Choosing an appointment scheduling software can be a real pain as there are so many options out there. Some of them are good, but most of them aren’t up to the mark. So, to simplify this process and help you pick the right tool, I have made a list of essential features to keep an eye out for.
Make a note of all these features and ensure the appointment scheduling software you try out has all of them…
A simple online self-booking process:
The most important feature is that it should let people book an appointment online by themselves. An example is the appointment scheduling app from vCita. Here you create your schedule and display the times you are available in the vCita app. You can then create a contact form and embed it on your website.
People can view the times you are available in the embedded app, choose their preferred time, add in their details and sign up. This is how simple and quick it should be. There’s no need for them to exchange a bunch of unnecessary emails.
Automated email and text follow up:
Your scheduling software should also follow up with people who scheduled the appointment via email and/or text to make sure they don’t forget and also show up on time. The software should also provide the option to easily reschedule by clicking a link and taking one or two steps.
There should also be an option to cancel. If they aren’t interested in attending anymore, the time slot can be offered to someone who will be.
The software should easily sync with your calendar. This provides two benefits chiefly. One is that it makes it easy for you to view all your appointments in one place and the other is that it provides a more accurate list of available times to customers/clients. You won’t mistakenly book someone at a time you are unavailable at.
Your software should also encourage people to add the appointment to their own calendar by simply clicking a link and saving it.
If you offer paid consulting services, your software must also make it easy for people to pay online. This should include both one time and recurring payments. There are many good appointment scheduling software that accepts payments via both Paypal and Stripe.
You should be able to add multiple team members to the software. This will make it easy for other employees to come in and make changes.
Your employee scheduling software should integrate with software such as your CRM, payroll software, email service provider, project management software, etc. to make it easy for you to transfer important data.
63.4% of people access the internet via their mobile phones. If you want to ensure that more mobile users book appointments too, you should use scheduling software that is mobile friendly. But make sure your website is optimized for mobile devices too as this too can provide a better overall experience that leads to more conversions.
The software should be both secure to you and all the people who are providing you with confidential information. So, check out their website to determine what methods they use to keep data secure and if it is safe enough.
Your appointment scheduling software should also offer reports. It should take in all the data it collected from the activity (of both people who converted and didn’t) and display it in easy to view graphs. You can use this data to modify your process and increase conversion rates and get people to show up for their appointments.
You should be able to use the data provided by the software to offer a customized user experience. Customizing the visual aspect should also be possible so that it matches the branding of your own website.
These are the top features that you must look for while choosing an appointment scheduling software. There are several good software out there that offer all these features. And almost all of them offer free trials. So, you can sign up for their trials, try them out for a few weeks and pick your favorite.