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SMEs capture business opportunities from social networking

Joe O'Halloran

The ability to capture business opportunities from social networking is being offered to small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) with a new online booking and payment system from BT Tradespace.

Based on software from Libersy, Book It Now is available for free to all BT Tradespace members at www.btbookitnow.com  and is claimed to be first e-commerce solution to integrate the PayPal payments system directly into an online bookings platform within a social network environment .

The new solution is targeted at SMEs in the service industry, such as hairdressers, restaurants, sports clubs and consultants. Calculating that nearly three quarters of all service bookings are made in the evening, BT Tradespace says that Book It Now will provide businesses with a round the clock online customer service tool. Users will be able to log-on at any time and check for available times, book appointments and pay instantly using the system.

“Socil commerce is clearly on the rise and, we are always looking for ways in which we can help the [SME] community make the most of this upward trend,” said Ivan Croxford, general manager, BT Tradespace . “It’s not only important to be able to display your services, it’s also vital to interact with your customers.”  

Karin Loeffen, founder and creator of Libersy, outlined potential suinsrss benefits from use of the software, "Businesses can use the booking system to obtain more clients, use their time more efficiently and increase their revenues … For small businesses it’s often difficult to take time off, because they fear missing opportunities. Thanks to this system, that’s now a thing of the past."

Book It Now is available in three packages: free, basic and advanced. The basic package gives customers the additional ability to support a range of services and accept full or partial payments for them. With the advanced package, customers can select different staff and rooms and businesses can tailor information that they request from customers to their needs. They can also create a link to their booking system on their own web site and third party search portals. The basic package is offered at £10 per month and the advanced package at £30 per month.

 

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