Appointment scheduling is used by a number of different industries, including medical professionals, spas and salons, service providers, and sales professionals. Depending on the industry, the types of appointments, specific needs of the businesses, and customers can vary wildly, so the software used to schedule appointments is also different for each industry.
Types of Appointment Scheduling
Healthcare providers needing HIPAA-compliant appointment scheduling software
Businesses with multiple service providers needing CRM and retail features
Fitness instructors, educators, or any business needing software for customers to self-enroll in classes
Individuals needing to schedule calls with clients or prospective customers
Individuals or small businesses needing software to schedule house calls or service appointments
Tax advisors, CPAs, and financial service professionals needing appointment software with document import/export
Why Use Appointment Scheduling Software?
Appointment scheduling software helps businesses and individuals manage their calendars and schedule clients appropriately. The best appointment scheduling software also has an online booking or a customer-facing element so customers can easily book their own appointments. Depending on the specific needs of the business, appointment scheduling software can also have customer relationship management (CRM) features, invoicing, retail sales, time tracking, and payment processing tools.
Appointment Scheduling by Industry Software Features
Appointment scheduling software lets clients book appointments and helps businesses manage those appointments. The specific features can vary based on industry, but all appointment scheduling software needs to be easy to use and offer online scheduling and calendar syncing for customers and employees. They should also allow you to book different kinds of appointments and store information about customers.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Medical Practices
Medical practices, such as family doctors’ offices, dentists, and therapists have specific needs. They need a medical appointment scheduling software that either has a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-compliant electronic health records (EHR) system or can easily connect to one.
Medical practices also need scheduling software that can be used to create invoices and bill patients. In addition to these industry-specific features, medical practices also need standard appointment scheduling features, including automated appointment reminders and an easy-to-use interface for patients and office staff. Instead of having a separate appointment scheduling software, many medical practices choose an EHR or practice management (PM) software that has appointment scheduling features built in.
Popular appointment scheduling software for medical practices include:
- PracticeSuite: A PM software with appointment scheduling, medical billing, and insurance verification. Monthly fees range from $0 to $195.
- AdvancedMD: An EHR software for managing patient appointments and files. Pricing is custom quoted for each business.
- Charm EHR: An EHR with appointment scheduling, automated confirmations, online booking, and billing features. Monthly prices range from $0 to $350 per provider.
- SimplyBook.me: A customizable appointment scheduling software with online booking, payment processing, and appointment reminders. Monthly fees range from $0 to $59.90.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Spas & Salons
Spas and salons need appointment scheduling software that can accommodate multiple types of appointments and many different service providers. Salon appointment scheduling software also needs to have thorough CRM features for managing customer accounts, including service and purchase history and loyalty programs.
In addition to managing services, spas and salons also need software that can process retail sales for products and charge customers for services at the time of their appointments. Salons also need an appointment scheduling software with standard features like a user-friendly online booking portal, automated appointment confirmations, and calendar sync for customers and service providers.
Popular appointment scheduling software for spas and salons include:
- Shedul: A free spa and salon appointment management software with retail features.
- Vagaro: A fitness and salon management software with easy booking and retail management features. Monthly fees range from $25 to $85 depending on the number of service providers.
- Square Appointments: A user-friendly appointment management software with a free website and online booking, retail management, built-in credit card processing, and CRM features. Square Appointments is free for solo providers, $50 per month for two to five employees, and $90 per month for six to 10 employees.
- MassageBook: A popular and affordable appointment booking software for massage therapists that includes online booking and calendar management, CRM features, and built-in credit card processing.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Group Activities
Appointment scheduling software for classes or group activities allows multiple people to register for a scheduled event under a single service provider. This type of scheduling software is used by many different types of businesses and professionals, including fitness instructors, educators, coaches, retailers hosting classes, webinar instructors, and meetup groups.
Most scheduling software programs allow one customer to book a single appointment spot. Group activities require a special appointment booking software that lets many people sign up for a specific time slot. These software programs also have features to let customers manage their bookings online, robust CRM features, payment processing for sign-ups and reservations, and typically have a loyalty program.
Popular appointment scheduling software for group activities includes:
- MindBody: MindBody is a management software for gyms, boutique fitness centers, spas, and salons with a user-friendly online booking platform for classes and solo appointments. MindBody ranges from $125 to $395 per month.
- Setmore: Setmore is a basic online booking software with features for managing classes and group bookings as well as payment processing. Monthly fees range from $0 to $89.
- Appointy: This is a popular appointment scheduling software with features for groups and classes, plus marketing features and built-in credit card processing. Monthly fees range from $0 to $99.
