In helping to do our best to keep small businesses up and running during these difficult times, we have launched Yocale Meet for easy virtual appointments

Online scheduling

6 Best Practices to Improve your Scheduling System

Business, as we know it, is transforming and we are experiencing a shift from in-person care to virtual delivery. Restaurants and retailers have been hit hard by the pandemic.

The good news? Stores that have been utilizing technology to control traffic in store and have transitioned to offering products online are seeing booming growth

To put this in perspective, this chart represents the prevalent incline and decline of in-store shopping:

online shopping Statistics

The data shows a direct correlation between growth and online shopping of tangible products. But, what happens if you’re providing an intangible product, like a service?

Well, Covid-19 has stunt in person appointments but there is light at the end of the tunnel. If you want to nurture your business with healthy revenues, adapt with the market and consider these two opportunities:

  • Use Online scheduling to book and screen clients in advance and have control over the number of individuals in your vicinity, inter alia.
  • Stay Home – Operate your business with online virtual appointments 

Let’s consider ways to effectively adapt to virtual appointments & in person visits during this epoch.

Chose the Right Platform

The market is saturated with a plethora of online scheduling platforms and, in reality, becomes inundating when shopping around. For instance, ask yourself what makes a great scheduling software? We did a little research to help you out.

A colleague and I surveyed a group of entrepreneurs and business owners and discovered the following features were essential when selecting a scheduling software:

  1. Video Conferencing for virtual appointments
  2. Full booking capabilities with text and email reminders.
  3. Client Management portal.
  4. Contactless Form ability to screen clients in advance.
  5. Customizable,- Caters to multi location and multi service bookings
  6. Cost Efficient

Let’s consider situations where these features allows for business continuity and minimized disruptions.

See Clients Through Your Phone

According to a 2019 report on workplace mobility by T-Mobile, 63 percent of businesses view mobility as the most significant factor for a competitive advantage. With Yocale’s video conferencing tool, resume business as usual through your mobile phone. 

Some of the benefits of shifting from physical to digital appointments include:

Online fitness sessions

Fitness facilities are also adapting to booking systems for equipment reservation and social distancing. Gym fanatics can reserve the treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine and more to ensure social distancing and duration in between bookings to clean equipments.

A good software should also offer flexibility and some customization. For instance, too busy to take on new clients? Control your online bookings and Manage Who Can Book You.

Electronic Forms

In the epoch of COVID-19, going to see your doctor, lawyer, or a beauty salon can result in feelings of anxiety versus excitement. From mandatory masks to social distancing, safety is heightened. How do you protect your staff and screen consumers for symptoms without inconveniencing them?

A software with the capability of electronic and contactless form is a viable solution. Digital forms can help you with:

  1. Registering new clients
  2. Screening for Covid-19 symptoms
  3. Obtaining electronic signatures
  4. Communicating needs prior to appointments
  5. Record management of client history and progress

Yocale’s drag and drop form builder simplifies data exchange. With its photo upload capability, client’s can upload photos to encode their needs more effectively. Contactless signatures and screening allows for business continuity and minimized disruptions. Watch it in action:

Smart Data Collection

We love technology because it makes our day to day activities inventive. We also love a singular tool that has multiple uses, which is why Yocale created The Booking Widget.  This innovative gadget provides a smooth booking experience for your clients while tracking consumer behaviour through Google Analytics.

Artificial Intelligence tracks and reports website traffic and demand. Five awesome benefits of Google Analytics are;

  1. Traffic Reporting
  2. Conversion Tracking
  3. Keyword Referrals
  4. Third Party Referrals
  5. Custom Dashboard

Know your target audience for free.

Appointment Reminders

Treatwell reported that 33.7% of Beauty industry customers have missed a salon appointment at some point. Why? It’s linked to a variety of reasons:

  1. They simply forgot about the booking and no courtesy reminders were provided.
  2. Failure to communicate,- no longer needing the service but neglecting to cancel the appointment.
  3. Rise of an unexpected matter or emergency

In fact, after using a scheduling software with text and email reminders and confirmations, you can enjoy an 84% reduction in no-shows.

Recurring Appointments

“I’ve been booking an appointment with you every two weeks, do I really have to call in to schedule every time?

Turn Customers into Regulars with Recurring Appointments. A recurring appointment feature sets a professional tone and has the potential to become a prominent time saver.

Instead of asking your receptionist (if you have one) to take time out of their busy schedule to book ongoing appointments for the next few weeks, use a software with recurring scheduling to save time, energy and avoid double booking discrepancies. 

The recurring feature offers more then just convenience, but acts as a (cost-free) marketing tactic to turn customers into regulars and increase customer retention, without increasing customer acquisition cost.

Summary

At the onslaught of a pandemic, technology and adoption have synergized. With the right scheduling software you can increase your productivity, influence customers around the globe, and allow remote employees to access all features regardless of whether they’re working in an office or not.

Yocale’s scheduling software is 100% free, which is priceless to a small business with a limited marketing budget. Upgrade today.

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