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Flexible Pricing and Price Hiding – Update April 19th 2017

by niall 0 Comments

The latest product update to online booking system BookingHawk.com facilittes a business in showing different prices for different customer types. For example, if a business offers a student or a seniors discount, they can now inform the user of this price when they are booking online. Click here for a short video showing how to add a flexible pricing message to your online booking page.

online-booking-system-flexible-pricing

An example of the flexible pricing message which is optionally displayed to users

Also included in this release is the ability to hide the price of your service from your business profile page. This came as a direct request from a business which is currently using BookingHawk.com to manage their diary and take online bookings. The business was concerned that customers were turned off by the price shown on the business profile page. The business in question felt that if a customer were to proceed to he booking page, they would be more inclined to complete the online booking. The thinking behind this was that once the customer is on the second page, they can see the customisable flexible pricing message. As well as this, they are also only one step away from completing the booking and therefore will realise how easy the process is. Click here to see a short video on how to hide the price from your business profile page.

hide-price-online-booking-software

An example of hiding the price of from your business profile page

 

display-price-online-booking-software

An example of showing the price on your business profile page. This is the default setting.

Price editing is also part of this update. This means that if someone avails of a discounted booking, you can adjust the price of their appointment. This is useful if you are using BookingHawk.com to track your financials and did-not-arrives. The below video demonstrates how to configure this change. Click here to see a short demonstration video on how to edit the price of an online booking.

change-price-appointment-booking-system

A business may now change the price of an individual booking. This will be useful where a customer is due a discount for their appointment. It automatically reflects in your online financial reports.

 

Finally, this release also included the following minor improvements:

  • Improvement in the process for transferring money collected from online bookings and credit card payments on BookingHawk.com to a businesses bank account.
  • Fix for a small defect which existed with discount codes.
  • Appointment times in the business dashboard as well as the business profile page are automatically sorted chronologically.
  • Assets will appear in the dashboard in the same order as you have configured them to appear on the business profile page.

 

Nights 11 & 12 – Presenting The Case

In 2017, I attended Phase 1 of the New Frontiers Programme which is run by Enterprise Ireland. The programme ran two nights a week over six weeks. There was no fee to attend. I would highly recommend this programme to anyone starting a new enterprise, whether your idea is just an idea or is a semi-developed product. What follows is a post which gives an outline of nights 11 & 12 of the course. When fully published, there will be 11 posts documenting all nights of Phase 1. To see a list of published posts, click here.

The final two nights of the course require the participants to present their project to a panel. The presentations were supposed to last for four minutes and be followed by a few short questions. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the first night of presentations.

The process of preparing for the presentation was a good exercise in articulating concisely what it is that Booking Hawk does and the objectives for the system. Some things I learned throughout the night:

  • It is never a good idea to add/omit something to/from your presentation at the last minute. Stick to what you have prepared.
  • If the presentation is supposed to be strictly x minutes long, leave 30 seconds for interaction at the start as it may help to settle nerves.
  • The 10, 20, 30 Rule for presentations

With regard to my own presentation. The feedback was as constructive as ever.

  • I should have included more details on the success stories
  • I should have been clearer on the pricing model and how I will make money from it
  • It would have been good to include a figure which reflected the monetary value for all of the bookings that have gone through the system
  • I was again advised (3 times) to pick a profession to target and focus on that as opposed to getting as many varying professions on the system.

I asked one of the fellow attendees to record it for me. In the interests of the Non-Disclosure Agreement that I signed, I won’t mention his name but thank you. The idea of recording it was so that I could observe for myself what sort of bumbling idiot I came across as, so I could improve on it in the future.

I thought about publishing the demonstration video but I have decided against for a number of reasons. The first being that I did not ask permission from the facilitators to record it in the first place which, in hindsight, was bad form. The second reason is that it contains some confidential data about the strategy and growth of BookingHawk.com.

Summary

Overall, I felt that participation in the course was hugely beneficial. It thought me about areas and subjects that I would not have discovered on my own. It changed how I think about decision making and strategy. It allowed me to meet some extremely bright and driven people. It was 100% free to participate and attend. The only drawback is giving up three hours of your Monday and Wednesday evenings for 6 weeks.

I cannot think of many reasons why someone involved in a startup would decide not to participate in this course. If you would like to talk to me about the course, I would be happy to do so. I am not affiliated with Enterprise Ireland nor have I been incentivized by them in any way to ‘spread the good word’. I feel it is the least I can do to express my gratitude.

Niall

If you know someone that would benefit from online booking, please let me know about them. I will send you a two paragraph email for you to forward to your friend so it couldn’t be less hassle for you to help a couple of Irish businesses to grow!

Read Night 1 – Introduction

Read Night 2 – Idea Exploration and Creative Thinking

Read Night 3 – Market Opportunity Problem / Pain ID

Read Night 4 – Market Analysis / Customer Identification

Read Night 5 – Route To Market

Read Night 6 – Lean Business Model Canvas

Read Night 7 – Marketing Communications

Read Night 8 – Legal Issues

Read Night 9 – Business Case Document and Team Makeup

Read Night 10 – Financial Planning

Read Nights 11 & 12 – Presenting The Case

 

Improved Booking Screen

by niall 0 Comments

We are using several tools to monitor how users are interacting with the system. One of the tools we use allows us to see a heat map of where users are clicking. If we notice an area on the heat map with a lot of bright colours, we can determine that a user is interacting with this area of a page. For example, if the colour is pale, it means it has had some interaction, but the interaction has been low. If an area has a bright colour, it means that an area has had a high degree of interaction.

Obviously, there are part of the page that we expect a user to click a lot, for example, the book buttons, or the dates on the calendar. However, sometimes we see a high degree of interaction with parts of the page that surprise us. None more so than in the following diagram:

online-bookings-for-business

The bright colours indicate that a large number of users are clicking on the disabled scroll bar. This is likely frustrating them as nothing happens when they click here. Here is the same area with the heat map disabled. Notice the scroll bar to the right of the ‘Book’ buttons. It is greyed out and actually not serving any useful purpose.

available-times-for-booking-online

As you can see, the numbers below the table allow the user to see later times. There really is no need to confuse the user with the disabled up and down scroll arrows. Therefore, our latest release completely removes the disabled scroll bar meaning the online booking timetable will look as so:

available-times-for-booking-online-updated-table

This product update is an example of how we constantly monitor user interaction in an effort to make it as easy as possible for a user to make an online booking.