|May 24, 2009, 01:56 AM||#1|
Anyone know about online appointment scheduling software?
I have a client who has inquired about having a completely automated appointment scheduling system online. He also needs it to be able to collect a deposit from the customer when making an appointment.
I was searching around and found a few online solutions with a monthly fee.
2 of the big ones that seem to come up a lot are:
Appointment Quest - http://www.appointmentquest.com
Appointment Plus - http://www.appointment-plus.com/
Does anyone have any experience using these services, or similar ones? Can anyone recommend other options available?
|May 24, 2009, 09:42 AM||#2|
I have seen this one before. They have a free version that you can use, however it does not do credit cards. You have to pay for that.
There are many online services that can help you do this. I have not seen any free ones. I have seen some premade PHP scripts like this on hotscripts.com or similar before. They lack some of the features you would be looking for, however.
That seems like a fun project to code. Grab your favorite framework if you don't want to do it from scratch, and get going! The difficult part might be the "automated" part.
I am having trouble wondering why your client doesn't want some level of control over the appointment scheduler. Perhaps they are too busy.
I am not sure if PHP will ever replace a good old-fashioned secretary.
|May 24, 2009, 04:32 PM||#3|
|Oct 29, 2009, 11:38 AM||#4|
a few others
i have used both of these companies and would definitely recommend them both. i spent a few months trying to find the right scheduling program to work within our budget. both of these places have free trials.
For us cost was really important, so we eventually went with Acuity, however Genbook is BY FAR the better of the two ones with its GOOGLEness features. It has tons of drag and drop and quick features that are really nice, but for us it wasnt worth the extra monthly cost.
Acuity is really customizable and has worked great for us.
|Nov 19, 2012, 01:40 AM||#6|
I used appointment-plus for my business for many years. The interface is decent, the back-end stuff is very powerful in what it can do. The people are (generally) great to deal with...
They didn't know how to do a proper backup and restore. (I sincerely hope they've improved by now.)
Long story short: One day I logged in and every single one of my appointments, past and future, was listed as being under a single customer. All customer information, other than that one (who wasn't even my customer, apparently he was a customer of a different client of appointment-plus,) was gone. They sent an apologetic email, said there was a problem with their system, and that they'd have it restored from backup within the day.
A day passed, and nothing changed. I emailed, got a form reply that they were working on it. I called a couple days later and got an "everything is restored, thanks!"
Uh, no, it wasn't. Apparently their backup was corrupt, so it restored the 'garbage'. New data was properly going in, but I was still without any data that had been entered before the crash. Luckily for me, I had kept all of the "confirmation" emails that I got, so I could at least manually figure out what the "scheduled for the future" appointments were. But it was still a major blow, losing all my past history. (For things like customer loyalty based on number of appointments, looking up old appointment information to see what had been done for that customer previously, etc.)
In the end, I zipped up all of the saved confirmation emails, and someone at appointment-plus manually fixed everything. (I feel very sorry for that poor intern/secretary/whoever.) I even suggested that they should be able to write a script to parse the emails and re-insert it into their database, but apparently nobody their knew how to do it. (And they weren't willing to give me the information necessary for me to write the script.)
I had already decided to stop using an online appointment service at the end of the year (this was June/July) so I went ahead and kept using them rather than switch; and they were always great to deal with outside this incident.
But, between their inability to properly test a backup/restore system, and the fact that apparently they had nobody on staff who could write a script sufficient to parse their own email format into their own database, I'm not sure I'd trust them...
20" Aluminum iMac 7,1 (mid-2007, Santa Rosa,) upgraded to 2.6 GHz Penryn, 6 GB RAM, 1 TB HD, 4 TB total external hard drive
|Aug 28, 2013, 08:59 PM||#7|
|Aug 29, 2013, 04:06 AM||#8|
If it helps you get more clients, then you might as well give it a try. But I haven't tried a scheduling software yet.
If you want to rear financial blessings, you have to sow financially.
- Joel Osteen
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