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Level 2, 12 MT Gravatt-Capalaba Rd, Upper MT Gravatt QLD 4122 • Phone (07) 3349 6538


Your Learners Guide

How to get the most out of your LEARNERS GUIDE

Read through the information in the learners guide carefully. Make sure you understand the material.

Some sections are quite long and cover complex ideas and information. If you come across anything you do not understand:

talk to your facilitator

research the area using other text books or the Internet

discuss the issue with other people (your workplace supervisor, fellow workers, fellow candidates)

try to relate the information presented in this learning guide to your own experience and to what you already know.








































1. Establish customer needs.

1.1.Connect with the customer within designated response times and establish rapport. 1.2.Use questioning and active listening to facilitate effective two-way communication. 1.3.Observe and determine appropriate level of interaction based on customer verbal and non-verbal cues. 1.4.Determine and clarify customer preferences, needs and expectations.

Approaching the Customer

Your initial contact with the customer will give you an opportunity to create a good first impression and put the customer at ease. You need to present yourself as being friendly, alert, helpful and responsive. Where possible you should address the customer by their name. This make the customer feel welcome, relaxed and valued. Even if you are busy you should acknowledge the customers within 60 seconds as they enter the salon. You can do this with a smile and eye contact or a few welcoming words. This will make your approach to the customer smoother and easier when the time is right.

You should then allow the customer to look around but you need to be alert to whether they are in a hurry or have time to browse. You should neither pounce on your customer nor ignore them.

All customers are different so you need to be able to read the buying signals that indicate that a customer is ready to be approached. These signals could include:

Handling or examining the merchandise

Standing close to the merchandise for some time

Looking interested

Looking around for someone to give them more information about the product

Reading the labels, price tickets or instructions on the product.

Once you establish that an approach is necessary, you need to decide on your method of


There are three approaches you can use:

1. The Greeting Approach

2. The Merchandise approach

3. The Service Approach

Approach 2. The Merchandise approach 3. The Service Approach The greeting approach This will be a

The greeting approach This will be a flow on from your acknowledgment of the customer who has entered the store, you have greeted them and they just appear to be browsing and not looking for anything in particular. You will continue the conversation in the same pleasant and welcoming manner and this will open up the opportunity for further conversation when the customer will generally give you an indication of the type of merchandise he or she is interested in?

The merchandise approach This approach will result from you picking up the buying signals that a customer has been giving. When you approach this customer, you will focus on the merchandise they have shown interest in. You have an opportunity to reflect the customer’s interest in your opening remarks and then need to find out what is important to the customer be it price, style, colour, fit etc. The customer then will usually feedback their feelings and thought about the merchandise and give you the lead that you need to establish their requirements. Your questioning will then relate to the product they are interested in and you have your opportunity to use your knowledge of features and benefits of the products in your store to achieve a sale.

The service approach This will be used for the customer who knows what they want and their buying signals tell you that they are in a hurry. Your approach needs to indicate your ability to help and serve a customer who is approaching the counter or seems to be in a hurry and may need information about the product quickly so as to complete the purchase.


You need to always be alert to the customer who is “just looking” or who does not want to be pressured or need more time

to look. Give them the opportunity to look around and some information that will help them. Let them know that you will be

there if they need any information or you can give them some information about product placement.

signals. Each person who enters your store is a potential customer. Setting a positive environment gives you, the sales person, some control over the outcome of their visit.

Be alert for buying

Effective sales approach Selling is one of the main steps in the process of achieving a customer purchase. It is up to you to use your personal selling skills in order to persuade the customer to make the purchase. In hairdressing we are generally on a personal level with our clients, they trust us to create their hair and enter their personal space, they are truly in our hands!. There are two main sales approaches that are concurrent with hairdressing because we are offering such a personal service.

You must communicate with your customers in a polite, professional and friendly manner at all times. Being rude, ignoring your customers and not using “please” and “thankyou” when asking them if they would like help will have a negative effect on how you are perceived as a “service provider”.

Acknowledge customers

Time your approach to customers

Open the sale using questioning and listening techniques

Identify buying signals

Recommend specific merchandise according to the needs of the customer.

Some questions would you ask a client in order to conduct a sale

How can I help you?

Do you need any assistance?

How much were you looking at spending?

What products are you currently using?

Is there anything in particular that you are having a problem with your hair?

Have you tried or heard of this range of products before?

Remember to use language and tone that is appropriate to the situation and demonstrate positive verbal and non- verbal communication in all workplace situations. Regardless of a person’s cultural back ground, appearance or physical and mental abilities you should always treat everyone of your clients with the utmost respect and curtesy.

Questioning techniques Communication skills are an essential part of hairdressing services. The skills and knowledge you will gain here will not only benefit you with your selling skills but with your consultation and advise skills also.

