Schedule Service Appointments Online with WooCommerce Scheduler
Hiring out professionals for a multitude of services online is all the rage these days. From cabs to plumbers, party planners to bakers, you can find organizations offering professionals-for-hire for practically every need (you would know, you are one of them after all!).
The general system is, you receive a call from a client requesting a quote for, say a party planner for a Christmas party. You go scan your list of party-planning business associates, call them up, check their availability, draw up a quote, and then co-ordinate with the client, to see if it fits their requirement. If it does, you close the deal and the work begins.
Then another client turns up with a similar request. And another. And another. You keep handing out job after job to your associates as per their availability like a pro, but ultimately there comes a time when the client requirements and the professionals’ availabilities clash. So what do you do? Refuse the client? Or compromise on service by providing a half-hearted associate who does not give the expected time to the project?
Neither of these is an option. What you can do instead is proactively schedule appointments on your services website so that people can check the availability of the professionals they want to hire and request a quote accordingly! How?
With the Scheduler plugin for WooCommerce of course.
The WooCommerce Scheduler is a complete scheduling plugin that lets you schedule availability on your WooCommerce store by date, day, and even time. In addition, you can also hide the service in case of temporary unavailability, which eliminates the possibility of having to refuse clients.
Let us continue with the example of the party planner. Here are the different ways in which you can schedule the timelines of your business associates, using WooCommerce Scheduler.
#1 Schedule by Day/Date
Suppose you currently have two planners working with you, one of whom is available from Monday to Thursday, and the other from Friday to Sunday. You can thus schedule the service, to be displayed with the requisite contact details, as per the availability. People can now choose the service they want to avail of and contact the person accordingly!
This works on a choose-the-date basis too.
#2 Schedule by Time
The guy who is working Friday through Sunday is available for the entire day on Friday, from 10-4 on Saturday and 9-12 on Sunday. That sounds complicated. However, you need not worry. WooCommerce Scheduler lets you manage the availability timings too, so that you can schedule and display the service, no matter how convoluted the timetable is!
#3 Schedule Multiple Timings Simultaneously
Want to juggle the schedules of the two planners at the same time? You can! So now, instead of going back and forth between the two service products you’ve created you can simply open up the category and schedule both of their availabilities simultaneously!
#4 Selectively Hide/Display Availability
This is a tricky one. Say one of the services you offer is currently unavailable, but you want your customers to know that you do provide the service. However, your regular scheduling plugin simply hides the product, since it is set to ‘unavailable’. Not to worry. WooCommerce Scheduler has got you covered.
The plugin is configured to let you decide whether the service can be displayed or not, in case of unavailability. If you decide to show it on your site, you can even add a customised message that informs your clients of the unavailability but makes sure that they know you do provide it!
#5 Display Future Availability
Speaking of temporary availability, you know that your associate will be back on his feet from some given date. In the meantime, you need to keep your clients engaged so that they do not use any other service provider, because they are under the assumption that you are currently unavailable.
In such cases, you can set up the future availability dates for the service on your store, with a tailored message like ‘We shall be back in action from Monday, November 10th’ so that there is a clear communication to your clients!
The WooCommerce Scheduler plugin works out-of-the-box with WooCommerce, and integrates well with every theme and plugin. It is an extremely handy method of scheduling service availabilities on your site, especially since WooCommerce does not have an in-built feature for the same.
Scheduling services can help you efficiently coordinate clients and professionals, thereby ensuring the satisfaction of both and thus increasing successful deals!