Manual appointment scheduling is laborious and prone to errors, risking profit loss due to double bookings, leading to dissatisfied customers and negatively impacting SEO performance. Various businesses, from sole proprietors to major companies, are turning to appointment platforms for efficient and error-free scheduling processes to mitigate these challenges.
In 2021, the worldwide market for online appointment software was $286 million, with a projected annual growth rate of over 18%. By 2027, it is anticipated to expand significantly, reaching a market size of $797 million. So we're halfway there. The market for appointment software is expanding rapidly.
Businesses employ appointment software to automate their scheduling activities, effectively managing and organizing meetings and appointments.
You should hurry if you own a service company and have not yet adopted appointment scheduling software. Such software allows you to optimize scheduling, increase customer satisfaction and drive business growth. Take time to leverage this valuable tool to stay ahead in today's competitive market.
Let us delve into the numbers surrounding the booking software market.
Keep in mind the business scope or targeted industry to select software with the necessary features.
Start by using the free trials of booking software to explore their features firsthand and determine if they meet your needs.
Reasons for businesses to use software for online booking
When considering the return on investment, the primary role of appointment scheduling apps is to reduce sales cycles. In addition to streamlining administrative tasks and improving accuracy in report monitoring, these apps help attract and retain customers while optimizing customer, employee, and appointment management. This allows businesses to allocate their time and resources to more critical endeavors, maximizing productivity and profitability.
Businesses that offer the ability to make appointments online mention a 24% increase in the number of applications. A 30% to 45% revenue increase is highly possible with appointment scheduling software. And re-booking reminders result in a 30% growth in repeat appointments.source — FinancesOnline.com
Introducing 4 compelling advantages to consider:
Enhance clients' satisfaction: appointment schedulers provide customers with a seamless and convenient way to book service appointments. This improved user experience attracts new customers and fosters loyalty among existing ones. Research indicates that many customers prefer online appointment scheduling over other methods, making it a powerful marketing tool.
Optimize revenue generation: Automating the booking process frees up staff's time, enabling them to focus on serving more customers and generating additional revenue. The software seamlessly integrates with electronic payment gateways, streamlining the billing process and facilitating faster payments, ultimately boosting the company's financial performance.
Enhance staff efficiency: Service professionals often juggle multiple customer appointments during peak hours. Without appointment scheduling software, the risk of double bookings and scheduling conflicts increases, leading to customer frustration and reduced efficiency. With the software's intuitive scheduling and rescheduling features, employees can easily manage appointments, confirming them with customers to ensure optimal time utilization.
Reduce no-shows and maximize productivity: The software proactively tracks upcoming bookings and automatically sends customer reminders via phone, text, or email. Some applications even allow customers to confirm appointments directly through these reminders. This proactive approach minimizes the occurrence of no-shows, ensuring better utilization of employee time and resources.
Embracing booking technology empowers businesses to thrive in a competitive landscape while delivering exceptional service to valued customers.
Top features businesses can expect in booking solutions
Notifications & reminders about bookings
Staff and customer management
Business analytic tool
Compatibility with social networks, CRM, and other platforms
Appointment scheduling software types
Robust desktop applications
These software solutions are licensed and installed directly on the user's hardware. With extensive features and reporting capabilities, desktop applications offer customization options. However, one limitation is the lack of an online employee and customer access portal. End users maintain, support, and upgrade the installed applications.
Web-based systems (SaaS)
This type of appointment scheduling software is provided by third-party vendors as a hosted solution. One significant advantage is the convenience it offers customers, allowing them to book and schedule appointments online. These web-based systems eliminate the need for installation and provide flexibility regarding access and management.
Within web-based systems, a notable variation is Customer Appointment Management (CAM) Software. Specifically designed for large mobile workforces, CAM software automates the scheduling and routing in-home service appointments. By leveraging proprietary algorithms that analyze the work patterns of mobile employees, CAM software accurately predicts a service technician's arrival time, reducing customer wait times to as low as 60 minutes. These SaaS systems are user-friendly, easily deployable, and often offer flexible pricing packages.
By understanding the different software types, businesses can choose the solution that best aligns with their specific needs, whether a robust desktop application with advanced customization or a web-based system that provides seamless online booking capabilities.
