First impressions count: A checklist for your salon Receptionist

By Salon Gold on January 26th, 2019

Every salon requires a friendly, helpful and organised team in order to be as successful as possible.

As well as the hairdressers and beauticians you employ, your Front of House staff are equally as important.

Though some salon owners view Receptionists as an expensive luxury, many perceive them as a valuable marketing and customer service tool. Here’s why:


The meet & greet

 Many Salons make it a rule that the client should be acknowledged immediately when they walk through the door. Even if the Receptionist is talking with someone else, it’s great to be greeted with a smile, offered a seat and reassured that they’ll be seen to shortly.


Phone etiquette

Calls should be answered as quickly as possible – ideally by the third ring. Just in case your salon system is down, or you can’t access it for whatever reason, keep a notepad handy for recording contact details.

We can all agree that the client is always the highest priority, no matter what. If they need to be put on hold whilst the Receptionist checks something, perhaps ask them beforehand if they mind waiting a minute, and always thank the caller upon return.


Stay positive

 Another rule that our expert Receptionists live by is always telling the client what they can do, not what they can’t.

For example, if the member of staff they’ve requested isn’t available, or if there are no slots with any member of staff, don’t just say “They aren’t free then” or “Amy doesn’t work on Mondays”.

It can be easy to slip into these negatives, which can put the client off and in turn result in them going elsewhere. To ensure you don’t fall into this trap, always start with the positive, for example, “They are free on —- does that work for you?”


Body language & tone of voice

People can tell a lot about us and our mood just by our body language. To show genuine interest, your Receptionist should make regular eye contact, keeping their arms open and their head up – but most importantly smiling.

As important as non-verbal communication, is tone of voice. Even if the client sounds a bit annoyed or unfriendly, your Receptionist should sound cheerful, enthusiastic and helpful.

Explain policies

In many salons, the Receptionist will act as the salon coordinator and manage the client’s journey from booking to payment. For this reason, it’s essential that they know how to explain the salon’s systems and policies.

For example, not everyone understands the importance of patch tests. Many people think it’s a chore and an unnecessary visit. A well-trained Receptionist will be able to explain the reasons behind it and make it as easy as possible for them to pop in do so.



Your Receptionist will effectively be selling time, so planning and efficiency is imperative. Random or large gaps of time between appointments should be avoided – even just 20 minutes in between clients can make a difference. For this reason, the Receptionist needs to be able to gently persuade clients to book slots to suit everyone’s schedule.


Compliment clients

It’s a known fact that we all love a compliment. Even if it’s nothing to do with the treatment you’ve just given them, find something else you like about the client such as their bag or coat for example, and let them know. They’ll feel special and might be more inclined to book in again.


The goodbye

In a busy salon, it’s easy for the Receptionist to take a payment and then move swiftly on to the next person with no pause or gratitude. This appreciation should be shown with a smile and a thank you to make the best final impression possible.

A proactive Receptionist should also take this opportunity to ask the client if they would like to make their next booking to avoid disappointment in not being able to accommodate their requirements in 6-8 weeks’ time.

The way a client feels after they leave the salon is very important in keeping them loyal. The Receptionist is their last point of contact and, therefore, their final impression of the salon.


Just remember…

As with all salon marketing and customer service strategies, consistency is key. Investing properly in the right Receptionist and training them to be the best they can be, will:

  • Help attract new clients
  • Improve client loyalty
  • Increase average spend
  • Boost retail sales

Your re-booking culture must remain consistent and eventually grow in order for your salon to be more profitable and successful in the long run. Having spoken with many Salon Owners, a key part of this is down to the Reception team.

Salon Gold is a specialist insurance provider for hair, beauty and nail salons. To find out more, please visit our dedicated salon insurance page.

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