experiences over stuff hero

Trending • Inspiration

Experiences, Not Stuff: Helping Your Clients Give Gifts Worth Getting

Exclusive discounts and bonus gift cards entice clients toward buying meaningful gifts for the holidays

The holiday season is rapidly approaching, and your clients are on the hunt for the best gifts for friends and loved ones. The problem? Many people don’t know what they want, but they know that whatever it is, it’s not that.Americans spend a collective $15.2 billion on unwanted holiday gifts, and much of it gets returned or simply thrown away.

Rather than resign yourself to seeing your clients fret about what thing they should get for that special someone, take the opportunity to steer them toward experiences that their friends and family can savor. In fact, studies show that people are often far happier receiving experiences like salon care packages or a trip to the spa than they are receiving material goods. Here’s how you can encourage clients to pick up a gift that can create memories that linger long after the holiday decorations have been put away.

Talk to clients and find out what their gift-giving plans are

The holidays are a significant source of stress for many Americans, and a large portion of that stress comes from finding the perfect gift for everyone on their list. Chances are your clients are stopping in for some self-care of their own between rushing to and from multiple stores, dealing with throngs of people, keeping up with online in-stock alerts, and the constant worry of the perfect gift being impossible to find.

They’re coming to you for a chance to unwind and look their best during the holiday season. Use this opportunity to chat with them about their holiday plans and see if they’re still looking out for gift ideas. Nudge clients toward gift cards and service packages, so they can pamper their loved ones just as well as they care for themselves. They already love the service they get — remind them that it’s possible to give this experience to others as well.

Offer discounts or bonus gift cards

Discounting gift card rates is a great way to encourage clients to pick one (or several) up as gifts. You have a lot of flexibility here, too, whether that’s simply offering a blanket 10% off or providing a discounted bundle of gift cards.

Another effective way to sell gift cards is to offer a second bonus card for free at specific purchaser values. That way, your clients can give a gift and get a little something for themselves as well. Experiment with tiers — perhaps with $50 you’ll throw in a $10 card, but at $100, they’ll get a $25 bonus instead.

It may seem like you’re giving away free money, but studies show, on average, consumers are more likely to spend nearly $54 dollars over the gifted amount. Plus, recipients are far more likely to try something they normally wouldn’t if they were footing the bill themselves.

Gift cards are great for businesses that offer a la carte services and have a well-stocked product inventory. However, it may make more sense to provide discounted service packages or bundles instead of gift cards. Ultimately, go with whichever works best for your business model and the services you offer. 

Provide customized combo packs for couples or friends to share

Why do something alone when you can share the experience with someone you love? There’s no better way to make lasting memories with friends or partners than to spend a relaxing day together at the salon or spa. Craft some holiday-exclusive bundles — like mani/pedi packages with a special massage thrown in. 

Make it personal

To craft an experience that truly stands out, consider offering highly personalized gift packages that buyers and recipients can tailor to their desires. The recipient can choose the music or scents to accompany the massage, colors or unique designs for their nail styling, or any other permutation you can think of. You can also offer one-of-a-kind photos, shirts, mugs, or other merch featuring the recipient’s name to highlight the occasion.  

These customized packages may take a bit more effort on your part, but they can have a massive impact on sales — plus, it’ll be a gift your clients can’t replicate anywhere else. To help make the process smoother, gather the necessary information (name, shirt size, messaging, music, etc.) up front with a form, then schedule the appointment to allow for the time needed for the personalized merch to arrive.

Think you know what clients truly want? We surveyed 800+ beauty patrons to discover what matters most to potential clients. Here's what we found

Client Experience Guide

Share Article

 /  /  /  /