Being able to offer your clients the option to book and pay for courses online is essential these days. Especially given that your clients will want to process their booking with ease, simplicity and in a least amount of time possible. If you don’t offer this functionality you’re in danger of loosing their interest or loosing them to a competitor. There are several options available to you, all have been clearly outlined below.
Adding a ‘plug-in’ to your existing site
Not all website platforms/builders have the capacity to add useful plug-ins, but all is not lost! If your website doesn’t support plug-ins there are a whole host of other alternatives outlined below.
If however, you have a wordpress site it is worth looking at WooCommerce. A fantastic customisable eCommerce platform that works alongside your existing website. With WooCommerce you can sell anything. From physical products to memberships, downloads or even appointments and course bookings.
Pros: WooCommerce is used globally and is a well established and trusted brand.
Cons: Not available for all websites
Adjustments to your own website with the help of a professional webmaster
Have someone create the perfect booking system with your business needs at its core. You can post your requirements on sites such as ‘freelancer’ or ‘fiverr’. This is a global network of freelancers. An alternative is to use a local webdesign studio.
Pros: You could build a brilliant, bespoke system tailored to suit your needs.
Cons: Lots of research and confidence required here! This could also demand a lot of your time if you spend too long pondering on the perfect solution.
Using an existing third party application
There are hundreds to choose from, it’s a minefield out there. All systems will charge a monthly fee, commission or both. Research the field well and look at the systems your competitors are using. Choosing the best solution is probably going to boil down to budget. With this in mind I have outlined a few below that were reasonably priced.
Pros: Choosing the right system will give you peace of mind that support is on hand should something go technically wrong. The system will have a professional and polished finish.
Cons: Acknowledging it may not be possible to find an affordable system which meets ALL of your needs.
A simple site with clean functionality and plenty of room from growth. With fees from $0 – $60.00 pcm depending on the number of bookings you expect to take and the number of features you want. This system accepts payments from a wide variety of sources and no additional fees will be taken when payments are made. Added bonuses includes some great online tutorials, and features including customisable promotions and product sales.
Advertised as completely free…..but…….Fees apply when you add additional features like the payment function then it’s $14.00 pcm. The price increases when you add further features like SMS notifications or using your own email address. This application only accepts paypal payments.
This application is tailored towards coaches and will work well as a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool. The application allows sessions to be booked and paid for online. The fees for this product start at $33.00 pcm.
Other systems to consider are outlined below:
https://www.timify.com/en-gb/timify-premium/ £29.00 pcm
https://www.bookeo.com/classes/pricing/ $40.00 pcm
https://www.bookingcommerce.com/en/pricing/ $10.00 pcm with 2% commission
https://www.smoothbook.co/pricing-3/ free for a limited time but you could get hooked then they’ll impose a highly month fee. I tried to call them to find out but no answer!
Once you have chosen the best solution to meet your business needs you may wish to consider hiring a Virtual Assistant to manage the administration and bookings to free up more of your time. If you would like to read more about how a Virtual Assistant can help you and business please read this post: Growing your business: How hiring a Virtual
Assistant will help