When it comes to running a service-based business online, scheduling appointments with prospects and clients are critical.
The downside of that, of course, is that it takes a lot of time to manage appointments and event bookings if you do it on your own.
With WordPress, however, there are a bunch of booking plugins that’ll get the job done. Put one of them in place and you can kiss many of those tedious appointment management tasks goodbye. But all this is contingent only on when you’re supposed to be using the right WordPress booking plugin.
In This Guide, We’ll Take a Look At-
- What Is An Online Booking System and Why Do You Think Your Store Needs It?
- What Are the Bookings Plugin WordPress-Based Alternates, and How to Move Forward With One?
- Simple Steps to Start Receiving Online Bookings!!!
- What are the Most Popular Plugin Capabilities, and Are They Really Relevant to Your Requirements?
Don’t stress. I’ll show you how to opt and efficiently utilize the WordPress booking plugin. So, that it can help you rock amongst your competitors.
So, let’s get started with the basics, shall we?
What Is An Online Booking System and Why Do You Think Your Store Needs It?
An online booking system is a system that helps your eCommerce business site to empower your bookings service as store-based products with bookable solutions.
Making use of an online booking system customers can easily check the availability of their product, service, or activity in order to avail their bookings requests.
Isn’t it amazing?
Having an online booking system is beneficial for both the customers and the business owner. And obviously, an online booking system is much more appealing than a busy tone or the answering machine.
Who would not like to have an online booking system that manages your store bookings itself and is, even more, customer-friendly?
According to research performed by GetApp, almost 70% of consumers prefer booking appointments online.
The research clearly depicts that- online booking is somewhere convenient for customers with booking requirements and is making their life easier.
While there are different ways to create an online booking system. As a WordPress user what can be better solutions than WordPress Plugins right??
By adding a booking plugin to your WordPress site, you’ll be able to eliminate more than half of your customers’ major pain points while also giving them their favorite booking choice.
Now, before you underestimate the feasibility of an online booking system, allow me to explain everything to you beforehand to demonstrate my statement more obvious. Get going.
Interested in an Online Booking System?
What are the Booking Plugin in WordPress-Based Alternates, and How to Move Forward With One?
From salons and clinics to hotels and consulting firms, appointments are a necessary part of doing business. In today’s world, being able to schedule an appointment for your service online has become increasingly important.
It’s not about you as a business owner who is always on the go. This also applies to customers. As a result, none of the customers have time to do anything that takes more than an hour or two to complete. Allowing your customers to schedule an appointment saves them time and leads to additional sales.
So, How Can You Create An Online Booking System for your WooCommerce Store Utilizing A Plugin, That too an Appropriate one?
This is really critical. Yes, despite a lot of alternatives available, opting the one out is tougher. You must be very clear and concise about your requirements and needs.
There are several WooCommerce booking plugins available with WordPress which would help you achieve your goal. Some of them are-
A. WooCommerce Bookings
WooCommerce has an excellent plugin called WooCommerce Bookings. Customers can use the plugin to book appointments, reserve space, or rent equipment without ever leaving your website. Allow your consumers to arrange their own reservations, meetings, or rentals without making phone calls. To free up time and add additional events to your calendar, let your website handle the work.
B. WooCommerce Bookings And Appointments
It is a strong plugin that enables you to transform your time, goods, or services into resources that are only available via PluginHive.
This plugin makes it simple for service providers and companies of all sizes to integrate and equip their WooCommerce websites with a straightforward booking solution.
C. YITH Booking and Appointment for WooCommerce
An powerful online booking system that can be used by both customers and vendors is integrated into a WooCommerce-built eCommerce site by YITH. This is perfect for all types of professionals who can’t rely solely on sales, such as real estate and travel agencies, hairdressers, physicians, and business consultants.
D. Booking & Appointment Plugin for WooCommerce
Give clients the option to make bookings and appointments without leaving your website. With Tychesoftware‘s Booking & Appointment Plugin for WooCommerce, you can sell reservations for overnight stays, tours, hotels, appointments, and rentals.
