Online booking allows your clients to book appointments independently at any time of the day. By offering online booking, you can also save your clinic's time for other tasks.
With the Provet Cloud online booking feature, you have detailed control over your clients' access to appointment booking. You can decide which services or treatments are included and choose the time slots that are available for online booking. You can also add treatment-specific instructions to inform your clients about how to prepare for the appointment.
Online booking is an add-on feature in Provet Cloud. Please contact Provet Cloud Sales or Support to purchase the feature.
Online Booking Settings and Preliminary Tasks
After the online booking feature has been added to your system, you can edit the online booking settings and complete the required setup:
General Online Booking Settings
The general, department-level online booking settings are defined in Settings > General > Department > Online booking.
To edit the settings, select the blue pen button next to the section title.
- Enabled: Select this setting to enable the online booking feature for your department. If this setting is not selected, you cannot add online booking for shifts and make online booking available to your clients.
- Available time slots: If your calendar uses smaller time slots (15 minutes is the default), you can select whether to offer all slots, full and half hours, or only full hours in online booking.
- Information: In this field, you can add general information that is shown at the beginning of your online booking form.
- Required time before appointment start: Using this setting, you can limit online booking times so that bookings cannot be made too close to the appointment starting time. For example, if you add 120, clients cannot book appointments less than two hours (120 minutes) before the appointment starts.
- Summary information: In this field, you can add information that is shown on the online booking summary page.
- Do not show duration to clients: When this setting is selected, the duration of the appointment is not shown to the client.
- Do not show veterinarian's name to clients: When this setting is selected, the name of the appointment's responsible employee is not shown to the client.
- Default label for "Notes for vet" field: In this field, you can add a title for the field that clients can use to add additional information for the appointment's responsible employee.
- Set "Notes for vet" as a mandatory field: When this setting is selected, clients must add additional information for the appointment's responsible employee.
- Email message: In this field, you can add a confirmation message that is sent to the client by email when they complete an online booking.
- Send SMS confirmation: When this setting is selected, an SMS (text message) confirmation is sent to the client when they complete an online booking.
- Send email copy to department: When this setting is selected, a copy of the confirmation email message is sent to your department's email address.
- CSS data for styling online booking: In this field, you can customise the look of your online booking form using CSS styles.
- Enable client ID field: When this setting is selected, the client ID field is included in the online booking form.
- Set "Client ID" as a mandatory field: This option is available when Enable client ID field is selected. When this setting is selected, clients must add their ID.
In Settings > General > Department > Booking, you can set a preliminary booking time for online bookings:
- Preliminary booking time: In this field, you can define in minutes for how long a time slot will be reserved when a client is making an online booking. For example, if you set the preliminary booking time to 10, the time slot will be reserved for 10 minutes after the client has selected a time slot in online booking. If the client does not confirm the online booking in 10 minutes, the time slot is automatically freed.
Setting Up Reason Groups and Reasons
Appointment reason groups and reason types are used in appointment scheduling, client communication and consultation workflow. Reason groups help to categorise specific appointment reason types so that clients can select from a list of limited options depending on the nature of the visit instead of having to browse a large list of mixed reasons. Reasons allow detailed control and define the available appointment times.
To set up reason groups and reasons, go to Settings > Items & Lists > Reasons. In the reason settings, select the Available online setting for the reasons that you want to include to online booking.
For detailed instructions on setting up reason groups and reasons, see Setting Up Reason Groups and Appointment Reasons.
Setting Up Staff Shifts
1. Allow online booking for your shift types.
- Go to Settings > General > Department > Shift types.
- Select the Online booking checkbox for the shift types that you want to include to online booking.
- In the Reason types field, select the appointment reason types that can be selected for this shift type. This setting determines the available times shown to clients in online booking. For example, with the example below, if a client selects the 'Vaccination' reason, this shift type will be available for scheduling an appointment. If a client selects some other reason, times for this shift type will not be available for scheduling. Note that the reason type setting works in sync with the shift type setting in the reason settings—when you make changes in one place, the corresponding setting is also updated in the other.
2. Allow online booking for your staff shifts.
Go to Appointments > Shifts and select the Online booking checkbox for the shifts that you want to include to online booking. Shifts that are available for online booking are marked with a computer icon in the shift calendar. To disable online booking for an existing shift, open the shift for editing and deselect the Show in web booking checkbox.
For instructions on making online booking available with shift templates, see Using Shift Templates.
