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- Date Established
- Charlotte, NC
- Good customer support
- Easy learning curve
- Strong security
- Outdated user interface
Before founding checkAppointments, Aditya “Addy” Kapur lived and grew up in India, got an MBA from Walsh College in Michigan, and co-founded software services company A2Stream Inc.’s mailVU.com, where he is still the Chief Technical Officer. With one software service startup and 20 years of experience in software design and development under his belt, Addy Kapur founded checkAppointments.com in 2006-2007.
Centered in Charlotte, NC, the company produced initially free software for businesses and professionals. Today checkAppointments has a wide variety of paying clients, mostly across the United States and Canada, including users in the healthcare and education industries. Successfully serving as CTO of mailVU.com and CEO of checkAppointments.com for years has made Mr. Kapur a qualified speaker on some startup and IT concepts. Several of his talks are available online: “How API Saved My Company” on Vimeo, and “Follow Your Dream, But Have a Plan” on igniteshow.com. CheckAppointments continues to be successful in the increasingly competitive appointment booking software market.
Table of Contents
The accounts in checkAppointments are designed for solo professionals, small businesses, and high volume businesses. The main differences between the Premium and Business Plans are the ability to generate “custom reports” and the guarantee that Secure SSL is always in use.
Plans are scalable in that you can choose to pay for packs of extra staff members, locations, or resources as add-ons.
- 1 staff member
- 1 location
- 5 staff members
- 5 locations
- $10/month for additional 5 staff, locations, or resources
- 1 shared room or resource
- 5 staff members
- 5 locations
- $25/month for additional 5 staff, locations, or resources
- 3 shared rooms or resources
- Priority support
Ease of Use:
While its basic functionality as well as extra features make checkAppointments stand out in many ways, the software’s design could use some work. Though customer service is very friendly and responsive, a lot of the problems I had using the software were minor, annoying issues hard to explain and not worth explaining. Why ask abou the difficulty I had resizing the window to make sure no content was being cut off or figuring out that “Download Report” in the sentence “If the button does not work then Download Report” is a clickable command, though the font style and color don’t change throughout the sentence?
- Setup: After logging in for the first time, a message pops up from the customer support staff (with a picture and a name!) with a link to the 5-minute setup video tutorial. Unfortunately when you set open hours, each day of the week of each set of calendars comes up as its own line. Easy to create and organize unlimited custom fields with any type of answer (yes/no, text box, list, etc.) for the online scheduler.
- Graphic User Interface: Not being very clear or well spaced, checkAppointments’ interface is relatively unintuitive. The software is set up with a menu bar vertically placed on the left side, an immovable header displaying name and a logout option, and the main window. The main window is often too lengthy for one screen but it’s difficult to tell you should or can scroll down. Log in and log out buttons are so far into the corners of the screen that they’re hard to see.
Unfortunately the menu organization is a little confusing as well. The setup wizard, for example, is listed at the bottom rather than the top of the Setup tab; Payment History and Payment Options are listed under the Website tab. Because the font of regular text and of clickable commands are indistinguishable, it’s hard to know where to click and how to maneuver around the site. Some of the text on the site and in the customer booking page is so small that it’s difficult to read.
- Calendar: The calendar isn’t impossible to learn to use, nor is it totally intuitive. It offers 1-day, 3-day, week-long, and monthly views. You can choose to view staff schedules side-by-side. Double clicking free space in the calendar leads you away from the calendar to the appointment scheduling screen. Selecting an available day from a monthly calendar on the left side of the screen brings up a list of buttons indicating free slots on the right. After choosing whether to send a confirmation of the appointment to the customer, you’re led back to the calendar screen. Once an appointment appears on the calendar, you can click and drag to reschedule.
- Customer Booking: Because the customer booking page is highly customizable, so that clients can have a relatively tailored experience so far as questions asked and the flow of the screens. Unfortunately the superficial elements of the site, such as the uncentered orange business name at the top of the site and the same-sized orange “Book an Appointment with us” subtitle, detract from the professionalism and clarity of the page. You can demo a customer’s experience with the Book Now button or explore a full demo of the scheduling website.
Customer Service and Support:
CheckAppointments is one of those rare small software companies that have offices in a publicly listed geographic location with a phone number for needy clients in addition to an email address. The customer support staff offer a warm, very personal tone to their interactions, a major plus. Opening a support ticket by submitting a question to checkAppointments online automatically earns you a login on checkAppointment’s “Support Desk,” the software’s customer service platform.
In addition to treating potential and current customers reaching out to them with grace and attentiveness, checkAppointments also reaches out to people via social media and preemptive instructional videos. Their additional customer support solutions are:
- Five video tutorials covering setting up, customizing the scheduler, synchronizing Google Calendar, and creating Book Now buttons
- One-on-one appointments for phone support or screen sharing with customer support
- Several posts per month on Twitter
- Facebook, where the company summarizes their blog posts and fields support questions, often answering within ten minutes
- A blog featuring in-depth posts about tech solutions for small business and education, as well as weekly profiles of checkAppointments users!