For managing appointments on your own website, BookingWP‘s WooCommerce Appointments plugin is ideal. WooCommerce, WordPress, and Google Calendar are fully linked.
What WP Swings have in their bag 🛒 for you ???
Bookings for WooCommerce Pro
An excellent way to transform your standard WooCommerce store into a reliable provider of booking solutions is with Bookings for WooCommerce Pro exclusively by WP Swings.
We could easily create an online booking solution that satisfies all of your customers’ needs by utilising the WooCommerce booking functionalities.
Before You Jump Straight Into the Setup, Take a Glimpse at Some Recommendations to Help You Choose the Ideal WooCommerce Booking Plugin for Your Store. If you want to flourish in business in this digital age, you need to have an online booking system. Here are some recommendations for selecting the appropriate plugin-
An excellent plugin should be straightforward and easy to use and customize.
Choose a plugin that won’t put a huge strain on your operational expenses or eat through your profitability.
You should really go with someone that can guide you through any difficulties that develop, especially in the early stages.
You might not be happy to discover a plugin that meets all of your expectations. Make a list of services you obviously would have to have, such as transactions, analytics, and notifications.
You need to be way more cautious before opting for the one as every store is a way different of its kind. An effective booking plugin can be an essential part of your business puzzle. Once you find the right one, you eliminate the possibility of losing customers to faulty or less-than-ideal plugins that don’t do the job well.
We are recommending Bookings for WooCommerce plugin here, as your booking support partner. Do check out the installation and setup in detail below to make use of the plugin.
The installation and activation process for the Bookings for WooCommerce is similar to any other WooCommerce plugin. It is fairly easy when done with automatic processes. However, it is a bit time-consuming if done manually.
Let’s see how you can set up this fruitful plugin for your WooCommerce store in the steps below –
Simple Steps to Start Receiving Online Bookings !!!
Taking into consideration Bookings for WooCommerce as an example here we’re deciphering the setup process in detail.
Before jumping panicky into the setup let me introduce you to the plugin utilizing this video, refer to the video, and have a rough understanding of the plugin features and benefits involved-
For clearer understanding, please refer thoroughly with us and get in detail with the screenshots attached along-
Let’s start then-
Step 1: Continue With the Environment and Plugin Setup
Technically in order to set up, we need to install both i.e. WordPress and WooCommerce beforehand.
Note: If you’ve got a fully functional store on WordPress already, kindly avoid the step and proceed with the setup directly.
Installing and activating the Bookings for WooCommerce PRO plugin is done following the steps below, like this-
- Download the Bookings for WooCommerce plugin from the respective website product page.
- Login to your WordPress Dashboard.
- Navigate to the Plugins > Add New page and hit the Upload Plugin button.
- Upload the .zip file of the plugin and hit the Install button.
- Finally, activate this plugin from the Plugins > Installed Plugins page and hit the Activate button to continue.
After that, within your WooCommerce menu, a new section called Bookings will emerge. That area allows you to customize the Plugin Settings, which you can perform in the very next step.
Step 2: Configure Backend Setup
The backend setup of an online booking system plugin is simple and quick; all you have to do is pay attention to the specifics and functionality of each option.
Bookings Plugin is easy to INSTALL
So, let’s get started-
The backend setup involves setting up different plugin backend tabs, that includes-
1. General Settings
This setting tab involves general setup options for the plugin backend. All the basic functionality handles to the plugin working can be controlled and managed from this very tab.
2. Booking Form Settings
As the name specifies this tab includes all sorts of booking functionality controls offered by the plugin. In order to set up booking process-related customization settings, you need to set up the controls in this tab.
This tab involves the availability settings for the plugin, you can effectively set up booking availability with respect to your WooCommerce store working hours and business days schedule followed up. You can also specify the in and out time for the days here.
This is quite an additional yet outstanding feature tab of the plugin that involves setting up the integrations of all different third-party applications that play an important role in the bookings order processing ease of the plugin.
