If you’re a service-based business, the ability to accept appointments online is a must, especially given the current landscape of the industry. Survey results show that consumers now expect that level of convenience—and it’s likely you’ll lose out on sales if you’re still using the old-school, over-the-phone approach. (It’s the age of instant gratification, no one has the patience for phone tag anymore.)
Square Appointments’ online scheduling software makes it seamless for customers to book time with you. It allows clients to schedule the service, staff member, and time that works for them, and it all syncs with Google Calendar, showing your most up-to-date available time slots from any device.
Thousands of businesses in the health, beauty, and service industries now use Square Appointments to make online scheduling for small businesses as easy as possible for their clients. We took a look at how people are using appointment scheduling software and uncovered some interesting customer behaviour insights that may help frame your approach to your business’s online presence.
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They book through mobile devices.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: customers are using mobile devices and contactless payments more and more to shop and interact with businesses. And accepting cashless payments is especially important these days. This holds true for making appointments as well—74 percent of visitors to our merchant booking sites come from mobile, and 78 percent of online bookings come through mobile devices.
Square Appointments is mobile optimised to ensure a seamless experience for clients across all devices. But make sure the rest of your site is optimised as well. (Square App Marketplace has a number of excellent options for mobile-optimised online store software.)
It’s also a smart idea to add the Square Appointments scheduling link to multiple pages on your website so customers don’t have to click around too much to complete a booking. That’s easy to do with just a snippet of code.
They book during off hours.
It’s not just the convenience of mobile scheduling that people are after, it’s the ability to book appointments when a business might not be open. Forty-eight per cent of appointments made through Square Appointments are booked during off hours. Which makes sense—it’s often easier for people to take care of “personal life” tasks after they get home from work or on the weekends.
Online scheduling software like Square Appointments and Square for Retail keeps your business open for taking appointments 24/7. Consider which other aspects of your business you can automate so that you’re reachable after hours, such as customer service.
They book more than one service.
Businesses using Square Appointments experienced an average of 37 percent cumulative growth in services year over year. That means that customers are adding more services online than if they had to call.
With Square Appointments in use with the Square POS and Square Register, all the available appointments and appointment add-ons are right there in the interface. That makes it quick and easy to select, say, a haircut, a colour, and a conditioning treatment in one fell swoop right at the time of booking. Make sure you’re clearly including all the additional services that can be booked on top of a base appointment in your online scheduling software—it helps educate customers about what more you offer and can land you more sales.
Offering customers the ability to book online with appointment scheduling software is key to competing as a local service provider and running a small business. Get started with Square Appointments today and stay up to date with other Irish business resources for your service-based small business.