Everybody outside the spa industry thinks the spa business is all about treatments.
We’re not denying that treatments and therapies are the meat and drink of the spa business, because you can charge for the expertise of your staff in delivering those treatments.
But if you’re in the spa business and you’re not getting maximum value out of your retail sales, you’re only in half the spa business.
If your retail products aren’t selling as well as they should, you’re missing out on a huge potential revenue stream.
In fact, the most recent statistics on average spa revenue suggest your retail products could be – and should be – making up around 5-6% of your spa’s annual income. If you’re not doing that sort of retail business, there’s something going wrong in your spa somewhere.
Are your staff not adequately trained in pushing the retail products at your spa? Are the products themselves an issue with your locality or guests?
Does the staff have an incentive to push them to sell the retail products? What’s going on that stops your retail products from bringing you the crucial revenue they should?
And – in case you need an incentive to take your retail products more seriously, how much is your spa making per year? How much more does a full 5% of revenue mean to you?
That’s what we figured.
Let’s Take A Lightning Look At 11 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Retail Sales.
1. Set targets and incentivize your team
Do you have sales targets for your retail products, or have you – like many people – gone along with the idea that that’s not really part of the spa business model?
If it hasn’t been part of your model up until now, it should be from now on. Without sales targets, your staff has no sales goals to strive for.
That means they won’t think of selling your retails products as a front-line part of their job.
By all means, you should incentivize them to get on board with selling your retail products with a reward program.
Ideally, any such reward program should have tiered targets, instead of a random approach – that helps build the sense of progression and achievement, which further motivates them to highlight the benefits of your retail products to spa guests, and wherever possible without seeming pushy, to upsell those products.
If this is new to your spa or your team, bring them in gently, and explain the benefits to both the business as a whole and them personally through a reward scheme of selling your retail products.
Remember to express the nature of the team, and that you’re in their corner, able to help in any way you can.
Build the sense of community within the overall team, and fold the new retail sales push into that ethos.
That can help motivate both those team members who are already familiar with the confidence it takes to upsell the retail products, and those who aren’t.
2. Deliver multi-level, multi-modal rewards
We’ve said you should structure your sales reward system in tiers because people understand tiers as representing levels of achievement and reward.
But you should also feel free to mix it up a little. Include prizes of money, or time off, or prizes or vouchers to allow them to choose their own reward, and even simple prestige and recognition rewards – Staff member of the Month, etc.
Find ways to even out the reward structure, so that it’s not always the same top sellers being given recognition and reward.
Include options like Most Improved Staff member, Rising Star, etc., to avoid the creation of a narrow meritocracy and broadband of resentment.
3. Give or arrange sales training for staff
Remember – for the most part, you didn’t recruit your spa staff for their sales skills. You recruited them for their skills as nail technicians, massage therapists, cosmetologists, and the like.
So it’s a mistake to assume they will automatically have the skills to sell products on top of their regular duties.
Make time to give – or arrange for professional salespeople to give – your staff some focused sales training, so they can overcome any natural reticence they may have when it comes to upselling.
If possible, also bring in some representatives from the companies that make your retail products, to take your staff through the benefits of those products, so they can pass the knowledge on to your guests, either when asked or when upselling.
4. Inspire belief
As mentioned, ideally, bring in some people from the companies that make your retail products, so they can essentially explain the significant benefits of the products to your staff.
It becomes much easier to sell products to others if you believe in their effectiveness yourself.
By spreading knowledge and belief in the products, you may well unlock some latent sales talent in many of your staff who might have no previous experience in selling products.
5. Display your product within easy eyeline – and easy reach
How do we begin to want things? We see them, smell them, even try them, and the journey towards buying them has begun.
So if you display your retail products prominently and attractively, have staff trained in explaining their ingredients and benefits, have testers on hand so guests can try them, and then have full saleable versions within easy reach, you stand a much better chance of selling them than if your staff have to start a conversation about products that can’t be seen or tried.
6. Swamp the socials
Websites. Blogs. Social media. Use the power of the internet to your advantage, by displaying your retail products on all your spa socials.
If possible, even arrange a deal with your product suppliers to secure a discount with a code, so you can guarantee some new interest – and capture some contact details for guests who might want future deals on your retail products.
7. Keep your stock up to date
Doing a big sales push on your retail products is worse than useless if guests are there, ready to buy them, and you’re out of stock!
Keep your inventory records on a spa management program, and ideally link it through to auto-restock products that are running low.
8. Maintain relationships
If you get guests who bought products, get as many details as it’s legal to retain – email addresses and what they bought, in particular.
That way you can manage a relationship with them in the future, checking whether they’d like to replenish and managing potential discounts and deals. As with inventory, your spa management program should be able to help you with this.
9. Reward loyalty
As mentioned, reward guests who buy products with potential deals and discounts. If you have an existing loyalty program, make sure you include your retail products as part of it, so expose loyalty program members to some of your retail products.
10. Run promotions, and bundle bundles
With agreement from your product suppliers, your capacity to run promotions on your retail products, or bundle them up so they work as gifts is practically limitless. Get creative and find the promotions and bundles that work best for your products.
11. Understand your guests
The fundamental business of running a spa is to provide wellness treatments and sell retail products. But you can tackle the future uptake of your business much more effectively by knowing and understanding your guests.
Using data of their treatments, their preferences and their purchases, you can know who they are and what they like.
By leveraging that data, and their interactions with your staff, you can give them much more personalized service and a long-term relationship with your spa – and all while selling more of your retail products than you’ve ever done before.
Yes, establishing and maintaining those relationships might seem like hard work. They may even seem like they’re not the business of a spa.
But they’re crucial to getting repeat visits, enhancing the value you provide to your guests – and increasing the volume of your retail product sales. That’s got to be worth the effort.