As another year comes to a close, it’s time to reflect on the past twelve months of 2021 and look forward to what the new year, 2022, has in store for us.
Here at SimplyBook.me, it’s been an exciting and prosperous year for SimplyBook.me With many new features released and the acquisition of the Harmonizely solution, we later rebranded as our new SimplyMeet.me system.
While we have a few treats for December, let’s see what 2021 brought to SimplyBook.me and our clients, quarter by quarter.
2021 Quarter 1, January – March
Much of the world started January 2021 with a firm aim of providing vaccines to everyone as quickly as possible. Our vaccination and testing schedule systems were ready for precisely that situation. Both nationalised and private testing agencies and vaccination centres used the SimplyBook.me system to better organise their testing and vaccination schedules.
February 2021 saw us improve the HIPAA system’s security with enhanced protection from unauthorised data access with Google 2-Factor Authentication. We also updated our marketing suite to email multiple clients through the client report feature and filter those who opted out of marketing material.
March 2021 was a busy month, with the release of several features and upgrades. We optimised our servers for high loads in conjunction with the increased loads of clients carrying out testing and vaccinations. However, we also created additional reporting, specifically with large amounts of data collecting and reporting in mind. We knew it would be a tough job vaccinating and testing a global population – it’s a lot of people. In a similar vein, we updated our API system.
March was also when Google Reserve became available for our Asian clients, and we partnered with Fiverr Logo Maker to help you design a logo for your business.
2021 Quarter 2, April – June
April 2021 saw us release the medical testing custom feature. A QR code was created for booking confirmation and tracking and scanning functionality to ensure that tests were followed from booking to test results without loss or mislabelling.
In May 2021, we introduced our new custom email design feature. We enabled many of you to create beautiful, customised, branded emails to clients. May was also when we updated our intake forms to add multiple option questions to your booking forms – some questions need more than a single answer from a dropdown menu. We also added label printing to our ticketing and QR code creation, most specifically useful for labelling test kits and ensuring smooth reproduction throughout the process.
As is usual in this business, June began the great Summer Vacation Slow-Down. When everyone is taking their summer holidays, development slows down, but it doesn’t stop. June saw us release updates to the membership feature and significant enhancements to the POS system.
June was also when we finalised the acquisition of the Harmonizely system.
2021 Quarter 3, July – September
July is the start of summer holidays for kids and disappearing to far-flung destinations (or not). While new developments were scarce, the completion of ongoing projects was fabulous. SEO enhancement of client booking websites saw an improvement with the option to add title tags, meta descriptions and even Facebook meta tags.
We also added the clone option to the custom email feature, intake form fields to invoicing, and customised banners for the client app users.
In addition, we enhanced the Google calendar sync feature to enable the creation of Google Meet links to remote bookings – and the option to automate the process of meeting link creation.
August was a slow month, with the only new release being the enhancement of the admin interface to make it more intuitive and less cumbersome to navigate. We took our inspiration from user feedback.
While August was very slow, September saw our team join together in Bukovel, Ukraine. It was a time to discuss new developments, build our rapport as a team, and generally have a good time. However, that doesn’t mean we weren’t working hard too. By the end of September, the long-awaited waiting list feature was ready for release.!!!
2021 Quarter 4, October – November
And now we come to the end of the year, and we really stepped things up a notch in the last couple of months. October saw us add weekly slots timelines to the waiting list feature. Alongside that, we finally completed our security training – an annual requirement of our ISO certification – and the news is good. Your data is in safe hands – everyone passed the test!
Following on, we had a bit of a feature fest in November! Not one but two new features were released in November. The File Uploader- Google Drive and the Telegram Notification features were released last month.
Let’s not forget the update to the client app to enable the “remember me” functionality and the update to the service add-ons feature to allow images and descriptions for your service extras. How to encourage and persuade your client they need that little something extra.
And now, The end is here…or at least the end of December
It might be a slow sign-up time, but our teams have been busy this month.
A significant update has been to the new File Uploader feature, released last month. To assist in the easy access of files and client information, it is now possible to upload documents relating to SOAP information held in the client records. This is an essential step in linking documents and SOAP information for recurring clients.
We have also updated the iOS Admin app, specifically for our medical testing and vaccination clients. The new features we have added are
- Print labels
- Share labels
- Test results.
What’s coming in 2022?
And now the year ahead…
What do we have in store for you?
Well, as we don’t want to clue in our competitors about what we have up our sleeves (and we know they keep up with our newsletters), I’ll let you in on the new updates and features that are coming out soon.
The Loyalty Scheme
You guys said you wanted this feature, and our devs have worked so quickly on this one. I can’t believe it’s in testing already!
How does it work?
Clients earn a predetermined (by you) number of bonus points when booking a service. You can set this in the service settings. Once clients have enough points, they can purchase a gift card for this amount and use it for further bookings. These are the usual gift cards, available in the gift cards and coupons feature, purchased using points or other accepted payment methods. Your clients will see how many bonus points they have accrued in their profile.
Point of Sale Development
We heard from a number of clients that our POS could use some development, so that’s what we are doing. Obviously, we can’t do it all at once because many of you use the POS for your business needs.
Our first round of redevelopment will include the ability to modify invoices and appointments created in the POS. This could mean adding or removing products and services while the service was in progress.
We will also remove the cancellation email when a user creates and then deletes an appointment in the POS. This was very confusing for users and their clients.
There is plenty of redevelopment ahead for the POS, all of which will help you streamline bookings and payments through SimplyBook.me. Stay in touch for subsequent updates.
That’s it from me in 2021. I’ll be back in 2022 with more new features, tutorials, and tips for getting the most out of your SimplyBook.me system.