As the UK treads cautiously towards the third step of lockdown restrictions being lifted, a welcome sight in recent weeks has been the steady revival of the high street.
Many retail businesses and personal care premises were given the green light to resume service back in April. However, ensuring their environments are safe and COVID-secure has proven to be a daunting obstacle for many.
Over the course of 2020, Great Britain is estimated to have lost around 17,500 chain outlets. Despite this, a survey carried out towards the end of last year suggested that more than half of consumers in the UK still preferred the bricks and mortar of the high street to online shopping.
BookingLive’s retail software provides you with an industry-leading booking and scheduling system to ensure a safe and profitable return once your doors reopen.
With requests for appointments set to surge in the coming months, we have outlined some key advantages that our innovative solution offers. This includes helping you manage resources, reservations, venue capacity and other critical safety measures, as well as increase takings.
Here are the 6 ways online appointment scheduling will ease the high street back to normality:
1 - Advanced Bookings
2 - Increased Foot Traffic
3 - Easily Implement Social Distancing Measures
4 - Staff Management
5 - Marketing Opportunity
6 - Trusted & Customisable Technology
Advanced appointments allow you to keep your location at a safe capacity. It also gives customers peace of mind, convenience and security that they can make a booking anytime, anywhere from any device.
Many individuals will still be anxious about being amongst crowds or within large groups of people. A pre-booked appointment eradicates this sense of unease through the assurance that a set amount of time has been allocated to them. It also highlights that customer flow is being controlled effectively.
Customers can reschedule and cancel appointments outside of business hours. We also have a waiting list feature for your clients to sign up to which enables you to contact them if a slot becomes available. This helps to prevent a loss of income, keeps your business moving forward and enhances customer satisfaction.
Increase Foot Traffic
Appointments are an effective way to drive footfall to your retail premises. Many shoppers are put off making purchases by the sight of queues and will be far happier placing their trust in a fluid booking system that delivers instant verification of their booking and minimal waiting time on arrival.
By offering a service that they can tailor to work alongside their schedule, it enables locations on the high street to bring a personalised experience throughout their customer interactions. From home furnishing to clothes and beauty products, the majority of retail consumers prefer the ‘in-store treatment’. This means they can physically browse, buy, and lean on your staff for customer advice.
To accommodate both in-advance bookings and walk-ins, offer specific ‘visit by appointment only’ times, for example, at the start and end of the day or specific time slots.
Easily Implement Social Distancing Measures
Having the power to interconnect appointment slots with cleaning and sanitation buffer times reduces the potential for coronavirus to spread.
Retail environments and staff are unable to carry out their duties from home, meaning they are likely to be at a heightened risk of COVID-19 infection. Online booking software can prove to be a valuable tool in protecting your business and minimising impact on the health of your workforce and customers.
You could also propose virtual appointments such as bespoke one on one pre-shopping consultations or video customer service through our zoom integration facility. This helps stimulate customer engagement during periods of isolation and maintain a source of revenue.
Inundated with calls? Phone is never off the hook? Our automated system removes the need to employ a full-time receptionist to fulfil administrative tasks or worrying about members of your team being dragged away from their day-to-day duties to manually schedule bookings.
Improve the productivity of your staff by setting up confirmations, reminders and feedback via SMS and email. This frees up time to keep on top of those rigorous cleaning protocols and dedicate their full attention to the customer to maximise sales of additional services and products.
As a retailer, you benefit because appointments as an alternative to a walk-in mean that customer flow is predictable. This data gives you the knowledge of how many customers your staff will be working with at every part of the day, allowing you to adapt your workforce numbers to cope with busy periods and manage quieter times.
BookingLive’s software is a potential goldmine with clients able to issue voucher codes and promotional offers to encourage bookings. Bookable services are proven to drive higher basket values (up to 300%) because they drive an active audience and create an expectation to spend.
Forming a portfolio of your client database will also enable you to gather a strong understanding of your customers and establish if any booking patterns or buying behaviours emerge. This information can be utilised to enrich your marketing strategies and hone in on your customer’s specific needs by sending personalised marketing recommendations.
Other marketing facets of our technology include the ability to modify our software’s user interface to match your company’s brand for maximum visual impact and identity.
Trusted & Customisable Technology
BookingLive have established a global reputation as a reliable and expert provider of online booking and scheduling solutions. We are fully GDPR compliant and a trusted supplier to partners such as CAPITA, Sopra Steria and NHS trusts across the country.
Our software can be implemented with many influential web applications from social media giants Facebook to digital coupon provider Groupon. By extending the functionality of your booking system, you can open yourself up to further opportunities to boost your cash flow and the number of people coming through your doors.
Remember, your scalable solution is cloud-based and with our API, your calendar management tool integrates seamlessly into your existing technology stack to help future- proof your business. It can be positioned within your website or as a standalone booking page.
A Free Solution To Help You Reopen
To help small businesses across the country, we have made our retail booking and scheduling system free for independent hospitality and hair and beauty venues. Helping them to open safely and survive the increased booking demand will greatly assist the UK’s economic recovery.
BookingLive are here to keep you, your staff and your customers safe - Claim Your Free Retail Appointment Scheduling Solution Here