If you're in the market for a new spa or activity management software system and don't know where to begin looking, you're not alone. It can be difficult to know what to look for. Below is a checklist of features you should be able to expect from a software. But first, some tips on how to find what you need.
Identify Your Pain Points
Needs vary, so before you start looking, you must identify what’s most important to you and the services that will most improve your business. Make a list of your pain points to determine where you are struggling and need the most help. Where are you spending the most time that could be better spent elsewhere? Is this on staff scheduling or payroll management? Pay close attention to how you’re spending your time. Look also at things that frustrate you, get left undone, and could generally be better handled.
Once you know what you need, research all the software options out there. Who offers what and how will this work for you.
Call around and ask detailed questions. Here is where having taken the time to identify your pain points will come in handy.
Be sure to ask the right questions pertaining to your specific spa’s needs, and don’t be afraid to push for answers! After all, once you make your decision, changing your mind is going to be a real hassle.
How patient the sales team is with your questions and how knowledgeable they are with the answers can also be a good indicator of what you’ll be able to expect when it comes to customer service in the future. If you encounter someone who doesn’t know what they’re talking about, loses patience with you, or isn’t prompt and courteous, that’s a big red flag.
What You Should Expect from your Spa Software Platform
Here are 12 things you should be able to expect from a spa software management system:
- Security. One of the most important things is security. Your software should be secure, and compliant.
- Top notch customer service. We know, because we’ve been told, that many (maybe even most) spa software companies out there have pretty terrible customer service. Your system goes down and there’s no number to call. Or of there is a number, you leave a message and they call you two days later. That is absolutely unacceptable. Make sure they will be available when you need them. Get it in writing.
- Appointment booking and management. Your software should allow guests to book online and via mobile, from anywhere at any time, and track all your bookings through a centralized booking system.
- Marketing & Retention. Your software should allow you to drive revenue, acquisition, and retention, with memberships, loyalty points, referral incentives, gift cards sales and spa package sales.
- Turn Away Tracking and Yield Management. Turn Away is notoriously difficult to manage and an average spa loses about 15% of a day’s business from turning away. Turn Away Tracking helps you minimize this loss and turn it into gain. Yield Management, meanwhile, allows you to drive traffic during slow periods and maximize usage during peak times, both of which will improve productivity and increase revenue.
- Revenue management. Your software should handle your revenue, including your point of sale purchases, credit card processing, membership billing, and the tracking and redemption of loyalty points.
- Inventory management. It’s 2018 and you should not be spending time manually tracking your inventory. Your software should handle your inventory, including purchasing and receiving across, purchase order progress, and vendor records across all your locations.
- Staff management. This includes scheduling, commission and spiff tracking, payroll management, and compliance. Not only should your software be taking care of this for you, your staff should also be able to access all relevant information both online and via mobile.
- Comprehensive and easily accessed business intelligence and reporting. If your software isn’t tracking all your KPIs and presenting them to you in an easily accessed and easy-to-read report dashboard it is not doing the job you need it to do.
- Customer notes. You should know as much as possible about a guest before their arrival, including contact information, health concerns, etc. Your software should offer a note taking function that allows staff to internally share this information so that everyone is on the same page.
- Multi location platform. If you have more than one location, all the information in your software platform should be accessible across all of them.
- Integration. Your spa software should integrate with your existing platforms, including hotel software, payments getaways, etc.
An optimum spa software like Book4Time takes care of these key aspects, so that you can get the business intelligence you need to focus on growing your business and improve customer experience.