Clients look for salon services and professional salon retail products online. They use the internet to get directions to nearby salon businesses. They look up reviews online before choosing a salon or hairdresser to try. They use social media to ask people for suggestions. They get email offers that motivate them to take action.
Even salon word of mouth has gone digital! Here are four ways to promote your salon suite online to attract new clients in today’s digital world.
Promote a Salon Suite Online by Mastering Digital Marketing
When it comes to Salon Suite web sites and social media, lack of return on investment often leads to abandonment. Rather than abandon these proven marketing tools, wouldn’t it be better to find out how to use them more effectively to attract clients and engage members of your target audiences?
5 Ways to Promote a Salon Suite in the Digital Landscape – without Discounting
1. Optimize your Web Site for Online Search
Online search guru Rand Fishkin created this graphic which outlines seven features of well-optimized web pages – the kind of pages that search engines will index and serve up when people are looking for salons like yours in your local area.
Don't stress about the complexity of what you see here! Some of the most basic things are also some of the most effective things you can do to ensure your Salon Suite’s website gets found in online searches; include optimizing:
- Elements “behind the page” or in what is called the “source code”
Meta tags (meta title and description) are not seen on the page but are stored in source code. The page title should be no more than 70 characters, should be unique to and descriptive of the page where it is housed and should contain keywords to help in search. The meta description should also be unique to and descriptive of the page’s content, and be limited to about 150 characters (including spaces).
If your page has a meta description, this will be the text that online searchers see on search result pages, just below the URL. A well-written description can bring people searching for salon services in your area straight to your web site – and your door!
- Unique content and on-page titles (or headlines)
Every page of your website should have its own unique on-page text (search engines can’t see pictures, they need words on the webpage in order to put it forward in online search! Ideally, your page will have a good text to image ratio; many experts advise that 400-600 words minimum is important for search engine indexing. If that sounds intimidating, bear in mind that it’s really just a few paragraphs – about 1/3 of the length of this blog post. Your content should have keywords and key phrases (the types of phrases or words a “real person” would type into a search engine when looking for a salon business like yours).
Use on-page section titles (also referred to as ‘headlines’ or H1, H2, H3, H4 and so on in source code) to make your content more readable, call out important information for website visitors and assist search engines in properly indexing the page for search.
2. Write for Your Audience
Your website can move up in online search results quickly if you use keywords and phrases in the on-page content of your website, especially if you incorporate a blog or add new pages to your website on a regular basis. Even adding 3-4 new pages (or blog articles) to your website each month can dramatically improve the number of new clients you attract as a result of being found in online searches, especially over time.
If you’re a MY SALON Suite or Salon Plaza Salon Suite Owner, you can get writing ideas from the monthly marketing guide available to you in the Member-Only app. Try coming up with three or four topics to write about that allow you to use phrases like these in a natural way:
- (your city) salons
- salons in (your city)
- salons near (your city, neighborhood, business park, mall or other landmark)
- top salons in (your city)
- best salons in (your city)
Can you see how these types of phrases, integrated into your website, could help you get more clients from online search? In addition to writing content that is promotional, you can also add valuable content to your website on other topics that would interest the same type of clients you want to attract to your Salon Suite; such as:
- seasonal hairstyling or skin care ideas, products and tips (spring, summer, fall, winter, cold weather, hot weather, etc.)
- lifestyle hair styling ideas, tips and products, (for runners, gym rats, busy moms, professionals, students, etc.)
- event-oriented ideas and tips (back to school, wedding, prom, holiday party, etc.)
- celebrity looks or secrets
- award show critiques, looks or how-to’s
The more web pages you have that contain quality content (content that would interest members of your target audiences and be relevant for local online searches), the more “authority” the search engines will ascribe to your Salon Suite’s website. And this is what moves your website to the top of online search.
3. Integrate Social Networks Seamlessly and Professionally
You may have already figured out that writing content on the topics noted above will also provide you with the type of content that will be perfect for sharing on your social networks. Be sure that your web pages have social sharing buttons so that readers can quickly and easily share your content with their own networks.
In addition, when you add new web pages or articles to your site, be sure that you are sharing those pages in your own social status updates. These types of posts can also be sponsored on Facebook for a relatively small dollar amount, allowing you to extend your reach and get real traction online by targeting ad placement for people in your area who fit within your target markets.
When you are posting on social media, the same keywords and phrases (e.g., salons in your city) can also help your social posts to be more relevant to your local audience. In addition, Google’s search algorithm includes social media posts so even your social updates can be found in online search.
4. Email to Push Content and Pull in Clients
Building a contact list for email marketing is a must. Sending emails to your clients helps to increase brand awareness and provides the perfect tool for them to refer friends, family or colleagues to your Salon Suite. If you are publishing new content on your website, sending email newsletters helps to ensure that your clients will find and read the new pages. Every email newsletter you send is an opportunity for you to invite clients to refer people to your Salon Suite and remind them about referral rewards and new client offers.
5. Consider Outsourcing
All of this website, social media and email marketing requires both technical skill and writing, which may or may not be your strong suit. Rather than struggle with a task you will not enjoy (and will probably procrastinate doing anyway), consider working with a local high school or college student who may have an aptitude for writing and an interest in writing these types of articles for your salon in trade or for a fee. A small investment in optimized web content could well yield a very high return for your Salon Suite in new clients, retail sales and client retention – well in excess of the outsourcing costs incurred.
Mastering digital marketing and promotion skills is no longer optional for Salon Suite owners who want to grow their client base. Even so, many are still sitting on the sidelines when it comes to marketing online. Beauty pros who master these digital marketing tactics will be better-able to successfully promote their Salon Suite online when it comes to attracting new clients in today’s digital marketing landscape.