When Pittsburg, PA-based Izzazu Salon was looking for a new website in January, they turned to Glammatic for help.
For owners Gino Chiodo and Emilio Cornacchione, having a great website was not only essential for discoverability, it was essential for retaining and engaging customers. In particular, Izzazu needed a place where customers could book appointments and buy their products online.
From humble beginnings to a modern website
As the largest and best-known salon in Pittsburg, Izzazu is no stranger to the web. They’ve had a website since 2001, back when the web looked very different than it does today.
Back in 2003, a website was an essential place for Izzazu to showcase their salon, communicate hours of operation and allow for online bookings by telephone. Prospective customers would usually find out about the website through word-of-mouth, a segment on the local TV station, or an online directory.
As relatively new salon operators, Gino and Emilio realized that they needed a way to stand out in a competitive market. On the surface, hair salons may seem like a commodity offering; there are over 80,000 beauty salons in the US alone, according to Dun and Bradstreet’s First Research.
However, seasoned operators know that differentiation, discoverability, and customer experience are key ingredients to making a salon succeed. A strong web presence is an essential ingredient to a salon’s ability to thrive in an environment where customers are increasingly online.
The modern online salon
The need for a website was as clear then as it is today: without a website, prospective customers don’t have a place to learn more about a salon. Unlike 2003, however, a business owner has many additional considerations when setting up a website.
The factors for whether a website (and overall web presence) enables a salon to grow online include:
- Being discoverable through search engines. Proper local search engine optimization (or SEO) is the difference between customers finding you or a competitor. The #1 and #2 positions on a Google search account for nearly 60% of clicks, with the 5th position only receiving 5% of clicks.
- Proving credibility through your website. A professional design is essential to creating trust and maintaining digital curb appeal. After all, your website is your salon’s digital storefront — imagine how you’d feel if you showed up to a salon with broken curbs, bad landscaping, and a dirty exterior.
- Providing customers with a way to engage immediately. In order to succeed as a salon, it’s vital to keep a busy appointment book, especially in today’s economy. In fact, 46% of salon customers now book appointments online when given the choice, according to Phorest.
- Having an up-to-date website and listing. Nothing frustrates customers more than encountering outdated information on a website. Whether it’s incorrect hours of operation, a broken booking page, or a team member that no longer works with you, customers are likely to bounce to a competitor (or worse, leave a bad review) if your website has wrong information.
- Being mobile-optimized. According to Similarweb, 66% of web traffic in July 2023 was on mobile. If your website is not accessible to mobile users, you’re losing a significant portion of traffic. While most DIY website builders let you build your website for mobile visitors, it can be challenging to get it right.
Prior to switching to Glammatic, Izzazu had a functional but poorly optimized website.
When Izzazu reached out to us in January, they were looking for an easy to manage website that would allow them to showcase customer reviews, their services, and their expansive team.
Years back, when they first went online, Izzazu used a design agency to build their website. At the time, DIY builders were not very capable and websites required an experienced developer to build them — at least if they were to be any good.
Around 2020, Izzazu decided to try something new. They initially opted for Wix, which is a website builder that is comparable to Squarespace and WordPress. Most website builders require a significant investment of time and education to use effectively.
Like many of our customers, Izzazu found Wix to be challenging to use without the help of an expensive professional. They faced two challenges common to our customers:
- Optimizing the website to look good on mobile;
- and optimizing the site to perform well in search (SEO)
While DIY builders provide the technical means to do both of these tasks, doing it right requires experience and time. In other words, it’s not practical for most salon owners to build and manage their own website.
Switching to Glammatic
A couple years after setting up a site in Wix, Izzazu began searching for a better solution that would allow them the ability to mange their website without the worries of having to use a DIY builder to do it themselves.
They were also looking for a website that looked more professional than the one they had previously. One reason Izzazu chose Glammatic was to get a brand new looking website that was especially designed for salons to look great online.
With Glammatic, Izzazu is also able to make a change to their website by simply sending an email, sending a text or calling our support team. And if they’d prefer, they can also do it themselves at any time using our intuitive dashboard designed to make updating hours, services, or website photos a cinch.
Since they’re using Glammatic, owner Emilio Cornacchionne can rest assured that his website will always look great on mobile, perform well in search, and remain up-to-date with the latest website optimizations including ADA compliance.
Customers can use Izzazu’s Glammatic website to book appointments, learn more about services, read reviews, and even learn more about the individual stylists at the salon. They even are able to link out to Izzazu’s existing online store, where they sell shampoos and other hair products.