Our Score: 92/100
Our review team selected Acuity as the best scheduling software for service-based businesses such as training and tutoring centers, coaching and consulting, photography and video production companies, fitness studios, salons, and spa centers and health and dental clinics.
Acuity Scheduling is an appointment scheduling software that lets your customers book appointments online and by themselves. You no longer have to go through email or phone tag with your clients to find a convenient time and you can focus on your work.
With more than 50,000 users, Acuity Scheduling is one of the best online schedule makers. Multiple staff personnel can use this program at the same time and see each other’s schedule on the group calendar. Acuity Scheduling also integrates into many important programs such as Outlook and QuickBooks, which, makes it a powerful business software suite.
Acuity Scheduling Overview
Acuity offers an appointment-booking program that allows both your clients and staff to schedule appointments and meetings. Acuity Scheduling‘s goal is to make the question, “What time works for you?” obsolete.
|1.||Calendar / Scheduling|
|2.||Appointments / Services|
|2.2.||Schedule Class, Group, or Event||√|
|2.3.||Make a recurring appointment||√|
|2.4.||Reschedule or Cancel Appointments||√|
|2.5.||Set up appointment rules||√|
|2.6.||Linking a service to Certain Staff||√|
|2.7.||Additional Service / Add-Ons||√|
|3.1.||Embed to business website||√|
|3.2.||Login account for customers||√|
|3.4.||Make a recurring appointment||√|
|3.5.||Sync to calendar platform||√|
(ex: Buy one get one)
|4.5.||Membership / Subscriptions||√|
|6.2.||Email Marketing Platform||√|
|6.4.||Video meeting platform||√|
Acuity Scheduling allows you to manage multiple locations and employees, designate specific appointment types and set pricing for each type. It allows you to share your calendar via social media, customize your calendar so that it reflects your brand, and embed your calendar right onto your existing website for a seamless booking experience. You also be able to ask clients to fill out intake forms when scheduling.
Acuity provides online booking page that allows your customers to see your calendar availability in real-time, self-select the appointment slot that works best for them. When booking an appointment, clients are able to use a coupon to get a special price. Acuity also has auto adjust for time zones, let clients easily cancel or reschedule themselves, and automatically send reminders to keep clients prompt.
Another interesting feature is that clients have the option of adding themselves to a waitlist if the calendar is full and a day and time they desire is already booked. It’s a feature that very useful for clients and is rarely found in other appointment scheduling software.
If you’re in the medical field (or you’re a business associate of an organization that must comply with HIPAA), you should know that Acuity Scheduling is secure enough for booking such appointments.
You can use add-ons to offer additional services to clients and/or add extra time to the appointment during the scheduling process. When clients book an appointment, they’ll choose the appointment type, then will have the option to add-on additional services or products. Clients are not required to select an add-on when scheduling. If multiple appointments are booked at once (such as recurring appointments), all of the appointments will have the add-on applied.
Coupons for Appointments and Packages
Acuity scheduling let you create a coupon to give your clients holiday discounts and incentives. The coupons can be applied to a specific appointment type, a group of appointment types, or all appointment types. And clients are only able to use one coupon or package code during booking. They cannot combine or stack codes.
Acuity scheduling software offers payment processing facility that you can use to receive payments from clients when they book their appointments or schedule payments, which clients can pay online via Stripe, Square, PayPal, Braintree & Authorize.net.
Acuity scheduling can be integrated with the most popular accounting software such as QuickBooks, Xero, and Freshbooks. It also offers integration with GoToMeeting, Zapier, Square, and many more. Acuity’s interactive calendar also be able to sync with Outlook, Google and iCal.
Client History and Reports
In Acuity you can run a number of different reports:
- Appointment Reports – For these reports, you can choose certain time frames and opt for specific calendars or an account-wide report. Plus, you can run reports on all scheduled appointments, paid vs. unpaid, and canceled vs. no-show appointments.
- Revenue – This reports the total revenue generated from appointments and add-ons, broken down by the payment processor.
- Users – This shows which admins scheduled appointments, and how many were self-booked by clients.
- Add-ons – If you use add-ons this report will show a summary of add-ons sold and revenue from add-ons.
- Tips – If you let clients tip while paying, this creates a list of tips from appointments scheduled on each calendar.
Acuity Mobile App
Acuity also provides a mobile app that let you and your clients connect to the appointment scheduler using any mobile device and easily work your way through the booking process. Whether your clients use the mobile scheduler or the online one, they can schedule, cancel and reschedule an appointment, though you can decide any cutoff times or other scheduling rules from the administrative portal.
In my experience using Acuity with a free trial, it does not take a lot of time to learn how to use it.
Add New Staff
When I want to add a new staff, it’s hard to find a feature that can do that. So I try to search an article in help center page that related to it, and I found that I can add new staff with creating a new Calendar in the “Availability” menu. But when I go to the “Availability” page, I had difficulty to find the button to create a new Calendar. And then I found “Try New Design” button and I try to switch the page to the new design. In the new design page, I found a button to create new Calendar at the bottom. Unfortunately, add new Calendar feature is available only with Growing Business and Powerhouse Player accounts.
Adding new staff is the most important feature for every business, so I think it would be better if Acuity put a button to add a new staff/calendar to the part of the page that is immediately visible to the user.
Create Appointment Types (Service)
By default, create “appointment types” is easy and not require a much step. The staff is available for the service automatically according to their working hours. But you can change the staff availability for specific days and times, or for specific “appointment types”.
Customer Services and Support
Acuity has video tutorials and articles to help you get started using the software. It’s very easy to find articles that I need. Live training webinars also offered for free to help you learn how to take full advantage of everything Acuity have to offer.
All support and sales questions are through e-mail. Acuity’s Support Team online Monday-Friday 7am-8pm Eastern Time and always periodically throughout weekends and holidays.
Like many booking apps, Acuity’s pricing is concerned with the number of staff who will be sharing the calendar. Acuity Scheduling offers one free plan, Freebie, and three paid subscription plans: Emerging ($15/month), Growing ($25/month), and Powerhouse ($50/month). The main differences between the plans are the number of calendars included, multiple time zones for user’s different staff/locations, custom API & CSS, sign Business Associate Agreement (BAA) for HIPAA Compliance, and more.
Pros and Cons
Auto adjusts for time zones, let clients easily cancel & reschedule themselves, and automatically send reminders to keep clients prompt. Automatically send branded & customized confirmations, reminders & follow-ups—via email or text message—and even accept payment.
A free version is very simplistic and feature-poor. You have no online payments, no built-in email or text reminders for clients and no direct scheduler integrations with social media sites or websites.
Acuity Scheduling puts the bulk of the scheduling effort where it belongs: in your customer’s hands. Instead of needing a lot of back-and-forth between you and your customers, Acuity lets you set up a scheduling page where customers can easily book one-time or recurring appointments, fill out important forms, and pay you—all in one place.
In our opinion, Acuity is the best choice for service-based businesses such as consulting business, fitness classes, martial arts classes, yoga classes, and other similar business.
Acuity Scheduling was founded in 2006 by Gavin Zuchlinski. It supports globally diverse businesses — if the business is in one time zone, and clients in another, all time zones will be converted automatically. Online scheduling is available 24/7.
Along with appointment scheduling, Acuity Scheduling provides a simple online store to offer products and gift certificates integrated with online appointment booking.