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The right way to create a Wait List column

A topic that pops up every now and then is that of a Wait List or Cancellation List. While Simple Salon doesn’t have a specific feature for it, there’s a great workaround you can do. The workaround works so well that by the time you set it up you’ll think that it really is a specifically designed feature—and that’s the beauty of Simple Salon, it’s flexible enough in its functionality to allow for all sorts of varied setups. Not everyone operates the same way, so in most cases Simple Salon will mould to fit your way of doing things.

A Wait List or Cancellation List is a column in your Simple Salon Appointment page where you can put appointments for clients who are waiting for some available time to open up in an operator’s column. Essentially, they are waiting for an existing client to cancel so they can take their spot.

As you might know, Simple Salon allows you to have automatic SMS and email appointment reminders being sent to clients a day or so before their appointments. With this in mind, you can’t just go ahead and create a new operator column and call it “Wait List” or “Cancellation List and then start throwing appointments in there, because these waiting clients will receive an appointment reminder for the appointment they’re not yet actually booked in for.

All good, this is where the workaround comes into play. So, you have two rounds of appointment reminders right? (If you didn’t know that, click here to learn about your 2 rounds of reminders). If you’re doing the Wait List thing, the trick here is to ONLY enable your 2nd round of appointment reminders. That way when you put an appointment in the Wait List column you can flag it as Confirmed (so that the letter C is displayed on it) and then the client won’t receive a reminder—because the 2nd Appointment Reminder doesn’t send to clients who have a C on their appointment.

Got it? Great. So, just to recap—turn ON your 2nd Appointment Reminder, turn OFF your 1st Appointment Reminder, create a new Operator called “Wait List” (or whatever you like), put waiting appointments in Wait List column, and while they’re in the Wait List column flag the appointments as Confirmed.

Click here for the article which will show you the steps (with pictures) so you can go through the setup correctly from start to finish.

If you don’t have a way of setting up a Wait List in your salon, get Simple Salon first, then you can have your Wait List. Click here to get started today.

Add a “Book Now” to your website & Facebook

To have your appointment book filling up 24/7 add a Book Online button to your website and a Book Now one to your business Facebook page. Using your unique Online Booking URL you can have your site and Facebook buttons link clients to your advanced Simple Salon online booking platform where they can conveniently schedule their appointments online from any smartphone, device or computer, from anywhere, anytime.

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On your site, add to it a Book Online button and have the button link to your unique Online Booking URL (or get your IT guy/gal to do it). Your unique Online Booking URL is located via Settings > Online Booking Settings.

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On your business Facebook page, add to it a call-to-action Book Now button and also have it link to your unique Online Booking URL. To add the call-to-action button to business Facebook page, follow the steps below (you’ll need to be an admin, editor, moderator or advertiser to add a call-to-action to your page):

  1. Click + Add a Button (under your Facebook page cover photo)
  2. Select the button you want, which is the Book Now one, from the dropdown menu and fill out the required information (add your Online Bookings URL to the Website field)
  3. Click Create

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Now that’s all well and good to add the buttons to your site and Facebook, but you do also need to have your online bookings set up and ready to go in your Simple Salon account. So, only add those buttons after you’re online bookings is setup. Click here to get that part sorted.

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Next you’ll need to add your unique Online Booking URL link to the SMS and email template, which is used when sending clients their online booking login details. Click here to see how.

Once you’ve setup your Online Bookings, added buttons to your site and Facebook page, and put your unique Online Bookings URL in your SMS and email templates, then you will need to send your clients their online booking login details. Send these via SMS and/or email to one client at a time via the Actions menu in their client card, or all clients at once via Settings > Online Booking Settings.

If you don’t have a unique business online bookings URL for your website and Facebook page it means that you don’t yet have Simple Salon. So, click here to and started today.

Simple Rostering—what to do when you need to open up extra time

Since the release of our super convenient Simple Rostering, the question that’s been coming up the most is, “How do we open up extra time here and there?”.