Using effective questioning techniques will enable you to listen more effectively and determine customer and client needs and build rapport. There are three (3) questioning techniques that are commonly used. They are:

Open questions

Closed questions

Reflective questions

questions  Closed questions  Reflective questions 4 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services


Open Questions

The use of open questions allows you to articulate the meaning of what is being communicated and are used in direct and indirect questioning to request information. Open questions start with:








What The use of ‘what’ in a question directly requests information; “what time is it?” Where ‘Where’ is used to ask a question about the place that someone is: in, at, coming from or going to; “where are you going?” Who Is used to ask about the name or identity of a person or people; “Who would you like to see today?” Why Is used to talk about the reason, purpose or cause of something; “why did you do that?” How Is used to determine in what way or to what extent someone wants to do something; “How would you like your eggs cooked today?” When Is used to ask at what time or point something will happen; “When will you have that job completed?” Which Is used to ask for something to be identified from a larger group or range of possibilities; “which colour do you prefer?”

Closed questions Closed questions are used to get specific information and usually receive yes/no or single word answer. This information should supplement the information gained from open-ended questions. Closed questions usually start with:






start with:  Is  Have  Do  Did  Does Examples “Is it for

Examples “Is it for a gift?” “Have you ever used this brand before?” “Do you want to take that today?” “Did you see that movie last night?” “Does Hannah have straight hair?”

Reflective questions Reflective questions are used to show you have been listening, and to clarify what you have heard. They are formulated by turning a statement the customer has made into a question.

Examples “You mentioned a problem with your wrist. Would a smaller package be better for you?” “You gave the impression earlier that this occasion will be very special. Would you like to start with our more exclusive products?” “You mentioned that you will be travelling a lot. Would you like to see our travel sized products?”


Using effective questioning techniques puts your customer at ease and demonstrates that you care about what they need and want and also that you are prepared to take the time to help them. Open questions enable you find a large amount of information with a few questions. Reflective questions allow you to show that you have been listening and provide additional service to the customer. Closed questions should only be used to clarify information and should be kept to a minimum.

Listening skills Listening is one of the key ways members in a business are able to understand the needs of their internal and external customers. Listening carefully to your customers at all times will enable you to determine their needs and develop a rapport with them.

Becoming an effective listener rather than someone who just hears what is said will enhance the quality of your personal and professional relationships, you will improve your productivity, as well as your ability to influence, persuade negotiate. What’s more, you’ll avoid conflict and misunderstandings – all necessary for workplace success. An effective listener is characterised by their ability to:

Listen carefully

Use empathy

Have an open mind

Not interrupt the speaker

Ask questions to confirm their understanding

Summarise the information they have been given

Repeat the information back to the speaker

been given  Repeat the information back to the speaker Interpret and clarify non-verbal communication Non-verbal

Interpret and clarify non-verbal communication Non-verbal communication is the ability to enhance the expression of ideas and concepts through the use of body language, gestures, facial expression and tone of voice, and also the use of pictures, icons and symbols. Non-verbal communication requires background skills such as audience awareness, personal presentation and body language. Non-verbal communication includes:

Body language

Eye contact

Facial expressions




Body language Body language is communicating with parts of your body, usually your eyes, face, hands/fingers, arms, and body position. It can be both positive such as: smiling and nodding or negative for example: frowning with your arms folded. We often underestimate the input of body language in the communication process. During communication, both the sender and the receiver are unconsciously evaluating and interpreting the body language being used.

As body language is interpreted at a subconscious level by the receiver it is necessary to be aware of the message you are giving your customers. For example: a sales assistant who speaks whilst pointing a finger at the customer often has their actions interpreted as an angry gesture.

Hairdressers need to be aware of the different ways cultures interpret body language for example: in some cultures personal space is very important and being too close makes some people uncomfortable. It is part of the role of a hairdresser to research and understand these cultural differences and accommodate them.

Eye Contact Direct eye contact is important in effective face-to-face communication. Eye contact establishes rapport with the other person and shows them that you are interested in what they have to say. Eye contact from your customer during a sales encounter shows that they are interested in what you are telling them


Facial Expressions Facial expressions articulate the way that we feel about people and situations. They are very important to non-verbal and verbal communication. Have you ever smelled a shampoo that you didn’t like, but in good manners you proclaimed how lovely it was…. Did your facial expression give away the fact that you didn’t enjoy the meal?

Gestures and movement Gestures, movement and body Language are a combination of movements of all parts of our bodies. Hand signals, crossed arms, sitting with crossed legs and leaning towards a person indicate some category of emotion. Walking slowly with your shoulders hunched over will convey to clients and colleagues that you are unhappy.

To reflect a positive image of the salon and demonstrate good self-esteem you should always:

Maintain eye contact

Be aware of your facial expressions

Stand up straight

Walk lively

Remain alert

Be attentive

Posture Feelings of confidence, inferiority, anger, disappointment and interest can be communicated through posture. To convey a positive message to customers and clients, you should always stand up straight.

Interpretation of non-verbal communication during sales encounters Being aware of non- verbal communication is one thing, but being able to interpret it another. Below is a guideline as to how to interpret Eye contact, Facial expressions, Posture, Movement and Gestures as a tool to gather information during a sales encounter.

