Today’s online booking systems are new and improved. One of the most important and innovative features that’s proving to be a real game-changer is artificial intelligence (AI). AI isn’t just transactional, but also relationship-based, as it gathers important information from the client that can help build and maintain the spa’s relationship with the client, including birth dates for special offers, emails for correspondence and marketing, and treatment information for specialized experiences.
“With TrueLark interactive and intuitive texting AI system, customers not only book services, they also have all their questions answered, which minimizes the risk of them not using your services, and dramatically reduces the overhead on front-desk teams,” says Srivatsan Laxman, founder and CEO of TrueLark. “A 15-minute phone call is replaced by a simple and enjoyable interactive and personalized text discussion. The power of AI technology knows how to respond to questions and has the capability to take a customer all the way through to booking an appointment.” What’s more, AI can play a role in suggesting complementary services for an even more personalized experience and anticipate the needs of clients. “If a client books a massage, the system might suggest a salt rub as the perfect preface based on the actions of other clients who booked the same service,” says DaySmart Software’s Steve Martin.
However, because AI is a fairly new feature for online booking, it’s important to be sure that it lives up to the expectations of clients utilizing this option and be able to handle many of their concerns. “The smarter we can make our system, the more spas will trust allowing clients to book online,” says John Harms, founder and CEO of Millennium Systems International. “People worry about what times may be available when using online booking, which therapists, which services, which rooms, and whether or not the system will honor booking restrictions that the front desk would know to do. For example, if a therapist can only do three massages in a row followed by a 30-minute break or they can only do up to four deep tissues in a day, we need the online booking to understand and honor that.”
By: Nicole Altavilla, American Spa