This was originally posted on Spa Executive, the online magazine for leaders in the business of wellness. Subscribe for news, exclusive interviews, and trends happening in the spa and wellness industry.
Guest experience is everything in spa. It will make or break your business.
As we have noted before (in an article on how to turn new customers into repeat customers), research has found that 71% of customers are highly dissatisfied with impersonal service experiences, while 44% are likely to come back if the experience is personalized. While this research was conducted for the retail industry, it still speaks volumes about standards for guest experience. Taking into account recent technological advances, and the array of available wellness options out there, the pressure is on the businesses of today to deliver experiences that go beyond standard expectations. With that in mind, here are five ways you can take your spa guest experience up by a few notches, regardless of the size of your spa.
Personalize the wait time
Don’t just get them a drink. Make notes on what they like.
Asking a guest if they’d like to have something to drink while they wait is standard procedure. But it’s only a starting point, if you want to create memories. Do you know what your guest asked for the last time they visited? Did you ask them if they had any comments on it? Most important, did you make a note of it?
If you were a guest that came back to the spa once a month, what would you prefer?
Question 1: Ma’am/Sir, would you like some coffee, tea, or juice?
Question 2: Ma’am/Sir, would you like your usual chamomile tea, or would you prefer a juice today?
Some other questions to ask yourself: what kind of magazines are my customers looking at more than others? Do they ask for or refuse a warm towel? Have they indicated any opinions on the lighting in the waiting area? To personalize, you have get to know them.
Addressing a guest by name when they come in for their treatment is a great start, but we can do better.
When you truly remember someone, they feel valued, and feeling valued makes everything better. Talk to people about themselves. Ask about their families, work lives, vacations, and hobbies. Remember these things, so that when they come back to your spa, you can ask how their trip to Machu Picchu went, or if their teenager is enjoying the new high school. Your guests will be astonished and impressed that you remembered these details, and will love you for it.
Make a special occasion even more special
Do you have the birthdays and other special occasions of all your guests highlighted?
Do you know if Sally and her husband are coming in to pamper themselves on their 15th wedding anniversary? Or if Mona is getting her nails done to kick start her birth week? These are the details that count. Even if you are not offering a complimentary treatment or service, small gestures, like a gift of flowers, chocolates, or a glass of champagne, can create positive emotions. Experience is about more than sending out an email offering a discount on a special occasion.
Make them feel like they belong
It is human nature to want to belong. We are a pack of animals, after all.
Do you have discounted rates or a redeemable points system that a guest can use after a certain number of visits? A simple card that checks off their visits to your property combined with a memorable experience every time can make the difference between a one-time visit and a long-term customer relationship.
Make booking easy
If they had to wait, they probably went elsewhere.
Nobody likes waiting. We live in the world of instant gratification where people would rather click than talk to others to get things done. If you don’t have online booking capabilities, the time to get started was yesterday. Better late than never, though.
If you do have an online booking feature already, take things one step further. Give your guests the opportunity to sign into their accounts to re-book a service from their history or reschedule their appointments instead of cancelling them. Not only do you improve their booking experience, but you also keep adding to the data pool of information you have on them. And that’s where you get the information you need to deliver a memorable spa guest experience!
Competition is tough in this industry, and the single best way to set yourself above the others is to deliver the most memorable service. Take advantage of what software technology makes possible. Book4Time not only offers advanced online booking solutions and collects customer information, the cloud-based business-management platform also provides analytics that can drive profitable actions.
Don’t get left behind!