In Episode #3 of Agency Toolbox, we go behind-the-scenes of the GuavaBox Acuity Scheduling portal so that you can see exactly how to set up Acuity Scheduling for your agency.
Last time, in Episode #2, I walked you through the specific reasons why we chose to use Acuity Scheduling instead of the other calendar scheduling app options for our agency, GuavaBox. If you're still on the fence about the best calendar scheduling app for your business, watch that video. Now let's dive into today's episode:
How to Configure Acuity Scheduling for Your Agency
Step-By-Step How to Set up Acuity Scheduling
STEP 1. Once you've signed up for Acuity Scheduling, you'll want to set up your calendars in the "Availability & Calendars" tab. Don't forget to head "Import/Export/Syncing" to set up bi-directional sync with your Google Calendars - you need to make sure that appointments get booked and added to the correct calendar or you'll be in trouble :)
With those calendars hooked up, set you ongoing availability for each calendar. I could configure and depend on recurring blocks in my Google Calendar to automatically protect certain time periods, but I'd rather set these inside Acuity Scheduling. I try to keep the early morning and late afternoon protected, plus a block on Monday morning and Friday afternoon so I can start and finish my work week strong. Head into your Acuity Scheduling dashboard and set your availability based on what works best for the way that you work.
STEP 2. With your calendars and availability in place, you can start adding appointment types. Set the name, description, duration, any time to block off on your calendar before and after, whether or not there is a price, if you want to include a form, the privacy settings, etc. There are a lot of options, but they're all pretty straight-forward.
PRO TIP #1: we keep all appointment types private, this keeps users from selecting from the dropdown menu and scheduling an appointment type that we're not actually offering to them.
PRO TIP #2: dive into intake forms and learn how to use them on scheduling pages. One way that we've used these here at DoInbound is for the Inbound Agency Journey podcast. When we send an email invitation to a guest and include a scheduling link, that scheduling event includes a form where they have to provide their Skype name and agree to the podcast terms - this simple step has really streamlined our process!
STEP 3. Time to get a little nerdy here and dive into your email settings. This is where you determine what reminder emails (or text messages) you want to send and how you want them to appear.
PRO TIP #3: as of this episode, you can't customize subject lines for individual event types. That's why we generally use something like this line for our reminder email one hour in advance: "%type% is coming up in an hour."
PRO TIP #4: If you're using a tool like UberConference for your meetings, include the link to your conference room directly in your email. Just make sure to customize all the emails if you have multiple team members with calendars and events - you don't want to ship a guest to the wrong conference room!
STEP 4. Now you've made it to one of my favorite parts - customizing the user experience.
First, head to "Client's Scheduling Page" and click on the "Appearance" tab. From here you can customize a number of on-page options like colors, logo, time format, and a really cool feature where you can change the scheduling wording. Make sure that you scroll down to the "Client's Schedulign Page Options" section to get the configuration just right.
PRO TIP #5: if you're the kind of marketer who really likes to take things to the next level, click on the "Advanced CSS" tab and you can customize almost everything on the front-end.
SUPER-NERDY PRO TIP #6: if you're playing in the CSS area and are having trouble trying to customize ID's (i.e. #id-name), that's because Acuity Scheduling won't let you save your custom CSS with ID's. You can only customize HTML elements and classes (i.e .class-name).
MOST IMPORTANT PRO TIP #7: In episode #4 of Agency Toolbox, I share our complete custom CSS file that I built to make the GuavaBox scheduling pages look cool and snazzy. For free!
Want to grab that free CSS download now?
Here's the deal, if you scroll down just a little bit and fill out the form below, you'll be on the fast track to getting on-demand access to all 12 episodes of the first season of Agency Toolbox.
Translated: you'll be able to grab that easily-editable CSS file right away!
If that interests you, follow the instructions below. If not, no worries, stay tuned for Episode #4 and shoot me any questions/comments you have in the meantime via Twitter!