If you started your business a few years ago, the chances are you probably did most of your routine internal tasks manually, from setting appointments, to sending invoices, and receiving payments from your clients. Doing things in this way can undoubtedly work well if you have a good process in place. It can also enable you to offer a completely personalized service to your customers, assuming you are serving a relatively small number.
However, as your company grows, these admin tasks that used to take up a smaller percentage of your time start to take over, leaving you with less time to focus on actually delivering the work you are contracted to do. If you’ve been feeling this way, it’s a sign you need to improve your ways of working to become more efficient and therefore more productive with your time. (1)
Regardless of your business type, tapping into the power of new technology can go a long way to achieving this. One prime example of such technology is appointment scheduling software. This will help significantly to make better use of your time and company resources.
Benefits of using appointment software
Running a service business, in some capacity or another, usually involves appointment or job scheduling. Whether it’s for booking a professional to carry out some work, making a reservation, dispatching members of a team to visit on-site locations, or getting back to your customers, the importance of an efficient calendar and appointment scheduler system such as Jobber can’t be overstated. (1)
The tool can significantly help you keep your appointment books full and your clients happy. Here’s how:
Customers have the power to book and modify as they please
Because your appointment software is a self-service tool, customers can use it anytime and however they want to. Booking an appointment becomes quicker and more convenient since they no longer need to contact you via phone or email. Suppose their appointment needs changing, canceling, or adjusting. The client can log in and make the necessary changes themselves, at a time that is convenient to them. (2)
As a result, this self-service option makes customers feel empowered. They know they’re in control of their business with you, and they don’t feel any pressure when making appointments. Cancellations will be fewer since you provide your clients with an option to adjust, move, or reschedule their appointments depending on their availability and preference. (2)
Appointments are synced directly into your calendar and diary
Once set up and running, the software works by syncing to your work diary and staff calendar. You and your team are automatically notified each time there’s a new appointment in the system, or likewise if one is cancelled or updated. As it is managed by your customers themselves, this job is essentially taken off your to-do list. (3)
You may also find that you are taking less calls as customers are able to serve themselves. Your team remains productive, your books are updated in real time, and your clients are experience a higher level of satisfaction. Of course, there are always the customers who would rather call you in person but given the reduced overall calls and simplicity of the system, you are empowered to help them in this way as an alternative too.
Software is accessible 24/7
As a successful modern business, your clients expect your services to be accessible whenever they need them. If you only operate during classic office hours, you could be inadvertently discounting any number of potential customers by not being available to them. Scheduling software will eliminate this problem as it doesn’t matter what time of the day or night they choose to interact with your booking system. (2)
As long as there’s an internet connection and a device they can use, you won’t need to employ graveyard-shift customer service representatives. People can look at your calendar and see the available slots 24/7. From there, they can make an appointment and have it confirmed quickly without waiting for an actual person from your team to complete their booking.
The software eliminates extra manual steps
All steps involved in the appointment scheduling process can be completed automatically through the software. From booking a slot to processing the payment, you won’t need anyone in your team dedicated to doing this for them. You can integrate several payment gateways so that payers can choose which one is convenient for them. Clients have the option to make their payments in advance, and they can easily check if the transaction went through. (2) (3)
A waitlist system can be integrated
Depending on the features of the appointment software you picked, you can integrate a waitlist system that notifies clients of schedule availability. For example, if your books are already full, they can get an option to be waitlisted and be notified via text or email if they want to be informed when a slot opens up. (4)
A waitlist system allows your clients to see which times work best for your schedules. At the same time, it allows your company to gather leads and prospects since the software collects the customer’s contact information. (4)
The bottom line
The investment of appointment scheduling software cannot be overestimated when you consider the benefits it can bring your service business. Not only can it help you become significantly more productive, but it will also help you to scale and grow. Give your customers the flexibility and power to do business as they please and when they want to. Enable a functioning waitlist system, to ensure you can serve more customers. These are all ways to maintain your sales pipeline that’ll keep your books consistently full and busy.
“Best Appointment Scheduling Software for Small Businesses”, Source: https://www.thebalancesmb.com/best-appointment-scheduling-software-for-small-businesses-5116152
“5 Reasons Why You Need an Online Appointment Scheduling Platform”, Source: https://sibca.medium.com/5-reasons-why-you-need-an-online-appointment-scheduling-platform-b9d40dd9576a
“8 Benefits Of Online Appointment Scheduling For Business”, Source: https://www.thekickassentrepreneur.com/benefits-of-online-appointment-setting/
“The Best 21 Appointment Scheduling Apps and Booking Software”, Source: https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/best-scheduling-app
This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes