As Peter Drucker says, ‘’Business has two functions - marketing and innovation.” Innovations in business are crucial to let the clients remain engaged and to attract new clients. No business can witness a good number of clients without providing them a facile and convenient service.
Getting an appointment has always been a hard cross to bear for customers. A facile way of providing appointments and bookings to the customers is the first step of a successful business.
SimplyBook is an online platform that helps you in creating, monitoring, and managing the schedule for online bookings. It helps the customers to get an appointment easily and remain updated about the bookings. The only thing they would need is the Internet.
- There are several themes for creating a schedule for your company.
- It also allows you to accept payments through Bitcoins.
- It also has a feature of gifts and coupons.
- There are several custom features.
- A few custom features are paid.
- Some features work only when you are subscribed to the premium version.
SimplyBook is an online scheduling platform that helps you in creating a schedule for appointments and bookings. It has many more features to manage and monitor the booked and upcoming appointments.
We shall review all the features of the platform and shall try to compare it with other platforms of the same kind to know it better. We shall analyze all the features and functions of the platform in-depth to conclude in the end.
We began with pros and cons; now, we shall see the basic features and then move forward with other internal details.
Let us begin with the account creation and user interface of the platform.
Beginning with the platform
Creating an account is facile with SimplyBook. You can do it by visiting the official website of SimplyBook.
You need to provide the name, email, name of the company, and description abut the company to create the account.
You can then create a password of your choice that is easy to remember and login to the SimplyBook account.
When you log into the account, the following screen appears. The home page of your account shows the map that denotes the location that you entered during the creation of the account.
Moreover, the platform also mentions the current location from where you operate the account. ‘Book now’ allows the client to book an appointment with the respective organization.
Readers are requested to notice the difference between the tasks of the admin or the company head and the customer of the firm.
In the next section, we shall see the booking functions and associated features.
Booking an appointment
You can book an appointment by using ‘book now,’ an option on the home page. When you choose to book an appointment, the platform shows you the available services of the company.
You can select any of the available services. If the company does not name the services, they appear as service 1, service 2, and service 3.
You can choose any service from them. After choosing the desired service, you are required to provide your details to confirm the booking.
The platform provides a calendar that helps you to choose the slot of the appointment. After your booking is confirmed, you get a notification through an email on your registered email Id.
You can also cancel the booking directly from your profile. You also receive an email confirming your cancellation of the booking.
Syncing and other features
When you book an appointment, you can use it as a reminder by adding it to the calendar. You can achieve this by syncing your calendar with SimplyBook.
The image shows the available calendar that the platform supports for creating reminders. However, the platform does not directly provide an option for syncing the calendar.
You need to sign up or log into the respective account. For example, if you wish to create a reminder using a Google Calendar, you need to log into your google account or must create an account if you do not have one.
The same modus operandi applies on all the available options. The calendar options that appear in the image are all that you can have. You can neither add nor remove any other calendar to the list.
Acquiring constant feedback and review about the services is one of the key secrets of a successful business. SimplyBook knows the fact, and thus, it allows the customers to write a review about the service that they took from the company.
Moreover, you can also rate the service with the help of rating stars on the review panel. To provide a review, you need to log into through any of the three available accounts on the review panel.
Administrative features and functions
So far, we have discussed the features and functions that re available to you as a customer. From this section, we shall discuss the features and functions that you get as an administrator.
As an administrator, you get features under categories like dashboard, welcome, calendar, manage, time settings, reports, custom features, settings, booking page, plans and prices, and live help.
The dashboard is more of a statistics panel. It shows the statistics regarding the bookings on the platform of the company. It shows the bookings of the current day, weekly bookings, total bookings.
You can also find some other information like workload, tariff, cancellations, and a few more. The panel also shows which services are popular among the customers.
These statistics help you in taking the necessary steps to improve and increase the business.
The welcome section helps you to create and customize the booking system. You get various tutorial videos under various categories that help you in creating a unique and innovative booking system.
The interface of a system plays an important role in attracting new customers. It helps them to get an idea about the website.
Moving forward, the next option that we encounter is the calendar.
The calendar allows you to create a slot for every service that is available at the booking system. You can set break timings that prevent customers from booking an appointment during that time.
You can also download the calendar or say information in the calendar in the form of an excel sheet or a PDF file, which you can print further.
