Failed appointments & late cancellation stats
In September 2013 I began to use my google calendar in a different way for making client bookings and actually invited the client to the event via email. If the client has a google account and calendar set up correctly these appointments go directly into their personal diary when they ‘accept’ the invite. I believe this also works on ipad and iphone with the appointments being added to their diary.
In September I also added a page to my website for ‘online booking’. You can’t currently book online, but you can see an i-frame of my diary allowing clients to see when I am free. This has saved me an amazing amount of admin time emailing people about available slots.
I send out text reminders the day before every clients appointment, if I have their current mobile number. Please however never reply to this as it’s not an automated service. It’s something I have to do manually with pre saved texts.
I also have my google calendar set up to send out an email reminder 3 days before the clients appointment to allow me plenty of time to fill the appointment if the client decides to cancel it.
I like to think I am pretty fair with my cancellation charge. I am willing to remove the fee, if I manage to fill the appointment by sharing it on social media. I actively encourage my clients to help me share the status, so the max number of people see it. To be honest I rarely have to mention the cancellation charge because my clients who have been with me for a long period of time understand that as self-employed I only get paid when people arrive for their appointments. Regular clients normally insist on giving me the ‘late cancellation fee’ when they are cancelling their appointments. Which is lovely as I know they respect my time.
Elizabeth Smith Beauty accounts April 2013 to April 2014
Calculated in hours.
|Failed appointment time in hours:||11.25|
|Cancelled with less than 24 hr notice in hours:||25.5|
I work part-time hours, but to be honest I am not that upset about this stats as I only brought in the google event invites Sep 2013 and these stats are from April 2013. I am already seeing great improvements and hopefully will continue to this year. Also these stats don’t include how many of those ‘cancelled with less than 24 hr notice’ actually got filled. The 11 and a half hours of ‘failed of appointments’ would have been charged and if they refuse to pay they simply get added to my ‘black list’. To be honest I don’t tend to forgot peoples names that fail appointments with me, but always good practice to keep a record of their names.
Current problems I have are:
- Google calendar doesn’t show appointments in 15 minute, only 30 minutes.
- Clients sometimes have their diary set up to different time zone.
- Sending text reminders the night before takes time.
- Clients not giving me full contact details before their booking as requested in my ‘welcome letter’.
- Confusion on my online dairy, which days and hours I work.
I am always continuing to improve the way I run my business, so any feed back on this would be great. Please feel free to comment on this blog with any suggestions you have.