Alright, friends. How many times have you heard, “I really wish I didn’t have to, but I ended up having to ___ today and will have to cancel my appointment for another time,”?

If you’re a beauty professional, chances are you’ve heard it time and time again. And while sometimes clients truly cannot make an appointment work, one thing doesn’t change: You still have bills to pay. And that’s why, today, I wanted touch on how any beauty biz babe can deal with last minute client cancellations– because even though confrontation can seem scary, it doesn’t have to be.

Let’s dive right in.

Be Up Front About a Cancellation Policy When They Book

The key to making sure you still get paid (without hassle) when a client cancels an appointment is being upfront about your policy when they book. When you explain to your customer about your cancellation policy upon booking simply say that as a small business you need to have these policies in place and appreciate their understanding. I’ve rarely had a client cancel and give me grief over my policy when I’ve told them at their initial booking– the issue has always come when I’ve forgotten, or when I was just starting out, didn’t explain before at all. Make sure it’s in the fine print!

Explain You’d Love for Them To Arrange a Better Time

After they cancel, make sure you reiterate how much you’d love to serve them at a time that’s more convenient for them in the future. When people cancel, it’s normal for them to be on the defense about their reasoning/payment method/etc. When you show how much you still value their business, it’s easy for them to want to remain loyal to you, and even recommend their friends and family to you! A little nicety goes a long way and I think that’s key when creating a client experience that thrives.

Ask If They’d Like to Have Their Spot Filled

This one is my personal favorite, and in my book, gold. Upon canceling, ask if they have a friend or family member who would like to take their spot– I always throw in how gals appreciate the extra pampering and their money isn’t going to go to waste. You already have the time blocked off from your schedule, so it’s nice to remind them that you still were prepared and excited to serve them. Whether they take you up on your offer or not, it goes back to the last point of having a fabulous client experience.

I want to know:
How do you deal with last minute client cancellations?
Do you have a policy in place?
Spill in the comments!