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Managing availability and calendars

Before you can accept appointments in Scheduling, you'll need to choose the hours you'll accept bookings from clients. This is called setting your availability. You can also set limits on how and when appointments are scheduled and add and edit multiple calendars. Each calendar has its own hours of availability.

Before you begin

  • Availability limits the times clients can book online. You or your staff can schedule appointments outside of your availability from the Appointment Calendar.
  • Availability is for regular appointment types only and doesn’t apply to classes.

Set and edit your basic availability

For full control over your schedule and when clients can book with you, set your hours for each calendar.

Set regular weekly hours

If the calendar stays the same from week to week, set regular weekly hours:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. If you have more than one calendar, click Edit Availability/Limits on one of them.
  3. In the Regular Weekly Hours section, leave I have regular hours every week checked.
  4. Enter your hours in the fields for each day of the week. For help formatting these hours, see Formatting hours.
  5. Click Save Regular Hours.

Set different hours for each day

If the calendar has different hours every day, first remove regular weekly hours:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. If you have more than one calendar, click Edit Availability/Limits on one of them.
  3. In the Regular Weekly Hours section, uncheck I have regular hours each week.
  4. Click Save, switch to Specific Days.

Then use the calendar that appears below to add override hours for specific days. Any days left blank won't be bookable by clients:

  1. Click on a day on the calendar.
  2. Enter your hours for that day, then click Set Hours. For help formatting these hours, see Formatting hours.
  3. Repeat Steps 1 and 2 until your schedule is complete.

Formatting hours

When entering hours on your calendar, you can set a range of time you’re available, list specific start times, or combine the two methods. Use the table below for help formatting hours.

Format example

Effect

8 AM - 5 PM 

Appointments can start at 8 AM. The last must end by 5 PM.

8 AM - 1 PM, 2 PM - 5 PM

Appointments can start at 8 AM and must end by 1 PM. They can begin again at 2 PM, ending again by 5 PM.

8 AM, 9 AM, 10 AM

Appointments can start at 8 AM, 9 AM, and 10 AM.

8 AM - 3 PM, 4:30 PM, 5 PM

Appointments can start at 8 AM and must end by 3 PM. Appointments can also start at 4:30 PM and 5 PM.

Limit when clients can book or change appointments

Use scheduling limits to choose if and when clients can book, edit, or cancel their appointments.

Scheduling limits control:

  • How far in advance clients can book appointments on your scheduling page
  • If clients can reschedule or cancel their own appointments
  • How close to a booked appointment clients can reschedule or cancel
  • The time slots offered on your scheduling page
  • If clients can edit intake forms after scheduling

Your default scheduling limits are applied account-wide. Scheduling limits on each calendar apply only to that calendar. If a scheduling limit is available both as a default scheduling limit and on specific calendars, the calendar-specific scheduling limit will override the default scheduling limit.

Set default scheduling limits

To edit default scheduling limits:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Click Edit Default Limits
  3. Make any changes to the default limits. For help with these settings, see the table below.
  4. Click Save Limits

Set scheduling limits for specific calendars

To add or edit scheduling limits for a specific calendar:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. If you have more than one calendar, click Edit Availability/Limits on one of them.
  3. Click Client Scheduling Limits.
  4. Make any changes to the limits. For help with these settings, see the table below.
  5. Click Save Limits.

Learn more about each setting:  

Setting

Action

General Scheduling Limits

Enable or disable clients' ability to reschedule, cancel, or edit appointment details. This is a default scheduling limit only.

Appointment Start Times

Have Scheduling choose appointment start times based on appointment durations, or set the timing yourself. 

If you show start times based on appointment durations, Scheduling will use the lowest common denominator of your appointment durations, which is the largest number that can be divided into all of the appointment durations. 

For example, if you have a 20-minute appointment type and a 10-minute appointment type, Scheduling will offer slots starting every 10 minutes.

This is a default scheduling limit only.

Do Not Allow Clients to Schedule Fewer Than

Set how many hours in advance a client must book with you. This setting can help you avoid last-minute appointments and limit how far into the future clients can book. This is a default limit you can override with calendar-specific scheduling limits.

Do Not Allow Clients to Cancel or Reschedule Appointments Less Than

Set how many hours in advance clients can cancel or reschedule. This setting can help you avoid last-minute cancellations. 

This is a default limit you can override with calendar-specific scheduling limits.

Make Me Look Busy

Add a percentage of time to reduce the number of appointments available. This hides some open time slots from clients. This is a default scheduling limit only.

Minimize Gaps

Automatically reduce gaps between appointment times and group appointments to avoid holes in your day. This is a default scheduling limit only.

Appointments Per Time Slot

Set the number of appointments that can happen at one time on this calendar or appointment type group. This limit must be set separately for each calendar.

