One Tool for Managing All Your Business Schedules

first_img 3 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. March 14, 2012 This story appears in the March 2012 issue of . Subscribe » Register Now » Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global The phone calls were driving Ray Chang crazy. His seven-employee company, Motorsport Lab, was hours into its first Groupon deal–a one-hour supercar driving session priced at $89, a whopping 82 percent discount–and the number of calls flooding the Boston office was out of control.”It was mayhem,” recalls Chang, whose company sells driving experiences in exotic cars such as Ferraris and Lamborghinis to New England- and Arizona-area marketing campaigns and events. “We were keeping track of all our appointments in Google Docs. When we sold 1,500 Groupons that first day, I thought, How are we going to make this work?”The answer came from a massage. Chang had booked one several weeks earlier using Genbook, a new cloud-based service that lets small businesses automate their client appointments. Merchants integrate Genbook’s BookNow button into their website, Facebook page or blog; the button links to a customized, real-time reservations page that features the business’s logo, contact information, consumer reviews and related information.With 48 hours remaining on his Groupon offer, Chang migrated the scheduling chores to Genbook. “The phone calls stopped, because 99 percent of the people could figure out everything they needed to know online,” he says. “It revolutionized everything we do. We don’t have to take credit card numbers and answer the same questions over the phone anymore, and customers can book anytime they want.”Motorsport Lab is just one of more than 5,000 North American small businesses implementing the online booking service. “Scheduling is the most critical task a business does day in and day out,” says Genbook founder and CEO Rody Moore, who started the San Francisco-based company in 2007. “Ten years ago, consumers felt put out if they had to book a flight or a restaurant reservation online. Now customers expect an online option.”In its startup incarnation, Genbook offered its platform to digital advertisers to help them manage media schedules across hundreds of websites. But in 2008 the company pivoted to its current, monthly subscription service and expanded its customer base. Chiropractors, massage therapists and other one-person operations made up the bulk of Genbook’s early adopters, but a growing number of larger businesses, such as spas, have since joined the platform. And their customers have embraced the service, too: An average of 500,000 appointments are being scheduled every month.”Scheduling is the most critical task a business does day in and day out.” –Rody Moore, GenbookThe booking service offers packages that cater to outfits of all sizes. Genbook Solo schedules one person’s clients for $19.95 per month; Genbook Standard manages an unlimited number of calendars for $39.95 per month. This year, the company–which has been bankrolled by $5.6 million from Neo Technology Ventures and Moore himself–launched an analytics dashboard to help merchants leverage “the massive amount of data generated through the act of making an appointment or reservation,” Moore says, adding that key metrics include customer preferences among services offered, sales trends and individual employee performance.Back at Motorsport Lab, Genbook has allowed Chang to fully automate the company’s scheduling and, as a result, shed staff and save $50,000 per year.”Genbook makes it so much easier to communicate accurate and up-to-date information about our business to people,” Chang says. “We still get a few calls with questions we can’t answer online, but Genbook handles just about everything else. To me, it’s a no-brainer.” last_img read more

Weak pound makes for a record April for overseas visits spend to

Weak pound makes for a record April for overseas visits spend to

first_img Travelweek Group Wednesday, June 28, 2017 Share Posted by TORONTO — More than 3.7 million visits were made to the UK in April 2017, up 19% compared to the same month last year and the highest April since records began, according to VisitBritain.Overseas visitors spent a record £2 billion in April, 20% up on the same month last year.VisitBritain says the figures come on the back of a record first-quarter for inbound visits to the UK and spend.This year “is off to an exceptional start for North American inbound tourism to the UK, up 16% from January to April, compared to the same period last year,” said VisitBritain’s Interim Executive Vice President, Americas, Paul Gauger. “We’re thrilled to continue the momentum from 2016, moving into peak summer season, and showcase why there has never been a better time to visit Britain.”These latest figures bring the number of inbound visits to the UK for January to April this year to a record 11.8 million, 11% up on the same period in 2016 with visitors spending £6.2 billion, up 14% and also setting a new record. Growth this year has been led from long-haul regions including North America with more than one million visits from January to April, up 16% compared to the same period last year.More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJThere were a record 8.3 million visits from the EU from January to April this year, up 7% on 2016.Strong growth has also been seen in holiday visits with a record 4.4 million visits from January to April this year, up 26% on the same period in 2016.VisitBritain says the latest flight booking data from ForwardKeys shows that bookings for international arrivals to the UK during the summer are currently tracking 12% ahead of the same period last year.Visitors from Canada made 828,000 visits to the U.K. in 2016 – up 17% compared to the previous year. This represents the highest visitor numbers since 2006. In 2016 Canadians spent £634 million across Britain, a new annual spend record.center_img << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: VisitBritain Weak pound makes for a record April for overseas visits, spend to the UKlast_img read more