Any business owner in any sector aims to make a profit. And real estate business is not an exception. Generating additional revenue, saving time for your staff, and less overhead expenses are impossible in today's digital world without an online booking system. Nowadays, it is а necessity that simplifies the life of the customer as well as the life of the business owner. That’s why don’t miss that opportunity if you want your business to succeed in the future.
What is exactly an online booking system?
From its name, an online booking system provides potential customers with booking and paying options directly through the system. That means from the moment a potential customer makes a decision to book a workspace - chooses a workspace, views it virtually, orders furniture, pays for the booking, everything is proceeding online. That helps to greatly reduce the staff workload, minimize human errors and increase business efficiency. Moreover, such a system allows customers to book through a variety of devices online, including mobile that greatly expands the potential for future bookings.
What’s the idea?
Having extensive experience, we, at DDI Development, often receive requests to develop customizable software solutions for various business needs. The fact is that there is a great number of ready-made software you can find on the market to serve all wants and needs.
Our client, a founder of a real estate company, came to us with an idea to create a platform that allows renting offices online. Whether you are just starting your business or looking for a new office, the best choice is a booking platform for renting workspaces. That’s why developing an online booking system that allows prospects to select the most suitable office spaces, order virtual tours and moreover decorate or choose furniture, its color, and replacement online is a great solution.
For this very reason, the client decided to implement a custom booking solution that would help him to decrease the number of no-shows, cut workload and build brand awareness. It had to contain the following features that would allow him to do the following:
- Provide capabilities to choose and book an office anytime you want online.
- Offer access to different devices.
- Enable to capture and create 3D virtual tours.
- Provide the capability to imagine how furniture would look in the potential workspace.
- Select 3D and choose the product you want to see in your office.
- Show real-time information, emails, notifications, and communication.
Having that in mind, we have developed a concept of an online booking system that eliminates the bottleneck of telephone-based booking, provides hassle-free management, easy and fast payments, in-depth reporting, etc. Let’s look at it in detail below!
Key features of the online booking system
We've provided a number of features so that you don't miss out on the opportunities you can gain from adopting online booking software:
- Real-time updates: reminders that get your audience to regularly engage with your booking system.
- Secure payment processing: easy-to-use option for processing payments online.
- VR tour: allows remote potential buyers to walk through the workspaces, view and interact with them.
- Advanced filters: allow users to narrow search results and/or navigate through a website by selecting the multiple features.
- Direct communication: allows users to communicate with the sellers through messaging to get the information they are interested in.
- AR capabilities: allow you to view how a piece of furniture (table, coach, сhair, shelf) fits in your future office.
- Reporting and analytics: allow you to make reports on data and easily analyze it.
Here we are going to provide user customization that helps users to understand their permissions across booking system. There are 3 user levels within the booking system for the real estate company: Customer, Seller and Administrator. Let’s dive into details below:
- Customers are users who have basic permissions in the booking system. They can search, view details, add to the cart and wish lists, read reviews, rate, message, make payments, etc.
- Sellers can add/view/search properties, view reports, etc. They can’t manage overall functionality, just their own listings.
- Administrator is able to manage every aspect of the booking system - all features and functionality are visible to him/her.
Here you can find the structure of the project and see the technologies utilized for booking system development.
Welcome to the booking system! Here you can search workspaces based on your needs. Use the search bar, select - private or desk office, monthly or hourly, and press the Search button to find a workspace of your dream.
Once you enter the search term into the text area and press the Search button, you will be redirected to the search results page with recommended content that matches your criteria. On this page, you can see a diverse number of widgets - offices available for rent.
At the top, you can apply the Filters functionality to find a workspace based on your specific needs and requirements. The filters are applied in real time, meaning you don’t need to press a confirm button to see them applied.
Filters functionality allows you to sort and flag the filters that you want to apply:
- Monthly or hourly;
- By district;
- By office type and size: total area, number of people, office type.
- By price: price per person, total budget.
Also, you can apply the Advanced filters option at the top of the page, or press the Clear Filters button to reset all the information selected. Advanced filters include:
- 24-hour access
- meeting rooms
- video conferencing
- event space
Using the Sort By dropdown menu on the left side of the page, you can select how workplaces are sorted on the page - newest to oldest, oldest to newest, lowest to highest, highest to lowest.
As you can see, each office will have its own tile on the page that displays the following details: location, address, short description, rating, cost, etc. The tile also indicates if the office is exclusive - the “exclusive” label is always visible.