Maximum Appointments

Set the maximum number of appointments that can be booked for this calendar or appointment type group. Choose to accept appointments until fully booked, or set a maximum per day or week. This limit must be set separately for each calendar.

Add and manage calendars

Each calendar in Scheduling represents a separate set of hours when clients can book appointments. Some small businesses only need one calendar. If you have multiple staff members or locations, you can create individual calendars for them.

The number of calendars you can add depends on your Scheduling plan:

  • Emerging Entrepreneur - One calendar
  • Growing Business - Two to six calendars
  • Powerhouse Player - Seven to 36 calendars
Tip: If you have calendars for your staff and more staff on duty than capacity for appointments to take place, add Rooms/Resources. For example, you can use Rooms/Resources if you have fewer rooms than staff or equipment clients need to use.

Add a new calendar

To add a new calendar:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Click Add New Calendar.
  3. Enter the calendar's name and any details you want to include, such as an image, time zone, and location. Add an email address or phone number to receive the confirmation, cancellation, and rescheduling notifications. Separate multiple entries with commas.
  4. Click Next: Add Appointment Types & Hours.
  5. Select the appointment types on this calendar.
  6. Click Save Appointment Types.
  7. Enter your availability
  8. Click Save Regular Hours if you’re using regular weekly hours, or enter each day’s hours if you’re using override hours for specific days.
  9. Click Client Scheduling Limits.
  10. Set your scheduling limits.
  11. Click the X at the top right to close the editor. 

Edit a calendar

To edit an existing calendar: 

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Find the calendar you want to edit and click Calendar Settings.
  3. Make changes and click Save Changes.

Delete a calendar

To delete a calendar:

Note: Before deleting a calendar, cancel all of its appointments or reschedule them to other calendars. After you delete a calendar, its appointments won't appear on any calendar. They won't be deleted, but they'll only be in individual client records, making them harder to find.
  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling
  2. In the Scheduling panel, click Availability.
  3. Find the calendar you want to delete and click Calendar Settings.
  4. Click Delete Calendar.
  5. Click Yes, Delete Calendar.

Set separate hours or limits for different appointment types

You can divide your calendar into appointment type groups with their own availability settings and scheduling limits. This is useful if you only offer some services at specific times. After you've created these groups, you can set availability and scheduling limits for each of them.

Add a new appointment type group

To create a new appointment type group:  

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Find the calendar you want to divide into groups.
  3. In the bottom-left corner of the calendar panel, click the Set different hours for certain Appointment Types link.
  4. Select the appointment types that you want in a group, then click Save Appointment Types. If this is the first group you've created, the selected appointments create a group called Group 2. Those you didn’t select create Group 1.
  5. Set your availability for this group.
  6. Click the Client Scheduling Limits tab at the top.
  7. Enter your scheduling limits for this group.
  8. Click Save Limits.
  9. Click the X at the top right to close the editor. 
Tip: Classes are automatically in Group 1. You can add more appointment types to Group 1. Because classes are offered at times you manually choose, they aren’t affected by Group 1’s availability settings. However, they are controlled by Group 1’s scheduling limits.

Edit an appointment types in a group

To add or remove appointment types from groups:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Find the group you want to edit and click Edit Group.
  3. Adjust the checkboxes to control which appointment types are in the group.
  4. Click Save Changes.

To move an appointment type from one group to another: 

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Find the group with the appointment type you want to move, and click the gear icon next to the Appointment Type’s name.
  3. Use the drop-down menu to choose a new group for the appointment type, or click Create New Group.

Use rooms/resources to manage items required for appointments

Use the Rooms/Resources panel to limit the number of appointments requiring an item that can be scheduled at one time. This limit applies across all calendars. For example, if you're a kayak rental company, you may want to limit the number of kayaks available for rent at a time. 

When you create a resource, you tell Scheduling how many of an item you have and which appointment types use it. When a client books an appointment that requires a resource, Scheduling deducts one from the resource for that time slot. When a resource reaches zero for a time slot, clients can't book any more appointments that use the resource in that time slot.

Keep in mind: 

  • Resources limit the total number of appointments happening at one time, but they don't allow you to schedule appointments for specific rooms. To allow clients to book for a specific room, create a calendar for each room instead.
  • If you have a calendar for each room, don't use resources to also represent rooms.
  • Resources are for internal use only and are invisible to clients.
  • Classes can use resources, but the entire class subtracts only one from the resource.
  • If an appointment type requires multiple different resources, all of them must be available for clients to book.

To add a resource:

  1. In the Home Menu, click Scheduling, and then click Availability.
  2. Click Rooms/Resources.
  3. Click New Resource.
  4. Enter a name and quantity for the resource, then select the appointment types that use it.
  5. Click Create Resource.
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Managing availability and calendars