Salon software manufacturer Millennium Systems International has gathered the top salon and spa trends they expect to see on the rise in 2018.
1. Instagram and Selfie Stations. Social media continues to be a driving force as 78% of consumers say a company’s social media posts impact their purchases. As a result, expect more designated photo areas to start popping up in salons and spas.
And these photo-friendly spaces are the perfect marketing tool to show off the talents of service providers with high-quality images. Furthermore, posting client selfies can help increase social media reach and revenue, as consumers are heavily influenced by their peers.

2. Natural Beauty Products. The organic beauty boom is part of the larger shift in customer awareness toward health and wellness. Consumers have access to more information than ever before thanks to a growing number of beauty blogs and social media accounts dedicated to the benefits of going “chemical-free.” By the end of 2018, the global demand for organic personal-care products is expected to reach $13.2 billion.

3. Chatbots. Several big businesses such as Sephora, Mastercard, and Starbucks are already using chatbots. What exactly is a chatbot? It’s a service that you interact with via chat interfaces such as Facebook Messenger, Slack, text messages, etc.

These bots can be built to perform a wide variety of services such as answering customer service questions, scheduling appointments, and purchasing retail. Chatbots are on the verge of becoming a regular part of business since people are using messenger apps more than they are using social networks.
4. The Desk-Less Front Desk. Going desk-less refers to removing the physical barrier between the front desk professional and the client. In a mobile-minded world, customers already expect an engaging experience. Without the front desk as a point of friction, front desk employees can appear instantly to enhance customer service.

5. Continuing Education. 

With clients more aware than ever of current trends, the beauty and wellness industries have become more education-focused to help professionals stay competitive and up-to-date. From apps and YouTube videos to retreats and demo classes, 2018 will continue to see a boom in professional development. Beyond keeping up with the consumer, 76% of employees say they want opportunities for career growth.

6. NFC Payments. From online booking to SMS confirmations to business apps, the ubiquity of mobile devices has made its way into several business functions, including the register. 2018 will continue to see a boom of mobile-minded checkout options, including NFC (near field communication).

NFC is the technology that allows contactless payments at your credit card terminal. Think Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay. NFC-enabled payments are the future for three key reasons: they’re secure, fast, and convenient for customers.

7. Curating Customer Experiences.

 Personalization has been a recent focus in marketing tactics, and 2018 may see personalization taken to a new level. Since people really like seeing their own name, businesses will continue to personalize the experience by adding names to emails, SMS messages, on the mirror, next to the service table, at the check-in kiosk, and on the welcome bag.

8. Men’s Grooming. 2017 already saw a huge boost in male grooming services and sales. As the men’s grooming industry continues to expand, the market is estimated to reach $60.7 billion by 2020.

Salons and spas are finding that men enjoy these services as pleasurable, leisurely activities and are more than willing to spend the money for them. Men are paying attention to their looks, with hair care being the biggest category, and shaving second.

9. Technology Upgrades. Clients expect a certain level of “technological-convenience.” So keeping up with the latest technology will help salons and spas continue to woo clients. Expect 2018 to be the year where many salons and spas add new tech bells and whistles and upgrade their peripherals and business management software.

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Original Article from Nail Magazine.

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