Calendar Scheduling Tool Comparison: Calendly VS Acuity VS 10to8

We have all been there. You and your potential client (or colleague) agreed to have a meeting.

That’s awesome.

Well, it was awesome before that dreaded conversation starts.

You know the one. You go back and forth several times determining a time that’s convenient for the both of you.

Then you realize you’re in different time zones. Whomp Whomp.

It’s so much easier to just send a link and say “find a time that works for you!”.

There are so many online scheduling tools out there. It’s hard to determine which works best for you and your business.

They all have their pros and cons, but to figure those out can also be time-consuming, so I’ve done that for you!

I’ve chosen to take a deeper look at 10to8, Calendly, Acuity.

10to8.com

Calendly

Acuity

Pricing Small Business: Free

Basic: $9.30/month

Grow: $20/month

Bigger Business: $40/month

Basic: Free

Premium: $8/user/month

Pro: $12/user/month

Freebie: Free

Emerging Entrepreneur: $15

Growing Business: $25

Powerhouse Player: $50

Automatically syncs to an online calendar Yes Yes With Paid Accounts
Multiple Appointment Types Unlimited 1 for Free Account
Unlimited to Paid Accounts
Unlimited
Time Zone Conversions Yes Yes With Paid Accounts
Number of Events Per Month Small/Basic: 100 appointments/month
Grow: 300/month
Bigger business: 600/month
Unlimited Unlimited
Event Notifications Yes Yes Yes
Customizable email notifications and reminders Yes With paid With paid
Integrates with your website Yes Yes With paid
Collect Payments Yes. Paypal, Stripe, Sage With Paid. Stripe and Paypal With paid. Stripe, Square, Braintree, Paypal, Authorize.net

All three of these online calendar scheduling tools are pretty easy to use. They have similar features in that:

  • You can set your office hours and when you’re available to your clients
  • You’ll get a custom URL to give to your clients to find a time that works for them
  • They all have amazing integrations with paid versions
    • They all integrate with Zapier, allowing countless automations
  • You can create multiple meeting types and durations for both 1:1 and group bookings.

10to8

10to8’s interface is so easy to use for both user’s point of view.

From the client’s perspective, it is very simple and clean. The URL is only customizable with a paid account. I love that I can create my own header, image, and copy to greet the users, who can easily click on an appointment and select a date and time that works for them.

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From my perspective, it’s very easy to use but the design and the colors are a bit antiquated in my opinion. It’s a tad clunky, but I think that everything is really easy to find. There is a side menu where you can navigate to the page you’re looking for.

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You’re able to speak directly with the meeting coordinator through 10to8 via email or text, which is very convenient when there is a follow up needed.

You can add questions for the attendee, which is really nice for me since I like to gather birthdays!

Calendly

From both user’s point of view, Calendly’s interface is very simple and clean, which I love.

From the client’s perspective, they can see my custom URL and my public meetings. You click on my 30-minute meeting and my client can select the date and time that works best for them.

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From my perspective, setting up events and availability is very easy to do.

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I feel like Calendly is a little too simple. I want to be able to set my office hours, then go to each type of event and adjust accordingly. But instead, I had to go to each event and set the office hours. This seems like a really silly downfall, but it took me a little bit of extra time to figure it out.

I really like that you can easily add questions to the attendee. For example, it automatically asks for their name and email, but you could add phone number and birthday.

With the paid version, the person scheduling the time can automatically book another appointment as well as other custom links such as a thank you page.

Calendly also has some direct integrations (integrations without having to use Zapier). These integrations include:

Acuity

Acuity’s interface is visually appealing and easy to use for both you and your meeting attendees.

From the client’s perspective, I like Acuity’s interface the best. You can view multiple days and times at once and it looks really nice. You can do a lot of customizations on this page, which is really awesome.

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With Acuity, there are so many customizations – it’s really amazing.

With the client’s view you can:

  • Use monthly or daily calendar view (the below screenshot is daily)
  • Allow/disallow recurring appointments
  • Allow/disallow client login and registration. This will save the client’s information for future scheduling.

When you schedule your availability, you can set a regular availability or select particular days. You can create a client intake form.

Acuity also has approximately 1 billion direct integrations. I’m kidding, but there really are a lot of integrations such as:

Are you ready to see my recommendations?

  • Calendly is super clean and easy to use but is a little basic. It’s great for someone you simply wants an online calendar scheduler, without all the extra uses.
  • 10to8 has an amazing free option with a great interface for your clients. There are many great options in the free version but the interface for the original user is a little clunky.
  • Acuity’s free version is very limited. It does not sync with your calendar or automatically convert time zone. The free version also doesn’t have event reminders or website integrations but the paid version is amazing. With the paid version you have so many different options available.

