Before you start setting up your services and staff members, make sure to go through these settings to provide basic information to help both you and your visitors have a smooth booking experience.

To access the basic Scheduling settings, click on Settings in the left-side menu.

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General settings

In General you can add the following:

  • Time and languages: select the time zone in which your business is based.

      What does the time zone setting do?

    If a visitor is booking an appointment on your website and is based in a different time zone than the one you're in, a small time zone indicator will show on the booking wizard making visitors aware which time zone they are booking in. All times on the wizard will be in your time zone.

    If you're changing your time zone after you've started accepting appointments, existing bookings will keep the original booking time i.e. a booking made with the time zone Europe/Copenhagen at 2PM (GMT+1) will be at 8AM (GMT-5) when changing to the time zone America/New_York.

    You can also add more languages if you wish to be able to display service descriptions, staff introductions and other texts in multiple languages.
  • Currency settings: add one or more currencies that you accept for payments. If you are operating with multiple languages, associate a currency with each of your languages by selecting it from the Primary currency dropdown.

      Prices and payments

    The current version of Scheduling does not support direct online payments for services. Payment between service provider and customer must therefore be arranged to take place in another environment, for example through in-store credit card or cash purchase.

  • Calendar settings: select whether you prefer Monday or Sunday as your first week day in the calendar view. Tick Show weekend if you want Saturday and Sunday to be visible in your calendar view.
  • Scheduling settings: tick Automatically approve appointments if you want new, incoming appointments to be automatically approved by the system. If this is not ticked, every new appointment will be marked as "Pending" in your calendar view and you'll need to manually change their status.

    You can set a fixed time slot offset as a default on all appointments made by ticking the box Use fixed time slots and selecting either 15, 30 or 60 minute sizes. Fixed time slots mean that the system automatically "rounds up" appointment start times to the nearest quarter, half hour or whole hour.

    This setting is particularly useful if you have services with odd durations, such as 21 or 25 minutes. If, for example, you have a 21-minute service and you haven't specified a fixed time slot duration, visitors will be able to book an appointment every 21 minutes which results in odd start times for appointments.

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    However, if you've set your fixed time slot size to 30 minutes, new appointments can only be started at every half-hour mark (09:30, 10:00, 10:30, etc.) providing more customer-friendly start times and allowing for easier calendar management as well.
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    In the field Visitors can book into the future, you can define how many days from now that visitors are able to schedule appointments. For example, if today is January 1 and you have specified that customers can book 30 days into the future, the Scheduling booking flow will show available time slots in the calendar up until and including January 30.
  • Email notifications sender email: when appointments are booked or changed, automatic notifications will be sent out to the customer and the staff member booked for the appointment, if you have enabled these. In the field Email you can specify which email address and name should show as the sender on these emails.

      Using a "noreply" sender email address

    It may be a good idea to carefully consider which email address you put as the sender of notification emails. If you use your own business email, for example joe@thecookieshop.com, customers can reply directly to you on all notification emails sent to them. Alternatively, you can select to use a "noreply" email address, for example noreply@thecookieshop.com, to indicate to customers that they are not supposed to reply to the notification messages. If you decide to do so, consider clearly indicating in the notification template texts that customers can't reply to the messages.

  • SMS sender name: if you are sending out SMS notifications to customers or staff members, you can specify which sender name you want displayed on the SMS messages (max. 11 characters).

 

Business information

Add your general business information in this tab to ensure that your customers have the right information about your business. The information added here can be automatically plotted into the notifications and reminders sent out to your customers and staff members.

 

Opening hours

Add your regular opening hours during when you are able to accept appointments. The hours you select here define which hours are available and which are greyed out (unavailable) in your calendar view.

If you have days or specific periods where your opening hours differ from the regular hours, you can add these under Special working hours. Click the Create new button and give the special opening hours a title (for example "Christmas", "Black Friday", etc.). If you're open for the full day(s) during the period, toggle All day. If you're only open during a certain interval of the day, click on the Start date and End date fields to specify the date(s) and time(s).

Finally, if you want to be able to accept appointment bookings during this period with special hours, toggle Available.

 

Terms and conditions

Add your terms and conditions and your data privacy policy. Visitors can read these and provide their consent during the booking flow after inputting their contact details. You can add the following texts for both your terms and conditions and your data privacy policy:

  • Headline: visitors see this once they've clicked the link text on the same page where they fill in their contact details.
  • Body text: add your terms and policies in this field. You can format your text using the Text Editor. Visitors see this text immediately under the headline text.
  • Description for tick box in Scheduling wizard: this text will be displayed as the link text on the page where visitors fill in their contact details. Clicking the link text, an overlay will open displaying the headline and body texts.

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If you don't want to show any terms and conditions, untoggle Show terms andconditions checkbox to visitors during booking flow. 

Toggle Require visitors to consent to your privacy policy before being able tocomplete a booking if you don't want visitors to be able to complete the booking without having consented (ticking the box) to your privacy policy.

