As we slowly shift our lives back to normal, retail stores are beginning to return to their pre-pandemic business models. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean everyone is ready to face large crowds again.
Researchers have been studying the possible long-term behavioral changes we’ll experience after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides, and it seems our brains have developed an aversion to close contact. This might take some time to unlearn, so in the meantime, giving customers the option to schedule their time in your store can make for a more comfortable shopping experience.
Even if in-store shopping is becoming safer, there are many other benefits to setting up shopping appointments for your store. It lessens wait times, keeps your staff more focused, and allows retailers to track customer behavior to promote future sales.
Plus, you can use retail scheduling software to book your employees’ time. This can be very useful for multilocation stores that shift their staff around and need a way to keep track of schedules.
If you’re sold on the idea of scheduling your customers’ time, here are eight retail scheduling software options you might consider for a seamless appointment booking experience.
JotForm has many uses for businesses of all sizes, and one in particular is setting up an appointment shopping system. You can use one of JotForm’s premade shopping by appointment forms or create one specific to your store’s needs.
The forms are fully customizable, and you can even add features like payment gateways, text boxes for notes or special requests, and a Google Calendar integration. All of your appointment details will conveniently be saved in JotForm Tables. You can set up permissions so that anyone on your staff can access their appointments for the day.
Since you can use JotForm for employee schedules, customer satisfaction surveys, and much more, it’s a great multiuse tool for your business.
10to8 offers both in-person bookings and virtual visits — great for things like fit consultations or quick chats with an expert. The tool focuses on customer satisfaction and even sends out automated satisfaction surveys to check in with customers once their shopping experience is complete.
You can also manage your staff with a single calendar that’s designed to work for teams both large and small across multiple locations. 10to8’s customer service gets high marks too, with video tutorials and bookable demos to get you started.
If you’ll be booking appointments across multiple stores in different countries, Appointedd is a great option for your business. It offers features that cater to global retail chains, like multi-language communications and multicurrency payment systems.
You can book appointments via Facebook, automatically reach out to customers via SMS or email, and adjust the calendar with simple drag-and-drop functionality. Best of all, Appointedd has its own CRM to store all your customers’ information and create marketing campaigns.
TimeTrade is focused on getting shops back in business after COVID-19, and it even offers a Retail Recovery Package for stores that need help adjusting to the new normal.
With omnichannel scheduling, you can collect appointments via email, social media, web, and mobile, and you never have to worry about being charged for scaling up. TimeTrade offers unlimited store locations and gleans helpful insights from all the appointments you’re booking.
The software is easy for your employees to use and provides in-store concierge assistance. If you’re thinking about building up your staff, there are tools to help determine staffing needs as well.
booxi is an option for tech-savvy stores that want a retail scheduling software solution they can build on. Its APIs and integrations are some of the best you’ll find, and you can definitely scale the software as your business grows.
One unique feature is the rental management app for stores that rent equipment and products and need help organizing the process. There’s also a great inventory management system to keep track of everything, and you can easily text your customers when their orders are ready to pick up.
Many business owners are already familiar with Square for handling sales, so adding its retail scheduling software would be very convenient. You can organize your customers with handy client profiles, and if appointments are a hot commodity, you can charge fees for late cancellations and no-shows.
If your business has a strong Instagram presence, you might find Square’s Instagram integration particularly useful, but you can just as easily take bookings via your free personal booking website. The super helpful Square Assistant will automatically keep your customers in the loop on their appointments and allow them to effortlessly cancel and reschedule at any time.
FlexBooker prides itself on being a simple retail scheduling software, and its color-coded calendar system provides an easy way to keep track of appointments. You can add the booking widget to any website in seconds, and external calendar and online payment integrations only add to the app’s convenience.
If you need help organizing your workers, FlexBooker takes care of that as well with a robust employee schedule management system.
Shops of all sizes can benefit from an Appointy plan that covers everything from virtual consultations to curbside pickups. If you’re using the software only for shopping appointments, you can accept bookings via Google, Facebook, or Instagram to increase customer convenience.
The customer insight tools are especially helpful for increasing sales and providing the best experience for your shoppers. Plus, you can run marketing programs right from Appointy, eliminating the need for other software.