I would recommend…

  • Calendly for a free very quick and basic setup
  • 10to8 for free, more customized setup
  • Acuity when you’re ready to pay for an upgraded version

So, what online scheduling tool do you use? Why did you choose it?


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a FREE Discovery Call here


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Use Asana to Get to Inbox Zero

Working for yourself is the most amazing experience, but it can be so overwhelming.

Do you have an inbox full of unread emails, sticky notes covering your desk, and a whole list of tasks that should have been done already?

The stress tends to either lead to all day/night working episodes, or completely ignoring all of your responsibilities because starting is just too overwhelming.

I’m all about getting to inbox zero, but it’s nearly impossible to do without a proper project management system in place.

I’ve told you about my dear friend followupthen! This is great when you want to remind yourself of an email at a later point in time, but what about all the other stuff?

You know, the email that you think is a great resource, the information about a project, client information, and all the other things that should be on your to-do list. (Your inbox should not be your to-do list!)

Enter Asana. Now, there are two major ways that you can use Asana to help you get to inbox zero.

  1.         Forward or Copy & Paste Emails into Asana

There are some emails that come in that I just want to save. Can you relate? They are either full of information or have links/passwords included.

If this happens, you simply either forward the email directly to Asana or simply copy and paste the important information into an Asana project.

This way, you always have the information and it isn’t taking up valuable retail space in your inbox.

To find the email for an individual project, go to the project. Click the down arrow > Add Tasks via > email.

The email address for that specific project will pop up.

Asana Screenshot

When you forward the email, the subject will become the task name and the body of the email will become the task description. If there is an attachment, that will stay.

You can put multiple projects in as contacts in your email, but I like to create a separate project that says “add to projects” and simply sort the information from there.

  1.         Communicate within Asana

Do you ever get the “what’s the status of….” email? What about the “I can’t find that x you sent me, can you resend”? Or even better, “I didn’t get that or it went to spam”.

Well, you can communicate with your clients and employees right in Asana.

You can see what has been done and what hasn’t been done.

You can assign tasks to each other with due dates, and you can communicate within the tasks.

You can add comments, tag a team members using the @ symbol, and keep project communication out of your inbox.

Attach documents right in the project, so it won’t get lost. Attach links to Google docs for easy access.

The options are endless.

Did I mention that Asana was free? You and up to 14 team members can be on your workspace for free. Now, there is an upgrade available that has some pretty cool features, but the free version works amazingly!

Do you use Asana to help organize your tasks get to inbox zero?


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here


How To Use Asana To Achieve Inbox Zero #productivity #automation AmandaLeighVA.com 1How To Use Asana To Achieve Inbox Zero #productivity #automation AmandaLeighVA.com 2How To Use Asana To Achieve Inbox Zero #productivity #automation AmandaLeighVA.com 3

How I use batch processing to be more efficient

Batch processing.

You may have heard to term, but do you use it?

If you don’t, you should!

Batch processing is a time management tool where you group like tasks together. By doing this, completing your tasks simply become more efficient.

There are so many examples, but I’ll give you a few of the ones I use most frequently.

  1. Batch process your blogs. I like to be a month ahead, so I do a month’s worth of blog posts at once.
  • I already have outlines in Asana that I put in there as soon as I come up with an idea.
  • One day a month, I block out time to write the following month’s blog posts. I just sit and write. Don’t worry about editing.
  • Another day, I’ll edit all of the posts at one time.
  • I’ll batch process all of the graphics for each posts (for the blog, Facebook, and Pinterest).
  • I’ll then schedule these out for every platform that I use.
  1. Batch process your invoicing.

I invoice once per month, but send updates every week. I will batch process my invoicing by preparing invoices from every client at one time.

  1. Batch process checking notifications.

Do you find yourself with your email and social media accounts open all the time? You can’t get anything done because you’re always checking every email and notification as they come in. Now, I’m not going to tell you to check your emails once or twice a day, but I am going to suggest batch processing this task. For example, if you are working on creating graphics, don’t check anything! Shut off your email and social media accounts. After you’re finished with creating your graphics, take 10 minutes (seriously, set a timer) to check your emails and other notification.

Batch processing makes things so much easier for 2 main reasons.

  • You get less distracted. You are focusing on one task at a time, so your brain isn’t going back and forth between different types of tasks.
  • You get things done ahead of time! Yay! By batching projects together, it forces you to plan everything out. No more waiting until the last minute because it is already done!