Eye Contact The Customer is:

Looking at you showing interest in what you are saying

Looking away from you disinterested in you or more interested in something else

Looking at the product bottle in their hand More interested in looking to see what the bottle says

Eye brows up Surprised or alarmed at something you have said

Facial Expressions The customer is:

Frowning Confused or unsure about something

Nodding in agreement

Tilting heads to one side – not quiet understanding, can’t quite hear

Smiling - Happy

Gestures, movement, posture The customer is:

Folding his/her arms -

Hands clasped behind back

Hands clasped in front

Hands on hips

Weight on one hip

Reaching out for product/brochure

Weight on one hip  Reaching out for product/brochure 7 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty


Using customer’s name Being able to remember names is a valuable asset in both the business and social arenas. It helps you build instant rapport with new contacts, and, as many companies place a premium on interpersonal and relationship-building skills, it makes a decidedly good impression on employers, too. So eliminate "what’s her name" and "what’s his face" from your vocabulary. The following techniques can help you remember the names of everyone you meet.

1. Be interested:

Many of us don't even catch the other person's name when they're being introduced; we're too focused on ourselves. So the first step to remembering a name is to pay attention as you are introduced.

2. Verify it:

Unless the person has introduced himself to you, verify what he or she wishes to be called. At a conference or seminar, for example, the name tag may have been typed incorrectly or it may be a more formal or informal version of the name they like to go by .Or someone else may have introduced you who doesn't know the person well. Asking what they prefer (e.g. "Jeff introduced you as Debbie, is that what you prefer to be called?") will not only cement the name in your mind, but ensure you are using the name that pleases them.

3. Picture it written on their forehead:

Franklin Roosevelt continually amazed his staff by remembering the names of nearly everyone he met. His secret? He used to imagine seeing the name written across the person's forehead. This is a particularly powerful technique if you visualize the name written in your favourite colour of Magic Marker.

4. Use word association:

Try to connect a person's name with a familiar image or famous person. For example, if a woman's name is Jacqueline, picture her as Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis in a pink suit and pillbox hat. If a man's name is Arnold, imagine him as the "Terminator" or striking a body-builder pose.

as the "Terminator" or striking a body-builder pose. 5. Use it frequently: Try to use the

5. Use it frequently:

Try to use the name three or four times during your conversation. Use it when you first meet, when you ask a question and in your departure, e.g., "Daniel, it was a pleasure talking to you. Maybe we'll get a chance to chat again sometime."

2. Provide advice on products and services.

2.1.Use product and service knowledge to tailor options to specific customer needs, and offer alternatives when product is unavailable. 2.2.Clearly explain and promote product and service features and benefits where relevant. 2.3.Advise on promotional events where relevant. 2.4.Provide additional information to address customer questions and objections. 2.5.Offer comparisons to competitor product or service range as required. 2.6.Collaborate with the customer to determine product or service option most suited to their needs. 2.7.Take opportunities to upsell and cross sell products and services that enhance customer request and maximise profitability of sale.

Directing customers to specific merchandise. Because you have been actively listening and communicating you have built a communicative relationship with your client/customer. Because you have researched your products and services you now understand where everything is within your salon and how everything works.


When a customer is in need of a specific item or merchandise they will intentionally ask directly where they can find it. Sometime the client does not know what they are looking for until you have had a conversation with them, actively listening and communicating to discover their needs.

By knowing your salon environment and product knowledge you will be able to direct the client to the specific merchandise they require provided you do the following:

Ensure the product shelves are well stocked

Be aware of any changes to merchandise

If stick is being moved around, inform team members

Ask open and closed questions to extract the correct information from your client

Use active listening skills to determine clients’ needs

Use positive body language

As a sales person you are faced with a situation where the customer wants to ask you a question, That question is important to the customer and the answer that you provide will, in many instances, be the deciding factor in the customer buying the product/service.

The best way to prepare for such an eventuality is to develop your knowledge of the products and services you offer within the salon.

Information Sharing is one of the best ways to continually develop your product knowledge. The range of products within a salon and the appearance of new or alternative products occur on a daily basis. It is essential that you maintain your product knowledge at a very high level if you are to truly be an effective sales person. Discuss new products with your team mates share what you know with them and ask for their ideas about the products.

The use of second hand knowledge should always be considered in light of the accuracy of the information source and if there is any doubt, the information should be verified.

Remember that when dealing with customers you must be accurate with the information you give. Accurate information makes your job as a salesperson easier and improves your professional approach to product knowledge.

Remember If you do not have the stock item they are wanting recommend another that you feel is closely equivalent in price and quality and specific to their individual needs.

What's a buying signal? A buying signal is an indication from the customer that they're ready to buy. Customers can send buying signals at any time. When they do, they're ready for you to close the sale. They're saying "Please let me buy this from you". A customer may or may not be aware they've sent you the signal and they can send them verbally or through their non-verbals.

Here are some examples of verbal buying signals:

How soon can you deliver it?

Do you take credit cards?

Do you have an appointment now?

Is this one on special as well?

Can I have a look at some colours?

I Love the smell

Here are some examples that may be non-verbal buying signals:

Your customer hesitates between words or sentences.

