How does a customer schedule their appointment? Without an online booking system, I’m willing to bet that the process looks something like this: The customer looks up your phone number. You could pay someone to sit by a phone and answer calls all day. One of the features that makes Bookly one of the best WordPress booking plugins is the option for different employees to create custom pricing and availability. Choose a date and time. Booked The Booked WordPress plugin makes it easy for customers to book appointments on your website. I like this plugin because it comes with great add-ons for things like integrating payment options with WooCommerce, calendar integrations with Google Calendars and iCal, as well as front-end appointment management. The plugin also comes with some great shortcodes, making it possible to embed your booking calendar nearly anywhere on your site. Team Booking integrates with Google Calendar, which makes it easy for managing appointments based on everyone’s unique availability. This plugin is great for those of you who offer multiple types of services.
Out of 652 booking plugins, there are 6 to consider adding to your website
I’ll get straight to the point. If your company takes reservations or appointments, you need an online booking system — period.
Take a moment to analyze your current process. How does a customer schedule their appointment?
Without an online booking system, I’m willing to bet that the process looks something like this:
- The customer looks up your phone number.
- If they’re lucky, someone answers quickly. Otherwise, they wait on hold or reach your voicemail.
- The customer explains the service they’re looking for and asks for your availability.
- After some back and forth discussion repeating dates and times, the customer scrambles to find a piece of paper to write on so they don’t forget.
That’s assuming you can clearly understand each other over the phone. We all know sometimes it’s difficult to hear based on things like reception, accents, and background noise. Oh yeah — that’s also assuming nobody else called you while you were on the phone. Then you’re forced to let the incoming call go to voicemail, or place your current caller on hold.
Each time someone calls, it takes you away from the task you’re working on. Sure, there are some alternative solutions. You could pay someone to sit by a phone and answer calls all day. But do you really want to incur that added cost? This still isn’t your most efficient option.
Why you need a WordPress booking plugin
Adding a booking plugin to your WordPress site will do more than just improve your operational efficiency. This new system will optimize the customer experience.
Roughly 70% of consumers prefer booking appointments online.
Furthermore, 36% of people said that waiting on hold too long when booking over the phone was their biggest pain point for scheduling appointments and 20% of people said the biggest inconvenience was having to wait to call during office hours to book.
By adding a booking plugin to your WordPress site, you’ll eliminate more than half of the biggest pain points for consumers while simultaneously providing them with their most preferred booking option.
When evaluating a new service provider, 94% of consumers say they are more likely to choose one that has online booking options compared to a provider that doesn’t.
In short, adding online booking options to your website will:
- Improve your efficiency
- Enhance the customer experience
- Reduce the time it takes to book appointments
- Increase the chances of getting new customers
- Give you a competitive advantage
I think I’ve made myself clear. Now that you know the importance of having a WordPress booking plugin, you need to install one to your site.
How do you choose? What’s the best WordPress booking plugin?
Use this guide as a reference to help you decide which one is the best for your business.
One of the features that makes Bookly one of the best WordPress booking plugins is the option for different employees to create custom pricing and availability. For example, let’s say you own a gym. Each personal trainer can set their own rates. Your customers would have the option to choose the trainer they want from a dropdown menu when booking a session.
From the user end, Bookly takes them through a quick four-step process on your website.
- Select the service with the options for categories and employees, if applicable.
- Choose a date and time.
- Enter personal details like name, phone, email, and additional notes.
That’s right. Bookly even processes payments or deposits. This is great for those of you who are getting lots of no-show appointments and missing out on those earnings. If you don’t want to force your customers to pay in advance, you can set an option for paying on-site at the appointment.
You can also set up automatic text and email notifications with Bookly. Those notifications remind the customer as well as your staff members about upcoming appointments.
Bookly also lets your customers translate the booking process into their native language. This solves the problem that I talked about earlier in terms of having trouble communicating with certain customers over the phone.
Bookly lets you create promo codes to discount your services. The plugin tracks all of the data, so you can determine which deals are working the best.
With Bookly, customers can set up recurring appointments, get added to a waiting list pending cancellations, attach files, and rate your services. This WordPress plugin even has a feature for group booking.
Overall, Bookly is one of the most complete WordPress booking plugins you’ll find.