By pressing the map view icon, you will be shown the workspaces with the prices located on the map. If you place your mouse over the price, a little bubble appears to display more detailed information about the workplace:
- short description
At the top of the map screen, you can see plus icon and minus icon that allows you to zoom in or zoom out the map.
By pressing the View Details button, you will be redirected to the office overview page. Here you can find the information about the currently selected object:
- Office images
On the office overview page, you will see the Request to book, Write to the owner buttons on the right side. When you’re ready to make a payment, press the Request to book, and you will be redirected to the payment page where you can select the most appropriate transaction option. Also, you can press Write to the owner button, and a popup window appears on top of the current content. If you have any questions to ask, just write and press the Send button to let an office owner know you are interested. Once you send a message, an office owner will be notified.
When you press the Go to virtual tour button, you’re redirected to the virtual tour page that will immediately display the office. With a 360-degree view, you can move and look around the office, navigate to different rooms to discover more about the future workspace. And all that can be done from any location in the world! With that option, you really save time and resources - instead of spending time on travel you can focus on achieving the organizational objectives that are more vital for your business.
Under the map, you can see the Choose furniture button. If you want to choose furniture for your office, you can press the Choose furniture button to be redirected to the AR office page where you can select the most suitable piece of furniture for your office and place it inside your office. Sounds impressive, right? Using ARToolkit technology, there is a capability to place the any of the furniture element that сonveys the real-life sizes in the office virtually. Also, the users can switch from different colors, patterns, fabrics, and styles. The AR option really provides potential customers with the best understanding how each piece of furniture suits their office.
Using the Choose room dropdown menu on the left side above the main image, you can select how rooms are sorted on the page. On the right you can see the objects that can be ordered for your future office:
Under the picture, there is a variety of objects types and color you can select based on own preference. Once you choose all the necessary pieces of furniture, press Add to preorder or Make preorder buttons.
To login in the booking system as a Customer, you should insert your username and password into the login form. Also, you can sign in with Google or Facebook account. And welcome to your booking system!
Once you sign in, you will find the list of tabs that allow you to access different and important areas of the booking system. This list of the main hub of navigation around the booking system includes the following:
- My Bookings
- Edit Profile
Let’s take a closer look at them below!
Real-time booking feature allows you to choose the cost and location of the future office. Moreover, you can book the office on the go and when it is convenient for you. By pressing the My Bookings item in the profile, you will be shown the Booking page that is comprised of 3 essential tabs:
- new booking
- past booking
- canceled booking
You can view and book the bookings by switching between the tabs in an easy manner. There is no need to visit and view office offline - just select the required options online. When users make a booking, they will receive notification that advises them that their booking is pending confirmation and that they will be notified when the booking is confirmed.
From the corresponding option in your main menu, you can reach the Messages page. Sending and receiving short messages in situations where you can’t communicate with the office owner face-to-face is essential. Whether you want to know some info about office furniture or about a discount, you can simply send a text message. Once an office owner receives your message, you will get a notification.
The Wishlist page can be found in the corresponding option in your main menu. With that option, you can easily organize items (offices) you are looking to rent later. Simply adding the unlimited items (offices) to wishlist encourages users to come back and complete the purchase.
By pressing the My Bookings item in the main menu, you will be taken to the Notifications page. Here you can find updates about activity on the booking system. You will be notified about the lowest price, discounts, last chance to book, etc. This option keeps you informed about things that need your attention and appropriate reaction.
By clicking the exact same option in your main menu, you can reach the Edit profile page. Here you can change the following information:
- First name
- Last name
- Phone number
Once you make changes in your profile, press the Save button to save the information you entered.
You can reach the Payments page from the exact same option in your main menu. You can pay for the services you chose in an easy and safe way. Here we use both Stripe and PayPal payment gateways that allow you to make payments. Once you make a payment, you will see all the information about transaction in the table. The information about recent payments - in the columns:
With that option, you are able to find all the information about your transactions and spendings.
After you sign in, you will find the list of tabs in the main menu to reach different and important areas of the booking system. This list of the main hub of navigation around the booking system includes the following:
- Edit Profile
Let’s take a closer look at them below!
With online booking feature you get rid of the hassle of answering phone-in availability enquiries. Potential customers can make payments on the go and receive immediate confirmation of their reservation. By pressing the Bookings item in the profile, you will be redirected to the Booking page that is comprised of 4 essential tabs:
- current booking
- past booking
- cancelled booking
- archived booking
With that feature, you can easily view and manage all the bookings by switching between the tabs. There is no need to visit offline in order to confirm a booking. You can just press the Confirm button.