What tasks are you going to start batch processing?

Batch Processing Pinterest Image 1  Batch Processing Pinterest Image 2  Batch Processing Pinterest Image 3


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here

Streamlining Your Business: Recurring Tasks

Have you ever forgotten to send out your invoices? What about forgetting to post on social media? We all have something that we forget to do. Then all of a sudden, you remember what day it is and hurry up and do it.

Streamlining Your Business_ Recurring Tasks.png

Think about all of these tasks. What do you do on a regular basis? Now, look at this list and see if you can automatically do any of this? Can your accounting system automatically send your clients an invoice every month? Set it up!

Anything that you couldn’t automate, input these tasks into some sort of system, whether it be on your Google Calendar, Outlook’s Tasks function, or your project management tool like Asana and make them repeat.


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here

How to Use Canned Responses in Gmail

Do you find yourself typing the same emails over and over and over again? Maybe you go back to previous emails to copy and paste the information. It just feels like such a waste of time. Fret no more because Gmail’s canned responses will come to the rescue!

I’m sure you’ve heard of canned responses before, but never really understood what it was. Well, you can type an email, include the subject if you’d like, and any formatting and attachments you would normally include in this email. Save this as your Canned Response, and you will never have to type that email again!

 

In order to create a canned response, you have to enable the feature in Gmail.

  • Click on your settings icon
  • Click Settings
  • Go to the “Labs” tab
  • Find “Canned Responses” and select enable
  • Save Changes

After the feature is enabled:

  • Open a new email
  • Type your email template. Be sure to include:
    • Recipients, if you use the same one for this particular email
    • Subject, if you’d like to always use the same one
    • Any formatting you’d like to save
  • Click the arrow on the bottom right of your email for more options
  • Hover over Canned Responses
  • Click “New Canned Responses”
  • Enter the name of your canned responses (it will use the subject if you entered one)

That’s it! You never have to type that email again. Now, to use it:

  • Open a new email (or respond to an email)
  • Click the arrow on the bottom right of your email for more options
  • Hover over Canned Responses
  • Select your Canned Response to enter into that email

How to Use Canned Responses in Gmail.png


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here

How to Automate Your Business: Client Onboarding

Automate Your Client Onboarding

The first step automating any part of your business is to write down every step in the process. Don’t skip over anything.

With onboarding, for example, your process probably looks like this:

  1. You are contacted by the client to set up a discovery call
  2. You go back and forth trying to find a date that works best for you both
  3. You email them a questionnaire before the meeting
  4. You realize that you aren’t sure who is calling who or what platform you’ll be meeting on – email back and forth to figure that out
  5. You were supposed to meet with the prospective client, but one of you forgot about a prior appointment or just forgot about the meeting
  6. You go back and forth again determining a new time
  7. You finally meet with the prospective client
  8. You send an email with any follow-up questions including what the next step would be
  9. Client hires you
  10. You send the contract and invoice to the client via email
  11. You then figure out how you will set up your first meeting or begin working

Why are there so many steps!? It should not be that complicated. You should not have to go back and forth so many times, there shouldn’t be any kind of mix-ups as to how you’re meeting (or when, if you’re in different time zones), and there should be no confusion. This is your first impression with the prospective client and it should go smoothly.

So, now that we’ve determined what our problem is, how do we fix it?

First, set up an account with a calendar booking application (I use 10to8.com, but there’s so many available) and put a link on your website. This way, the client can open your public calendar and select a date a time that works for them. Steps 1 and 2 are complete without you having to do anything! (Bonus tip: If the client emails you, respond with an email template that has a link to your calendar.)

Using the calendar booking application that you choose, they should automatically receive the client questionnaire, meeting reminders, and a link to your Skype or Zoom meeting room. Steps 3-6 are done and you still haven’t had to do a single thing!

You have your meeting. Sorry, you can’t automate and miss out on this one! Step 7, done!

After the call, send an email to the prospective client. You could use an email template (see how to do this in Gmail) and change any details to customize it for the lead. This should include a link to digitally sign the contract and an invoice so the client can pay you. Steps 8-10 are complete!

Once the contract is signed, the new client should automatically receive a welcome packet that includes vital information about your business such as your office hours, basic payment information, etc. This email should also include a link to set up an initial meeting, if necessary. Step 11 is finished!

That 11 step process for you turned into a two-step process for you! It’s like magic.

What does your client onboarding system look like?


Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.

 

If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a
FREE Discovery Call here