3 reasons why you should stop overbooking your salon

people waiting

I just don’t get why people overbook because I get a lot of customers telling me and compliment me about how we have a good track record on times. If you have an appointment at 11am then shouldn’t you be able to help the customer at least by 11:10? I know stuff happens but I get compliments from other customers that certain nail shops are always late.

The extra “profit” you think you’ll make will never make it in the long term.

Sure you’ll make more money in the short-term but not the long term and it’s a proven fact.

What happens is, you end up making your clients “wait” and you “rush” them so you can take care of the next one. This is NOT how you build a sustainable client base.

If you’re worried about your overhead, you my friend made a mistake in the beginning. Maybe you should have did more research on

Finding the best nail shop location

Check out these customer reviews from nail shops I read.

I’m completely aware that Sh*t happens and you can’t avoid the wait for a customer. All it takes is one customer to be 15 mins late and your whole schedule is out of wack.

However, there’s a difference of where you’re purposely booking it too close to the actual time after the client before and the difference between a customer causing this.

Well here’s a few reasons:

#1 Long term customer service

It’s always better to deny customers because YOU have no time; they will come back. Every single time I cry in the corner because I really wanted to take care of that customer. But in the back of my head there’s just no room to take care of him/her.

happy customers

Either they book tomorrow or they go somewhere else but realize they want you instead. Just because a customer goes to another nail shop does not mean they will stick there.

Sometimes they just need their nails done

Your clients will understand this and will respect you for the decision. I’m at the point where I wish I can take everyone because it’s always a fight with other client’s to get our time.

They will feel more appreciated if you gave them the time of day instead of rushing them for another customer.

Owner and client relationship goes both ways because you take care of your favorite clients in a different way vs someone else. You give a slightly better service and they know that. At the same time your client will go the distance to book with you.

Without you, they will feel a bit lost because you’re the one who matched what they “needed”.

Some owners I have heard specially the ones that need to improve, has a different way of thinking.  Their thought process goes like the following:

  • They are a returning customer, they will wait for me.
  • The customers will always come to me
  • My customers can always wait
  • They will never know the quality will go down.

#2 Nail Quality and Service goes down

You’re going to end up rushing no matter how hard you try.

I don’t care if you’re the most “not-rushing” person but it’s hard when customers are waiting. It’s pretty bad if just started the manicure and you have a customer  (appointment) who walks in 10 mins later and needs to wait another 20 mins.

While you’re working on the nails they are waiting.

Now another walk-in customer asks for a pedicure. What do you do? Not much you’d have to deny them but your appointment needs to wait which is a bad thing.

slow down

But again this is why you do not overbook. 

Slowly but surely

This applies to your own quality of work. It’s a fact that when you’re rushing, you are likely to make mistakes. The human brain can only take so much information at a time and you’ll confuse yourself.

#3 Waiting is no fun

People hate the the DMV….No wait, actually people hate government offices period. Why? Because there’s a fudging long wait for each departments. Remember when I went over how to open up your nail salon, and we had to get building permits?

There’s always going to be a wait and rarely any appointments. It’s the same way on overbooking your clients because they will wait

No one loves to wait but there’s also a certain tolerance where customers will wait.

5 minutes is pretty doable and there should be no problems and customers who do care on the mins, shouldn’t be your customers.

10 Minutes is slightly on the pushing side but again, it’s still tolerable.

12-15 mins is when people will start to get a little cranky and will start to lower your service.

Of course I’m hoping anytime after  15 mins you have a back up plan and you’re going to have to compensate. Again sometimes clients do understand and you get a “feel” on what they are actually thinking. Most of your best clients will give you more slack than others but never take advantage of overbooking your clients.

people waiting

Again, let’s make sure we never overbook but it will happen sometimes even if you didn’t mean to. As long as you don’t do it all the time, you’re going to succeed in this industry. Take care of other people’s times and they will take care of you.

In the meantime, get that reputation of customer service where you do not overbook and you’ll be one happy owner!

Small business marketing, Crazy runner guy, loves good and now start-up nail salon ninja. Aka “Jack of all trades”.

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