Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Online Appointments for Everyone

Online appointments for everyone

I am still surprised to occasionally get asked ‘Why should I get an online appointment system?’

The simple answer is ‘Because that is where your customers are!’ bbu to emphasis the point I usually ask a follow series of questions

  1. Do your customers ever book a flight online?
  2. Do your customers use online banking?
  3. Do your customers ever buy anything on EBay or Amazon?

If the reply is ‘No!’

I just agree with them and say online appointments are probably not for you.

But if the reply is the more usual

‘Of course they do – doesn’t everybody?’

The conversation will go something like this.

‘You should look at YouBookIn and its competitors not primarily as an administration tools to help you manage your business, which of course they do, but as a key marketing tool to help you Grow your Business.

Online appointments enable your clients to book appointments 24/7. If you restrict your clients to making bookings from 9am-5pm, which coincides with most peoples working hours, they often have to make a special effort to make that appointment, such as find a private spot out of their bosses and colleagues hearing. With online appointments they can make that appointment while sitting at their desk at work or when they go home. Don’t forget that most people these days work in large open-plan spaces rather than private offices so private telephone calls are anything but private.

Making an appointment is even more difficult and frustrating for them if you do have a receptionist and you end up playing telephone tag with your clients.

Your clients and potential clients online are not just 20 to 40 year olds. Sites such as Ancestry.com and Friends Reunited are very popular with people in their 50s and 60s, whilst not having the mass appeal of Facebook and Youtube; they still measure their membership in the tens of millions.

If your clients are active on the web so must You.

Don’t be left behind – Go Online

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