Many retailers think that placing a booking button anywhere on their website is enough to start taking reservations from clients and see results appear. Spoiler Alert: this is a myth!
While using an e-booking solution is supposed to be easy, there is a lot of strategic thinking and upfront work that needs to be done before embarking on the project.
It is essential to understand how the customer journey works and ask the right questions before launching this kind of project.
First and foremost, it is crucial to understand that setting up this type of project must be done as a team. And this is probably the most important step to take!
Many companies use an e-booking solution to solve some problem related to a specific department. However, no other division of the company is aware that the use of the software can be beneficial to them as well. Sometimes, they don’t even know that some department uses it! So, at the moment, the specific issue can be solved - but since only a very small part of the tool's potential is used, and no teamwork has been done beforehand, the results do not appear in the long term...
It is essential to involve the right people from the right departments in this project to see what it can achieve for everyone within the company.
Another very important step is to choose a project manager. This person will be responsible for bringing the whole company together, gathering the different teams and explaining how the appointment scheduling software can be used by each department.
Together, all relevant departments should think, consult and understand what are the challenges before launching the project. They must identify the different issues that appointment scheduling can solve such as : optimizing operations for the retail team, improving the customer journey for the CRM team, increasing website traffic for the digital team, brand awareness for marketing...
All departments have to agree depending on who defines the personas and the customer journey.
It is necessary to identify the problem, ask the right questions, and interview customers. Why do we want to offer our clients the possibility of making an appointment? What problem(s) is it supposed to solve? Who is the target? This has to be the starting point for a strategy on how to use this new feature for the company. All departments must work together to understand where the friction is and how to remove it from the customer journey.
Once this is accomplished, it is only now that you can start creating your service offering. This is also the time to set up the right promotion strategy: how to promote the appointment booking, where to place the booking button, how to communicate to customers, etc.
It is essential to think about every detail of the end-to-end journey before the project goes live and is deployed.
In conclusion, despite the simplicity of implementing an appointment scheduling software, deploying this kind of project requires a certain amount of preparation and reflection to harmonize everything and bring cohesion.
What’s also important is to choose the right solution for your needs. Many retailers around the world choose to use Booxi on a daily basis. Much more than just an e-booking solution, this tool helps retailers implement all kinds of experiences and services at every stage of the customer journey.
But remember, without teamwork, the project cannot be successful. It's the only way to observe and achieve concrete results! Discussing it with everyone else in the company can help solve problems you weren't even aware of!