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Simple Guidelines for Increasing Retail Sales

Tracy F. Wray March 2012 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

Among the types of spa therapists, estheticians are the most poised to generate high retail numbers due to the variety of applicable products available on the market. Some owners choose to carry the best of the best in product lines, and some even offer commissions or incentives for selling products. Following a few simple guidelines will help increase your retail sales exponentially. Although these concepts aren’t new, it is always important to review the basics for success.

The first step to increasing your retail sales is to know and understand the product lines that you sell. In most cases, product lines offer some sort of support, which is usually free for spas that carry their products. Take the time to get to know your lines. Some manufacturers offer free classes about their products, and some will even send a representative to your skin care facility to train and educate your therapists. Be sure to ask lots of questions, such as: “What are the active ingredients in a certain product?” and “What benefits do those active ingredients offer for a certain skin condition?” To minimize the likelihood of a return, it is also important to be aware of a product’s contraindications. Knowing both the benefits and the limitations of your products will help you believe in your line and the results it can help your clients achieve.

Once you understand your product line, recognize that it is imperative that your clients use appropriate products for at-home care. If a client comes to you for a skin care treatment, but then goes home and only uses bar soap on her face, she will not see a difference in her skin and will not return to you. Understanding the importance that a client’s care be continued at home will make it much easier for you to discuss the benefits of purchasing your products.

The best time to begin the discussion about your clients’ at-home routines is while you are analyzing their skin. Tell them what you see in their skin; ask them what issues they currently have that they would like you to address and which products they currently use at home. Do they like the results they are seeing with those products? Chances are, if they liked the results they wouldn’t be coming to you for a service. Explain that, along with regular professional treatments, there are significant advantages to using an appropriate, professional skin care line at home.

Let them know that you will be using those types of products on them during their treatment, and if they have any questions regarding the products, they should not hesitate to ask. You are there to educate them about proper skin care in order to ensure they are able to have and maintain amazing skin.

Lastly, never be afraid of hearing the word “no.” If you educate your clients and answer all of their questions, they often will see the importance and value of your products, and will make a purchase. However, some may not be interested. This is something that should not ruin your day. It is your duty as a skin care professional to do your very best for your clients, and make sure they are properly educated so they can see the best results. Whether or not they choose to purchase is entirely up to them.

Always gather the products that you’ve recommended and, when you’ve finished their treatment, review the products with your clients. Never ask if they would like to take any products home; ask which of the products they would like to take home. If they do choose to hold off on a purchase, inform them that you will keep a record of the products you’ve recommended in case they would like to purchase them in the future.

Following these few simple rules will increase your retail sales substantially and, ultimately, will make you a better skin care professional. You will not only see more cash in your pocket, but you will see more repeat clients, as well.

Tracy F. Wray is a licensed esthetician, marketing expert, author and entrepreneur with more than 10 years of experience working in the beauty industry. She currently resides in Miami, where she holds the position of director of sales and marketing for a leading cosmetics and chemical manufacturer. Wray can be reached at 630-297-1611 or at tracy@tracyfwray.com.

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