Negative Reviews and Complaints:
The problems checkAppointments has as a software have nothing to do with funtionality or features and everything to do with layout and appearance.
- User Interface: As mentioned in the Ease of Use section of this review, checkAppointments’ graphic user interface is not as clean or simple as it could be. This makes the software harder to learn to use as well as less appealing to the demographic of people accustomed to beauty and elegance in carefully crafted software. The roughness of the UI detracts from the professionalism of the site and potentially from clients’ trust in it.
- Homely Customer Booking Site: Similar to the main scheduling software from a user’s point of view, the customer booking experience is just a little degraded by the awkward and somewhat bland scheduling page. CheckAppointments users can change the content of the booking site’s screens but not the layout or the colors of the space around the changing screens.
- Not Optimized for Mobile: CheckAppointments is not yet optimized for smartphones or devices, nor is there a complementary app.
Positive Reviews and Testimonials:
Users’ positive reviews centered around security, customer service, and the simplicity of setup. Additionally, the functions listed in the “Features” section of this review are each valuable assets to the software and practically helpful to many businesses.
- Helpful Customer Service: CheckAppointments’ customer service is proactive, often immediately responsive, multi-dimensional, and very friendly. No users seemed to have complaints about the speed or quality of the customer support they received.
- High Security: CheckAppointments implements above-average safety and security measures to ensure user privacy, a high percentage of uptime, and constant backups of important information stored on their servers of hundreds of businesses.
- Easy Setup: Some reviewers were impressed with the speed and ease with which they could setup their account and start taking bookings. CheckAppointments allows you to start scheduling after a less-than-three-minute basic configuration process.
The fact that checkAppointments is flexible enough to be used in healthcare and education as well as other service industries suggests that the software has some neat capabilities. According to the site, checkAppointments customers include an online school, party game truck, tech consultant, and non-profits. These companies might be drawn toward checkAppointments rather than competitors for one of the following functions:
- Report/List Generators: Choose to generate lists and reports of open or closed classes; open, upcoming, completed, and cancelled appointments; no shows; and invoices. Download PDFs and Excel spreadsheets of the information with the click of a button.
- Website Customization: In addition to a web anchor (URL) and logo, you choose which screens in the booking process you want and don’t want, and decide their order. You decide if clients must or can login to book. Customize the text on each screen, right down to formatting.
- Coupons: It’s easy to create simple coupons on checkAppointments. You can set an expiration date and maximum number of redemptions, as well as choose between percentage or fixed amount off to maintain control of client usage.
- Custom Fields: Add as many custom fields to client intake forms as you like while categorizing them for organization and easy reference. You choose from five different answer types (list, text box, etc.) for each question, as well as create a “hint” to guide answers. You get to determine whether each question is mandatory or optional.
- Resources: Unless you have a Solo Account, you can divvy up resources across certain services, staff, and time slots. Keeping track of the use of equipment or a conference room can be a huge hassle no matter how on top of your schedule you are; this function can really save some time and energy.
- Message Customization: There are 15 automatic email and SMS templates in checkAppointments for events ranging from “appointment cancellation due to non-payment” to “new appointment message sent to staff.” Each automatic message is fully customizable.
You can choose to setup client payments through
- Merchant Warehouse’s Merchantware,
- or Google Checkout.
The integration with these payment platforms requires you to have a preexisting account with the software company of your choice. Though checkAppointments doesn’t offer to take deposits, you can decide whether you want to require (full) prepayment.
CheckAppointments boasts some excellent security and privacy features. The software is both HIPAA and PCI compliant. They use Amazon for their servers and retain all data for at least seven years. Full backups are made hourly and stored on expensive hard drives, which are more reliable than offline media.
CheckAppointments.com is validated by TRUSTe Certified Privacy and Trustwave Trusted Commerce, ensuring that both your peronal data and all credit card transactions are secure.
Integrations and Add-Ons:
The software integrations for checkAppointments give the site its client payment capabilites:
- Merchant Warehouse: CheckAppointments recently integrated Merchant Warehouse’s Genius Customer Engagement Platform. Genius is PA-DSS validated and uses tokenization and point-to-point encryption.
- PayPal: Selling services through PayPal involves the usual 2.9% of the sale amount fee plus a $0.30 fee per transaction for sellers.
- Google Checkout: You can also use Google to collect client payments.
With a cleaner, clearer user interface and a more attractive customer booking site, checkAppointments could rival the sharpest appointment booking solutions out there. Integration with payment platforms as well as the ability to offer coupons, manage resources, and generate reports makes checkAppointments fully functional and useful for a wide variety of organizations and businesses. It also offers users an unusual amount of control over automatic messages and the content of the customer site, including custom intake form questions. The company’s excellent security and customer support have the power to put nervous and tech-challenged business owners at ease. Its various customer payment options and high level of customization make the software very flexible as well as useful. CheckAppointments is a safe option for almost any type of business or professional wanting to take appointments and payments online, except those concerned with aesthetics (or whose customers are).
We've done in-depth research on each and confidently recommend them.
We've done in-depth research on each and confidently recommend them.