As the name suggests, an online booking system is a software solution that allows potential guests to self-book and pay through your website and other channels, while giving you the best tools to run and scale your operation — all under one platform.
At the core, online booking systems give clients a convenient way of seeing, booking and paying for appointments online through your website. They often come in handy for the following industries:
- Travel/tour companies
- Training providers
- Event managers
- Beauty (spas, salons, massage therapists)
- Activity companies
- Doctors and other medical service providers
Essentially, any industry that relies on scheduled appointments, specific times and dates, and online payments will certainly benefit from implementing an online booking system into their business.
Why your tour, travel or hospitality business needs an online booking system
At the top of the hierarchy of needs for consumers is convenience, and online booking systems provide just that and more. With booking systems, users can see a variety of options and select one that fits their budget and is suited to their liking. They can book their desired service without going through the nuisance of pushy sales representatives and tedious browsing. The entire process is simple, non-time-consuming and accessible from the comfort of the user's home.
Along with convenience, there are other advantages and reasons as to why you would want to implement booking systems into your tour/travel company.
- Mobility - allow consumers to book your tour/activity at any time of the day
Before online booking systems existed, consumers would have to physically go to tour/travel agencies for a booking. However, since the platform is web-based, users can now make bookings and purchases via their laptops, phones, or tablets. They can access your service 24/7 and are not limited to opening/closing times, resulting in a drastic increase in the number of bookings. Additionally, they can choose to easily edit or amend their booking without any hassle — more services for the consumer, greater revenue for you.
- Tracks the bookings in real-time
For any business, tracking growth and performance is crucial. Luckily, with an online booking system, it becomes much easier to get a better understanding of your customers. Use reports to see which strategies, offers and proposals bring in the most money. Consequently, you will want to enhance certain resources to provide the highest level of service to customers.
Since users provide a ton of information while booking, the booking system allows you to use this source of data to your advantage and increase your customer service. For example, you can choose to send follow-ups with special offers and heart-warming thank-you notes for using your service. Little gestures like these make the most difference in having satisfactory customer service.
- Removes the hurdles of different languages and currencies
Online booking systems cater to every customer, regardless of language and currency differences, and they are a great way to offer your services on the global market. Providing potential customers with prices in different currencies and options to translate the page in various languages will draw a wider audience's attention.
Not only will booking systems cause you to see a rise in the number of customers, but the absence of any language barriers will also provide an edge over your competitors — critical for business growth.
- Automated: less time-consuming for both client and provider
It goes without saying that an online booking system is entirely automated. However, many tend to underestimate what this actually means for you and your travel/tour company.
- no tiresome back and forth emails: Before booking systems existed, communication occurred via telephone and email, which would require constant supervision and manning. One could imagine how time-consuming it would be to sit through thousands of calls every day and booking activities manually. With a booking system, customers can simply select their desired tour/activity, enter their information, complete the online payment, and await the day of their tour/activity.
- zero risk of double booking of available time slots due to human error: Since the entire process in an online booking system is automated, you need not worry about whether two customers have been booked for the same time and day. Unlike human error, the system automatically displays which tours/activities are fully booked and does not allow such mistakes to occur.
Additionally, booking systems come with smart calendars which display all the critical data needed, such as the total number of bookings, capacity, and turnover for the required period within a few clicks. Planning has never been easier.
- facilitates online payments/deposits: Implementing an online booking system allows you to complete transactions for your services quicker and easier. Through the booking system, payment is made directly to you and conveniently before the customer arrives so that everything runs smoothly.
This also allows you to benefit from customers ordering any additional products or services as they manage their booking online — increased revenue.
- enables automatic cancellations (if required): With an automated booking system, you won't have to worry about manually managing cancellations. Once a customer cancels their tour/activity, the system automatically updates the calendar and applies for any cancellation fee/refunds the money.
- Increases overall business efficiency
With an online booking system, everything updates automatically with instant notifications for the tour/activity providers. The booking system interacts with several other features such as the smart calendar and ensures an error-free process to both the customers and providers.
An online booking system is what you need to simplify, automate and optimize your business. From automating operations such as getting customer details to updating booking information, payment and scheduling, an online booking system allows you the advantage of implementing the modern ways of conducting travel and tour activity into your business. For as little as €10.00 per month, TripAdmit offers you the perfect online booking solution to help improve and enhance your tour/activity business.