. Or a DIY Eyebrow Lamination Kit to pair with a professional Hybrid Brow Dye service.
Pro tip: Consider running promotional offers that combine brow services and brow products into a bundled discount price. Customers will appreciate cost savings as this creates an incentive for them to come back to your salon compared to your competitors. A bundled price point strategy is also great for the price-conscious consumer. Also consider offering a VIP or Loyalty Program in your salon for your regular customers and have it directly relate to the retail products you sell. If your clients feel rewarded from coming to you, they will always come back.
And just to be clear, the conception that salon discounts are damaging to profit generation is simply not true. Thoughtfully designed salon promotions can be exceptionally lucrative for your business and put retailing in the driver's seat of success.
Have a Polished Ambience
It goes without saying that the ambience of a salon means EVERYTHING to the survival of the business. “I checked out this new salon and didn’t notice the space”, said no one ever. The atmosphere in your salon is the first thing people notice and it should be nothing short of welcoming and screaming feel-good vibes. Honestly, if your customer doesn’t feel like they’ve stepped into an ultimate treat-myself-indulgence the moment they walk in, is there even any point?
A good salon ambience will help you create a strong brand impression and associate your image with quality, class, and premium value.
- Keep your dedicated retail space(s) clean, polished and inviting in appearance so your customers look at your products and have an instant urge to buy them.
- Create sensory experiences with scents and sounds, so your clients can turn their relaxing, mood-lifting mode on.
- If you have other staff members working in the salon, make sure they are friendly, happy and exude positivity, so there's never a dull moment for your client and they can confidently pitch the products you want to sell.
Pro tip: Create a space for your retail range near the reception area dedicated to impulse buyers. You will find many customers who previously declined your sales offer or had no prior intention to purchase, impulsively splurging on last-minute purchases. Buying impulses are generally driven by a look-good factor, so having a space that looks appealing and eye-catching is key.
Trial and Test
Last but not least, a good salon retail strategy is about generating the highest revenue and keeping the liabilities to a minimum. Avoid the temptation to overbuy new brow styling products without a guarantee they’re going to sell. This is especially true when you’re new to the salon retailing game and don’t have an idea about what your customers are going to love. Buy products in small amounts, focusing on low-cost items first. Explore these with your customers and measure their success. Take in customer feedback and implement changes to your retail accordingly. Once you’re comfortable with your product mix and ready to expand, take the plunge and grow your retail range.
Our Final Thoughts
Okay, so that’s that. All the essentials on how to retail brow products to your clients in the salon and implement a strategy that works. The next time you second-guess yourself while trying to sell products to your customers, think about this. If YOU don’t sell, your customers will go elsewhere to buy their products anyway. Maybe even spend more! So throw your doubt boots away and always have a conversation around retailing products with your clients.
Don’t forget to own what you sell and believe in the quality of your products. Making confident recommendations to your customers can go a long way because they will appreciate your expertise in guiding them through the process of making a purchase. You will also make your name as a professional brow stylist more powerful when you showcase knowledge and awareness about the latest and best-selling brow styling products in the industry.
In today’s fast-paced world, brow lovers want something that will make them feel and look like the best versions of themselves, between professional salon visits, when they’re on the go, and more. There’s never been a better time to get into sales of At-Home Touch Up Kits and Brow Styling Products. Just take the leap and see your salon profits, client retention and customer satisfaction grow grow grow.
Want to shop retail for your salon? Check out Brow Code's full range here. Happy selling!