16 Jan 2023
  

​How to create a booking app like Booksy: Features, Cost, and Business Model

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Surbhi Bhatia

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app like Booksy

Beauty is a booming industry that has experienced significant growth in recent years. People are concerned about their appearance and personality. Therefore, many people are starting to open spas and salons. Beauty and health are stable businesses that have not been affected by the economic recession.

There is too much competition in the market. So the question is: How can you be different from your competitors? You can gain a competitive edge by developing a salon booking app.

According to a report, 20% of consumers contribute to 80% of future salon business. This shows how important customer retention is for your business project’s growth. You can unlock the potential for customer retention by creating a salon application.

You are in the right place if you want to grow your business. Let’s discuss why you should invest in a beauty/wellness app and its most recent features.

BUT FIRST…

What’s a Salon Software?

Salon software is a set of software tools that can assist salons in managing and growing their businesses. The software includes features such as client and appointment management, salon marketing, point-of-sale (POS), salon operation management, and reporting.

This article is about “all-in-one” solutions. Platforms that offer support in all areas necessary to run a salon successfully.

However, this is not the only way to create systems supporting your business. It is possible to use different systems that specialize in other areas and combine them where needed.

However, this would add complexity and cost. Our recommendation to 95% of business owners is to find a tool that supports most of their needs and add additional tools when they have a business need.

We’ll be reviewing the features of each salon software platform listed here, and you’ll see where it makes sense for the software to be complemented by another, more specific tool.

Business Models for On-Demand Beauty Service Application

1. App for dedicated beauty service

Well-known or renowned beauty brands develop these apps to help them expand their local markets. This allows app owners to make their services more accessible and enhance brand visibility. In addition, the admin can assign a professional to complete the service when a booking has been made.

2. Aggregator Beauty Service App

The Aggregator app brings together all beauty professionals, freelancers, hairdressers, and other service providers under one roof. Anyone looking for a particular service can find it by partnering with a local beauty salon or service provider.

An app owner may earn a commission/fee for every transaction.

Why should you invest in Beauty Services Mobile Applications?

It is growing exponentially, and competitors are constantly looking for better options to offer their customers the best service.

  • According to a report by Statista, the Beauty & Personal Care Market revenue will be US $511,401M by 2021. CAGR 2021-2025 is forecast to see the market grow by 4.75% annually.
  • The industry is currently valued at $532 billion and will reach $716.6 million by 2025.
  • About 70% of the approximately 1.2 million professionals in the US started to market themselves via mobile apps.
  • Now, this article will discuss building an app like Booksy, one of the most well-known apps.

What’s Booksy?

Booksy is a calendar- and appointment-management application that connects businesses and customers. It was established in Poland and had its headquarters in San Francisco. Booksy is the number one app for booking appointments in the beauty, lifestyle, and wellness industries.

Booksy raised $ 70 million in 2021 to purchase other salon booking apps and expand its reach. Booksy is a popular salon booking app available in the United States, Brazil, South Africa, and Spain.

The platform lets users view local businesses, search by category, and book appointments in a calendar. They can also see all available timeslots.

Businesses can use Booksy to discover new customers and manage appointments, schedules, and payments through an app. Booksy’s availability for customers is another benefit. Customers can schedule appointments at any hour, even after hours.

Booksy is a mobile Point-of-Sale system (POS) that manages all customer journey stages, including the appointment.

How Booksy makes Money: Business Model

Customers can use Booksy to search for businesses and book appointments. They also have the option of paying for services with no fees. However, Booksy does charge a monthly fee for service providers. By doing so, businesses are more visible and accessible to mobile users and enhance their user experience.

Booksy offers several payment options to service providers. A $29.99 monthly subscription can access all the main features, such as a calendar, appointments, payment processing, and marketing tools.

Each additional staff member costs $20 per month if you require access to your Booksy profile. Therefore, the cost of the staff member exceeds 14, and the monthly fee is $309,99.

Booksy offers marketing services. This feature is called Boost and allows businesses to be promoted on Booksy. In addition, the boost will enable companies to pay only for customers acquired through Booksy.

The platform charges a 30% fee for the first service a customer receives: minimum $10 commission, maximum $100. Even if 30% of the service provided by a business is more significant than that amount, it will not be charged anymore.

Booksy is very profitable. It was ranked as one of the top-growing companies worldwide in 2020. Their revenue has increased by 1500% in three years, and their team has grown by 500% in just three years.

The Benefits of Developing a Salon Booking App

We have seen the variety of beauty services available on-demand for various occasions and daily requirements. Users can feel bored or irritated sitting in the salon lounge waiting for hours because of their busy schedules. The application has many other benefits, which we list below.