You can reach the Reports page just by selecting the exact same option in your main menu. With that feature, you can find specific performance data that is effectively presented. Also, there is no need to download your data in order to thoroughly explore. In the top of the page, you can see all the places and separated places tabs accordingly, and switch between them. Let’s discover the widgets:
- Total revenue
- Today’s revenue
- Expected profit
- All objects views
- All preordered objects
- Added to wishlists
Provided charts reduce the need to download the data for deeper analysis and describe qualitative and quantitative information about your data.
On the Payments page, you can see valuable information about the payments made. Using both Stripe and PayPal payment gateways, you can accept payments in a secure manner. Also, that proves you value customer privacy and security, and allows you to get instant, guaranteed payments as well. In the table you can see the transactions summary:
- Payment date
- Status (Approved)
- Due Date
With that option, you can view, organize, and analyze the payment data. Also, you can filter it in the specific columns and download the table to share with others.
To access the booking system in which you’re an Administrator, log into your booking system through Google or Facebook accounts. You will find the list of tabs that allow you to access different and important areas of the booking system. This list of the main hub of navigation around the booking system includes the following:
Let’s take a closer look at the most interesting functionality below!
By selecting the Statistics item in your main menu, you can reach the Statistics page. Flexible and sophisticated reporting option allows you to professionally manage the booking processes, make data-driven decisions or predictions and mitigate risks. Here you will find the statistical info in the following widgets:
- Popular districts
- All users
- All sellers
- Unique users
- Bounce rate
- Monthly/Yearly bookings
- Total earnings
The multi-segment analysis allows you to slice and dice your data with finer granularity in order to explore data more thoroughly.
You can find the Settings page in your main menu by selecting the exact same option. With that feature, you can change the functionality and behavior of the booking system, view and edit your global settings and preferences. Moreover, your privacy and security settings can be updated.
How does a booking system work?
The good news is that online booking software can be integrated or embedded into your existing solution fast and easily. If you want to know how online booking software works, here we are going to explain it. Let’s delve into details below!
Step #1: at this step, users visit the booking website, search for the office they need, applying a great number of filters (monthly or hourly, by district, by office type and size, by price). Based on that information, they can select an office in the preferred district, add to wishlist and book in the near future.
Step #2: once users find what they were looking for, there is an ability to visit an office online through the virtual tour. Not only does that option reduce the overhead related to the sales process – from scheduling visits to answering phone calls, but it is also an excellent alternative to a physical visit. A virtual tour allows potential customers to visit an office directly from their smartphones as many times as they like to increase their confidence in choosing and paying for an office.
Step #3: at this step, users choose the right furniture for their offices. It is a fact that selecting and ordering a piece of furniture is a tedious and uneasy task. A black table in the meeting room looks amazing while it may not suit your open space. With AR solution, you can visualize that table and choose the color in order not to invest in a piece of furniture you have to pay to return.
Step #4: users make payments through a payment gateway which will transfer the payment to the seller. The developed booking system is equipped to handle safe online payment processing, and all data like transaction details and customer info are securely protected. The process may take just a few minutes and can be done on the go using mobile devices.
Also, the system updates any changes in information and notifies both users, sellers and administrator in real-time - either through email or notification.
Benefits of using online booking software
There are many benefits of the booking systems for organizations. Do you want to know their benefits? So keep reading:
- Productivity. You can manage booking activities faster and more efficiently.
- Efficiency. You can reduce the amount of time and efforts required to provide products and services.
- Accessibility. You can get the information you need from a centralized location wherever you are.
- Payment Security. You can provide instant and secure payment process.
- 24/7 Booking services. You can deliver booking services at any time and from anywhere.
- Mobility. You can manage bookings with your mobile device.
- Simplification. You can simplify and speed up the bookings procedures for users.
- Automation. You are always up to date with real-time information, emails and notifications.
- Integration. You can integrate your system with third-party solutions - platforms, apps, and sites.
Bottom line: Are you equipped with innovative booking solution?
An increasing number of businesses are realizing the benefits of having an online booking system. Whether you own a large chain of workspaces or a small company - you can benefit from using an online booking system. Not only will innovative booking software help to generate a higher profit, but it will also help to increase productivity and automate booking procedures. We, at DDI Development, have extensive technical experience in delivering digital solutions for a wide range of business verticals. Let us know if you want to turn a concept into a valuable and attractive solution to grow your business.