 

Notifications and reminders

Here you can create the standard email and SMS templates that are sent out to customers at various stages of the appointment flow. You can also create templates that are sent out to the booked staff member. You have the option of creating email/SMS templates for the following scenarios:

  • Pending appointment: email sent out when a booking has been made by a visitor and is awaiting your approval.
  • Cancelled appointment: email sent out when you move an appointment to status "Cancelled" on your Calendar view, or a visitor cancels it. 
  • Rejected appointment: email sent out when you move an appointment to status "Rejected" on your Calendar view, or the booked staff member rejects it.
  • Approve appointment: email sent out when you move an appointment to status "Approved" on your Calendar view.
  • Rescheduled appointment: email sent out when you have changed the time on an appointment on your Calendar view.
  • Reminder appointment: open this template to specify how many hours prior to the appointment you want this email to be sent out. Here you can also write a template text for the reminder SMS that is sent to the customer and/or staff member.
  • Follow up appointment: open this template to specify how many hours after the appointment you want this email to be sent out. Only customers receive this type of email, not staff.
  • Missed appointment: email sent out when you have marked a customer as a "no show" on a Done appointment on your Calendar view. Only customers receive this type of email, not staff.

Remember that notification messages are only sent out if you have toggled Activate this notification message on each template.

Read more about the various appointment statuses here.

After you have filled in the email and SMS templates, you can visualize what they look like by sending out test messages. Click either the Send test email or Send test SMS button and select which notification message type you wish to send out and to whom. 

  Sender email address on notifications

In Settings -> General, you can specify which email address should show as the sender on all email notifications sent out to customers and booked staff members.

 

Formatting the email templates

For each of the templates, you can write a subject line and a body text. You format text using the Text Editor toolbar.

Moreover, you can feed specific pieces of information about the relevant appointment into the email template using variable tags. Using this method you can also add information about the service booked, the staff member booked, and your business information.

Full list of applicable variables for email templates

{{appointment_status}}
{{appointment_date}}
{{appointment_time}}
{{appointment_date_time}}
{{appointment_notes_to_customer}}
{{appointment_reference_number}}
{{service_duration}}
{{service_name}}
{{service_description}}
{{service_price}}
{{customer_full_name}}
{{customer_first_name}}
{{customer_last_name}}
{{customer_email}}
{{customer_phone}}
{{customer_notes}}
{{employee_full_name}}
{{employee_first_name}}
{{employee_last_name}}
{{employee_email}}
{{employee_phone}}
{{business_name}}
{{business_email}}
{{business_phone}}
{{business_mobile}}
{{business_description}}
{{business_website}}
{{business_fax}}
{{business_address}}
{{business_street}}
{{business_city}}
{{business_zip}}
{{business_state}}
{{business_country}}

 

  Using variables

You can use variables both in the template message body text and in the email subject line as well.

 

Example of email using variables

Dear {{customer_full_name}},

Thank you for booking {{service_name}} with {{business_name}}. We are checking our availability and will get back to you as soon as possible. If you have any questions in the meantime, feel free to contact us.

Email: {{business_email}}

Phone: {{business_phone}}

Best,

{{business_name}}

 

Creating an email footer template

You have the option of creating an email footer template that will be added at the bottom of all notification and reminder emails sent out. You can create one template for all emails sent out to customers and one for emails sent out to the booked staff member(s), respectively.

As with all the notification and reminder email templates, you can format the footer text using the Text Editor and add variables as well.

 

Calendar sync

If staff members want to view their appointments in an external calendar application, for example Google Calendar, Outlook or iOS Calendar, you can sync it with their calendar from Scheduling. The only requirement is that the external calendar application supports the iCal format. You can create multiple calendar syncs, for example one for each of your staff members.

  How does the sync work?

The calendar sync works one way: from your calendar in Scheduling to the external calendar application. Any events you have created on your external calendar will not be synced back to the Editor. The one-way sync is dynamic, meaning that any new appointments booked in Scheduling will automatically be synced to your external calendar application. Be aware that it may take multiple hours for the external calendar to detect and update the changes. Refer to your provider's documentation for information on update frequency.

To set up a sync, first give it a meaningful title to help you identify it later on. Select which appointment status(es) you wish to display on the external calendar. Finally, select which staff member(s) calendar to sync. Click the Save button in the top-right corner to generate the shareable URL.

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After you've clicked Save, the shareable URL will show. Copy this URL and paste it into you external calendar application.

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Once you've generated the shareable URL in the Editor, you can paste it into any calendar application that supports the iCal format. Please consult the external calendar provider's technical documentation to find out how to import a calendar through a sharable URL.

 

Example: syncing your calendar to Google Calendar

If you're syncing your Scheduling calendar to Google Calendar, log in to your Google account and navigate to Calendar > Settings > Add calendar > From URL. Paste the shareable URL from the Editor into the field and click on Add calendar. The synced appointments will now show up in your Google Calendar.

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Example 2: syncing your calendar to Outlook Calendar

If you're syncing your Scheduling calendar to Outlook Calendar, log in to your Outlook account and navigate to Calendar > Import calendar > From web. Paste the shareable URL from the Editor into the field Link to the calendar, give it a name in Calendar name and click on Import. The synced appointments will now show up in your Outlook Calendar.

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Wizard customization

Here you can customize the bits of text that appear to the visitor during the various steps of the booking flow, enabling you to provide relevant information at the time of need.

In each step you can customize the headline, the introduction text, and the text on the button that visitors click to get to the next step in the booking flow.

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