1. Quick Navigation

Clients will have no issues with trade fair information, such as hours, rules, packages, and costs.

2. Notifications

Clients need to know that you exist. Although cold-calling may not be the best option, push notices can remind clients they are available.

3. Time-Saving

This connects to the first benefit. Customers can save time planning their appointments by using a lounge reservation app.

4. Customization

A salon reservation app is a key advantage. In addition, a smartphone app can allow customers to select the stylist they prefer, thanks to its fascination with personalized content that adds to the customer experiences.

5. No hassle payment

Given the current pandemic, payment is a common practice. Users will benefit in many ways from the development of a payment portal for salon reservations. The payment gateway provides multiple payment options.

6. Showcase Services Globally

Publicity is essential for any beauty salon. It allows customers to know about the salon and the services it offers. In addition, on-demand applications enable salon owners to list their services and promote them to existing customers.

This gives the app owner an insight into the trends and questions they are most interested in. They can then work on these issues to improve their services. Salons can also plan for expansion in the area based on app downloads and demography.

What You Need to Consider When Choosing the Right Salon Software For Your Salon or Spa?

When choosing the right salon software, there are many things to consider. First, the software must deliver on the “killer points” you already know.

To make sure you make an informed decision, here are some things we recommend you keep in mind.

1. Supported Countries

Today’s salon software platforms are largely localized. One reason is that credit card payments can still be managed in different ways in different countries. However, the structure of businesses can differ from one country to another.

It is important to know if the platform has supported your country. 

2. Simplicity vs. Flexibility

After reviewing multiple platforms, we found there is always a balance between providing essential features and flexibility while still being easy to use.

You will need to learn more if you want to control your company’s branding and customize reports than if you use something predetermined and locked down.

Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages. However, ultimately, you will decide how important it is to control everything and whether you are willing to accept more complexity.

This list shows that Fresha and GlossGenius are the easiest-to-use platforms. However, this also means you have less flexibility if they are chosen over the other options.

3. Integrations

Do you need to be able to use specific accounting software, such as Quickbooks, or an external e-mail marketing service? You should also consider how easy it is to integrate with other platforms.

Mangomint is the platform that supports the most integrations. Mangomint can be integrated with almost any software that supports integrations. However, you will likely need to hire one of the best mobile app development companies to assist you in setting it up. Furthermore, Square offers a wide range of partner software, making it easy to integrate. Vagaro allows integration with many of the most popular tools used in salons.

4. Design

Your clients will interact with you through the platform, so you want to ensure everything, from email templates to hardware, is consistent with the salon or spa experience.

Many salon software platforms are outdated and have interfaces that remind you of Windows 95. While some may have good functionality, the design is more critical than the functionalities.

The platforms are all good. We believe Square is the best POS unit for a larger salon, GlossGenius has the most innovative card reader, and Mangomint has the most intuitive interface. Fresha, Vagaro come close. However, what looks good can also be subjective, so this is not a significant difference in the list of salon software.

5. Price

The price is something we cannot ignore. The price of your software will impact your decision. The pricing differences between these systems are significant.

When evaluating the price of a subscription, it is important to consider your staff, any additional fees (such as card transactions), and the features and customer service support you receive at the subscription price.

All the tools here are worth it, or they wouldn’t exist. 

6. Features and Functionality

You must ensure that your software supports the must-have features you need. They will differ from one business to the next.

What features are you required to include?

It is important to understand the features you should include when setting up a salon booking application. These are the main features to remember when building a salon booking application.

To the customer

1. Inbuilt calendar

To manage your appointments, make sure to include a calendar. Your app users will be able to open the app and check their reservations directly from your internal calendar. Then, they can book their appointments accordingly.

2. Commitment Fee

To ensure that customers arrive on time, include a deposit.

3. In-app payments

Your customers can make payments in-app, even during the post-COVID era. You can manage the transactions of your customers and their payment details with in-app payments.

4. Loyalty Program

You can show your customers that you care by creating a loyalty program or providing special offers. To give your customers incentives, make sure to include a loyalty program. One example is giving them a haircut free of charge for every ten. For your loyal customers, you can offer a variety of other perks and rewards to increase your chances of keeping them.

5. Style Library

A style library can be extremely useful. A photo gallery that includes tons of photos can give your clients a clear idea of what they are looking for, which will improve communication.

6. Push Notifications

Potential customers can easily forget about your app, given the sheer number of software and apps available. Push notifications are the best way for customers to know you’re available. In addition, you can send your customers the most recent updates and news.

