Customers not showing for their appointments is a common nightmare for most businesses. Most of the time, the main causes are that customers either forget or are late. In this blog post, we’ll give you some advice on how to reduce the number of no-shows you experience, or better yet, get rid of them completely.
- Have a reminder system
As mentioned, many appointments are missed due to customers merely forgetting the time of the appointment or that they had an appointment at all. So to solve this issue, have a system in place that reminds customers of their upcoming appointments. This could be done via SMS, email or even over social media, and is probably best if you let your customers choose their preferred method. The most important thing is to remember to send the reminder in enough time for the customer to receive it and prepare for the appointment, and also that the contact information you are sending the reminder to, is correct and up to date.
- Have cancellation periods
A good way to stop customers missing or cancelling appointments is to notify them of a limited time period in which they can cancel in, and if they cancel or miss the appointment after that period, they are charged a deposit fee. Now some could argue that this makes your business less flexible; however, it’s helping to make your business more efficient. The fact that customers know they could be charged if they are a no-show will also make them think twice about doing so.
- Follow up on no-shows & analyse the data
By following up on missed or cancelled appointments, you can identify the reasons behind why they occurred. Then use this information to make changes so that they do not occur again. You could also analyse the data to find out if there are particular customers who are always no-shows or if there is a particular time slot where appointments are missed or cancelled. For example, you may find that early morning appointments are regularly missed or cancelled as customers are experiencing transport issues.
So there you have it: three straightforward ways to reduce no-shows. You may choose to use just one or all three in an effort to diminish missed appointments. However, remember a really easy way to reduce your no-shows is through providing a service which meets or possibly exceeds customers expectations. This is because if you satisfy your customers and keep them loyal to your business, they are less likely to let you down. Please feel free to share any ideas you have and from all at BookingBug, we hope you have a great Halloween!