As a parent or guardian, one of the frustrations about booking kids onto a holiday camp or activity is the time it can take, or the hoops you have to jump through, to get a place confirmed. Make the booking process quick and easy, and parents will love you for it.
Parents want to book on their time, not yours
People are busy and, while they want to get their kids onto camps or activities that fit their interests, the time they have to search and book may well be limited. Working parents, for instance, may not have a convenient time during office hours to make a booking, finally getting some time later in the evening to hit your website.
Which can be particularly frustrating if you’re only taking bookings during the daytime.
This, of course, is the reality for those businesses who still operate a manual style booking process, via phone or email.
A phone call is no good, as your offices are closed. An email means a wait, which puts into jeopardy available spaces. Imagine a scenario where a parent can only access personal emails in the evening, for instance. It’s a booking process that could take 2 or 3 days to complete.
Not a great experience.
Providing an online booking solution via your website can alleviate this frustration, providing a 24/7 access to the camps and activities and allowing parents and guardians the opportunity to make the booking on their own time-schedule.
A slow online journey risks annoyance and abandonment
OK, so you’ve got an online booking facility for your clients.
That’s good – a step in the right direction.
But, nobody wants to use a system that’s slow and complicated to use. If your online process means a parent is going to spend all night navigating their way through it like a digital Indiana Jones quest, always on alert for the trap, glitch or dead-end, then all you’re doing is annoying and risking them abandoning and looking elsewhere.
Unlike X-Factor contestants, people making a booking don’t want to go on an elongated journey. They want to be able to search, identify, select, book and pay for the activity as quickly and as simply as possible. The fewer barriers to booking, the more chance of conversion.
Speed does mean cutting corners on safeguarding
Of primary concern for any provider of activities or holiday camps for kids is safeguarding. Part of any responsible registration process is ensuring relevant safeguarding information is gathered ahead of the event taking place. Information such as:
- Emergency contacts
- Dietary needs
- Consent for photographs, application of sun cream etc
- Adults authorised to pick-up
And so on.
But while this is of critical importance, it needn’t become so cumbersome to unduly slow the process or delay the actual booking. Why restrict a customer from making a booking, because they don’t have all the requisite information to hand at that moment; or just don’t have the time there and then to fill out a long form?
Providing parents with an element of control over their booking can remove the hassle without compromising the essential safety.
This allows them to make the booking quickly, securing the place for their children, while having simple access to a personal online account to fill out the safeguarding questions online, when they have the time to do so.
So, what if they haven’t provided all the info with the event time looming?
Well, your booking system should send out an alert, reminding them that it needs to be done.
Get the balance right between convenience and peace of mind can provide a service that customers will be happy to use again and again, while helping endorse the sense of trust that you take their children’s entertainment and safety with the utmost seriousness.
At thinkBooker, we specialise in online booking systems for kids’ camps, classes and activities – optimised for efficiency, growth and ongoing client satisfaction.