This tab involves the booking reminder setup options that thereby involve SMS and email reminder setups. You can customize the reminders on your own or make use of the pre-defined templates available.
6. Global Cost
This tab involves setting up the global cost-related rules that thereby act as a protocol for your booking store in order to manage the cost-related uncertainties and keep your cost estimation in check without altering the whole system every time.
7. Add Booking Order
This tab involves setting up the booking management on behalf of your customers. One can manage booking from the backend for their customers, this setting is optional you can set up when there’s a need for that.
That’s all for the backend setup, if you require more detailing on that please refer to the official setup documentation of the booking plugin.
Comparison b/w WooCommerce Bookings & Bookings for WooCommerce
|WooCommerce Bookings||Bookings for WooCommerce|
|Schedule one-on-one online appointment or meetups with several people.||Offer one on one and people type bookings facilities.|
|Offer discounted rates for groups, days, or individuals.||Comes up with an exclusive Global cost setting feature that lets merchants create personalized costing for different types of bookings.|
|In the customer’s time zone, display availability.||Specified availability settings are offered in order to manage unwanted bookings on offs and holidays.|
|You can request confirmation or provide free cancellations.||Offer a specialized setting in the product backend to offer bookings cancellations and confirmations. As well come up with setup options to automate these processes too and save manual work.|
|Send out reminders to cut down on no-shows.||Easy booking reminders through SMS and Mails can be transferred utilizing the feature of the plugin. Twilio integration is available for SMS services.|
|Avoid multiple bookings by syncing your reservation calendar with Google Calendar.||Streamline booking calendar display available to understand as well plan the booking schedule.|
Step 3: Create Bookable Resources i.e. Services or Products
In order to initiate the booking process further after the backend setup, you need to set up the bookable resource i.e. the Booking Product. Let’s learn how we can go forward creating up that-
It’s not rocket science to create a bookable resource in order to receive more booking requests. You may build a bookable resource, such as a service or a product, in the same way, that you can build a simple product; the only difference is in the settings.
Don’t stress, let me tell you that in detail-
You must first browse to your Dashboard > Products > Add New in order to establish a bookable resource for your reservations. Following that, you’ll be taken to the Add New Product window.
Fill out the fields there as required and scroll down to the Product Data Settings section there, which looks a lot like the screenshot below.-
This setting section involves different setup options followed by 5 tabs that include General, Cost, People, Availability, and Services respectively. Perform the settings and create a bookable product for your store.
There you go, now you have successfully created one bookable resource for your store and are ready for booking requests to be made. In a similar manner, more booking products can be created with ease.
This is how your store would look like after you are done with all setup and updations—
Till here I guess all plugin setup scrutinies are clear, if still perplexed or want to learn in detail please refer to the official setup documentation guide from here. Setting up a Booking service offering plugin cannot determine its best usability and effectiveness, rather than its own features.
So, in order to have a good combination of Booking Plugin for your store, you must check out all the features of that particular plugin and also understand if they suit your requirement structure or not??
That’s crucial… Let us continue with our feature debunking process for the plugin that we’ve learned to set up for above.
What Are the Most Popular Plugin Capabilities, and Are They Really Relevant to Your Requirements?
You may initially think that a booking plugin is a simple calendar with a form, but it depends on the type of business being run.
For instance, a gym might have multiple personal trainers. Each of these employees needs their own schedules listed on the website. On the other hand, a dental office may need to show specific times and reveal the different types of services offered.
Therefore, it’s important to look closely at the features of each WordPress booking plugin. This way, you’ll have all of the functionality you need and some flexibility to grow your business stronger-
1. Industry Wise Requirements
Booking or Scheduling is an outstanding utility for a WooCommerce store. One can gain utmost traffic, relevant resources, target prospects, generate revenue and offer your products/services as utilities to people without even actually selling them.
