As homeopaths, we love helping people. Our client work is the focus of our business and we want to make sure that we provide a personal service. However, unless we want to be a full-time receptionist as well as a homeopath, it’s wise to use a good booking system.
Simple Can Be Beautiful
Your business can be kept very, very simple with a paper diary. For many homeopaths, this system works beautifully with their client base and nothing needs to change.
Simple Can Be Frustrating Too
As our practice grows we may find that our personal work becomes secondary to our work of ‘being our own receptionist’.
We find ourselves playing email/text tag with clients who want to book or rearrange appointments.
The truth is, we are living in busy times. We are busy, and our clients are busy too. Above and beyond being busy, there are higher levels of distraction than ever before.
Busy, Busy, Busy
When people are busy but organised they remember appointments without reminders.
If they are too busy or are not organised they may forget.
How A Booking System Can Help With Appointments
An online booking system will send out an automatic booking confirmation email as soon as an appointment is made.
It will also send out a reminder to your clients without you having to do a thing. Some will also send SMS reminders as part of a paid plan.
Your booking system can also allow your client to rearrange their own appointment using a link in their appointment confirmation email.
They can book online when it’s convenient for them.
How A Booking System Can Help With Payments
If your clients book online they can also pay at the time of booking and even use a credit card quickly and easily.
Booking systems can also be used to send invoices for consultations, and products or packages or just about anything else.
You can use it to log when payment is received and view a list of outstanding invoices so you know who might need a reminder.
I resisted using a booking system for many years but during the summer of 2016 I had so many late cancellations/rearrangements and late payments I decided it was time to make the change.
It took a little while to get it set up and but my clients soon got used to the new system.
I can’t begin to count how many hours of ‘email back-and-forth’ I save every month and helps me look and feel so much more professional.
With a booking button on my website, prospective new clients can easily schedule a discovery call.
Existing clients know they can book online.
I send out invoices before each consultation.
I’m rarely paid late and I find it so useful for selling ‘add-on products’.
Why I Recommend Timely
I started out with a free booking system but I soon upgraded to GetTimely.com as it has a beautiful design and lots of useful features.
Here are the things that spring to mind:
- They have friendly UK based support people to help you get set up and answer any questions you have, plus a Facebook group community.
- They integrate with Mailchimp so new clients can choose to be added to your email list.
- It’s easy to set up invoices for payment by bank transfer (saving on card fees).
- SMS messages are included, and you can message clients directly as well as sending reminders.
- There’s an easy way to set up client intake forms.
- You can set up client packages easily.
- The phone app is great, so you can check and change things on the go.
If you’d like to try Timely*, there is a free trial period (no card details needed) and if you decide to use them, your first two months are half-price.
I’ve been recommending Timely* for years, and it’s always lovely when other homeopaths come back and tell me how good they feel about it.
What is your next step to make bookings, payments and accounting easier?
*This is an affiliated link, which means that I receive a gift card if you join Timely through me. This is not why I recommend them. 🙂