You might have one day next week, say Wednesday, where you’d like to stay open late, however if you change the operator hours or salon hours for that day, it will make every Wednesday open until late and not just the one next week. How do you go about blocking off the extra time on all those other Wednesdays?

In the same way you might be closed Mondays, however there’s one Monday you’ve decided to take appointments on, therefore you change the operator hours or salon hours to open up on that one Monday, but of course it opens up every Monday. How do you block off all the extra Mondays?

When using Simple Rostering, the solution here is to use your Tasks feature to block off the extra time. Now, keep in mind that you have two options when it comes to rostering—Simple Rostering and Advanced Rostering. We’ll get to Advanced Rostering shortly, but if you’re using Simple Rostering, here’s how to block off the extra time.

You need to create a Task called “Salon Closed” or “Rostered Off” (whatever you like) and book it into your Appointments page to cover the extra time, which opened up on those extra days. For example, you would change the salon or operator hours to open up on Mondays, then you’d book a task into your operator column to block the first Monday that you’re not working. Simply repeat the task weekly to block off every Monday in the future. This means that the one Monday you did want open is available for appointments, but every Monday after that is blocked off using the “Salon Closed” or ‘Rostered Off” task. Click here to see these steps from start to finish.

Now, we mentioned Advanced Rostering before. The Advanced Rostering is more involved, but will allow you further flexibility with rostering operator hours, plus it can calculate wages. There are lots more steps involved to set it up, therefore we suggest you try Simple Rostering coupled with the Tasks feature before considering a switch to Advanced Rostering. If you do decide that you’d like to check out Advanced Rostering, have a good look at this article first to get a thorough understanding of what’s involved in setting it up properly. So, back to our original question, “How do we open up extra time here and there?”—Advanced Rostering is the other solution. It is designed to allow you to roster operators on for random times, even if it changes every week.

The choice is yours—our recommendation is Simple Rostering, so try that first. Then if you definitely require the extra functionality, perhaps consider Advanced Rostering.

Just to recap—click here to learn how to use the Tasks feature alongside Simple Rostering, and here to see how Advanced Rostering works.

If you don’t have either of these rostering options, then it’s time to get Simple Salon. Click here to begin today.

Open spaces are good outside, but not in your appointment book

You might not be aware that you have an Appointment Wizard to assist you in finding available dates and times for your clients’ appointments, and filling up all of those open spaces. This feature saves you from having to look through your appointment columns for open gaps, particularly on those busy days when clients are wanting a few services one after the other and you’re trying to find consecutive gaps to fit each service in. It’s time to leave all the figuring out to your Appointment Wizard.

The Wizard is located up on the top right of your Appointments page. Click the Wizard icon (or tap if you’re on your tablet) and you’ll see that it requires you to enter in some details about the appointment you wish to make. Simply start by typing the client’s name, then click them when they display below. Complete the rest of the fields (service(s), operator(s), date and time) then click or tap Find Options.

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Your Wizard will list the first available appointment options based on the details you’ve entered. It will take into consideration the operators who are rostered on, the time they have available, and all service durations and processing times where applicable. Pick the best suited time for the appointment and hit Lock In to add the booking to your operator columns.

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That’s all there is to it. Let the Wizard find all the right gaps for you, and make your scheduling more efficient.

Click here for more info about your Wizard, and here if you don’t have one, because if you don’t have an Appointment Wizard then it’s time to get Simple Salon.

Bend the rules for your clients—changing a voucher’s expiry date

It’s common that clients at times forget to use their vouchers. I’ve been in this situation, and it was so nice when the spa, who issued the voucher, was still willing to honor it despite the voucher being a month or so past the expiry. You too can be one of these salons or spas who bend the rules for clients. Meaning, if your client comes in or calls up letting you know that they’ve just found a voucher for your salon, which has expired (yep it’s even 3 months past the expiry), here’s how you can respond…”Oh, that’s a little past the expiry isn’t it? Never mind, we’d still be happy for you to use the voucher as soon as possible, can we book you in this week?” You get the idea. You see, the voucher has already been purchased, you’ve received the money for it, therefore it’s no problem for you to honor it. When you do so, you’ll have a very happy client because they were probably expecting you to say no, like most of the others do.

