May 16, 2024

Challenges Faced by Salon Owners in Collecting Customer Feedback

Challenges Faced by Salon Owners in Collecting Customer Feedback

Reviews are often said to be the lifeblood of many small businesses, but gathering feedback from your customers can be a double edged sword. Reviews are public and are there for all to see. 

So when your reviews are positive, it can help to encourage more customers to trust your services for the first time. But if a customer has a negative experience and you specifically ask for their feedback, this could be potentially damaging to your business.

So, how do you manage the desire to gather positive feedback with the risk of getting negative feedback? In this guide, we’re exploring some of the challenges you might face as a result of asking your customers for feedback.

Why ask for feedback?

Why ask for feedback?

Asking for feedback from your customers is a great way to attract new customers. This is often referred to as “social proof”, where customers are more likely to make a purchase decision if they can see that other people have had a positive experience before.

When the feedback is positive, this can help your business. But some customers will want to share negative experiences, and some simply cannot help but put a negative spin on an otherwise positive experience.

When you ask customers for feedback, you need to have a plan for coping with negative feedback. It doesn’t matter how hard you work and how far you go to help your customers, there will always be opportunities for things to go wrong. And some people simply cannot help but see the negative in a situation. So what are the risks to your business in asking for feedback?

Reputational damage

Reputational damage

Some customers feel so upset and angry at a situation that they will make it their goal to damage your online reputation. This can be distressing for salon owners and employees, as the attacks can feel personal. 

When you face a reputational attack like this, it’s vital to keep things professional and respond to the review in a calm and measured way. Ask to take the conversation offline so that you can help to put things right. 

Prospective customers will see that you take complaints seriously, and provided you don’t have a huge imbalance of negative to positive reviews, it shouldn’t do too much damage.

Staff morale

Staff morale

If a member of staff is named specifically, this can damage their confidence, particularly if the poor review is quite personal. Common complaints include members of staff being rude, but this could be down to personality differences or simply having a bad day.

If attacks are personal and name the member of staff, it’s vital to respond to the review and show that you take the complaint seriously, but that you support the member of staff. Individuals don’t want to feel that they have been thrown under the bus just to save the reputation of the salon.

Spam attacks

Sometimes, the reviews are not even genuine and are the result of spam attacks. If you can prove that the reviews were not written by genuine customers, it’s often possible to have these reviews taken down by the platform. 

This is one way in which Salon Iris reputation management can help you to avoid any spam attacks. You’ll be able to act quickly at the first sign of an issue and request that the reviews are removed, or you could respond to each one stating that you have no record of their appointment.

Taking feedback on board

Taking feedback on board

Sometimes, complaints are genuine and it’s down to salon owners to take a look at operations and see how they can improve. It’s vital to take a step back from your business and try to see things from the customer’s perspective. If you can see some rationality to their complaint, you could try to take this on board and adjust your policies to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

You can also respond to the review and let the customer know that you will be taking their feedback on board and making changes. This is one of the easiest ways to turn a negative review into a positive one. Some customers will even change their review if they are satisfied with the outcome.

Final thoughts on gathering feedback

Fear of honest feedback is not a reason to avoid requesting reviews. There are far more positive outcomes from asking for reviews than there are negative ones. 

It can help to improve your search visibility, encourage new customers to give your salon a chance, and help to boost staff morale. Some awards will also look at the presence of positive reviews and use this as a judging criteria. 

Provided you have a system in place for coping with the bad reviews, you should have no issues in boosting your online reputation by asking for reviews. 

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