Your customer changes their voice tone or inflection.

 Your customer changes their voice tone or inflection. 9 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty


Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services Training Package (Version 2) © MATTERS IN GRAY TRAINING ORGANISATION Created May 2016


Your customer looks at a product and resists putting it down (example hair piece, straightening iron).

Your customer does some calculations to assess affordability.

Your customer asks their partner or friend to have a look.

As you make your sales presentation, you relate the benefits of a product / service to the customer's needs or wants. Acknowledgement of the benefit of a product / service may also be a buying signal. Customers can acknowledge benefits verbally or using non-verbals.

Here are some acknowledgments of benefits that may well be such buying signals:

“Yes, it really is a great price” “Wow, I really like that colour!” Yes, it's just the right colour for our bathroom” “Fantastic! I didn't know you had late opening hours on the weekend” Whenever you hear one of these buying signal clues, it's time to stop selling and follow the buyer's lead to the close. But be careful as you can sometimes lose the sale by being too eager to close or by not picking up on the signal and continuing your sales talk. In response to any buying signal be sure to act positively, confidently and immediately.

Usually once you have received a buying signal from your customer it is a sign that they want to buy, therefore do not be

shy, ask them for the sale.

request. Develop the confidence to ask for the sale in a variety of ways and begin asking every single person for their


As long as you do not pressure them into making a decision, they won't be offended by your

Matching the customers’ needs A client’s needs means there is something that he/she requires or wants. Once the client feels welcome and assured of your attention, listen carefully to find out how you can best meet their needs. Active listening and questioning skills (see section three) are essential in dealing with clients to convey and clarify complex information. You need to check what you are providing and what the client expects. Know your companies services and products thoroughly. Keep abreast of changes and updates, use active questioning to extract information and listen to your client’s responses.

Communicating product features and benefits.

Products may be described in terms of their features and benefits. Features are product characteristics that deliver benefits; we buy products for their benefits.

Stated another way:

Features are product characteristics such size, colour, functionality, design, hours of business, fabric content, and so forth. A feature is:

Physical size

An applicator

Patented colour molecule

Product features also refers to the physical or measurable characteristics of a product or service. These can be described for a product as the ability to:







An example of a product feature would be:

Product: Straightening irons


* ceramic plates

* thermostatically controlled

* swivel power cord

* changeable plates

* easy to clean

* little maintenance

* range of colours

* economy size

clean * little maintenance * range of colours * economy size Benefits answer the customer's question:

Benefits answer the customer's question: Why would I want to own it?

A benefit is:

Small enough to fit in travel bag

Quick to heat up

Easy to use

Therefore the definition of ‘benefit’ could be:

“The conversion of product features into words that clearly illustrates to the customer how helpful the product will be in satisfying their need”. There is a simple rhyme which may help you remember the difference between features and benefits:

features tell, benefits sell

For example: The product may be Deep Cleansing Shampoo

A feature could be it very concentrated

The benefit would be it is good value for money and will last a long time

In determining the benefits of a product feature, you may find that the benefit may be either rational or emotional.

Emotional benefits satisfy needs that are related to a customer’s personal need for something. Example There is a company dinner where the managing director will be attending. Although you have clothing suitable to wear, you decide you need a new outfit to impress the managing director. This would be an emotional need.

A rational need is one for objective, or physical reasons.

Example You have a picture you wish to mount on the wall and you need to buy a hammer and nails to mount it.

While product features are usually easy to detect and describe, product benefits can be trickier because they are often intangible. The most compelling product benefits are those that provide emotional or financial rewards. It is not the shiny hair that the shampoo offers that is its benefit; it is what the shiny hair might bring you. (beauty, confidence)

Emotional rewards run the gamut of human emotions but basically allow the buyer to feel better in some way. For example, sending flowers to a friend or family member allows the buyer to express love. Buying products made from recycled materials offers the buyer the chance to be environmentally responsible. Products that deliver financial rewards allow the buyer to:

Save money (a discount long-distance phone plan)

Make money (computer software for managing a home-based business)

Gain convenience and time (microwaveable meals).


To identify your product's benefits, you need to consider the customer's viewpoint. Besides putting yourself in your customer's shoes mentally, talk to or survey them asking them to tell you why they like the product. They might see benefits in the product that you had not considered - or, conversely they may not be seeing the benefit in the product that you had designed it for.

Through your own experience Using your own experience can help to describe a product or safety requirement for use of a product, for example, you have just sold a temporary colour mousse to your client then you add “when I use this mousse at home I always put on disposable gloves to protect my hands, here is a pair for you”

Or, “When using the straightening irons, I always place them on a towel as the safety requirements outline that they cannot be placed on a non-heat resistant or plastic surface”.

Skills and knowledge Once you have been using a product for a length of time, you get to understand the primary uses and safety requirements for that product. Soon it becomes second nature to describe the uses and safety requirements for that particular product.

Comparing products Within salons, customers generally have a choice of similar products that are displayed. Each of these products may vary to some degree in either brand name, colour, size, appearance or variety of use.