Yes, the voucher is expired, but how much do they appreciate you and your business when you still decide to let them use it. It’s all about customer satisfaction, and a small gesture like this can make a big difference to them, which will help keep them coming back.

When it comes to your Simple Salon, it’s super easy to change a Gift Voucher’s expiry date. When you sell the voucher the expiry date is automatically generated based on how the voucher is setup i.e. 6 months, 12 months, 18 months—whatever it might be. To extend the voucher all you need to do is bring up the voucher details and change the expiry date (you do need to do this before the system will let you use it).

Click here to see how you can change the expiry of a Gift Voucher in just a few simple steps.

If you’re not yet managing your vouchers, and your business for that matter, via an advanced online software platform, then click here to get Simple Salon today.

In-house messaging for your convenience with Simple Salon Messaging (SSM)

Simple Salon Messaging (SSM) is the improved way for you to SMS your clients.

Simple Salon Messaging is the Simple Salon advanced in-house texting platform designed specifically for you to streamline your messaging. With fixed pricing for SMS credits (only 9 cents per SMS), and the setup already done for you, all you need to do is click a button, buy some credits and away you go. It’s that simple.

Simple Salon Messaging also has the 2 Way Messaging automatically setup ready to go. So, right from the get go your clients can reply Yes to their SMS Reminder, which will automatically put the letter C on their appointments to confirm that they’re coming in.

If you are still using SMS Central it’s time to start thinking about making the switch to Simple Salon Messaging. Next time you run out of SMS credits, in your SMS Central account, swap over to Simple Salon Messaging and buy your next lot of credits there. We are phasing out SMS Central, therefore it is in your interest to use up your remaining SMS Central credits, then make the move.

Click here to make the switch to Simple Salon Messaging today, or to see how you’ll do it the next time you run out of SMS credits in SMS Central.

The Client Capture Form—updating existing client details

Two posts back we looked at how you can use the Client Capture Form to capture new client details. We learnt that when new clients come into your salon for the first time, you can simply hand them the iPad (or any tablet or device for that matter) and they can fill out their personal details via the form on the tablet. If you missed this blog post, click here to catch up.

Now, not only does the Client Capture Form capture new clients, you can also use it to update personal details for existing clients. So, when any client of yours walks through the door, new or old, you can still hand them the iPad and get them to fill out their details.

For new clients you would tap the New Client option on the form, however for existing clients you simply type their name, or the starting letters of their name, into the Search field. When you see their name display below, tap it and it will take you to their existing client profile. The client then fills out any missing details in the form, or changes old details for new ones. They tap Save, and it’s all done.

After we published the first post about capturing new clients via the Client Capture Form, a few of you asked about what to do when a new client calls up to book in, because you already create them in your Simple Salon database as a new client when you grab their name and number. So what you do is, when they come in, search for their name (the name you already saved when they called up), tap it, and then hand them the tablet so they can fill out the rest of their details.

It is important not to use the New Client option if they have already been added into your database, because it will create a duplicate client. If you have found yourself doing that, click here to learn how to merge your duplicates, and then from now on, for existing clients, use the Search option instead of New Client in the Client Capture Form.

To see exactly how to update existing client details via the Client Capture From, click here.

If you don’t have a Client Capture Form on your tablet, it means that you need Simple Salon—click here to get started today.

The ‘Sales Report’ does your tax so you can relax

It’s that time of year when tax is getting done and you’re after your revenue figures for the past financial year. The Simple Salon Sales Report is where you’ll find what you’re looking for. This report gives you the total GST figures for any period of time—everything you need for your BAS Statement.

