The ability for your customers to book appointments with your employees at their leisure is a powerful tool for all parties involved: Your clients get to feel in control of their schedules, and your employees are less likely to be stood up. With its strong tool set and intuitive user interface, Acuity Scheduling is a worthwhile service that appointment-based small businesses should consider.
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Acuity Scheduling Pricing
As a subsidiary of the popular and highly customizable web design platform Squarespace, Acuity Scheduling offers four distinct service tiers. Each tier has its own set of features and price, without the monthly minimums and additional fees of other vendors. Each paid tier has a seven-day trial period.
- Freebie: Acuity's Freebie tier could be right for the solo business owner, like an in-house therapist or stylist. For the low cost of free, as the name suggests, this tier offers the basic level of features, including client self-scheduling and unlimited services and appointments.
- Emerging Entrepreneur: If your business only needs a single calendar for one person at one location, the Emerging Entrepreneur tier could be a good fit. At $15 per month, this is the first tier to include a set of "advanced features" that the higher service tiers also have. This is also the first tier to offer automatic time zone conversion for clients and the abilities to display your custom logo, change the software to fit your company's color palette, and edit any text that shows up on the app to fit your business's style.
- Growing Business: For businesses that need more features and support for up to six calendars split between staff and locations, Acuity offers its Growing Business tier. For $25 per month, you get everything in the previous two tiers, along with other features like text message reminders and the ability to sell subscriptions, memberships and gift certificates.
- Powerhouse Player: Companies that need a little extra horsepower in their employee booking solution can sign up for the Powerhouse Player tier. For $50 a month, this level grants access to every feature Acuity has to offer. Powerhouse Player users also get 36 calendars to split between staff and locations.
Acuity also offers an Enterprise service level that can go above the 36 calendars available at the Powerhouse Player level, but you'll have to discuss your business's needs with the Acuity sales department to get details and pricing for this plan.
Along with its monthly plans, Acuity Scheduling offers yearly rates that represent a slight cost savings. Additionally, you get a free month of service if you sign up for an annual account. Those savings come with the understanding that you will stick with Acuity for the entire year. Monthly plans allow you to drop the software and move on to another vendor if you're not satisfied with the service. Acuity does not offer a prorated refund if you bail on a monthly account.
Earlier this year, Acuity Scheduling was purchased by Squarespace, so you can expect the same level of design and usability that users of the web design platform enjoy. The interface is easy to use, allowing you to control even tiny details of your business's booking practices.
Like many modern booking solutions, Acuity allows your customers to self-book appointments. The paid plans let you embed a scheduler into your business's website, so your clients don't have to go to a separate site to book their next appointment. Your clients can also cancel and reschedule their appointments. On the employee side, workers can set their real-time availability so customers know who's open for appointments.
All paid plans provide access to advanced features. Along with the embedded scheduler, all paid subscriptions offer the ability to sync appointments with Outlook, Exchange, Office 365, Google Calendar and iCloud. If your company needs to hold online meetings or classes with clients, you can integrate Acuity with GoToMeeting, Join.me and Zoom. It can integrate with QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Xero for invoicing and accounting, and with Mailchimp, AWeber, Constant Contact, and other software for email marketing and customer communications.
Since some paid plans also allow you to sell appointment packages, subscriptions, gift certificates and other items, all paid plans include the ability for you to accept online payments and deposits through PayPal, Square or Tripe. The software can save customer credit card data in a secure vault to make charging clients faster and easier for later bookings. You can even give clients the option to tip your employees with the advanced features package.
Considering how connected Acuity is, it should come as no surprise that it has companion Android and iOS apps that let managers and employees view and manage their appointments at any time.
Not only is Acuity easy to use and compatible with some of today's best business applications, but the company also takes considerable measures to make sure the service works smoothly. While the company's website has an extensive knowledgebase to help you troubleshoot issues or find answers to your questions, Acuity takes a hands-on approach in the form of scheduled "parties" to train users of varying skill levels on using the software.
While Acuity was a strong contender for best booking software, there were some things we considered drawbacks to the experience. The most glaring issue we found is the lack of phone or chat options for customer service. It's rare to find a company these days that gives you no way to reach out for help if you need it as fast as possible. The only way we found to get in touch with Acuity's service team is by email, and even that is only through a submission form on the site. The company says it regularly checks the inbox for that form on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST, but you always run the risk of either getting lost in the shuffle or waiting longer than you'd want for a response when you reach out through email.
While we praise Acuity Scheduling for its overall intuitive interface, some functions required us to head into the knowledgebase to figure out how to use them. That may not be as big of a knock as some other programs get for their usability, but it stood out because the software ran so smoothly for the most part.