Keeping clients returning is simple: deliver an outstanding client experience each and every time they interact with your salon or barbershop. Not only does it keep clients returning, but an excellent client experience attracts new clients too.

This blog covers:

What is client experience?

A client experience generally describes how a client perceives their interaction with your business. Every clients’ interaction with your salon or barbershop plays a part in the client experience. This could be through coming in contact with your salon or barbershop or with your business online.

Team involvement

As mentioned in our previous blog “Creating a Good Workplace Culture”, a happy, motivated and committed team is the most important factor in providing an outstanding client experience, so investing time and effort in developing your employees' technical and people skills will pay dividends.
Positive attitudes and positive actions make for positive workplace culture. Happy, engaged employees will translate into excellent customer service, a relaxed, pleasant work environment, and better client experiences. If your clients are more satisfied, then the salon is more successful. And that, in turn, makes the team happier. 

Social media

The pandemic has caused digital to have a greater impact than it already did before Covid-19- and we are living, shopping, working and playing differently because of it. Use online channels to enhance client experience. Social media is your online ’shop window’. What you put on your social channels and how you interact with your followers contributes to the client experience. You must ensure it looks great and reflects your branding. Good-quality, high-resolution images are a must-have. You could use a professional photographer to get some essential pictures – but always agree on a price in advance.

Use your social media accounts to create an online community for your clients. Keep them updated and relevant with all your latest news and special offers, as well as the range of services you offer and any last-minute appointments that become available. Keep it fun and informal, and don’t miss opportunities to interact with both existing clients and potential new ones who make enquiries via your social media sites.

To ensure your salon or barbershop thrives and grows, you’ll need to create a workable marketing plan. This doesn’t have to cost a massive amount of money as many marketing activities can be carried out free or very low. Marketing is an ongoing activity that will help you engage with existing clients, continually attract new ones and encourage long-term client loyalty. NHBF Members can download our Salon Marketing Guide plan.

Barber laptop

Internal décor and ambience

The first impression counts, and thus your salon or barbershop reception should make a fabulous impression as soon as your client walks through the door. You want them to feel welcome, relaxed and pampered before their appointment even starts. Make your reception and waiting areas an important part of the overall design of your salon or barbershop – not an afterthought. Create a look for both that reflects your overall branding – whether that’s retro, rustic, luxury, minimalist or individual and quirky.

Your waiting area should have comfy seating, at least one table where clients can put their drinks, and up-to-date magazines and newspapers. If some of your clients bring their children along, keep a supply of colouring books, crayons and comics.

Music, TV and access to Wi-Fi will all contribute to a more relaxing and enjoyable client experience. However, be aware that you will need various licences for your business, for example:

You must have PPL and PRS licences to play music in your salon or barbershop. PPL PRS Ltd offers a single licence called TheMusicLicence. NHBF Members benefit from a 10% discount on the PPL portion of their music licence. Please call our membership team to find out more.

Visit PPL PRS Ltd’s website at or contact PPL PRS Ltd on freephone 0800 0720 808 to find out more about PPL and PRS licences.

If you play music without a licence, you are infringing copyright and could be sued for damages.

You must have a television licence for your salon or barbershop if your clients and/or staff watch or record television programmes as they are broadcast. This includes BBC iPlayer.

If you show films in your salon or barbershop via live TV, DVDs or streaming, you will need a licence explicitly related to films. (This is in addition to your TV licence.) You could be sued for damages if you show a copyright film without having a licence.

Two organisations cover different film studios:

  • ilmbankmedia
  • MPLC (Motion Picture Licensing Corporation)

Mr Barbers

Adding extra services

Adding extra services to your offering not only enhances the clients experience but can also boost your profit margins. Make sure your salon or barbershop receptionist keeps a basket of irresistible impulse buys topped up at reception. These can be smaller items such as travel products or handbag essentials. Make sure they’re clearly priced so clients can buy with confidence. You can also gift wrap a few to provide easy last-minute present ideas for busy clients.

Encourage and support continuing professional development among all your staff to ensure your salon or barbershop is up to date with all the latest skills, techniques, developments, products and technology. This will help you keep existing clients, attract new ones and also encourage staff loyalty among your key talent.

Encouraging client feedback

It’s vital to know where you stand with your clients. Equally, it is important to continue to improve your business see what is working and what is not. The best way to get an insight into how your clients perceive your business is by encouraging them to leave feedback on their experience in your business.

Try a client questionnaire. Keep the questions short and simple and hand them out to clients over eight weeks. Explain it can be filled in anonymously, and don't look over their shoulder if they choose to fill it in a while still in your salon or barbershop. After all, you want to get honest responses.
Make a point of logging even minor complaints and grumbles. You can use this information to build an overall picture of your main weaknesses and take steps to address them.

Dealing with client complaints quickly and efficiently is one of the hallmarks of a professionally run salon or barbershop.
NHBF Members have access to our in-depth guide on dealing with client complaints and can also use our industry-specific alternative dispute resolution (ADR) service.

Our friendly membership team is available 9-5, Monday to Friday, for advice on how to deal with client complaints and Members can also call our 24/7 legal helpline for further help and support.

Check out Google, business listing sites, and your own social media accounts to see what clients say about you. Don't be disheartened if you find negative reviews. Instead, take steps to help prevent it from happening again.

business payments

  • Recognise the importance of a good client experience.
  • Create a positive work culture in your business for a better client experience.
  • Use online platforms to create a community for your business and upload quality content for engagement.
  • Spend time creating a positive first impression with your décor and ambience and ensure you have licenses in place if showing TV or playing music.
  • Encourage and support continuing professional development among all your staff.
  • Upsell products that you use in your salon or barbershop
  • Encourage feedback from clients and continue to improve your business.