The manage feature
The next function in the list is ‘manage.’ As the name suggests, it helps you in managing the booking system if your company.
It provides options to manage services, service providers, clients, users, coupons, and gift cards.
You change the sequence of services and service providers. The platform also allows you to hide the name of any service or service provider if you do not want to make it public.
The client usually registers himself through the client or customer page. You can manage them through the client section of manage.
The administrator can add a new client to the list on his own, and he also has the right to delete any existing clients or edit the already available details.
‘Users’ is another category of administrative functions. This option allows the administrator to manage the users. Through this option, you can add new users to the system.
By providing the required details, you can add a new user. A user group allows you to limit the rights of the newly created user. The user group has options like admin, senior employee, junior employee, viewer, operator.
All these groups have different rights and duties in the booking system. Admin naturally is the most powerful user group and has the largest set of rights.
Gifts and coupons
Gifts and coupons are a good way of attracting new clients. SimplyBook allows you to add the feature of gifts and coupons o the booking system.
But this is a custom feature. It means that the feature is available in the custom section. Also, to activate this feature, you need to enable the ‘accept payment’ in the custom feature section.
If you think this is the only requirement, then you are wrong. You also need to upgrade your subscription of SimplyBook to use this feature.
In the next section, we shall discuss the payment feature of the booking system.
The payment system in the platform
The payment system in SimplyBook is vibrant and supports several payment methods. After enabling ‘Accept payment’ in the custom features section, you get various settings.
The settings include general settings, currency settings, invoice settings, and Email settings. General settings allow you to set the time out period of the payment, which lies in the range of five minutes to three weeks.
Through currency settings, you can choose any currency of the world to accept payment, and the customer pays in that currency only.
Invoice settings help you in making changes in the invoice system and the invoice that is generated for the customer as a receipt of the payment.
The email and SMS are also used to notify and confirm the payment or to inform about the cancelation of the payment.
SimplyBook has a default template for the email and the SMS, but if you wish, you can change it to the one that suits you.
You can add several payment methods to the system. The image below shows a few payment methods that the platform allows you to add to the booking system.
We shall discuss other custom features in upcoming sections in a while.
Booking Page and other settings
You get various settings to enhance the working of your booking system.
The various available settings are general, company information, design, services, service providers, and bookings. The general settings include settings like an SMS gateway, system users, and clients.
Company information deals with the settings of information that you submit during the creation of the SimplyBook account. You can also delete the account from here.
Design deals with settings of themes and colors or, more correctly, the interface of the platform of the company website.
Service and service providers deal with the services that you give to the customers. ‘Service providers’ deals with those organizations or individuals that let you deliver their services to the customers through your platform.
If you wish, you can create a Facebook page of your platform from here and then can manage it. The last setting category helps you to achieve this.
Booking.page is one of the few last options on the platform. Through this option, you can edit and add some more information about the company by adding a logo and a few other means.
You can also add more services to the company profile. The platform automatically provides the list of the services according to the name of the business you choose in the beginning at the time of creating a profile.
In the same way, you can also add or edit the name of the service providers. Like the services, the list of service providers also shows only the relevant service providers according to the name of the business.
Custom features are those features of the platform that you do not get by default. You need to enable them if you wish to use them. Payment is one of the custom features that we have already discussed.
But you do not get all the features merely by adjusting the enable button. Some of the custom features are paid. You need to pay some amount to enable and use them. Custom Domain name is one such feature.
The custom features are useful and can improve the working and efficiency of the platform.
The help and support section of the platform is vibrant. A live chat option is also available for instant messaging.
The platform seems fitting to the expectations of the users. When used as a customer, the platform does not disappoint people.
You may find a few drawbacks if seen through an admin’s perspective. Some features which are placed in the custom features section are generally expected in the category of basic options like the payment and SMS gateway.
The reluctance of some features to come in action in the absence of some other feature is also not appreciable.
Apart from these drawbacks, admins cherish a few features. The allowance to accept bitcoins is a pleasant gift for cryptocurrency lovers.
Also, the number of payment methods it supports is quite appealing. The colorful and bright themes spellbind the individuals for whom the interface is an issue.
For now, the platform is ready to be used on a small scale or say for small businesses, but it has to a little longer to become a prominent choice for large scale and international business heads.