Written by Rory Z Fulcher
As hypnosis and hypnotherapy trainers, we’re always keeping our eyes out for products and services that are useful for our students and graduates (as well as any hypnotic professionals who read our blogs). This week, we’ve been made aware of a fantastic new online service that could revolutionise the way you book in your clients, and the best thing is, it’s free! So, if you’ve been wondering about how to streamline your client booking process, this could be ideal for you!
The global payment processing company ‘Square Up‘ have launched an ‘appointments app’ for businesses, which, upon our initial testing, is a fantastic alternative to some of the existing client booking services out there, most of which you have to pay an annual subscription to use. We personally use Square Up to accept payments, both for Hypnosis Courses Ltd, and for our own personal hypnosis businesses. Their fees are highly competitive and their payment processes are super slick, with a cool ‘square reader’ that you can hook up to your phone/tablet.
If there weren’t already enough reasons to choose Square Up to process your business payments, the addition of this new bookings app really does put Square Up high on the list for any businesses that take client bookings. It allows you to quickly and easily book in and manage your hypnotherapy clients and take payments all in one place. It sends out automated reminders to your clients (and allows them to add their appointments to their online calendars), and really just simplifies the appointment booking process for both you and your clients.
I personally tested the app yesterday, and it took me less than 20 minutes to set up and test everything, and it worked like a charm. Here’s a quick overview of what you need to do in order to get started, how it works and what the ‘client experience’ is like.
Obviously you need to sign up for a Square Up account in order that you can use the booking app. Signing up is free, and as mentioned, it’s a great way to take payments and reduce your payment fees (with fees of just 1.75% per transaction, versus PayPal’s fees of 2.9%, as an example). If you’re going to join Square Up, you can use our affiliate link to get your first £1,000 of sales with free processing (no fees):
Note: If you’d like to get a ‘Square reader’ as pictured above, that costs extra (but it’s only like £19 to order from Square Up directly).
Once you’ve signed up and downloaded the booking app, set your payment preferences (you can either take payment on booking, take a payment card for charging customers later, or book with no pre-payment), you can then choose if you want to use the dedicated booking page (which is super slick and looks great), or if you’d like to integrate your bookings with Google or Instagram as well.
After that, you can specify your availability either on a recurring or individual basis. The days and time-slots that you set will show up when a client goes to book a session with you (more on that in a bit).
Finally, add your service/services (your hypnotherapy session types). Name your services, add a price and add the ‘session duration’ (you can also add ‘extra time’ such as a 15-minute block at the end of your session in order to prep for the next client). Once that’s done, your ‘services’ will appear on the booking page, kind of like this:
…and that’s pretty much it. You can then add the booking link to your website (or anywhere else) so that when your clients are ready to book, they get directed to that page. Their bookings are added to your own calendar in the app, which you can use as a hub in order to manage your client bookings and to contact your clients.
As to what a client sees, once the client visits the booking page, it works exactly as you’d expect any booking software to work. They click to book a session, then they are presented with your available days and time slots. Once they have chosen one, they have to put in their details (name, phone & email), before confirming the session and paying (if you’re taking payments at that point).
Once booked, the client receives an email confirmation of their booking, and they also receive an SMS message confirming their booking (and another one later to remind them before the appointment). Again, all this is a built in part of the process, and is at no additional cost – all you pay is the Square Up processing fee on bookings that you make.
So, as you can see, the booking app by Square Up is a super simple but highly effective way of automating your client bookings. It’s so good, in fact, that we wrote this blog about it. When you’re ready to get started, set up your free Square Up account and have a play with the settings – it’s so user-friendly that anyone can do it, and you could start effortlessly booking in new clients within the next half an hour!
We hope you’ve enjoyed this blog on automating client bookings, and if you have any more questions about this topic, or anything else for that matter, do please get in touch, because we’re always happy to help!
– written by Rory Z Fulcher