It’s often repeated that “time is money”, and with good reason. When you’re trying to expand your business, increase profits, and attract new customers, every moment matters. A missed appointment can result in wasted time and lost profits, which can have a profoundly negative effect on your business and bottom line.
It’s not uncommon for customers to forget about an appointment, especially if a long time has elapsed from the moment when they first scheduled a meeting with you. Although missed appointments can seem like a benign issue, they can lead to empty periods of time in your schedule.
Additionally, every missed appointment is also a missed chance to convert a lead or make a sale. Over time, missed appointments could cost your business thousands of dollars and plenty of productive time.
The obvious solution to missed appointments is to task someone in your staff with contacting customers as their scheduled appointment approaches. But unless you hire a new employee specifically for this duty, having to contact a significant number of clients each day could be overwhelming for your staff. This could make them neglect other responsibilities or become stress and overworked.
But on the other hand, hiring someone to exclusively manage reminders can be cost-prohibiting — particularly for small and medium businesses. According to research, hiring a new employee takes approximately 52 and can cost more than $4,000. You will also have to spend a significant amount of time and resources to train a new employee, and pay them full-time wages and benefits.
Hiring a virtual answering service, on the other hand, will allow you to set up automated reminders that will be sent to your customers exactly when you need them to. These are some of reasons why automated reminders can be a great way to save money.
Automated reminders can increase your productivity
There’s nothing worse than sitting at your office and having nothing to do. Whenever a customer misses their appointment or shows up late, your entire schedule is negatively impacted. You waste your time, and waiting times get longer for other customers.
But automated reminders can greatly reduce the risk of no-shows, ensuring that your schedule is packed and your office hours are as productive as possible. Reminders can also make it easier to schedule new appointments without delay.
This way, you and your staff will be able to focus on providing great quality service to every client, increasing customer satisfaction and profits. An automated reminder service also allows your customers to cancel an appointment with enough time to allow you to schedule another meeting or task during the newly-freed time slot. At the same time, the cancelling customer can have their appointment rescheduled for another time.
Reminders can help you analyze your customers’ patterns and help you create more efficient strategies
Unless you’re keeping an eye out for this type of behavior, it can be easy to forget which customers are constantly cancelling their appointments or arriving late. It’s not uncommon for businesses, regardless of the products or services they sell, to have certain customers who never seem to show up for their appointments.
But you can use the data generated by your customers’ replies to automated reminders to realize who is missing their appointments and try to figure out why. Maybe you will notice that customers in a certain age group are the ones cancelling appointments, or that people from a certain area frequently arrive late for meetings.
This information can be very useful, allowing you to analyze exactly who your no-shows are coming from. You can use this data to create new advertisements, change your scheduling strategies, or ask for feedback from these customers.
You can customize your business’ automated reminders to fit your needs exactly
Every business is different, and they all need to remind their customers about different things. Some businesses need their clients to remember to bring equipment or items in for maintenance, others need to remind people about an upcoming event, or about a one-on-one meeting with a member of your staff.
Regardless of the type of reminder that you need to send out, automated reminders will allow you to fully customize your message. You can also choose your preferred method of communication to send these messages, whether that is text, fax, or email.
You will also be able to decide how often the automated reminders are sent out. Some businesses choose to remind customers the same day of their appointment, or a few days prior. You can also have the service send out multiple automated reminders for each appointment.