Almost every industry requires a booking mechanism of its own. As digitization is advancing and becoming a part of everyone’s life, offering services and products with an easy and digital medium is required.
The best thing about the WooCommerce booking system by WP Swings is that- It is not dependent on any specific industry or type of service offering. You can easily let it fit any industry-based store, no matter which industry it belongs to. We have listed a few industries that are more interested in avail bookings for-
- Salons, spas, fitness centers with services or classes at specific times.
- Service providers that work by appointment only e.g. mechanics, plumbers, etc.
- Real estate agents host open houses or schedule property walk-throughs.
- Freelancers and small businesses use discovery calls to vet prospects, and so on.., the list is very long!
So, it is quite a crucial metric to check whether your Bookings plugin is compatible with your industry-based requirements or not. I like the WP Swings based WooCommerce booking plugin the most because it surpasses such a requirement and becomes a fit for all.
2. Customer Wise Requirements
A customer-centric approach leads your business to heights within no time. Yes, heard that right-
If we think that more specifically, whatever processing, approaches, modifications, evolutions, etc. we’re performing on our traditional strategy of business are only to gain one person’s trust in us i.e. our valuable Customer right.
Then why not, think about them when you’re about to plan a system for service. Must check whether the Booking plugin you’re opting for is fulfilling all the aspects of your customer requirements or not.
Here, also the WordPress booking system by WP Swings leads the path with shining colors. Yes, there are numerous features that are loved by your customers as well as more user friendly in terms of accessibility also, let’s debunk a few here :-
This is an important yet essential feature that the plugin must offer. Yes, the outstanding responsiveness is the amazing quality of the plugin. As most people love to access the internet through mobile devices it is a far more smart option to offer seamless accessibility there too.
II. Easy to Access
User-friendliness is also an important aspect. You can easily access the WP Swings offered online booking system WordPress backend as well as the frontend in order to set up and place bookings for your customers. Each and every feature and setup is properly defined with outstanding UI that thereby improves your store’s usability to an extent also.
III. Seamless Location Tracking Facility
Offer basic reservations involving a nearby second site. Consider that your business provides a booking service, such as for salon or doctor booking appointment, that necessitates that clients arrive at the service location at a certain time. Then you will undoubtedly benefit from this specific feature of the booking plugin for WooCommerce.
A guided tour, a museum visit, a themed supper, and much more could all be successfully planned using just one plugin…
IV. Avoiding Unwanted Bookings
The admin managers can easily determine in advance the maximum amount of bookings that can be made for a given day. They can also identify upcoming holidays that will render bookings unavailable and explicitly define the set one day off every week.
Other than that, Using this setting option you can select multiple dates to disable your booking requests for the same. You can select multiple days in the date picker calendar like this—
After that, you can mark your unavailable days easily and display them on front end day picker calendar too.
In order to manage bookings for their services, avoid scheduling needless appointments, and instantly indicate periods that are unavailable, store managers can do so.
V. Custom Color Codes Display
You can now update your custom color codes for your availability & unavailability dates utilizing a setting option. Just enter the custom color code within and hit on the Save button.
You can add custom color to your Available Dates, Unavailable Dates, & over on Calendar Text also.
VI. Effective Availability Management
As an admin, you can now allow your customers and visitors to view the availability and unavailability of given slots with the help of color codes in the date picker calendar. This will automatically enhance the user experience that you will give your customers.
Using the latest version of our Bookings for WooCommerce plugin, you can set display availability of dates with green color and unavailability of dates with red color in the date picker calendar.
VII. Scheduling Calendar Support
The plugin offers an online booking calendar also, actually, that’s an effective feature in order to determine , How your month or week is shaping up in terms of bookings?
You can effectively strategize and plan beforehand the availability and schedules of the resources with the help of the booking calendar available there.
VIII. Easy Bookings/Cancellation
Not just the easy bookings process facilitate your service offering panorama, also a reverse mechanism is required too.
