How To Avoid Clients Canceling Appointments
There is nothing more satisfying than having a full diary of scheduled appointments. Back-to-back clients mean back-to-back business, which ultimately means revenue. It’s great, as long as that client actually shows up for their appointment. No company is a stranger to canceled appointments, whether you have weeks of notice and the chance to reschedule, a last-minute cancellation, or even a no show. It has happened to everyone at some point. What you don’t want is it becoming a habit. Being regularly let down by clients will ultimately cost you, so here are some methods you may wish to consider to ensure your clients show up for their appointments.
Digital reminders are a great way to gently remind your client of their up-and-coming appointment. Sending texts or emails is one of the most efficient ways of reducing no-show appointments. With everyone having a smartphone glued to their side, sending a reminder directly to it is a sure way to get noticed. You can sign up to online services that allow you to send unlimited reminders, tailor your message and dictate when and how often it is sent to your clients.
Remember, this works both ways. Where you can avoid canceling appointments with clients. Canceling appointments creates a precedent that may make them more comfortable adopting themselves - if you already have. Also, do not forget to be on time for your appointments; clients don’t like to be kept waiting, and it may put off that return visit.
If your client doesn't show up to their appointment, consider using them a follow-up service. Whether by text, email, or phone call, get in touch with a simple ‘we’re sorry you missed your appointment’ message and offer them the chance to rebook another as soon as possible. Another great tip is to get the next appointment scheduled in the diary when they leave their current appointment. Booking in advance gives you the chance to take advantage of a hopefully emptier diary and prioritize your service over other appointments or commitments that may arise later.
Image Credit; Anete Lusina from Pexels
Where a client repeatedly misses or cancels appointments, it can be beneficial to politely explain the consequences that missed appointments have on your business and their lifestyle. Tactful messages that convey the adverse effects of missed appointments can gently remind clients that it is in their interest to show up to their appointment and that someone else is depending on them. It may be that they had not considered the impact a missed appointment or cancellation has had, and if you don’t tell them, they will never know. If you are struggling with repeated cancellations, then it may be worth exploring the option of appointment deposits. Any sums paid can be deducted from the final bill or refunded, but it is a proven way to ensure commitment from your client.
Ultimately one of the best things you can do is offer quality service and keep your customers happy. Happy and satisfied customers will be less likely to cancel or miss appointments. They will want to keep them, and you will retain good custom. Always keep the lines of communication open between yourself and your clients, whether it is with reminders, rebooking options, or advising them of the consequences of missing appointments. Be friendly, approachable, and welcoming and create an environment your clients want to spend their time in.