It is essential that you, as the sales person, know the difference between products, so that you can capably assist the

customer in their choice and according to their need. To be able to provide this advice you must first compare these products for yourself.

Other salons will also sell similar, if not the same products as your salon. In most cases the prices will be the same, because

of the recommended retail prices. Other larger salons, because of their buying power, may be able to sell these products for

much less. Regular checks with other salons on what they are selling and for what price will help provide you with a better knowledge of your competitor’s products and


A customer will base their decision on buying a product that is located in two different

stores on a range of reasons. Such as:

in two different stores on a range of reasons. Such as:  Proximity to where the

Proximity to where the client lives

The cost of the product

Their past experiences in relation to the quality of the customer service

The way the product is marketed or promoted

Suggestions and recommendations by friends and family

A PROMOTION is a message issued in behalf of some product, cause, idea, person or institution; "the packaging of new ideas" Examples include:


Personal selling


Selling is a function of customer service. It is a process of communication that involves helping the customer make a buying decision and to purchase goods or services. As a sales person one of your most important functions is being able to pass on specific information about a product to the customer in order to sell the products and services offered to your customers.

Your salon may spend a large amount of money in attracting customers to your salon by; advertising on television, billboards, newspapers, or promotional brochures distributed through mail delivery or mailbox drops. All of these activities are for the

purpose of attracting the customer to the salon, which then presents you with the opportunity to sell.

this effort to get the customer into your salon, only to be served by staff that have limited product knowledge.

Imagine going to all


Customers not only expect to be approached by a sales person, but also they expect that sales person to advise them on making a selection.

Customers come to the salon with two basic needs:

Firstly to buy a product or service that you offer.

Secondly to buy that product or service, which best suits their needs at the best price.

We can influence the customer visiting our salon that we offer superior service, by the use of product knowledge. Many customers will make a decision to purchase based on the advice, and depth of knowledge about the product or service that you, the sales person, offer. Product knowledge is an essential requirement for the sales person, but what actually is product knowledge?

It is important to remember that many salons offer the same product and services at competitive price. Often customers may be influenced to purchase not just by the product alone, but also by the range of services offered by the salon. Successful salons offer desired services that assist customers to make purchase decisions.

Know your competitors Now that you have some knowledge about the product/service range within your salon, it is to your benefit to know what range of similar products and services your competitors offer to the customer.

What is it that your product or service offers that a competitor does not? Is price the only difference between salons? Some other factors that may provide the difference are:

Attractiveness of the salon environment

Presentation of the staff in the salon

Ease of locating and accessing the products in the salon

Helpfulness of the staff

Knowledge of the staff

Friendliness of the staff

Continuity of supply of products

Variety of products on offer

Regular sales to attract customers

Fast and efficient service

Quality of the products and services

Influences in buying similar products

Each and every customer, when buying products and services, considers many of the above issues before making a decision to buy. Sometimes the customer has already made that decision before they visit your salon, but in most circumstances a comparison of like products is made at the same time.

Put yourself in the shoes of the customer. What would you do if you were making a comparison, and the information on the product/service or the promotion surrounding the product/service did not answer or satisfy your question?

There is only one answer: ASK A SALES PERSON.

Apply the three E’s

There is so much completion these days with regards to salons and other online services selling the same or similar products. For your business to be successful in standing out from other you need to ensure that all staff have the following skills and knowledge to encourage their customers to buy from them and not their competitors:

Expertise Know everything possible about your product and service

Exceptional Service Well beyond the client’s expectation

Enthusiasm Sincerer passion and excitement (verbally and non-verbally)

Sincerer passion and excitement (verbally and non-verbally) 13 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services


3. Facilitate the sale of products and services.

3.1.Select and use appropriate techniques to close sale. 3.2.Direct the customer to designated point-of-sale and process sale, as required, according to organisational procedures. 3.3.Farewell customer on leaving, and invite to return. 3.4.Provide any required after sales service according to organisational procedures.

Customer objections.

While objections are as diverse as the people who make them, There seems to be eight core objections that the salesperson must know and be able to respond to effortlessly. Salespeople must never "wing" their responses; they should anticipate what prospects might say and be prepared to respond. Here are the most likely objections salespeople will hear and must be prepared to deal with smoothly:

"I have a friend/relative in the business that can do this for me." "’I’ve never used this before." "I'm not interested." "I have to go, I have another appointment." "I have so many other products at home." "I'm satisfied with my present product." "I have no need for a colour." "Your price is too high” “I can get it cheaper somewhere else."

too high ” “ I can get it cheaper somewhere else." Though they often sound negative,

Though they often sound negative, objections to a product or service should be viewed simply as a customer’s way of saying “I need to know more”. Objections often arise because the hairdresser;

Didn’t identify a need, so the information they are giving is irrelevant

Didn’t explain the information using benefits, so the customer cant seethe need or importance of the service

Offered too many features and benefits, which became confusing

Didn’t seek feedback from the customer to check on the relevance of the information presented

Sometimes objections arise because the customer has certain needs and requirement which you have not covered during the consultation, such as; price, time and merchandise characteristics

Price Objections are about value for money or getting the product cheaper somewhere else.