There isn’t any guarantee of all things greener always, there are times when you need to manage the reverse mechanism that is Cancellations too. So, it is very smart to check whether your booking service is a cancellation offering or not.
WP Swings WooCommerce Booking system offers all easy bookings as well as cancellation processes with ease, just a minor setup at that backend is required. This feature not just manages but also lets your customer understand that you value them.
IX. Agent Like Panel
You offer bookings service at your WooCommerce store, that’s good, but that is something that many people are doing.
So, what would you do to make that stand out? Let me tell you.
WP Swings offers an online booking solution that offers a feature known as Add Booking Order, this feature enables an option for you to manage your customer’s booking on your own from your backend panel.
Isn’t it great?
Yes, this feature lets you manage bookings for your consumers similar to an agent service and offer bookings to them.
This feature lets your booking store stand out and also lets you find more ways to please your prospects and nurture them.
X. Search Widget
Not just that, you can also make use of the outstanding search widget feature offered in the plugin backend. Search widgets would assist your customers in picking up their desired booking product that suits their requirements with ease.
Sorting options like Booking Quantity, Number of People, Start, and End date along with the additional services are available in the widget.
This widget feature lets you easily place bookings from anywhere you like, no need to navigate your customer, gather their requirements, and effectively place bookings thereby.
XI. Early Bird Discounts
Discounts and coupons engage more prospects and traffic than any other strategy involved. You must be cautious while opting for your booking service, whether it offers additional discounts or not.
WP Swings Bookings which is a WordPress booking system is all capable of offering amazing yet customized discount offers to their customers, just you need to have a setup in the backend that’s it.
This feature clearly depicts that- the plugin is all capable of offering separate coupon management for early bird discount offers on your WooCommerce store.
XII. Booking Data Export
Now, all you need to do is use the name of the relevant Booking product to easily export the data from your orders for WooCommerce bookings. You did understand me correctly. You can export your booking order data for a certain booking entity if you require it, and you’ll get a .csv file for it in return. For reference, refer to the below screencast—
XIII. Dedicated My Bookings Tab
Our Booking plugin has a special My Bookings Tab for managing your booking requests easily. Your website’s My account section contains a link to this tab. You can easily visit there and check the information for all of your upcoming reservations.
One can place bookings and can refer or review them just by referring to this tab, let me show you how—
Other than this, our My Bookings tab also offers a specialized button option to Add your Booking to Google Calendar. Yes, you heard me right.
You are just required to click on the +Add to Google Calendar button for your booking order and get it added to Google Calendar right away.
3. Service Wise Requirements
Not just the feature-specific benefits, WP Swings Bookings offer service-based benefits too.
How? Let me detail.
The plugin is not industry-specific, so you can effectively place different sorts of booking orders utilizing a single plugin only. No matter which service domain your WooCommerce store belongs to, our WP Swings offered WordPress booking system is all set to serve you there.
Hospitality, real estate, education, services, product-based, etc. no matter you can –
- Scheduling Training & Classes bookings utilizing the plugin with ease.
- Effectively manage and book appointments through this plugin.
- Book Courses and Check availability easily.
- Hotel online booking system, room rentals can easily be placed utilizing the plugin.
- Spa, salon, repairing service, maintenance service, etc. based service bookings can be managed effectively over.
- Book your dream house from your favorite store online easily.
- Look for a food booking genie utilizing the plugin.
- Plan your next event booking, movies plan, outing schedule utilizing the plugin.
These are a few examples, you can make use of WP Swings Bookings which is an effective WooCommerce bookings plugin for all booking service-related requirements.
4. Addon Integrations
There are many outstanding yet effective integration available with the plugin, listed below-
In order to process easy booking refunds for your customers, we’ve made our plugin all capable of handling both manual and automated booking refund requests.
You have two options for providing a full refund to your clients: a manual method or a specialized and done by robots process, including using a plugin. WP Swings Bookings plugin that offers an online booking system WordPress is completely compliant with WooCommerce’s excellent RMA (Return Refund and Exchange) plugin.