To cover the full 12 months of sales figures, you are required to run the report in 4 x 3 month blocks of time, then simply add those totals together for the annual figure. So here we go—head over to Reporting, then into your Report List, and choose the Sales Report. By default it will give you today’s figures, so change the dates to look at the first lot of 3 months (i.e. 1st April — 30th June), and click Show Report.

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You can see how the report not only looks at your total sales revenue (including and excluding GST/TAX), but it also breaks down the figures to show you how much of the revenue was from Clients, Walk Ins, Packages, Gift Vouchers etc. Each line of the report accounts for something new to ensure that you have a full analysis of your figures.

Export or Print this report, then run it again for the 3 months prior to this date range. Once you have your 12 months (in 4 exported/printed reports) simply add these totals together to get your annual sales figures.

If you haven’t got a Sales Report then click here to get started with Simple Salon today.

The Client Capture Form—just hand them the iPad

Give your hair or beauty salon a sleek edge with a slight tweak in the way you capture new client details. Before I tell you how, humour me for a moment—let me guess, you’re still handing your clients sheets of paper on a clipboard for them to fill out their details on? I know, you’re engaging your clients in a questionnaire at the front desk, manually entering in their details for them aren’t you? (…meanwhile on your third attempt at getting the spelling of their trendy first name right, oh and that complicated hyphenated last name of theirs too—who even has the time for that?)

Here’s your solution—The Simple Salon Client Capture Form. It allows the client to enter in their own personal details via a slick form on the iPad (or any device for that matter). All you do is hand your new client the iPad when they arrive at your salon (and why not a coffee while you’re at it), then let them kick back for a few moments while they fill out their details on the Client Capture Form. When they hit Save they’re added as a new client into your Simple Salon database.

Along with their personal details, they can also add a pic of themselves by taking a selfie directly from the Client Capture Form—that way when you’re looking them up later, you know who they are.


You’ll really like this feature—click here to start using it.

If you don’t have a Client Capture Form then it means you need to get Simple Salon, click here to get started today.

Do you know what power lies hidden in your ‘Report List’?

It’s time you uncovered the power hidden in the Simple Salon Report List. The Simple Salon reports give you access into the behind the scenes of your business. By increasing your understanding of what’s really happening business-wise, you position yourself strategically to know how to make your salon more profitable.

You’ve most likely had a brief look at your Report List, but by the time you’re through reading this article you’ll be motivated to really go exploring. Let’s take a look at how some everyday scenarios find their solution in your Simple Salon Report List.

Have you ever found yourself pondering how much revenue this next month is going to generate? You’ve possibly thought that you can’t do that, so figured you’d just have to wait and see. Better yet, maybe you worked out that if you sit there manually adding up all of your future appointments for the next month you’ll get a rough estimate. No more of that, simply go to your Report List and check out the Client Visit Report. Change the dates to a future date range of your choice, tick Include Open, and click Go—what you’ll see is your total expected revenue. You can also filter the report by Operator, bringing up the total projected revenue figure for any specific therapist or stylist.

How about when you want to know how much each of your therapists and stylists have made? Again, simply head over to your Report List and check out the Operator Report. Using this report you’ll discover at a glance who your best operators are, as well as see a break down of the services, products, vouchers etc sold and the corresponding revenue generated. Drill further down to see what specific services each operator performed, and what items they sold.

How about your monthly sales figures—have you found yourself wondering what they are, inclusive and exclusive of GST? That’s an easy one, it’s called the Sales Report. This report breaks down everything you need to know sales-wise. Go on, go check it out.

I could go on all afternoon, but I’ll leave the rest for you to uncover yourself. Go to your Simple Salon Reporting page, then into the Report List and start getting a grip on the powerful analysis you have right there at your fingertips.

If you don’t have a business report list, it means that you don’t yet have Simple Salon. Click here to get started today.

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