5 Big Service Menu Mistakes That Could Be Damaging Your Profits

5 Big Service Menu Mistakes That Could Be Damaging Your Profits


It’s just a price list, right?

All you need is a basic list of every service you provide with a price beside it, right?

It’s not worth investing too much time or money getting something really amazing, right?

Here’s something many salon owners fail to realise.

Your Service Menu is a valuable marketing tool for your salon or spa.

It not only provides information about your location, services, contact details and prices, but if done well, it also helps your readers to understand how your services can provide the perfect solution to their problems.

So, in fact, your service menu is also a tool that helps you to sell more services, more often, to the people who are interested in what you have to offer.

Or at least, it should be…

After creating fresh service menu content for scores of salons and spas, I’ve pinpointed 5 major areas where salon owners are making serious mistakes.

The kind of mistakes that are preventing them from gaining new clients and selling more of the right services (read that as more profitable services) to their existing clients.

This is what I’ve discovered.


The menu is almost impossible to read.

What happens when a prospective client picks up your menu to have a look through it but finds it too difficult to read? She puts it down and forgets about it of course.

So, what makes a menu too hard to read?

The size of the font. The tiny sized font may allow you to cram every service and sub-service you provide onto your menu, but it makes it exceedingly difficult for your readers to read the content, especially if your target market is anti-aging or mature.

The colour of the font. Now while it’s the job of your graphic designer to make your new service menu pop and try to be ‘different from the rest’, using a light coloured font on a dark background, makes it very difficult to read.

My suggestion is to save the fancy layout for areas on your menu that don’t include important information such as – well actually, everything on your menu should be important, so don’t use a light coloured  font on dark backgrounds ever.

The style of the font. While you may just love script font with curly bits all over the place, the fact is it can be really hard to read – especially if it’s combined with either of the 2 mistakes mentioned already.

Keep your font clean-looking and easy to read without all the fussy bits. If you love the look of script style font, incorporate it into your logo or only for text that is large enough to still be readable with all the added swirls and curls.

The line spacing. Yup, you can definitely fit more onto your menu if you squeeze all the lines together, but it makes reading the words extremely difficult for your readers.

Instead of trying to fit every tiny little service you provide onto your menu, free up some space and give your words some breathing room instead.


The menu doesn’t include important information about salon/spa policies and etiquette.

I often hear salon/spa owners complain about how their clients don’t do what they should do. Turn up on time; give enough notice for cancellations or appointment changes; turn off their mobile phones; leave their kids at home. You know what I’m talking about here – all the little things that drag you down each day.

But here’s the snag.

Your clients are not mind-readers. They don’t have the foggiest idea about what will make your life run more smoothly (and they probably don’t spend much time thinking about it either).

The fact is that clients are much like children. They have lots of other stuff rattling around in their brains, and so if you want them to do something a specific way to make your life a little happier, then you must tell them clearly and in detail what that is and why they should do it.

Your salon policies and etiquette section serves a very important purpose (keeping your alcohol consumption for de-stressing purposes down to a minimum), but only if your clients know about it in the first place.


The menu doesn’t tap into the profit-producing power of pre-paid programs and packages.

What feels better than selling your most profitable facial to a client? Selling them a program of pre-paid facials of course.

Let’s face it; if you’re not selling treatment programs to your clients, then you’re missing out on a ton of opportunities to make more revenue and to lock your clients into doing business with your salon for a longer period of time.

Here’s what I think.

If a client can get some benefit from having a facial, a peel, or even a pedi, then how much MORE benefit will she receive if she has a series of these treatments on a regular basis?

Tons more!

We all know that a single treatment makes the skin look and feel great for a short period of time, but clients who commit to regular treatments are always the ones who get the greatest benefits, therefore, programs are in fact a win-win arrangement.

And let’s look at packages also. This is where you get to sell a whole cluster of different treatments to your clients to either indulge themselves or give as a pampering gift (just love those profit-producing Gift Certificate sales, don’t you?).

Packages don’t just have to be available for Christmas and Mother’s Day. People are celebrating something every day of the year, and if you marketing your packages well, that’s how often you should be selling them also.

So, maybe it’s time to consider how you can harness the profit-producing-power of programs and packages in your business.


The menu layout is just too messy to make reading easy.

You’ve got to remember that your menu is a selling tool, and if you want to sell things, then you have to make it incredibly easy for clients to find what they want and to then buy them.

If your menu is laid out like a chook’s dinner, this isn’t going to happen.

You need to consider a couple of things before deciding what goes where (this is also when you have to have control of your graphic designer who is only interested in how aesthetically pleasing your menu looks, but not how functional it is).

The services you want to focus on. Lots of salon owners tell me that they really want to do more facials and less waxing, but when I look at their menu, their waxing list takes pride of place, with facials tucked away out of sight (and mind). You have to be clear about what services you want to promote within your business and then make sure they are where they need to be to catch the eye of your readers.

The flow of the menu. Want to sell more add-on services or upgrades? Then consider where these services are placed on your menu (if they’re on it at all). These extra little service sales can mount up to huge dollars over a year.

Just imagine if you have just 30 clients a week and you sell just half of them an extra $20 in services. That amounts to an extra $300 per week or a gob-smacking $15,000 per year – now wouldn’t that be nice to have tucked away in your holiday account?

And finally, the last, but biggest mistake of all…


The service descriptions focus on service features instead of client benefits.

This has to be the biggest and baddest mistake I see on nearly every menu.

It screams ‘Look at how good I am and what I know’ instead of ‘Here’s how I can help you to achieve your outcomes’.

Telling your readers how many cleanses you intend to do and which clay mask you’ll be applying, is about as meaningful to them as how to design a space rocket.

Unless your client is another qualified therapist, all they really want to know is what outcome they will achieve if they pay for a particular service.

It’s called ‘selling the benefits’ and it’s what every description you write should focus on.

And if every facial in your menu seems to deliver the same thing i.e. soft, smooth, hydrated skin, then your readers are never going to be informed enough to make a choice. It’ll simply end up in the ‘too-hard’ basket and get forgotten about.

Well, there you have it. The top 5 mistakes I see when I’m re-creating a Service Menu that sells. How does your menu look? Perhaps it’s time for a re-vamp to boost your sales and profits.

I'd love to hear from you so send me a message...

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Hello world!

Hello world!

Hi and welcome to SalonSpaCopywriter.com.

In case you haven’t already guessed, I write copy for the salon and spa industries.

With well over 30 years industrymag-pic-reduced experience (gulp), and a book or two under my belt, I can offer writing services to help salon, spa and clinic owners communicate more effectively with their existing and prospective clients.

Today, there’s just so much information floating around and, just like you and me, there’s only so much your clients can (or want to) take in.

Your message can get smothered among all the others unless it really stands out, and your readers love what you send them.

Let’s face it, that Unsubscribe button is oh-so-easy to click on if the reader isn’t being entertained with every email, newsletter or blog post they receive.

And that’s where I come into things…

In all truth, I’ve never yet met a salon or spa owner who’s said to me, “OMG, I just love sitting down each month to write up my monthly newsletter and I love writing those 2 blog posts every month even more“.

And I’ve got a sneaky feeling that you might feel that way too.

So, if I’m right and you’re looking for some help with your newsletters, blog posts/articles, service menus, promotional offers, website content, product descriptions, secret shopper forms, custom client marketing letters or something else altogether, then get in touch and let’s chat.


I'd love to hear from you so send me a message...

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