Relating the principle of

better quality does cost more, but saves money in the long run” is the best technique to use in this situation. Customers

want to be sure they are getting what they pay for and that the product will do the job they require it to do.

says they can get the same product somewhere else cheaper, some stores will match the price. However, the business needs to be aware of what the competition is charging for similar items. In some cases the client has a particular budget and the product/service you are offering them does not fit or the price is lower than they expected and therefore they feel quality is missing

If the customer

Merchandise objections relate to the suitability of the goods – “will it match my décor will I be able to use it will it fit into

the space”. For example :

The colour of the bottle does not match the bathroom

They do not like the smell

The consistency is not what they expected

You will address this type of objection by restating the benefits of the merchandise to reinforce suitability and provide any written material you can to reinforce your verbal presentation and enhance your credibility


Time Objections show that the customer is concerned about buying the merchandise right now “I don’t really need it at the

moment – or I am not quite ready to buy just yet.” For example :

The service will take too long

The application procedure at home is too time consuming

Overcoming objections Finding solutions to objections is easier than it sounds. By using your active listening skills and knowing your product and service range, you will be able to direct the client onto another solution or find something about your product and service which can answer their objections. In order to do this successfully you should;

When handling objections you should:

Be prepared, by researching the standard concerns regarding the product or service

React calmly and responsibly – “I can see how this does appear a little pricey, but have you considered what it offers you?” or “You seem to have a concern, is there something I haven’t covered?’

Probe with questions – “So the question is, how can I make it easier for you to commit to this colouring service?”

Validate that it really is a genuine objection – “If it could be shown that the colour service is easy to maintain, would it then be the type of service you are after?”

These methods of dealing with objections are based on the assumption that the client needs more information. This is different to the situation where the customer has the information but is still dissatisfied enough to complain. First, avoid generalities when answering objections. Remember, the client has raised a specific concern. The only way successfully to remove it is to address it head on. To avoid it will only cause the objection to stick out in the clients mind and give him reason not to buy. Remember: you must never leave the client with what he can regard as a legitimate reason for not buying.

Probe for the real reason for the objection by asking "why" and "what" questions. Your job is to keep the conversation going and to get more information.

Listen with sincere interest, don't interrupt, and hear the client out. Interrupting your client will intensify the objection and cause him/her to become preoccupied with it. As you listen, clients will often expose the real reasons for not buying. Clients continually volunteer new information that will help you better understand their needs and desires. Allow yourself to hear the complete objection.

Restate the objection in your own words. "Do I understand you to mean that

objection completely. It gives you an opportunity to restate the objection in a more favourable way. "As I understand it, you

feel that

Clients will be more inclined to listen to you when they know you have listened to them.


This helps ensure that you understand the


ensures that the client will know that you have taken an interest in, and understand, the objection.

Never argue with the Client. Often you will be right, and the client will be wrong. However, winning the argument (and embarrassing the client) ensures that you'll lose the sale.

Don't guess at an answer. Admit you don't know. Say: "I'm sorry, I don't have the answer to that question, but I promise to get the information to you." This type of honest answer can be quite disarming and evoke a positive feeling towards you!

Anticipate and prevent objections before they are raised. To do this, you must be prepared. Make and keep a list of your most common objections. Write answers to them and address them in your sales talk. After each presentation, conduct an analysis to recall any new objections that may have been raised, and any new answers you've thought of to these objections. Always try to determine why the client did, or did not, buy.

Always try to determine why the client did, or did not, buy. 15 Developed from SHB


Methods of closing a sale.

Now you have it, you have plugged into your client’s needs, you have outlined the benefits of the product or service, you have overcome objections, you have received positive buying signals and have successfully encouraged the client to make a purchase decision and it is now up to you to close the sale. Although it may be difficult, closing doesn't have to be painful or bewildering. Here are a few basic pointers to help assist you in this potentially awkward process:

Close from the beginning. Don't confuse this idea with the hard sell; the cutthroat approach alienates many potential customers. Instead, explain your agenda. Tell the client exactly what you're selling and how it can benefit their hair/lifestyle. Being up front about your intentions promotes an honest, mutually respectful, and rewarding discussion, paving the way for a smooth close.

There are 6 techniques that can be used to close the sale. They are

1 Direct order

This involves using a closed question – “So you will take the brown pair?”

2 Active

Involve the customer by getting them to do something that will help them to decide.


Handling the goods, taking them to the counter.

Or you could commence filling out paper

work or removing the ticket from the item.

3 If

Letting the customer decide one step at a time without pressuring them

“if you take one now, we can put the other away for you”

4 Alternative

Offer the customer a choice “Will that be the brown or the green one?”

5 Difficulty

Use this when deadline apply. The goods may be in limited supply or the sale may finish. You must however be honest or you will lose your credibility eg “We have only one left in stock; they

have been very popular and I would hate you to miss out!”

6 Assumptive

This assumes that the customer is purchasing the goods and offers a related product or

service. For example”we can adjust the length for you. When you like to pick it up? Or “We can deliver that or would you like to pick it up?”

