Solving the pain of appointment scheduling for the small business owner.
Once in a while we have the opportunity to help a company deliver a feature on an extremely short schedule. We live for these challenges and loved working with Infusionsoft.
In very little time, we established a relationship of trust with Arck and gave their team access to our flagship CRM product. Arck are now stewards of the MVP they developed and co-responsible for managing on-going changes.
Infusionsoft is a software company that is headquartered in Chandler, AZ. It has 361 employees and $133 million in revenue.
Infusionsoft champions the small business owner by automating the minutiae of logistics, so that owners can best use their time to strategize and succeed.
Here’s the simple but time-consuming problem faced by all small business owners who schedule appointments:
Annoying, right? What business owner wants to be caught between looking desperate and leaving business on the table?
To solve this problem, Tyson had been tasked with introducing a feature to Infusionsoft’s popular CRM (customer relationship management) system for small businesses: an automated appointment scheduler that would save time and make scheduling easier.
But that’s not all. In order to be an effective small business champion, the appointment app must also, like a successful business call, maintain a friendly professional attitude – along with some gentle pressure.
Oh, and, it had to be finished in two months.
An experienced project manager, Tyson knew what to do: assemble a team of professional problem-solvers who live for short deadlines. When he reached out to Arck, we put together such a team.
Matt BecketEngineering Lead
I bled out for this.
Pablo ScassoFront-End Engineer
No component was left without a tastefully implemented responsive state.
Sarah RobinFront-End Engineer / Quality Assurance Lead
Ensuring 80% unit test coverage was no small task.
David KnapeFull-Stack Engineer
Just in it for the mixins!
The Research Process.
After 20-something interviews and 35+ user tests, Tyson learned that:
- Having more than one appointment type is critical
- Google Calendar is the most commonly used online calendar and users are not hesitant to connect to it
- Office 365 and iCloud are the two next-most popular cloud calendars
- Not everyone knows when and if they’re using a different cloud account (e.g. I use my Outlook calendar or I use the calendar on my iPhone)
- Managing and editing appointments by users vs. the client-scheduled appointments created confusion
- Zoom is the most common online meeting tool
- Pre-paying for appointments is desired but not common
From these “learnings” the following conclusions were drawn:
- Not all users know that they have multiple calendars within their cloud account
- Many users had common types of appointments, such as
- “Initial Consultations” (often 30-min and free)
- “Consulting Calls” (often 60-min and are paid)
- Users don’t want to appear as overly available – indicating that they aren’t that successful
The Strategy & Vision.
When you’re working on an expedited schedule such as the one set by Infusionsoft, it’s important to have everyone on-board with a clear vision and clear goals.
Rather than reinventing the wheel, we envisioned an intuitive workflow that would connect with the common calendars small business owners already use day-to-day to manage their businesses.
Once we had our vision, we used goals based on the user stories that were distilled from the dozens of interviews and user tests conducted.
For example, we knew users wanted to choose:
- “Which of my Google Calendars Infusionsoft uses to identify openings in my schedule that clients can book so that clients only see openings in times I want to meet with them.”
- “What specific time intervals across specific days that clients can book with me so that clients can only book the openings that work best for my schedule.”
- “Where the appointments will take place (phone, meeting URL, address) so that I can ensure clients know how we will meet and so that they will show up at the appropriate time.”
We also held daily scrums and worked with a Kanban methodology to hone our roles and goals as follows:
- Give Arck access to the sandbox environment so it can start integrating to the endpoints that are completed
- Deliver endpoints to production continuously starting as soon as possible to eliminate any gotchas or unknowns around delivering to production
- Complete all core functionality that Arck needs so that it is fully unblocked from completing all front-end work
- Complete production readiness on NIS and Auth so we are ready to take alpha users after Arck integration
- Have all major unknowns eliminated in a fully functioning app in production that alpha users can begin testing
- Get a working app with core functionality fully into production
Decide Later (ideas, requests)
Focus (user concept testing)
Given (obvious and defined)
Following the debut of the scheduler, there was a 52% conversion rate. Instant success!
A-hem. If by “instant success” you mean two months of intense laser focus on production challenges and team problem-solving, then yes. It feels good when a plan comes together.
But if this is the kind of passion, drive, knowledge and experience you need to help get your project off the ground and into reality,
contact the team at Arck today!
For more information about Infusionsoft’s scheduler, watch Tyson here as he takes you through it step by step: