Scheduling/booking is coming into its own as a key feature for SMBs, as more and more businesses tie their marketing and promotions to open slots in their schedule.
Key companies in the space include Full Slate (recently acquired by Intuit,) ReachLocal’s ReachCommerce, Groupon Scheduler, Agendize, Moon Valley Software, GenBook, Schedulicity, Maxipage and Hakema (in Europe). Another company, MyTime, was founded by RedBeacon founder Ethan Anderson and is an aggregator of scheduled appointments.
Another major player in the space is Booker, which has raised $42 Million. While focused on the beauty, health and wellness space, it also works with a wide range of national-local players.
Booker announced today a mobile app partnership with Como (formerly Conduit Mobile) to take scheduling beyond the desktop. The app takes less than 15 seconds for SMBs to create.
Mobile apps make a lot of sense in this context. A customer might make 12 appointments per year for cut and color treatments at a salon. For such a customer, a dedicated App — perhaps tied to a loyalty program — coule be especially useful. The same may not always be true for “discovery” segments such as restaurants and retail, which may be better aggregated in directories such as Yelp, Google, OpenTable or YP. Customers may also prefer booking an appointment directly with the SMB, rather than going through a directory site — or at least, this is what Booker is banking on.
Booker CEO Josh McCarter is a featured speaker at BIA/Kelsey’s Leading in Local: SMB Digital Marketing, which takes place Sept. 22-24 in New Orleans. You may register here.