Before your clients can book with you through a scheduler, you need to create a scheduler template. Think of the scheduler template almost like a form template! Once you create it, you can send it out to clients over and over again.
You'll want to create a separate scheduler template for each type of appointment you want to offer. This allows you to customize the settings for each type of appointment. For example, you might offer 15 minute consultations Monday - Friday and 60 minute coaching sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
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Creating a Scheduler Template
Go to Templates >> Scheduler in the main menu.
Click Add Template.
Fill in the Appointment Name - this will be visible to your client when they open the scheduler!
Set the Appointment Duration. This is how long the appointment will last.
Set up your default availability, including when the appointment can be scheduled, what times you are available, and whether you're available or busy once booked. This is when you generally want to be available for this type of appointment, barring any conflicts on your external calendar. Check out the Default Appointment Availability section in this article for more details.
Enter a Location for the appointment. This will be visible to your client when they open the scheduler. It could be a physical location or a video conferencing link!
Customize the invitation email for this scheduler. This is the email that will be used by default when you send the scheduler through a project manually or with a workflow.
Click Save at the bottom when you're finished!
After you go through the initial setup for a scheduler template, you'll be able to adjust more settings in the Advanced tab. But for now, let's take a closer look at the settings available in the Basic tab.
The appointment name is up to you, but it will usually be what type of appointment this scheduler template is for. Some examples are Discovery Call, Coaching Session, Venue Tour, Coffee Chat, Feedback Session. This will be visible to the client when they open the scheduler to book!
This is how long the appointment will last and determines the duration of the event on your calendar. You can select from the available options in the dropdown or click Custom Time to set your own duration.
The maximum duration for an appointment is 12 hours, so appointments cannot span multiple days.
Default Appointment Availability
When can this appointment be scheduled?
This setting determines how far out in advance you want to allow appointments to be booked. There are three options:
Rolling day window - This is the most common. When a client opens the scheduler, they will see appointments available for the number of days you set. For example, if you set a rolling 14 day window, clients will be able to book up to 14 days out at any given time. This is great if you don't want clients to schedule too far out.
Fixed Date Range - Allows you to set a specific date range when this type of appointment is available. This is a good option if the appointment type is for a special, limited-time event.
Indefinitely - Allows your clients to book as far out in the future as they would like.
What times are you available?
Here you're able to set the default time slots you would prefer to be available for this type of appointment. Dubsado uses the default availability you set on the scheduler template, cross checks it with "busy" event conflicts from the external calendar you've connected, and only shows the resulting available appointment slots to your client.
Let's say you want to be available for consultations Monday - Friday from 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM, but you know you have a vacation coming up in June. In the scheduler template for consultations, you'll set your default availability to Monday - Friday from 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM.
Then on your connected external calendar, you'll add events to block off the days that you'll be on vacation. Be sure to set the availability for the calendar event(s) you create to Busy. Dubsado will automatically block off any appointment times that conflict with your vacation the next time one of your schedulers is viewed!
To customize your availability on a day of the week:
Click on a day in the availability calendar.
If your new times will overlap an existing time slot, click the red X next to the existing slot.
If you want availability on that day of the week, enter the start and end time for a time slot and click Add Times. Otherwise skip to Step 5.
Add more time slots if needed. You don't need a separate slot for every possible appointment, but you could set up a time slot for appointments in the morning and a separate time slot in the afternoon if you want to take a break in the middle of the day!
Once you're finished adding time slots, click All ____ to apply the availability across the board on that day of the week, such as All Thursdays.
Repeat for other days of the week.
👋 Here's a tip... you can apply time slots to a specific date by clicking Only ____ instead of All ____. This is a good option if you want to adjust availability on a specific date for a specific scheduler template without relying on your external calendar.
Once booked, show me as...
This setting determines whether or not you can be double booked for the same appointment time. There are two options:
Available - when an appointment is booked, another client can book that same exact appointment time or an overlapping time through any of your schedulers. You can end up with two or more appointments booked at exactly the same time on the same day. This is actually useful for setting up group events!
Busy - when an appointment is booked, the time will be blocked off from being booked again across all your schedulers. This is the default setting and prevents double bookings!
The physical address or general location of the appointment. The appointment location will be visible to the client when they open the scheduler.
Check out our video conferencing integration if you would like to have the scheduler generate a unique meeting link when an appointment is booked!
This is the email that will be used by default when you are sending this scheduler out through a project or a workflow. If you are sharing the scheduler publicly, this email will not be used.
You can select an existing canned email using the dropdown, or type in a custom email. Just make sure the email includes the Smart Field >> Link >> Scheduler Link! This is the placeholder that will generate a button with a unique link for the client to click on and access the the scheduler when you send it.
Remember to SAVE your changes when you're finished 😃
Can I use smart fields in the Appointment Name or Location field to autofill information from the client or project?
No. Smart fields do not work in the Appointment Name or Location field of a scheduler template.