Do you want to allow your website visitors to book an appointment or reservation on your site? A bad booking process can sabotage your business and reputation. With the right WordPress booking plugin, you can easily transform your existing WordPress website into a fully functional online appointment and reservation booking system.
With choice comes confusion, so in this article, we’re going to take a closer look at some of the best WordPress booking plugins that help you manage online appointment and reservation booking.
Choosing a WordPress Booking Plugin
Every WordPress booking plugin comes with a lot of features to fulfill your booking management needs. As a user, this makes it tough for you to choose the right plugin that perfectly adapts to your workflow and fits your requirements.
Before we dive into our comparison, it’s worth taking a moment to examine what functionalities you need to look for in different booking plugins.
Not every booking plugin is created equal. Some are built specifically for managing appointment bookings for services, while others are built for managing reservation bookings such as hotel bookings.
You can also find multipurpose booking plugins that offer both appointment and reservation bookings.
Some plugins are built only for displaying booking calendar on your site, which means they do not support online payments. This can be a great option for service providers who want to promote their services right from their website but prefer offline payments.
Understanding what options you’ll need from your booking plugin can save you precious time and money. Be sure to set your expectations clear and review the features of booking solutions before investing your time and money to test them.
Offering a great user experience is important when it comes to your online business.
Before choosing the right one, ask yourself a few questions.
Does your plugin offer seamless mobile integration that enables your customers to book on the go? After the booking, does it allow you to send customized triggered emails to your customers?
These questions will help you find the right booking plugin for your unique needs.
Having that said, let’s take a look at the best WordPress booking plugins in the market.
BirchPress is one of the best booking scheduler plugins that allows service businesses to schedule booking and accept payments online.
With BirchPress, booking form can be easily built using the built-in form editor and embedded on your pages via shortcodes.
It syncs with your online calendars such as Google and iCal, so you can quickly view your appointments and availability.
BirchPress also allows you to send highly customized emails to your clients when an appointment is booked, rescheduled and canceled. You can also remind your clients about an upcoming appointment without having to use a different email marketing software.
The plugin comes bundled with PayPal payments. For more payment options, you can integrate your website with WooCommerce.
The BirchPress plugins also come with thousands of functions and hooks, making it one of the most developer friendly booking plugin in existence.
The Booking Calendar plugin is one of the most popular booking plugins in the WordPress plugin repository, with over 40,000 active installs. It’s a multipurpose plugin that allows you to manage both appointment and reservation booking from your site.
The plugin is extremely easy to use with a lot of functionalities, tailored to a wide range of businesses.
The premium version of the plugin comes with all the features you’ll need for your WordPress online booking site. Since all bookings and settings are stored in your WordPress database, you don’t need to have a third-party account to manage bookings. However, if you want to import feeds from third-party sources like Airbnb, Booking.com, HomeAway, TripAdvisor, then you can easily do that.
Your booking form and calendar support is responsive, meaning they’ll look great on all devices such as desktop, mobile or tablet.
Best of all, a wide range of online payment gateways is supported, including PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.net, and more.
Bookly is a complete WordPress booking plugin that automates your booking and online scheduling of your services. Bookly is best suited for booking your services such as salon, health and wellness, education, professional services, etc.
It offers seamless mobile integration making it easy to book appointments on the go for your clients.
It’s one of the most easy to use WordPress plugins for appointment booking. The whole appointment booking process can be set from 2 to 6 easy steps.
Bookly is compatible with the WPML plugin, so you can create a multilingual online booking website without hassle. It also lets you manage your client base effortlessly by providing an unlimited, sortable and searchable customer list.
You can also enhance the core features of the plugins with a lot of different addons, like coupons, custom fields, group bookings, chain appointments, recurring payments, and a lot more.
WP Simple Booking Calendar might be the right booking calendar solution for you if you’re after a simple WordPress plugin that only shows your customers the availability of your holiday home. Keep in mind that this plugin doesn’t allow you to accept online payments.
With the free version of the plugin, you get all the basic features you can expect from a booking calendar plugin, like displaying a booking calendar widget that shows availability and accepts bookings through a user-friendly interface with multilingual support. You’ll have to accept payment offline.
With the premium version, you can easily sync your booking calendars with third-party vacation rental apps, like Airbnb, Booking.com and Flipkey. This way any changes made to your website booking calendar will be automatically reflected on your third-party accounts.
WPForms is the best form builder plugin for WordPress that makes it easy for you to create online booking forms right within your WordPress dashboard. With WPForms, you can easily integrate your booking forms with any third-party apps via Zapier integration.
With its smart conditional logic, you can show or hide form fields based on your users’ selection. It also lets you seamlessly integrate your web forms with major email marketing services, including MailChimp, AWeber, GetResponse and more.
It also supports PayPal and Stripe payment gateways.
If you’re looking for a complete WordPress form builder plugin that lets you create any web forms, such as contact forms, booking forms, survey forms, signup forms, etc. then WPForms is the best solution for your needs.
Want to start with the free version instead? Try WPForms Lite.
Appointment Calendar is a simple WordPress plugin to manage appointment bookings. It is best suited for users who want a simple solution to manage online bookings, like consultant, lawyer or doctor.
With the free plugin, you can get email notifications on bookings. It also allows you to send automatic confirmation emails to your clients on booking approval and cancellation.
For accepting payment, you’ll have to purchase the premium version of the plugin that supports only PayPal payment gateway. It also lets you send email reminders to your clients about an upcoming appointment to ensure they don’t miss the schedule.
It also offers two way Google Calendar sync and time off, which makes it easy for you to handle online bookings.
As it doesn’t allow you to import feed from third-party hotel booking management apps, like Booking.com and Airbnb, it may not be the right solution for hotel booking management.
WP Booking Calendar is a premium WordPress plugin that transforms your WordPress website into a powerful booking system. You can promote many services on your website and accept online booking with ease. Customers can look at your online reservation calendar before scheduling an appointment.
Both you and your customer will be notified after a reservation has been placed.
The WP Booking Calendar plugin is also compatible with WPML, so you can build a multi-lingual booking system.
Right on your WordPress dashboard, you can manage your booking calendar, reservations, forms and emails.
While it’s not as feature-rich as Bookly, it’s good enough to solve your basic booking management needs.
Which WordPress Booking Plugin Should You Use?
After our comparison, we’ve found that BirchPress is the best online appointment booking plugin for WordPress because it comes with all the features to manage your appointment booking for your services. No matter what services you’re offering, the plugin is packed with a robust set of functionalities to manage appointments online and grow your business.
For a basic booking plugin, you can use WPForms which is the top rated WordPress form builder in the market.
We hope this article helped you find the best WordPress booking plugin for your needs.
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