Nearly 70% of respondents say they would book online if various booking options were available, compared to only 22% who would book by phone.Hedges, L. — Analyst, (2021, April 8, Online Booking Options Can Get You More Clients.)
Global appointment software market in numbers
In various industries, appointments are particularly popular for efficient management, but it's no surprise that the healthcare and beauty industries have emerged as clear leaders. These sectors rely heavily on appointment-based services to ensure timely access to medical consultations, salon services, and beauty treatments. With a significant share of 25% and 21%, respectively, healthcare and beauty industries consistently demonstrate the importance of effective scheduling solutions in meeting the needs of their clients. Additionally, appointments play a significant role in the maintenance industry (19%), gym classes (15%), and entertainment, further highlighting the diverse sectors that benefit from appointment-based systems.
How customers find online-booking pages
social media 37%
web referral 31%
organic search 3.5%
paid search 0.5%
Features that tiny businesses look for in appointment scheduling services
calendar management 36%
automatic alerts 21%
resource scheduling 20%
How clients typically schedule their appointments with business
It is no secret that users have long favored self-sufficiency when scheduling their appointments. With a smartphone, they can easily order meals, purchase bags, and book appointments at salons or courses. That is why it is no surprise that the leading method for scheduling appointments is online, providing users with the convenience and flexibility to manage their booking process.
Facts of online appointment technology
The preference for online appointment booking extends to specific industries as well. Take, for example, the spa, nail studio, and beauty salon industry. Nearly 50% of all appointments in this sector are made online, and what's even more intriguing is that a significant portion of these online bookings occurs outside of traditional salon business hours.
This trend highlights the increasing demand for flexibility and accessibility among customers. By allowing individuals to schedule appointments online, even outside the typical operating hours, spas, nail studios, and beauty salons can cater to a broader range of customers who have busy schedules or prefer to make appointments at their convenience.
Online scheduling leads to 26% more new customers.Yocale — 2021
Based on facts and order history, analysts predict an average 30% to 45% increase in company revenue when using appointment scheduling software. 59% of customers are discontented with being put on hold and the disruptive office hours associated with phone bookings (GetApp, 2021).
Appointment scheduling software eliminates common hurdles like long wait times by empowering patients to book their services. Implementing online scheduling for doctors improves convenience and fosters patient engagement. 35% of customers indicate online appointment options are a deciding factor when picking a healthcare provider
Physicians who offer online appointments alongside phone appointments were booked 24% more than those who offer phone appointments only.Dental Economics — 2021
After deploying a two-way appointment reminder system, Riverside Medical Clinic significantly reduced the number of no-shows by 33%. Moreover, the number of appointments increased by 94.5%.
With online appointment booking taking less than a minute, compared to the average of 8.1 minutes via phone (taking into account staff call transfers 63% of the time), embracing online scheduling significantly reduces the time and effort required for appointment management, benefiting both the customers and the staff.
Price of the issue: how much does appointment software cost?
When researching pricing for booking software, it is worth noting that developers often offer a free plan with limited functionality. Paid plans usually depend on the staff size, notification limits, and booking capabilities and offer additional features and customization options.
Here is a list of some popular appointment schedulers:
EasyWeek – individual users can benefit from a free software plan with features like online appointments, a free website, calendar management, and notifications by email and push. The basic business plan starts at $16,99 monthly (including 3 users, 1 location) and $4 for each additional user. Two thousand bookings for each plan.
Simplybook – a free plan with a limitation of 1 user and 50 bookings per month, $9,90 monthly for the next plan (5 users and 100 bookings)
Booksy – prices start at $50/month and go up to $100/month.
Planfy – start from $17/month for 250 bookings
10to8 — aside from the free forever plan, prices start at $9.6/month and go up to $40/month.
Appointy – free plan with limited users and services, paid plans start from $49,99, add staff - $5 (including one user), 2000 appointments a day.
The business reality is that most service industries are accelerating down the path of digital appointments. This new economy is a way to improve customer interaction and service across all business sectors. Moreover, that can only mean one thing: the time of both customers and business owners must always be valued.
Consider the appointment scheduling trend to stay relevant in business scope and retain customers. Test out online booking with a free trial to know how it works.