Small business owners are always looking for ways to save time. Time is money, after all, or so the saying goes. So, using an online appointment scheduling software like Setmore just makes sense.
But what sets some booking systems apart from others? How do you choose the right one for your unique needs? And will the system you choose integrate with the other platforms you already use to do business?
If you’re looking to invest in an online booking system like Setmore, then keep reading for all the details about what it is, what benefits it offers, and what Setmore alternatives are on the market so you can make an informed decision that best suits your small business.
What is Setmore?
Setmore is a free online appointment scheduling software (and app!) that enables you to stay on top of your calendar thanks to 24/7 automated booking that includes reminders, payment options, and more. Since its functionality is strictly scheduling-related, it’s not a full end-to-end CRM (client relationship management) tool, but it provides CRM capabilities specific to managing your calendar.
You can use it as an all-in-one scheduling tool to book your own appointments or create a customized booking page to enable your clients to self-book their own appointments anytime, anywhere.
What are the key benefits of Setmore?
Like any online appointment scheduling software, Setmore offers a few key benefits for small business owners, including:
1. Better client experience (and increased retention rates)
Using a booking system that’s fast, simple and effective helps to create a more positive customer experience – and a more positive customer experience keeps clients coming back.
2. Improved operational efficiency
Rather than spending time coordinating meetings and reschedules or sending reminders and follow-ups, using an automated system frees up more time to focus on taking your business to the next level.
3. Increased revenue
Easy to use scheduling software helps to reduce no-shows and encourage happy clients to take advantage of up-sell opportunities – two key factors that can significantly impact your revenue without requiring you to increase your client base.
In addition to these benefits, Setmore offers some key (and cool) features like:
A customizable booking page
To help your clients self-book, Setmore allows you to create a tailored online booking page that showcases your services, your real-time availability and your unique brand – like your logo and client testimonials. Plus, it will send automated appointment confirmations and text and email reminders so your clients never forget a session.
An integrated, book-from-anywhere experience
With Setmore, you can link your booking page to your website and your social platforms (or use it as your website) so your clients can make appointments via Facebook, Instagram, and more. You can even create a QR code that drives directly to it or use a website plug-in so clients can book from anywhere on your website, anytime.
Flexibility to work the way you want
Setmore syncs with Square, Stripe, PayPal and more to accept secure online digital, credit and debit payments before your appointments. You can also use it to schedule recurring sessions or take seat reservations for events like webinars – and you can add Zoom, Teleport or Google Meet links to your appointments so you can join your clients from anywhere.
How much does it cost?
Setmore has three plan tiers to offer something for everyone:
Music to our ears – this free Setmore tier works for up to four users, and provides unlimited appointment booking, payments, personalized notifications, email reminders and integration with your favorite apps.
Setmore Pro works for 1-2 users who want to enhance their client experience by offering text reminders, recurring appointment capabilities, and two-way calendar sync. This level also allows you to remove Setmore’s branding from your platform. Plus, 1% of your $12 per user/month membership fee goes to planting trees.
Setmore Team offers the same functionality as Pro for unlimited users and will run you $9 per user/month.
What are the top alternatives to consider?
Chances are you've probably used Calendly before. This leading appointment scheduling software allows you to send a customized link to your clients which they can use to access your calendar and book an appointment in just a few clicks. You also have the option of adding the link to your email signature, social media accounts and website so anyone can set up a time to talk.
Known for its simple interface, straightforward experience, and its ability to sync with your Outlook, Google and Office 365 calendars, Calendly is also free for basic users. If you want to add more advanced features, like payment options, automated reminders, or multiple event types, you can upgrade to their Essentials Plan for $10/month or their Professional Plan for $15/month. You can check out more Calendly alternatives here.
Formerly known as Squarespace Scheduling, Acuity Scheduling is a good choice for those that need to gather information from their clients before booking a meeting with them – like fitness trainers, physiotherapists or tutors. Its easy-to-use intake form allows clients to leave the information you need to make their upcoming appointment a success, and it automatically sends alerts and reminders via both text and email, so you don't have to worry about no-shows.
What's even better? It's HIPAA compliant, so healthcare providers can rest assured that their data and appointment information meet all mandatory privacy standards.
Find out how it stacks up to Calendly, and – if you like what you see – try your first seven days free. After that you'll pay $16/month for their Emerging Plan, $27/month for their Growing Plan, and $49/month for their Powerhouse Plan.
This popular option is another name that you're likely familiar with. Square Scheduling is part of the larger Square experience, and, as a result, it features convenient integration with all the other services Square is known for – like its POS systems and team management tools.
This particular booking system stands out for its ability to manage a multi-location calendar, allow clients to book multiple services with multiple providers, and incorporate cancellation and no show fees – all of which make it a great option for service providers like spas and salons. Plus, it also allows you to do other handy tasks like adding and managing visitor profiles and logging client interactions so you can improve your small business marketing and targeting. It's also available via traditional web browser or an easy-to-use app.
A basic plan is available for free, with payment plans starting at $35/month for the Plus membership (geared towards growing teams) and $85/month for the Premium membership (for businesses that have complex booking and team management requirements).
Zoho is a solid calendar syncing and appointment booking app for consultants and small businesses. It gives you the flexibility to book one-on-one or group appointments, offer in-person, over-the-phone or online options, and collect payments before sessions if required. Plus, it offers seamless integration with all your other favorite small business software – like Zoom, Google Meet, PayPal, Stripe, and more – and it automatically adjusts time zones for you, so you or your clients don't get confused.
The other neat thing about Zoho is that it also allows you to work smarter. With this system, you can set up buffer times between meetings (to input those notes before you forget!), avoid surprise bookings (so you always bring your A-game for your clients), and define your vacation and break times (so you won't get overbooked, overworked and exhausted).
Plans start at just $6/month for their Basic offering and $12/month for Premium.
Bear with us while we toot our own horn (just a little!), but – if you're looking for a simple and effective online scheduling system – we've got one. Our built-in meeting scheduling tool is part of our larger client relationship management platform, which is designed to streamline every aspect of your solo-business – including your appointments, file storage, client portal, record keeping, forms and contracts.
With us, you can choose whether you want to embed your calendar directly on your website or link to it using a URL and you can create different meeting parameters for different meeting types. Plus, you can change your availability across all your calendars in just a few clicks (so you can take that impromptu afternoon off!), and you can add payments or forms to any appointment and create registration pages for group events, like webinars or info sessions. We even offer a Teams option so each member of your organization can access all your shared files and collaborate in one, simple space!
Do what's best for your business
Moral of the story: there are a lot of online appointment scheduling systems out there, but the key is to find the right one for your business' unique needs. Our advice? Don't underestimate the power of a simple interface, don't settle for a system that lacks the real capabilities that will save you time, and don't hesitate to check out our blog for more content about other popular online booking options.