Questions to ask when choosing an online booking system

03 Jun 2020

An online booking system will simplify the day to day running of your facility and automate many operational tasks such as membership and facility management. The search for a new booking system can be a daunting and time-consuming task if you are unsure of what questions to ask and what features you need.

With this in mind, we have put together a list of questions you should ask every booking system provider.

How did the product come to be? How was it developed?

Before you invest your money and time into a new booking system, it’s worth finding out how the product came about and the development timeline. You can usually find this information on the ‘About Us’ page.

Sports Booker has been delivering innovative booking software for 8 years. The team is made up of a group of individuals passionate about delivering the very best booking systems using the very best technology.

What industry is your product best suited for?

A quick scan of a booking system providers website will tell you if they cater to all types of facilities or a select few, as some may be tailored to specific industries.

Our booking system can cater for a diverse range of industries and can be customised to meet individual business needs with cost-effective solutions. Our client sectors include sports and leisure, hotels, holiday parks, education, business centres and spas.

What features do you offer?

These days it goes without saying your guests or clients should have access to an App to enable them to make bookings at your facility in just a few simple clicks. The Sports Booker App is our latest development and will soon be available on IOS and Android.

After that be sure to choose a booking system that’s packed with easy to use features, such as a central dashboard and various activity calendars. It should also include multiple calendar views such as daily, weekly and monthly.

We recommend making a list of the features you need and a list of features that would be nice to have.
Sports Booker has many features to ensure you can manage your facility efficiently:
• Booking & Facility Scheduling View
• Management Reporting
• Membership Management
• Integrated Payments & Direct
• Marketing
• Point of Sale
• Client Booking Portal
• Invoicing

Is your booking system easy for staff to use?

Your employees need to be able to find bookings with ease, review calendars and produce reports.

Due to the simplicity of Sports Booker, training your staff on our system has never been easier and for most people it takes around an hour to be able to use the system competently. In just a few simple clicks you can easily view your customer website from the central dashboard and navigate to your calendar and booking history.

How does your booking system integrate with other systems?

Choose a booking system that offers simple integrations with third-party systems, as this will significantly improve communication between platforms and reduce staff workload.

Sports Booker integrates through API’s which enables us to integrate with most third-party systems.

Do you have marketing integration?

Automated emails and texts can really help you save time managing your business and any good booking system will integrate with email marketing software.

Sports Booker can help you reduce administration time by setting up automated booking confirmations, waiting list alters, booking reminders, invoices, marketing messages and text message(additional charge for SMS messages).

Can I take payment during checkout?

You want to ensure your customers have a streamlined booking process, with an easy to navigate checkout.

Sports Booker integrates with major payment processors such as Stripe, UK fast, Haven Systems, Go Cardless and Mail Chimp. You can also set up direct debits.

Can I create promotional codes and gift vouchers?

You can attract more customers with promotional codes and gift vouchers.

You can set up promotional codes with set validity dates and add gift vouchers to your Sports Booker booking site. Once purchased the contactless gift voucher will be emailed directly to the recipient to use at a later date.

How many users can I have and can we log in at the same time?

If you have multiple receptionists or senior management who need access from remote locations, it’s vital you look for a booking system with unlimited access. We recommend a cloud-based booking system if you need multiple users.

As all Sports Booker licences are unlimited, you can add as many administrators or operators as you want per site and you can have 10 members of staff login at the same time.

Do you provide a front-end customer site?

Yes, with every subscription you will receive your very own booking website. This can be customised with your branding and images.

How easy is Sports Booker to set up and install and what training do you provide?

We recommend choosing a booking system with a simple set up and clear training plan.

The set up of Sports Booker is simple and hassle-free. Our friendly team will set you up and give you all the tools you need to succeed. As well as full comprehensive training allowing you to start booking straight away, our booking system has a knowledge portal with easy to follow user guides and answers to many commonly asked questions.

What are the security measures you take to protect data?

A booking system with high levels of data security is a must. You should check for appropriate firewalls and data backups.

We build each of our client booking sites with HTTPS or “HTTP Secure”, communication. This protocol allows for secure communication over a computer network and provides authentication of the website, which protects against man-in-the-middle attacks.

Additionally, it provides bidirectional encryption of communications between a client and server, which protects against eavesdropping and tampering. To secure our servers we use a custom-built UltraFire™ High-Availability firewalls, configured in failover pairs for optimum security.

What are the pricing options?

Pricing usually varies between sectors. This is due to the level of features required.

Our pricing models vary from sector to sector and depending on preference you can choose to pay monthly or annually. If you would like a quote for your booking system please contact our account managers over on our contact us page.

What kind of support do you offer?

You never want to be in a position where you lose bookings because of technical issues or find yourself in a position where you can’t get help to resolve an issue. Working with a provider that offers 24/7 customer support will help to keep things running smoothly.

Sports Booker offers 24/7 service desk support and you can contact our friendly team by phone, email or webchat.

Will you support us as we grow?

When looking for an online booking system, you need to choose a service that accommodates your facilities needs.

Our dedicated developers work tirelessly to develop new feature requests. If there is something you would like to add to your Sports Booker system, you can get in touch with your Account Manager using the methods above to discuss your development requirements.

Can I get a demo of your product?

Never sign up for a booking system without having a demo first. Any good booking system providers will offer you a free live demo to view the interface and run through the features, with time at the end to ask questions.

You can sign up here for a free demo and book a time convenient here:

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