Do you have clients that cancel appointments often, leaving gaps in your work schedule? Are you having trouble accommodating them and are losing revenue as a result?
It might be time to create boundaries for your business.
Online booking terms and conditions are excellent client management tools that will help minimize misunderstandings.
One of the only caveats with online booking is that you can miss the opportunity to answer questions about the booking process. Meaning, if you don't include your terms surrounding company policies, it is safe to assume that they will be much more challenging to enforce later on.
Here are some policies you can include in your online booking page:
1. Starting Prices
Due to add-ons, stylist, or service changes, the base prices next to your services online may not be the final price your client will see when they checkout. Make sure to include a "starting price" disclaimer in your terms so your clients will not be surprised when they reach the sales register.
2. Cancellation Policy
No-shows and unexpected cancelations can cost you precious time and resources.
Especially after a year of unprecedented changes, lockdowns, and protocol adjustments, cancellation policies will help you hold your clients accountable when they book online. An example of a cancellation policy could look like a 12 hour cancellation window with a non-refundable deposit if canceled within that time frame.
3. Refund Policy
The best way to resolve any mishaps is to plan for them. Unhappy customers can cause a lot of work-life stress, but it's also essential to have procedures in place to protect your business and the hard work you've accomplished (oh, and not to get taken advantage of, of course).
Use refund policies to establish fair expectations between your employees and your clients. Stating all refund policies will help them see where you are coming from and explain what you can offer in return.
4. Late Arrivals
That early morning Starbucks stop will domino down your scheduling calendar and leave you with many unsatisfied clients. Eliminate the hassle by creating a policy for arriving late to an appointment.
5. COVID Requirements
Keeping up to date on local guidelines can be tricky. Stating your COVID policies in your booking terms can avoid confusion and help your clients prepare beforehand to keep themselves and your staff as safe as possible.
When creating your terms and conditions in your Online Booking forms:
Always be firm, clear, and concise.
Set cancellation windows that suit your needs as a business owner. Avoid misleading language or words and phrases that make the policy feel like an option versus a requirement.
And the most important tip of all:
Make sure to select the Require user to agree to terms before booking online checkbox to ensure your terms are being read. 🎉