If there’s one thing I have learnt since starting my company, Appointedd, it’s that moving forward means taking one step at a time and not trying to map out the entire journey from the beginning. Besides being an impossible task, stalling progress while you try to plan for every possible twist and turn is a good way to get nothing done at all. Part of the challenge, and the joy, of entrepreneurship and building a startup is the constant potential for surprises, good and bad.
Going with our gut and taking the curve balls as they come has been at the heart of Appointedd from the start. The idea for Appointedd’s online booking software came about when I was trying to keep a magazine afloat in a challenging economy. My hours were getting longer and I became used to doing everything online. The only thing I didn’t do online – because I couldn’t – was booking hairdresser appointments.
Driving to work every morning I would think: “I need to book a salon appointment,” and then driving home I would think “I didn’t book that salon appointment!” By then it was always well after opening hours and it struck me that, as a society that did everything else online, it was frustrating that we couldn’t interact with small businesses that way.
So I saw a gap in the market, and Appointedd was born. The software we developed started life as a tool for small businesses, to help them get online and be competitive. And providing small businesses with advanced technology at an affordable price is still an important part of what we do, but since that initial spark the company has grown into something much bigger.
Appointedd is an online booking and business management software system that connects with any web presence and turns it into a live online booking engine. We work with businesses and entrepreneurs who sell time. So that could be hair salons, physiotherapists, accountants, car valets… really anybody who’s selling a service via a time slot. It’s also for people who sell a resource by time, which could be meeting rooms, events, or equipment hire – anything that you would book for a period of time. Having all these different uses is why we’re the most flexible online booking and scheduling software on the market, and this flexibility has come from asking “Can we do this?” when faced with opportunities instead of limiting ourselves to a single industry or type of booking.
Things really took a global turn after we developed our multi-timezone functionality – the first of its kind. An enterprise client had been looking for a tool he and his team could use in a flexible way so he could travel between timezones easily without having to change his schedule. Nobody else had said that they could do this and he got in touch with us just at the time we’d decided we needed to internationalise. At that point we didn’t support any other timezones at all, but we said we could do it. And we did!
This functionality has been a key factor in our ability to export and become a contender in the global arena of SaaS, but equally has our ambitious approach to forming strategic partnerships. Relative to the size of the Appointedd team, the company punches well above its weight on the international stage. For instance, we are proud to have been able to provide bespoke solutions to ABCN workspaces. ABCN has 700 business centres across 52 countries, which has allowed us to see global spread very quickly. Our software is now is now powering business centres across all of these regions, seeing a spread across the world.
We are also working with elXtr, a leading digital hub created and maintained by the award-winning lawyers at LHS Solicitors. The team at LHS Solicitors approached Appointedd to provide them with booking tools that would enable members to securely book appointments with solicitors online, from right across Europe. To deliver the ideal solution for the elXtr platform, the Appointedd development team worked closely with the team to configure the booking flow to their exact requirements. As well as developing elXtr’s booking portal, Appointedd is also proud to be included among their line up of Experts – a selection of hand-picked companies who represent the best tools available for entrepreneurs.
So from salons to meeting rooms, to lawyers and beyond! And all this came from taking an idea and running with it – not being precious about our initial plans but using them as a launch pad from which we can power ourselves onwards and upwards, into the unknown.
Check out our software and give a free trial a whirl to see what online booking can do to your business: appointedd.com
by Leah Hutcheon – Founder and CEO of Appointedd.com
Leah is speaking at the upcoming Scotsman Conference – Inspiring Growth: Alternative ways to take your business to the next level. To find out more, or to book your place click here.