Meetings and appointments have been the pivotal arms of any business. As every organization is sales intensive, it has to rely on these two customer touch points to give more mileage to its products. Now that you have decided to give a monumental leap to your business by scheduling calls and appointments with your prospects and customers, the best way to gain optimal value is by embracing automated appointment scheduling software products.
While freezing a particular appointment scheduling software, ensure that it performs the functions that are archetypal of such tools. Here is what makes a great appointment scheduler.
Agile is an all-in-one CRM integrated with Marketing Automation and Helpdesk. The online appointment scheduling software is a major asset to the sales enablement feature in the app. The software allows your clients to schedule appointments from the list of events in the calendars and you can sync the same in other calendars.
With a unified email marketing tool, you can embed the calendar link in the nurture campaign mails. This helps your prospects to pick a date and time as per their convenience, to book a demo of your product. The app has a powerful contact management software and all the client interactions are chronicled on an easy-to-view timeline. This simplifies the process of customer tracking and enables you to send the scheduling link to the right prospect so that you spend more time with sales-ready leads.
The group appointment scheduling tool turns out to be more productive for sales and support teams. A single scheduling link serves the purpose of sharing the calendars of all your team members. This helps customers to pick any rep to set-up a meeting. For every new meeting booked, the software creates a new record and serves as a potential lead generation and management tool. However, the app is not powered to track recurring visitors.
Agile CRM is loaded with all the features of appointment scheduling and tops them with marketing and service automation. For the price of one product, you get three automation tools integrated in one platform. That’s not all. Agile CRM is free for 10 users so that all the members of your team can access, test and explore the potential of the software. The starter version is available for a shockingly low price of $8.99 / month.
If your business is heavily dependant on social media channels, then there’s nothing like Appointy. One of the amazing features of the software is that it allows you to book appointments from those channels. You can easily embed the appointment calendar on your Facebook page. So don’t worry if your website is not appealing or is still in its nascent stage.
Although the scheduler is clutter free, the booking process takes you through multiple pull down menus. The other software programs in this space offer an easy interactive calendar. Another setback for Appointy is that clients can’t cancel the appointments online. They have to call into your office to request for cancellations, which can be done by your staff manually.
As an admin on Appointy, you can easily navigate through client histories, which are in-depth and defined clearly. There is an option to set up payment schedules, create invoices and receive payments through the website.
Appointy’s free plan gives you unlimited bookings for five services but email marketing integrations cost you a reasonable $19.99 / month.
Calendly has a clean interface and relies more on Google as the sign-in process. As with every other calendar, this one provides a perfect sync with your Google calendar too. It allows you to have requests for meetings rather than book meetings straight up. Once you accept a meeting invitation, the same appointment gets added to the guest’s Google or Outlook calendar. This is a great feature in the app.
Calendly saves different meeting types and it offers a flexibility to schedule your weekly or monthly meetings based on your preferences and available time-slots. This also won't affect your default settings for new meetings. The software does a good job in scheduling meeting with reps from different teams within an organization and also enables you to share the custom event links with your clients.
Calendly comes at an affordable price. You have to go to their site and get the ‘book appointment’ link from there. Their free package may very well be enough for those who offer a single service but their $8 / month price-point for all their features is tough to beat.
If your company wants to provide employees with their own booking websites rather than one group scheduler, it can embrace SetMore. This is good in a way as every employee has his or her schedule on the site, but the difficulty lies in scheduling around each other’s availability, as a team. The downside of this software is that it lacks a group calendar. This throws inconvenience at customers who want to schedule appointments with many individuals from the same business website.
Apart from booking appointments online, customers can see the cost of appointment / visit, set recurring visits and request reminders on their mobile. They will also know their payable dues before their next visit. This also gives them a way to track their expenses. The recurring visits feature is missing in many scheduling software programs and Setmore scores there. However, a few features such as cancellation of appointment and wait-list creation are not available in the app.
The process to set up an appointment calendar is hassle-free and you can view a comprehensive customer history. SetMore also allows you to include a booking button on your website. It includes more basic tools with subtle enhancements such as auto text reminders to reduce no shows. Their free plan allows 20 staff members and unlimited customers, and their premium package is for $25/month.
Apart from the flagship appointment scheduling, vCita comes with other functions such as email marketing, contact management, customer billing and more. The online scheduling options provided by vCita can be used by your website visitors to request a call, demo or appointment with your reps.
You can generate more leads from the website using vCita contact forms, which integrate contact management along with payments and online scheduling. The forms can be placed on all the web pages to invite visitors.
Vcita helps you reduce ‘no shows’ with automated reminders and confirmations. These reminders also ensure faster payment. You can publicize your brand with customized invoices. Offering discounts and sharing documents on web portals keep vCita in the good books of businesses. On the flip side, vCita doesn’t accept many bookings for a single slot. So, it’s not friendly for businesses indulging in group training and boot camps. The app is not mobile friendly and the tricky interface forces you to zoom in and out to accept appointments. The basic version is free and more feature additions cost you from $19.90/month. Document sharing and text reminders are available in the business plan that cost $39.90/month.
If you are a sales rep who is booking dozens and dozens of meetings and is more into the cold calling environment, then such a business style calls for spending more on an application and it might well be worth it. But, if you are someone who uses appointment scheduling sparingly, then it’s not advisable to pump in heavy investments on the same. Appointment scheduling software is not something we use each and every day but it’s something that we use as a convenience from time to time. There are many services available in the market and you can simply dismiss them because of the price. No one wants a clunky and complicated scheduling tool at a hefty amount.