- Picktime: Picktime is a free appointment scheduling software with features for managing classes, staff schedules, and automated appointment reminders.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Sales Professionals
Sales professionals need scheduling software for setting meetings and conference calls with current and prospective clients. Sales scheduling software differs from the other appointment software on this list because there are generally no services rendered.
Sales professionals may not need built-in credit card processing, but they do need appointment scheduling software with detailed CRM features for managing contacts and notes, automated scheduling tools, calendar sync, and meeting notifications. Sales scheduling software also needs to be easy to use and have a professional interface for clients.
Popular appointment scheduling software for sales professionals includes:
- Calendly: Calendly is an appointment scheduling software for business meetings that has a user-friendly interface and clean calendar integrations. Calendly monthly fees range from $0 to $15.
- Assistant.to: Assistant.to is a free Google Chrome browser extension that links to Gmail for easy appointment scheduling and management.
- NeedtoMeet: NeedtoMeet is an appointment scheduling software that makes it easy to coordinate meeting times between multiple parties. Monthly fees range from $0 to $19 per user.
- Appointlet: Appointlet is an affordable booking software with automated notifications, personalized links, and reporting. Monthly fees range from $0 to $10.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Service Providers
Service providers, such as repair businesses and cleaning services, need appointment scheduling software that can manage appointments, store customer contact and service information, and generate invoices.
Whether making house calls or receiving customers at your business, service providers need a system to manage their time with each customer, track the work that is being done, and bill accordingly. These businesses also need software with automated appointment reminders, easy online booking, and built-in credit card processing for deposits and invoicing.
Popular appointment scheduling software for service providers include:
- Square Appointments: A user-friendly online booking and calendar management software with built-in invoicing tools and a free website. Square Appointments is free for solo providers, $50 per month for two to five employees, and $90 per month for six to 10 employees.
- Acuity: Acuity scheduling lets clients book and manage their own appointments and integrates with different payment processors and web builders. Acuity monthly fees range from $15 to $50.
- Housecall Pro: Housecall Pro is an appointment and invoice management software for field service businesses. Monthly fees range from $49 to $249.
- Booker: Booker is an appointment scheduling software with automated reminders, online booking features, and an integrated point of sale. Monthly fees range from $125 to $395.
Appointment Scheduling Software for Accountants
Accountants use appointment scheduling software to schedule time with clients for tax preparation, bookkeeping, and other types of financial management appointments. Appointment management software is used by individual accountants to schedule clients and by firms to manage bookings among multiple employees.
Appointment booking software for accountants should have a user-friendly online booking feature for clients and calendar management tools for accountants to set their availability and different appointment types. The software should also have CRM features, options for secure document uploads and storage, and invoicing tools.
Popular appointment scheduling software for accountants includes:
- Acuity Scheduling: Acuity is a popular appointment booking software that lets clients book and manage appointments online, includes automated reminders and confirmation, and integrates with a number of websites and payment processing services. Acuity monthly fees range from $15 to $50.
- EZ Accounting Scheduler: This is an industry-specific online scheduling software for accountants. Monthly fees range from $22.87 to $69.95.
- Appointment Quest: An appointment scheduling software for tax advisers and CPAs with automated reminders, online booking, credit card processing, and document import and export. Monthly subscription fees range from $5 to $165.
Appointment Scheduling by Industry Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Appointment scheduling can be a complex process, especially as your business starts to grow. Appointment scheduling processes and features also look very different for each industry. Below are some of the most common questions and concerns around appointment scheduling by industry.
How much does scheduling software cost?
Appointment scheduling software pricing can vary drastically depending on the industry and size of your business. There are several free appointment scheduling programs, especially for individuals. If you have a larger team of five or more employees or need scheduling software with complex features, such as medical health chart management, it can cost anywhere from $50 to $300 per month.
What is the best appointment scheduling software?
The best appointment scheduling software is different for every business. The best systems are all easy to use for clients and employees, let customers book and manage appointments online, and store customer data for automated appointment reminders and marketing.
Who uses appointment scheduling software?
Any individual or business that has regular meetings or provides services will benefit from an appointment scheduling software. Using a software system can save time, prevent human errors, reduce no-shows with appointment reminders, and provide customers and clients options to book online.
Appointment scheduling software is necessary for efficient calendar management for small businesses and individual service providers. Simple calendar appointment software is used in office settings by sales professionals, accountants, and consultants. Businesses, including salons, fitness studios, and medical practices, require software with additional features like invoicing, payment processing, and loyalty programs. The best system for any business is affordable and easy to use.