If your closing techniques are positive it will save time for both you and the customer. The customer will get what she/he wants and will no put off the purchase. Example,

“Before we go ahead with the colour service today let me show you this shampoo and conditioner, I would advise you to purchase these should you want to maintain the colour for longer in between services”

Learn to recognise when potential customers are ready to buy. A customer might indicate they're ready by asking questions about the product or the service: "How long would the colour take?" or "What does that treatment do?" Other signs include interested comments such as "Really?" or "Good idea."


“the colour will take 25 minutes, let’s do it now”

“this treatment will ultimately fix your broken hair”

“I know isn’t it great, let’s get you one”

Free trials often lead directly to sales. This strategy works well for all sorts of businesses and appears frequently in magazine subscriptions, where you can receive one month for free; Internet services, where there are often free 30-day memberships; and car sales, where potential buyers are offered test drives.

car sales, where potential buyers are offered test drives. Example, “Have a seat and I can

Example, “Have a seat and I can show you what that colour would look like next to your skin” “Can I show you on this section of your hair what that technique would do” “If you take a seat I can show you what this product will do”


Even if you follow all the guidelines to selling, there will be times when the customer will not wish to purchase the product or service you are offering. That is you will not make the close. It is important that you take such rejections in your stride, and remain courteous and friendly in dealings with the customers. Further, you should endeavour to understand why they are not interested. Whatever the reason, your positive attitude and friendly approach may cause them to return at a later date or recommend your business to others.

Opportunities for making additional sales.

"Would you like to try a value meal today?” Congratulations, you’ve just been versed in a classic use of up-selling. Don’t let the terminology scare you away, up-selling is jargon for adding on to your product or service. But up-selling, also known as cross-selling, isn't just for fast food. Smart business owners are always looking for opportunities to remind customers about additional add-ons or higher quality products. Here’s one of the keys to up-selling:

Communicate with Your Customers Early

Up-selling is an art too few businesses seem to have mastered. One reason is that many sales associates or other employees neglect to communicate with the customer about their purchase. By simply probing the customer you can determine if they have selected the right product, all its parts, etc.

Unfortunately, we find many businesses seem to think the best practice is to just let customers find their own way in determining what to buy. They couldn't be more wrong! In many cases, businesses assume the customer is already well versed in what they need. Or, they expect the customer to self-educate themselves based on product packaging or minimal instructions.

Inevitably you’ll find sales managers and your accounting department saying, ‘we need to increase sales' or ‘we need to add on product,' but then they fail to actually teach their people how. Salespeople need to know what adding on looks like and sounds like."

Up-selling Dos and Don'ts

Guide your sales team into up-selling techniques. One of the key phrases that will end a large majority of your sales is “Would you like anything else?” This is screaming buy more. Up-selling should be seamless to the customer not a hard sales pitch. Following are a few examples of how up-selling works:

When you purchase a leather jacket and get to the counter your sales clerk will typically offer the all-important whether proofing product. They’ll express that by spraying this product on your jacket you’ll extend the life and keep it looking like new for years to come.

As your hairstylist is finishing the final touches on your hair she offers the suggestion of this great new firm hold gel. It’s the latest in hair product and will help you achieve that “just stepped out of the hair salon look.”

You’ve just purchased a new printer and the clerk reminds you that the cartridges that come with the unit are only good for 100 prints. He recommends getting a black and colour cartridge and a case of paper.

Keep this in mind as you look at your products or services. What could you do to increase sales on a daily basis? How can you package your offering so up-selling becomes a natural thing?

package your offering so up-selling becomes a natural thing? 17 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty


The difference between Up selling and Add on

Selling up

Selling up requires using your selling skills and product knowledge and requires a genuine concern for the customer. Professional selling does not involve forcing someone into buying a product they do not need. You need to develop the right atmosphere and be sincere and have excellent product knowledge before you can attempt to sell a bigger size, a better quality or more than one. You must be able to sell the benefits of a more expensive product. In order to justify a higher price the product must

Meet the customer’s needs more appropriately than the cheaper line because it offers extra benefits.

Have better quality than the lower priced item, giving better economy saving the customer money in the long run as the product will last longer than the cheaper product.

Perform better than the cheaper product giving better results.

Adding on Selling add-ons can take two forms:

Selling lines related to the purchase

Selling unrelated lines.

You need to take every opportunity to add on even in busy times. Setting the right atmosphere is important using the

principles of excellent customer service. When you are selling add-ons you may have to be quick thinking.

your product so that you can suggest a suitable related line as an add on. Eg batteries when a customer buys a torch. You

need to be sure that the customer has everything they need to achieve a result with the product they are purchasing eg

matching handbag for the shoes, turps to clean their paint brushes. complementary to the product the customer is purchasing.

You need to know

Related lines are products that are accessories for or

Unrelated lines should also be offered to your customer they could be a totally different promotion that you have running that represents good value and to which you can draw the attention of your customer. The secret to selling add-ons is:

Be specific. Don’t just say “Will there be anything else”

Keep it short and simple

Sell the benefit of the add-on

Offer a specific product.

