CUSTOMER SUCCESS STORY
Bobby Cooper Salon in Indianapolis Sees an Average Ticket Increase of $14 and a Total Service Uptick of $36,000 after 1 Year of Aura
Sarah Cooper and business partner, Master Stylist Bobby Cooper, opened Bobby Cooper Salon in Indianapolis, Indiana in 2007. Armed with an extensive local following of Bobby’s, who was already a sought-after stylist, and a strategic business plan created by Sarah, Bobby Cooper Salon opened with a revolutionary vision to execute an unmatched level of client experience and the highest level of artistry that was then unheard-of in the area. The salon located in the Broad Ripple neighborhood of Indianapolis is grounded in three core values: consistency, integrity of the hair, and client experience.
12 years later, their vision of a sophisticated, client-focused salon, armed with the best stylists in the field is thriving. The salon is known for its service and attention to detail and incredibly talented staff. With a strong emphasis on continuing education, every stylist at Bobby Cooper Salon has had innovative training though the Bobby Cooper Salon Advanced Education Program. The team has traveled the country to learn from some of the most paramount names in the industry such as: Gina Kahn, Oribe, Sassoon, Vivienne Mackinder, Scott Cole and Ramona Eschback to name a few. The salon has attended several Intercoiffure Ateliers that comprise only the top 1% of salons in the world. Their relentless commitment to evolving their skills and expertise gives this salon an edge and passion that brings innovative expertise and something truly unique to Indianapolis.
Bobby Cooper Salon has been featured in numerous industry publications, earning the Salon Top 200 designation by Salon Today magazine for both salon culture and technology. Satisfied guests appreciate that the staff is so attentive to clients’ needs, note the excellent customer service and the luxurious atmosphere.
While the salon’s growth and well-earned acclaim solidified the business as one of the top salons in the country, there was a disconnect between their software management and POS systems and the salon’s business. Bobby Cooper Salon realized the need for a more intuitive and modern salon software system to reflect the business growth and needs that their existing platform, Milano, could not provide. While the salon and its artists continued to evolve and refine their expertise, their existing system just could not keep up.
In today’s tech-based world, Sarah knew this was a bigger problem than seeking out another software provider. She began to envision what her “ideal” software would do, using insights from her 12 years running the salon. This hands-on experience sets AURA apart from other systems in that it has been designed from the viewpoint of a salon owner. Exacting detail has been paid to the stylist, management, and guest functions of the software. It is a complete solution, a turnkey business model, rather than a semi-functional computer program that must be used in conjunction with other add-on services.
“Our current system wasn’t cutting it, so I did a lot of research on what else was out there. To my surprise, I found the same old standards that were created 10, 20 years ago. There were no programs specific to salons that matched the modern, streamlined business model that I created for my own business. I realized it simply didn’t exist, and decided to do something about it”, Sarah explains.
Sarah knew that the automation and reporting capabilities she desired didn’t exist in the various software platforms on the market. Many were aged systems simply not built for modern automation, and she needed a program that would comprise her entire business model, rather than running multiple programs with a separate cost for each. Bobby Cooper Salon began using AURA in August 2018 and the results have been astounding.
“The technology in AURA, and the things you can do with it, far surpassed our former system. It is night and day.” commented Salon Manager, Ciera Pedler.
AURA Builds Upon Proven Strategies to Increase and Maximize Revenue
Through its first year of using AURA,Bobby Cooper Salon has seen an increase across the board in revenue. Service sales are up $36,000, retail sales have increased by $3,000 and the average ticket has increased by $14 (from $179 to $193).
Eliminating Costs and Improving the Bottom Line Thanks to AURA
Immediate cost reductions were also seen. The salon was able to discontinue use of Demandforce, providing a savings of $3,500 year and Aura’s integrated payment processing solution saved Bobby Cooper Salon another $2,400 annually in credit card processing fees. The intuitive booking and front desk management and payment processing has consolidated those functions entirely.
“I wanted to build an intuitive system that automated the time-consuming front desk functions to free staff up to service clients. Some salons aren’t large enough to have a full-time front desk person or need to consolidate costs. The client app allows clients to save and store payment information, and checkout is as easy as tapping a button. Clients no longer need to wait in line to leave, they just swipe and go” explains Sarah. “By implementing AURA, we were actually able to eliminate a full-time front desk position, resulting in a savings of $25,000 per year.”
Innovation to Elevate the Entire Salon Experience with AURA
From the beginning, the goal of AURA was to improve salon management and operations in luxury salons. By utilizing the power and feedback of The Salon Collective, we have created a dynamic tool to run a successful business and to achieve the next level of growth. The 20+ member salons have contributed expertise, feedback, experience, best practices and insider strategies, enabling AURA to build an even more comprehensive system for every salon that uses it. AURA took this valuable insider feedback and integrated it into each and every system of the program.
“We not only endorse AURA as a business tool, but we use it as well,” asserts Sarah. “We are proud to be a part of this new business model and look forward to continuing to improve and elevate our offerings to our clients with all of the features it provides.”
Capturing Costs Through Data Insights
Even though the salon has been a steady success over the years, Sarah admits there’s always something more to learn. One surprising example of how AURA identified a previously unaccounted area of loss was with extension services. This popular service at the salon is also a very time-consuming service but can be extremely profitable if correctly priced. Using the reports function, Cooper was able to determine that the service fees for extension services were priced incorrectly and way too low. Bobby Cooper Salon was actually losing money on every extension service they performed! After a quick update to service fees, the extension service is still just as popular, and now far more profitable.
Branded Client App Enhances Guest Experience
Included with the AURA platform is a custom-branded app for each salon. There is a Provider version and a Client version, where clients can store their payment methods, track their service and product history, and even upload photos for a virtual consultation. Entirely cloud-based, it eliminates “tech fatigue” but still allows a customer to experience a custom and branded portal for their appointments and bookings. This was important to Bobby Cooper Salon, who considers brand recognition and client satisfaction as main priorities.
“Our guests have high expectations. Whether it is a comfortable, luxury environment, the ability to rebook on the go from their mobile device, or to access their service history, they have come to expect the utmost level of quality from us, and going digital was no different. With our branded Bobby Cooper Salon app, busy clients can book appointments in the off-hours, at their own convenience, from the privacy of their phone. This was one of the core functions I envisioned when we created AURA and it has been very well received,” says Sarah.
For Sarah, implementing AURA in her own salon has proven to be even more satisfying and productive than she had expected. With the endorsement of The Salon Collective and most modern technology available, AURA has led Bobby Cooper Salon into its 12th year with continued success in sight.
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