We’ve all been there, juggling multiple conversations, across several different apps… WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook messenger, texts, and email. As your business grows this can quickly become chaotic, absorbing a lot of your personal time, and affecting your patient rapport.
This blog will outline what you can do to manage appointments effectively and how introducing a software solution can support you to create processes to benefit both your business requirements and patient’s experience.
Managing your Appointments
Firstly, how are you currently managing your appointments. Is your beloved paper diary full of crossed out names and arrows showing the rescheduling of appointments from one time to another? Perhaps, you are using a built-in calendar that comes with your phone, such as Google or Apple calendars to manage your diary.
However, managing your appointments through these methods can soon become time consuming and hard to manage as you need to schedule each appointment manually yourself. These methods also do not offer the opportunity to link appointments to patient records, allowing you easy access to the history of patient’s treatments.
If this sounds like you, then the first step for a cohesive aesthetic booking system would be to explore your options available with in-clinic management software. You should look for a software that is designed specifically for aesthetic practitioners with a dedicated diary. The system should be able to store all your patients records in one place and be quick to select returning patients.
But how can practitioner’s work even more efficiently, saving themselves time and improving their patient’s experience? The answer: Online Booking.
What is online booking?
An online booking system is a software solution used for self-serve appointment management, allowing patients to book appointments themselves through your own unique booking page which can link to your website or social media.
Your business is always open
You will never miss a potential booking! Did you know that between 4pm and 8pm on a Sunday is the most popular time to book an appointment? This is likely when people have the most downtime, allowing them to plan for their weeks ahead. As an independent business you could be losing out on a large amount of footfall. However, with an online booking system, whether you’re in clinic, training or even having a week in the sun, patients can view the treatments you offer and your availability at a time that suits them. Essentially, your business is open 24/7 for bookings!
Create a professional first impression
Online booking systems can boost your professional impression. The first impression of a webpage is made within the first few seconds on the page meaning an efficient booking system with easy processes can boost the conversion rate from browsing activity to active bookings. In the UK, it is estimated that 45 million users are active on social media and of those active users 28% are seen to research products and services to buy. Without an online booking system in place, you could be missing out on a huge number of potential patients.
Appointment confirmations and reminders
In today’s busy society patients can sometimes lose track of their scheduled appointments. However, with an online booking system automatic confirmations and reminders will be sent to patients regarding their appointments, removing this mind-dumbing admin task from eating into your personal time. By creating set foundations and a rhythm for appointment confirmations and reminders this will reduce the number of no-show appointments and late cancellations, allowing you to focus on what matters most, the patient experience and your clinical procedures.
Protect your time and business
There is nothing more annoying than a patient not turning up to their appointments or receiving a last-minute cancellation, effecting your business growth, and reducing your productivity. However, deposits are a great way to prevent this loss of income and create a compensation blanket for your wasted time. Now, you may already request bank transfers. However, it can be a time-consuming process to keep on top of including chasing payments before the appointment. Online bookings allow you to charge patients a deposit at the time of booking to secure their appointment, stating your cancellation policy which patients must agree to before their booking is complete.
Also, this gives patients the ability to easily reschedule appointments. It can be easy to forget to get in touch to cancel or reschedule an appointment, especially when it’s out of hours. However, by making it easier for patients to cancel or reschedule with a simple click of a button you are likely to reduce your last-minute cancellations and no shows.