What to look for in booking software

Booking Software: Everything you need to know

With the surge of “touchless” and “virtual” ways to do everything, the need for your practice to implement an easy-to-use online booking system has never been greater. Your practice is unique and there are hundreds of available online booking systems. How do you choose the right booking software to meet the needs of both your patients and your practice? Here are a few key points to consider when choosing an online booking system.

What is an Online Booking System?

Often called medical scheduling software, online booking systems help automate the appointment scheduling process using a digital interface between patients and providers. While there are many features and functions included with any online booking system, the most basic function of automating appointment scheduling delivers a more convenient patient experience and reduces strain on administrative staff. Happier patients paired with a more efficient workforce almost certainly means a better patient experience.

What Industries Can Benefit From an Online Booking System?

You don’t have to own a medical practice to reap the benefits of using an online booking system! This post will primarily focus on benefits for medical professionals in relation to COVID-19. The following industries can also benefit from an online booking system:

  • Chiropractic
  • Dental
  • Dermatology
  • Salon and Spa
  • Veterinary
  • Vision Care
  • And more

This is only a sampling of the industries that can benefit from online booking. Any industry that offers appointments should offer this convenient service. Combined with appointment reminders, online booking can help grow your appointments and reduce your no-show rates.

Why Your Practice Needs Online Booking Software

In the wake of COVID-19, patients are looking for a way to connect with their medical providers with as little contact as possible. There are unavoidable reasons that require patients to be seen, especially if medication needs to be prescribed. In any circumstance that requires your patient to enter the office, you want to provide them with user-friendly technology and a safe environment.

How does cloud-based booking software make the experience more enjoyable for both patients and your practice?

Clients want convenience – Times are changing, and today’s patients expect to get what they want when they want it. Online booking allows patients to request an appointment on their terms via their smartphone, tablet, or computer. 

Reduces no-shows – Missed patient appointments not only affect revenue but also throws off your schedule. A cloud-based booking system typically sends out automated appointment reminders, ensuring patients don’t miss their appointment.

Improves staff efficiency – There are always tasks that your staff could be doing, other than manually scheduling appointments. By automating the appointment scheduling process, your staff will have more time to devote to other areas of your practice.

Better scheduling – Your online booking software puts you in charge of your schedule, allowing you to plan your day ahead of time. You can see how busy your day is and how many open time slots are available for last-minute appointments.

User-friendly – Online booking software is user-friendly for both practices and patients. You can choose the available dates, times, and even websites that patients can book an appointment from. On the patient side, your patients will appreciate how easy it is to book an appointment.

What features to look for when choosing an online booking software?

It’s important to choose the best cloud-based online scheduling system for your staff and your patients. Online Booking from Demandforce makes it easy for patients to easily view your real-time availability, schedule their own appointments, and instantly receive an automated confirmation email.

5 Essential Online Booking Features

Fill your calendar 24/7 with key online booking features that enable your practice to book more appointments. Here are 6 essential features to consider when looking for the right online booking system for your practice.

1. Real-Time Availability

A major advantage of an online booking system is integration with your current practice management system to display your schedule in real-time. This feature lets your patients get the time slots they want without the risk of double booking. Patients get to see your practice’s availability online in an uninterrupted format, which makes coming to your office more convenient.

2. Customizable Settings

Customizable settings are useful for medical practices with multiple providers who have different schedules. Look for an Online Booking system that enables you to predetermine which appointment types, procedures, and providers patients can view and schedule. This lets you create custom calendar blocks to ensure that patients can only view and schedule appointments for specific dates and times.

3. Calendar Embed for your Website

Having the option to add Online Booking to your website is a must for attracting new patients and retaining existing ones. A comprehensive online booking solution should include functionality that allows you to embed your online booking calendar on any site, including your website, business listings, and social media pages.

4. Automated Email Notifications

Once a patient books an appointment, a good online booking system should notify the patient and provider immediately of the new appointment. In addition, the email notification should include an option for the patient to add the appointment to their personal calendar. This functionality greatly reduces the risk of no-show appointments and revenue loss.

5. One Consolidated View

The ability to see all of your appointment requests in one dashboard is a huge plus of any booking software. Look for the ability to view, accept, or reschedule appointments from one dashboard to help streamline your appointments and boost the productivity of front office staff. The ability to view all of your appointment requests in a single dashboard can also help your practice quickly and easily plan for the day ahead. 

6. Booking Source Tracking and Reporting 

Being able to measure your online booking software’s success will help your practice gain a better understanding of how patients are booking their appointments and which sources are the most effective. It’s not enough to simply view your past and future appointments. Look for an online booking software that provides key metrics like:

  • Total number of booking requests
  • Distribution of new and returning patients
  • Booking sources
  • Distribution of booking requests from each source
  • Top appointments booked

Online Booking Performance

Measuring your online booking software’s success will help your practice gain a better understanding of how patients are booking their appointments and which sources are more popular. It’s not enough to simply view your past and future appointments. Your online booking software needs to display key metrics, including:

  • Total number of booking requests
  • Distribution of new and returning clients
  • Booking sources
  • Distribution of booking requests from each source
  • Top appointments booked

Going Online With Demandforce Changes Everything

If you’re not already offering convenient appointment scheduling options to your patients, Demandforce can help! Our Online Booking software makes it easy for your patients to view your real-time availability and schedule appointments 24/7. Plus, your front office staff will be able to spend more time on other tasks and less time on the phone. Book a demo with Demandforce today to upgrade your appointment scheduling system and discover other features that could help improve your practice.

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