End up making use of this fantastic plugin to provide simple refunds to clients whose booking orders fail or could be accomplished due to unforeseen circumstances.
Bookings For WooCommerce PRO plugin perfectly interoperable with the WordPress Multilingual i.e. WPML plugin in order to facilitate easy translations and localization within the plugin.
Yes, you can now effectively translate your plugin-based strings into the language of your choice. To begin the translation process, simply extract all of your plugin-based strings.
THE GOOD NEWS IS –
WP Swings Bookings is now compatible with “WPML” and “Multisite” too!!!
The WP Swings Bookings plugin has an outstanding integration capability for processing simple and effective yet customized SMS reminders. Using the credentials provided, you can now easily integrate your Twilio account with the plugin and send SMS reminders to your customers.
To do so, simply create a Twilio account (if you already have one, that’s fantastic) and connect it to the plugin using the Integration Settings tab setting option.
IV. Facebook Share
This is an outstanding feature that offers effective outreach for your brand-based products on social media with ease. This option enables your customer to effectively share their upcoming booking order details over their Facebook account.
You might think, what’s so special about that?? There is, not just let them share your service as well as offer a free promotional opportunity for your brand and assist you to gain prospects with ease.
5. Other Benefits Include
The WP Swings based WooCommerce booking plugin is capable and power-packed with many alluring benefits, some of them which we forgot to mention above are listed here :
I. Open 24 Hours Every Day
The number one advantage of including online booking system on your website is that it remains online at all times. This means you do not need to be present at all times concerning the booking to take place.
If we talk about the previous times, every time someone calls to place a booking request, it takes you away from the task you’re working on. Whereas just by adding a booking plugin to your WordPress site, you’ll eliminate more than half of the biggest pain points for consumers while simultaneously providing them with their most preferred booking option.
II. Online Booking is Vital to Attracting a Younger Customer Base
We discovered that Millennials, especially their younger counterparts, Gen Z, book online more than any other generation. Millennials account for 25% of all internet appointment bookings on average.
In the last three years, their internet booking rate has climbed by 6.5%, with no indications of slowing down. While all generations are seeing an increase in the use of online schedulers, Millennials were the quickest to adopt an innovation.
III. Enhanced Savings
You save money in the long term because online booking systems are a one-time setup. To begin with, you do not need to engage someone to handle the reservation. You also don’t have to be concerned about payments because the booking plugins have payment methods with multiple options available to them.
As a result, when a customer schedules an appointment, he can pay right away. Cancellations are also possible with the online payment methods, just by placenta cancel request online hassle-free.
IV. No Need to Hire Additional Staff
You can automate a number of things using a booking plugin. This implies you won’t have to pay anybody to help you with the booking process. You also don’t have to worry about human error because everything is automated, from taking down appointment details to processing payments. Outstanding, isn’t it?
V. Everything is Handled from the Backend
You receive a one-stop solution with an online booking system on your WordPress site using plugin support. This clearly means that you’ll be able to manage all of your reservations from your WordPress backend.
For Instance, you can easily check your schedule, alter it, and even cancel it if necessary. Once you’ve accepted a booking request, the WordPress backend allows you to send confirmation emails to your consumers.
And the best part is that by incorporating the booking plugin you can also access your booking store’s analytics and performance with ease.
What’s Your Take on That?
You can design an extremely functional and easy-to-use online booking system with WP Swings Bookings for WooCommerce, our top pick, that will make your customers extremely happy.
We’re a little opinionated, but we believe you need to use Bookings for your WooCommerce. If you use the plugin go ahead and comment about your experience. Moreover, if you find confusion in any of the above steps, you can make use of our online chat window here or connect with us directly, either Generate a ticket.
If you enjoyed this post on how to develop a WordPress booking, Do not believe as I say, it is far better if you should seek out the free Bookings plugin live demo on your own.
WOW!! It’s full of information. Thanks for sharing such nice content. I have learned some important things from this.
Thank you Codeware Limited.
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