While business usually slows down for the season – as regular customers and clients go on vacation or opt for outdoor activities – the summer of 2021 has represented a reentry into the world. While the pandemic is still ongoing, many more consumers are vaccinated and ready to spend again, especially after months of shopping from home and a lack of casual social interactions.
Consequently, the summer slowdown has been replaced with an upswing. Professional services providers – from life coaches and driving schools, to daycares and home services providers – must be prepared for an influx of appointments.
Here are four best practices to ensure positive experiences for clients and employees alike.
Set up for Scheduling Success.
Your current appointment scheduling system – whether that’s a physical book or a personal scheduler like Google calendar – may be passable when business is slow and steady, but it won’t cut it during a significant upswing in customer interest. The rush of incoming clients is bound to get complicated if you have to shuffle through handwritten notes, edit and update paper calendar pages, reconcile your schedule with any employees you have and ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
Online booking can solve all these problems, and then some. You can easily define your availability – and that of your employees – within the platform, which ensures appointments stay organized without overlap. You can also reserve time for breaks between sessions with clients to ensure you operate at your peak potential.
In some cases, you can adopt a digital appointment book that grants client access – as is the case with AppointmentPlus service business scheduling software. That means, you no longer have to stand by the phone or constantly check email to field appointment requests. In fact, clients can book appointments with you 24/7, which means even more business coming in after regular hours. As a result, you’ll have more time to spend with clients and create those memorable experiences that keep them coming back – even after summer ends.
Eliminate No-shows for Good.
As soon as summer starts, whether it’s in a slowdown or an upswing, schedules get hectic. No matter what type of appointment a client has booked, it’s easy to forget in the rush of summer activities. Manually notifying clients of their appointments one by one is a time suck that’s best avoided through automation. That time could be better spent serving other clients or even enjoying some summer relaxation of your own.
Automatic appointment reminders are also a surefire way to reduce no-shows. These alerts remind clients of the details of their booking ahead of time, along with any information relevant to their service like preparation instructions, information on parking, or forms they need to complete (e.g., a COVID-19 health evaluation).
This way, clients not only make it to their appointment, but they appreciate you making the service as simple as possible during this schedule-packed time of year.
Track Customer Data.
Just because demand is high doesn’t mean you don’t need to market yourself.
In fact, it’s especially important to advertise and promote your services when there is extra demand. Paying customers will go to your competitors if they can’t find you. With AppointmentPlus, you gain reporting capabilities to track customer metrics, service and product purchasing trends, and no-show rates. With this information, you can create customized and easy-to-use marketing templates.
For instance, are you expanding your regular business hours to accommodate a higher demand? Make sure every active (and inactive) client knows. Are you offering a summertime promotion? Send an email to every customer in your database that meets certain criteria – whether they haven’t used your services in the past 90 days, or if you know they like a certain service.
This reporting function is also key for taking notes on client experiences. Store information on the service, client preferences, progress and other details that enable you to provide personalized experiences. This extra touch – made easy with digitized data – will win (and retain)more business this summer.
Enable Remote Access.
Don’t forget – it’s your summer, too!
You deserve to have your schedule be as flexible as you want, while still cashing in on the influx of business headed your way. AppointmentPlus service business scheduling software offers a digital appointment book, which you can check anytime, anywhere.
This remote access means you can view your schedule from wherever you happen to be—home, car or coffee shop. There’s no need to go into the office to see what the day ahead looks like.
Imagine: you check your appointment book online, see you only have appointments booked for the afternoon, and get the morning to yourself. Or, if a client cancels once they receive their appointment reminder, you can look at your appointment book no matter where you are, and send out communications that a spot has opened up.
In today’s digital world, this isn’t a luxury. It’s a necessity. If you aren’t using this technology to your advantage, you’re starting out behind and trying to catch up from the get-go. Your business deserves every chance to succeed…and so do you.
So while business is booming this summer, it’s important that your professional services business matches that demand. With the right tools and techniques, you can be prepared to deliver an optimal experience no matter how many clients walk through your doors. That’s why so many service-related companies are turning to AppointmentPlus. It saves time and pleases their customers with the convenience of do-it-yourself online booking.
When service providers empower their clients and prospects to conveniently self-book via their website, they’re delivering a modern customer experience – while also reinforcing a positive brand image at the same time.
Learn more about how AppointmentPlus service business scheduling software can help you master the summer rush on your business here.
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