What to do when Clients say: You Charge too much
As a professional Beauty or Wellness service provider, you have likely experienced various types of customers, with varying budgets, personalities and service requirements. Similar to customizing each service to tailor-fit your clients’ needs, price points must also be custom in order to meet the needs of your customers. While careful thought must be put into your service menu and pricing so as not to discount your years of training, knowledge, and experience, inevitably from time to time you may hear: you charge too much, or can you offer me a deal?
How should you respond?
While Stylists, Barbers and Wellness professionals use their own discretion when deciding whether or not to offer discounted services, it’s important to stand your ground and be prepared to calmly, clearly and confidently explain your price points. Whether you are new to your industry or a veteran with years of experience, your customers will challenge you and test your price limits.
Your loyal customers likely accept your price points, but new or potential customers will sometimes compare your prices to other businesses. Here’s your chance to attract them to you versus your competitor and show them your passion for your craft.
Do you use high-end, quality products? Is your team of staff highly trained and experienced? Do you offer an experience, not just a service? These are just a few things to consider when interacting with a potential client. Your front desk staff should also be well-versed, as they are your customer’s first point of contact, and should be your team’s fiercest supporters.
Don’t be Intimidating, Angry or Defensive:
Regardless of your price points, your services will always be too highly-priced for some customers. Luckily, there is a place in every marketplace for every budget. Instead of reacting negatively to price inquiries, your best bet is to provide quality answers to questions, backed by your knowledge and experience.
Here’s an example: Your cut and color price is too high, do you offer any deals? You could say: Tell me more about the type of service you are looking for. What kinds of products do you use for your hair at home? We only use professional salon quality products and each service is tailored to the unique needs of each customer. Do you typically visit high-end salons for your hair care services?
The better you know your customers, the more positive the experience will be for both parties. Perhaps your clients do not understand the true value of your services, so this is your chance to educate them. Each interaction is also a chance for you to learn from your customers not only about which price point they are comfortable with, but also about their unique preferences and motivations. On the other hand, here’s some food for thought; if your price points have never or rarely been challenged, now might be a great time to reassess them. Is it possible you’re not charging enough?
Should you Drop your Prices or Offer Promotions?
When you’re challenged about your prices, don’t be quick to drop them as you are risking clients assuming they can negotiate with you. It’s up to you if you feel your clients would place value on and appreciate occasional price drops, as long as you are ok with attracting deal seekers, who might only rebook with you if offered a discount.
Discounts work well if you are trying to fill empty seats during your off-peak times or to fill gaps due to last-minute cancellations or no-shows. Clients interested in trying out a salon for the first time might also appreciate a discount.
Most importantly, believe in your price points and be prepared to explain them. Ask questions, seek to understand your customers and help them understand the true value of the services you provide.
How you advertise your business also has a huge impact on client perceptions, as customers want to feel that there’s something unique about you that motivates them to book your services. Despite all your efforts, sometimes a client might not be the right fit for you and you realize that they will never feel satisfied with your price points because they are simply looking for something else. There is nothing wrong with being straightforward with your customers and letting them know that they are paying for more than just the service; they need to be aware that your price includes the products used during the service, your level of expertise and the experience itself.
If you feel a client is not the right fit for you, move on. Think about whether they will spread positive word-of-mouth, if they would book with you again in the future, or whether they are focused on the price rather than the service and results.
Focus on building and maintaining positive relationships with everyone you interact with. As a business owner, be welcoming – you never know who might book with you in the future and become a loyal customer because of your positive attitude and willingness to teach.
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