Review sales outcomes to maximise future sales.

A Customer Service Programme needs to be managed, maintained, and reviewed. Surveys need to be carried out systematically. This is not a one off exercise. Put a plan in place to ensure that your Customer Service Programme works in the long term. Your customer has a right to:

Professional, courteous and prompt service

Expect competent and well-trained staff

Attention to detail

Fair prices for quality products and services

Open channels of communication for feedback

Your full and undivided attention when they choose to do business with you

Appreciation for their continued custom

with you  Appreciation for their continued custom Recording client information where appropriate for the

Recording client information where appropriate for the purpose of providing improved and personalized service

Keep a boxed set of index cards or a computer program with details of your regular clients, including their contact details and any services or products they have purchased. The card should be filled in as soon as you have finished serving a client, no matter how busy you are. You should record not only what work has been done, but also the products and retail items they have purchased. This is important in case they should later complain about the product or the service.


If you keep comprehensive records, you will find it useful in helping you to work out what your most popular and unpopular services and products, which in turn will provide you opportunities to improve your services and tailor your services to meet your clients individual needs.

Legislation Trade Practices Act 1974 and the Competition and Consumer Act which is Commonwealth legislation are both designed to protect customers and ensure a competitive trading environment. States and Territories have similar State legislation. (The Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA) applies to just about every aspect of a business - including advertising, price setting, and transactions with consumers and other businesses)

The Trade Practices Act 1974 (the Act) protects consumers when they buy goods and services. It does so by saying that there are legal rights and obligations in every contract between a buyer and a seller. For example, the law requires that goods must be free of defects, and do what they are meant to do. Services must be carried out with care and skill. Consumers’ rights, which the Act says automatically form part of every contract between buyer and seller, are called statutory rights. If a seller of goods or services does not meet any one of the obligations, it is a breach of their contract with the consumer. When this happens, consumers are entitled to a remedy from the seller.

Staff members should receive training in their compliance obligations as defined in the act: Every salon should have:

An effective complaints handling system including recording of the complaint.

An effective product safety and recall system

A person who is responsible for the compliance to the CCA.

Exchange. Refunds and Warranties

Queensland Office of Fair Trading GPO Box 3111 Brisbane QLD 4001 T. 13 QGOV (13 74 68) fairtrading.qld.gov.au

The other area of after sales service that you must have a good knowledge of is your salons policies and procedures regarding exchanges and returns. If you have ever wanted to get a refund or exchange you will know that conditions can vary greatly from business to business. Under the law, the retailer has certain rights in relation to refunds.

Customers have a legal right under the Trade Practices Act to ask for a refund in certain circumstances, even if the goods are purchased as a sale item.

A sign that reads: Sorry, we do not give refunds is not acceptable.

An unqualified ‘No Refunds’ sign or a policy of not giving refunds in any circumstances may lead your customers into thinking that they have no rights whatsoever to a refund. Misleading consumers about their rights is unlawful under the Trade Practices Act. Refunds Customers have the right to a repair, replacement or refund if the goods supplied:

have a fault that the customer could not have known about at the time of purchase

do not do the job that the customer was told they would

do not match the sample shown to the customer

are different than described in the advertisement or by your staff.

than described in the advertisement or by your staff. Statutory warranties When providing goods and services

Statutory warranties When providing goods and services you must ensure:

the consumer owns the goods outright once purchased

the product is suitable for the purpose you are selling it

the product is not faulty

the product performs to an appropriate standard and achieves the requested result

your samples match the supplied product

services are carried out with due care and skill

.In circumstances where your customer is entitled to a refund you can offer an exchange or refund but you cannot insist that the customer has no alternative to accepting what you nominate eg a store credit


Product Safety When must a supplier recall goods:

if they discover that the goods may cause injury, either through misuse or a fault.

If the goods fail to meet a safety standard

If the goods have been placed on a temporary or permanent ban

For detailed information about the recall process, Consumer Product Safety Recall Guidelines are available from the Product Safety Recalls Australia website recalls.gov.au.

By law, all cosmetics supplied in Australia must be labelled with their ingredients so you can identify ingredients that may harm you. The label also enables you to compare various products. This applies to any substance or preparation that is manufactured for contact with any external part of the body, including teeth and inside the mouth.

This applies to products that:

perfume or change a body’s odour

change a person’s appearance

cleanse the body

maintain the body’s condition

protect the body.

Consumer protection

Standards for goods

As a consumer, you have legal rights when you purchase goods and services in Queensland. Goods and services must meet a certain standard or have an appropriate warranty. You are entitled to ask for a refund in certain circumstances.


The Trade Practices Act 1974 is designed to protect you as a consumer in your dealings with business. In this section of our website you can learn more about:



What does the Privacy Act cover?

The Privacy Act regulates how your personal information is handled. For example, it covers:

personal information is handled. For example, it covers: 20 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and Beauty Services


1 – 2016 SIRXSLS001 – SELL TO THE RETAIL CUSTOMER 21 Developed from SHB Hairdressing and