For more information about scheduling shifts, see How to create, edit, copy, or remove shifts.
Previewing and Testing Your Online Booking Form
To preview how your online booking form looks to your clients, go to Settings > General > Department > Online booking and select the Preview online booking button (available when the online booking settings are not in the editing mode).
Above the form, you can select some additional options to adjust your online booking page:
- Department: You can limit the online booking service to a specific department if necessary. The preview will change accordingly if you have different settings for different departments. If you do not select a department, all departments are available and clients can select a department from a selection list in the online booking form. If you only have one department and have not selected a specific department for your reason groups, you can ignore this setting.
- Language: Select the client interaction language for your online booking page.
- Size: Adjust the size of the online booking view.
It is recommended that you test the whole online booking workflow with test appointments before publishing it. When you are happy with the settings, you can make the online booking service available to your clients.
Online Booking Workflow for Your Clients
Below is a description of how your online booking form looks to your clients and how they use it.
The text you added to the Information field in the general online booking settings is shown below the page title (a).
- Depending on your form selections, client may have to select a department.
- Depending on the department settings, client may have to select the Species of the patient.
- Client selects a reason group.
- Client selects a reason. Reason-specific instructions set in the reason settings are displayed below the reason (b).
- Days with available appointment times are shown in the calendar in green. Client selects a day in the calendar.
- The available times for the selected day are listed below. Available times depend on the reason settings as well as the Available time slots and Required time before appointment start settings in the general online booking settings. Clients can use the filters to view available times for the whole day, morning, afternoon, or evening.
- Client selects the Choose button to select an appointment time.
A new page opens. Appointment details shows a summary of the appointment. The duration and responsible employee's name may be hidden or shown depending on the general online booking settings.
- Client fills in their information. Required fields marked with an asterisk (*).
- Client fills in their pet's information. Only single-pet appointments are available in online booking. Information added in the text field will be shown in the appointment details and in the consultation general information section.
- Client can select the Remember me checkbox if they want their browser to remember the information they have entered. This is useful if they regularly book online.
- Client selects Confirm appointment to finalise the booking. The appointment is added to your appointment calendar and the selected confirmation messages are sent. A summary page opens.
Making Online Booking Available to Your Clients
To make online booking available to your clients, you can embed the form on your website or share a link with your clients using the code and link provided on the preview page.
- Code example for embedding iframe: This field includes a code example which your website developer can use to embed the form to your website.
- Direct link to online booking: This field includes a link to your online booking page which you can share with your clients, for example, on your website, social media channels, or emails.
The Code example for embedding iframe and Direct link to online booking fields change as you make changes to the form selections above. By changing the selections, you can provide different forms, for example, for different departments or languages.
How Client Data is Matched with Existing Data in Provet Cloud
When Provet Cloud receives the client and patient details from the online booking, it tries to match the details with existing clients in your system to avoid client and patient duplicates.
The following rules are applied in matching client data:
- First name must match exactly.
- Last name must match exactly.
- One of the following must match:
- Phone number
- Email address
For example, if there is a client that has the same first name, last name and phone number, but a different or missing email address in your Provet Cloud, the client is matched. Note that the different data (in this case, email address) is not automatically updated from the online booking data to the client details in the system. If there are existing client duplicates in your Provet Cloud based on these details, the match fails even if other details (for example, client ID) of one of the clients matches with the online booking data.
The following rules are applied in matching patient data:
- Client must match.
- Patient name must match exactly.
- Species must match exactly.
Admitting Appointments Booked Online
With online booking, the process of admitting a patient and starting a consultation is the same as with other appointments.
Appointments that have been booked online are marked with a computer icon in the appointment calendar.
When you open the appointment details dialogue, you can view the information added by the client under Online booking information. If a matching client and patient were found in the existing records in your Provet Cloud, they are shown as links the appointment details.
If no matches were found, you can either add an existing client and patient manually or create a new client and/or patient:
- First select Mark as arrived to consultation. The online booking information is shown on the Mark as arrived to consultation page.
- To add an existing client and/or patient, select the client and/or patient in the Client and Patients fields. Note that information is not automatically saved from the online booking details to the existing client's records, for example, if the online booking information includes an email address which is missing from the existing client records.
- To create a new client and/or patient, select the New client and/or New Patient buttons. The information is automatically copied from the online booking information to the fields in the New client and New patient dialogues.