7. GPS

GPS is a standard feature in every app. GPS is essential to assist customers in finding the salon.

To the admin

1. Client Management

– The ability to view, add and delete users

– The provision to view the client audits of beauticians

– View and manage clients’ profile

2. Web appointment management

This feature allows admins to view and manage past and future appointments.

3. Beautician management

This feature allows you to edit, delete or modify your beautician management. You can also see the beauty therapist’s schedule.

4. Service Management

Service management allows admins to view, edit, delete and add data. These data include bank details, beautician records, appointments, and ID card information.

The Advanced Features of an On-Demand Beauty Service App

1. Promo Codes

The app offers unique codes that allow users to receive discounts, service bundles, or loyalty programs. This makes them feel special. These offers should only be available to long-term customers, so they return to you often.

2. Chat/Calling in-app with Providers

Customers can chat with experts in the salon via in-app messaging or by calling. This allows them to discuss their needs and let customers share their concerns. In addition, they can quickly clarify any questions or concerns about a service.

3. Upload Video Portfolio

This feature allows makeup artists and hairstylists to upload videos and portfolios into the app. These videos can assess the services’ quality and help users decide if they want to use them.

5 steps to create an appointment booking app similar to Booksy

Step 1. 

If you are reading this article, you probably have an idea for an app similar to Booksy. You must ensure your product is unique and targeted to your market and audience. You might also want to create an app applicable to other types of businesses, not just salons.

Consider your user persona. Then, think about the problems your product will solve for them. Also, consider making it more personalized and easy to use.

Make a list of your requirements. Even though they may seem vague, a professional salon booking software vendor will make them concrete specifications.

Step 2.

Partnering with the app developers in USA can be the best and most cost-effective option for those who don’t have a development team. In addition, you can save money by finding vendors in countries with lower living costs. This will allow you to repurpose the funds for business expenses such as marketing.

How can you find a trustworthy vendor? These are some of the options:

  • Ask business friends and acquaintances to recommend a company.
  • Review listing platforms such as Clutch. co or Goodfirms
  • Visit the vendor’s site to see their portfolio and view any content or services that interest you.

Once you have narrowed down vendors, get in touch with them to see what solutions they provide. Then, again, you can involve a third-party expert to ensure that your developers are competent in their technical tasks.

Once you have found the perfect candidate, it is time to sign a contract.

Step 3.

Booksy is a feature-rich on-demand service app, so plan your development. The discovery phase involves gathering requirements, understanding the target market, and converting the user expectations and business goals into a technical specification.

Technical specifications are a description of every aspect of your product. They help all team members and stakeholders get on the same page. This document will ensure that you get exactly what you need and expect.

Step 4.

Now, it’s time for you to build your app. You will need two apps to serve customers and businesses if you follow Booksy’s model. An admin panel is also required. This allows you to manage users and receive subscription payments.

You can prioritize features and create an MVP to speed up development. This will enable you to develop your application based on the real feedback received from users.

If you select native technologies, you will need to create a custom iOS application and an Android app for end-users and businesses. On the other hand, Cross-platform technologies such as Flutter are a great way to save money. You can create one app that is suitable for both companies and end-users.

While your appointment booking app develops, you can market it. Contact businesses to inform them of upcoming opportunities and build a client base.

A promo campaign can be launched using the lean startup method, with your development team handling all technical aspects.

Step 5.

After your product has been launched, and you have your first users, it is time to monitor the metrics. Integrate analytics before you go live to track your users’ behavior, convention rates, and revenue.

Encourage customers to provide feedback to improve your product and grow your company.

Step 6.

Your work on appointment booking applications does not stop with the release. You will need to continue maintaining your appointment booking applications.

  • Bug fixing
  • OS updates
  • Updates to the library and framework
  • Security checks
  • Refactoring

This stage also includes the development of new features and redesigning existing functionality. You want to ensure that your software is always up-to-date and relevant to your customers so they can see the value and remain loyal.

Concluding

Everything you need to know about developing a salon booking application is available here. Apps are crucial for your company’s growth and sustainability. Therefore, a primary application is not recommended. But it is important that your app has all the essential functions to make it stand out.

Also ReadHow to Choose a Mobile App Development Company?

There are benefits as well as other costs. You might consider building one for your salon if you don’t have one yet. You can add or remove any feature to your application. You can do whatever you want. The application, regardless of how big or small your company is or what you do, is an important tool that clients will love to use.

So, what are you waiting for?

Schedule your first consultation with Techugo, and acquire further assistance on the app idea!

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