Qualified sport instruction professionals are always willing to help their clients improve their stroke, swing, toss, or how ever they can help them with their particular sport. These instructors usually enjoy working with clients, watching their progress and seeing them improve. However too oftern they’re spending more and more time trying to book appointments, handle the customer service of changing or modifying the appointment.
In this day and age, its so easy to leverage technology in order to alleviate this pain. The following article details just how you as an instructional professional can utilize the power of the web to end the painful customer service duties of appointment management and get on to what you love the most, helping your clients excel.
One of the biggest selling features of any spa is that it is a place where clients can come and relax, forgetting about the worries of their day for a while. It’s a little bit ironic that so many spas can actually add stress to their client’s days through the booking process.
You may ask how is that possible? How is our booking process adding to the daily stresses our clients come here to get away from?
Well, consider the age of convenience that we live in. People are looking for ways to cut time out of almost everything they do, and booking appointment is certainly one of them. They no longer want to spend time on the telephone, trying to find out which appointments are booked and which ones taken, and figuring out a time which works best both for them and for the spa itself.
By using an online booking system for your spa, you can avoid adding to the stress burden of your clients. Instead of phoning in and comparing calendar dates, all they have to do is log onto your site on the computer.
There, they see the days of the week, possibly months in advance, and which time slots are free and which are taken. They can easily select the time slot they want to receive their treatment, without ever having to pick up a telephone.
Online booking is good for repeat clients, too. How many times have you heard a client tell you she will phone you from home after an appointment, because she needs to check her calendar first? And of course, nine times out of ten, that phone call never comes.
With an online booking system, that client can book her appointment months in advance, again without having to worry about picking up the phone. Your schedule is up 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so there’s no worry about losing a client during off hours either.
As a fitness club owner, you have probably had a situation come up a time or two when your sports facilities (be they basketball courts, tennis courts, or racquetball courts) were accidentally double booked by an employee. Four regular clients are suddenly standing at the desk, holding down anger not helped by the anticipation of a match, wrangling over who should receive the coveted 12-1 appointment on the court.
Situations like this are inevitable when one relies on a human tracking system to black out court times, but there is a way to avoid the resulting client dissatisfaction.
The use of an online appointment system added to your club’s website will ensure that courts are never double booked again. Clients can check to see which courts are available at which times, and black out the court themselves. Computer tracked records are much better than human ones in this area!
Moreover, an online booking system might actually increase the number of clients you see coming through the doors each month. Lots of people want to take up regular court sports, but are daunted by the communications issue. When they are off work, the club is getting ready to shut down. They want to make an appointment, but no one is at the desk. Instead of trying again later, they are likely to just give up.
An online booking system operating all day every day gives everyone the chance to book a court at whatever time they wish. They just check to see whats available, and slot themselves in.
Online systems can also help catch those “quickie” clients. These are the people who suddenly find themselves with nothing to do for an hour or so, and want to book a court for a game. If they have access to online information and can book that way, they will be more likely to do so rather than waste time phoning, booking, or driving in to see if anything happens to be available. You may never have empty courts again!
If your health club operates like most health clubs you have certain classes, personal training sessions, and specialized equipment that all need to be booked in advance. Scheduling appointments for these classes, meetings with trainers or to use specialty equipment can be time consuming and irritating for members that might not always be able to call in and make an appointment during regular business hours. If clients don’t get the appointment times they want they are likely to get frustrated and go somewhere else. If you want to keep your customers happy and keep them coming back to your gym you should give them the opportunity to book their appointments online.
Most people are quite familiar with the process of using the Internet to book appointments and love the freedom of being able to go online when it’s convenient for them to book appointments for the classes they want or to get an appointment with the personal trainer that they prefer. Building an online scheduler into your website that will allow customers to schedule their appointments online will make customers much more likely to come back to your health club instead of going somewhere else.
Using an automated appointment scheduling system that allows customers to book online is also preferred by customers because it gives them a written record of the appointment day and time which can help your clients create their own schedules. Some appointment scheduling software will even send clients a reminder through email the day before the appointment. With a written record of the appointment your clients will know that the appointment was made and can be certain of the day and time of their next appointment.
Installing a system to book appointments online will also make things much easier for your staff. An automated scheduling system can manage the appointments and plan out the schedule more effectively than a person can and the automated system won’t make the same kind of mistakes that a customer service rep might make. If changes need to be made to the automated schedule it’s easy for an employee to log into the system and make the appropriate changes without having to worry about appointments being lost or other scheduling mistakes being made.