Schedulista Business Spotlight – an Interview with Gerald Wu

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One of Gerald’s favorite quotes …

–”Lead with your heart follow with your head”

Gerald Wu has been cutting hair since he was a teenager. He studied in Paris where he earned a Certificat d’Aptitude Professionel Coiffure. Gerald opened his own solo Seattle salon in 2009. He has been featured in several publications including Seattle City Arts and Seattle Met.

My mission is to simplify and beautify hair through good design and craft.

I decided I was destined to start gerald_logomy own business when I realized I wanted to take apart and rebuild every job I ever had because I thought everyone I worked with was stupid and being martyrs.

My special sauce is I don’t focus on or try to force growth. I want to just keep getting better at what I do and experience many great humans. The business grows naturally if my work is good and sincere. I also take a lot of time off like French people and think about food and the possible futility of life. Then I’m all fresh for another work week!

The biggest challenge in my first year of business was trying to convince people to come to a lone hairdresser with no large salon behind me. People like flash in the hair world. It was hard to convince people to trust me without some established brand to stand in front of. But I think craft will always prevail. It took me years and hundreds of haircuts to prove myself, but I think I’ve got some good street cred now.


My biggest challenge now is handling increasing volume without overpricing.

If I had more time I would arrange Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden” for four electric guitars.

The one piece of advice I’d give to someone just starting out in this field is your eyes and your hands are your best tools, rely on those and not expensive scissors or products or the sheen of salon world. Think outside the hair and expand your visual palate. Let your self get obsessed and work intuitively not intellectually.

The impact of Schedulista on my business is… It’s changed everything for me. It freed up almost 100 percent of my admin (scheduling) time and allowed me to redistribute that time for more service hours and more days off. That’s extra revenue and extra relaxation. Clients tell me it became easier for them too, thus increasing the quality of their experience. Schedulista has contributed in keeping my overhead low and making operations graceful and efficient: Two things that I think are keys to operating a small business.

Find out more about Gerald Wu at…



Schedulista Business Spotlight — an Interview with Mantis Massage


Austin based Massage therapist Kyra Gerhard founded her own practice Mantis Massage in 2010. She now has 4 employees and is still growing.  Kyra was kind enough to take some time out of her busy schedule to answer a few interview questions about her business and the impact that online scheduling has had on it.

Our mission is to provide clinical, deep tissue, therapeutic massage in a professional, health-centered environment.

I decided I was destined to start my own business when a restaurant in town bought their entire staff gift certificates to see me and I had no choice but to quit my full-time job.


Our special sauce is… we are the strongest, deepest, and most anatomy focused massage studio in the city!

The biggest challenge in my first year of business was getting used to all the technology! I was so used to only needing my hands and knowledge of anatomy! I never thought I would need to have too much knowledge of the interwebs.

My biggest challenge now is keeping up with business! We’re fortunate enough to always have a full schedule thanks too Schedulista. I’m trying to get more space and fill it with more therapists so we can meet our demand.

If I had more time I would open up a walk-in specific practice. We would always have therapists available and the clients could pay for whatever amount of time they want to devote to feeling better.

The one piece of advice I’d give to someone just starting out in this field is the internet will run your business for you. Piece together your own system and let it go!

The impact of Schedulista on my business is huge. I went from being a sole practitioner in a single office to having multiple therapists in a 2000 sf space! And we’re still growing!

Most inspirational quote:

“If life gives you lemons you should make lemonade. Then find someone who’s life has given them vodka and have a party.”


Find out more about Mantis Massage at…


A Better Scheduler

A few weeks ago we announced  that we were working on a new scheduler, and invited some customers to take part in a beta test.

Today we are announcing a wider release where any customer can switch themselves over to the new scheduler. (Try it out with our demo business)

new online scheduler


We had the following goals for the new scheduler:

  1. Easier for clients to schedule on a mobile phone
  2. Simpler and more modern design
  3. Solid foundation for new features

During the last few weeks we have been measuring performance. We wanted to  measure whether the new scheduler was actually better than the old one.

Simply put —  were more people scheduling appointments? Were they  getting through the process faster?  Especially on mobile.

The short answer is yes.

Does design matter?

We know that great design is important to our customers. But do clients, who just want to schedule a haircut, a massage, or a session with their personal trainer, care?

We had a hunch that clients do care, but we weren’t entirely sure if it would translate into more appointments and less time wasted. In order to answer this question, we measured two things: (1) percent of visitors who ended up scheduling an appointment, and (2) average time to schedule an appointment.

The biggest improvement was for mobile customers. Mobile customers account for 29% of scheduler visits (that number has been steadily rising).

7.5% more appointments on mobile

Visitors using a mobile phone scheduled 7.5% more appointments with the new scheduler than with the old during the same time period.

35 seconds saved on mobile

Visitors using a mobile phone (who successfully scheduled an appointment) saved an average of 35 seconds with the new scheduler compared with the old.

Design matters.

Select which calendars to view side-by-side in the Scheduilsta calendar

Are you a hair salon with more than 10 stylists? Or are you a busy massage therapy practice and would you just like to  limit how many service providers you see side-by-side in the Schedulista calendar?

We just added a new feature that lets you do just this. Visit the day-view in the calendar, and click on the provider’s name to toggle on and off.


A Couple of Small Improvements

Recently we added a number of small improvements.

Automatically choose provider  based on  a configurable ordering

choose provider

On the /settings/policies page you can now choose for the system to automatically select an available provider based on a configurable ordering. The ordering is the same as on your public scheduling page and can be configured on /settings/users.

Provider SMS notifications are now queued

In the past, you could limit when SMS notifications would be sent. This was there so you wouldn’t get woken up  when a client scheduled an appointment in the middle of the night. But, in that case, you wouldn’t get notified at all. We now queue the notifications  and send any pending notifications once you are available to receive them.

You can configure all of this on the edit user page,  which you can find by clicking edit on the /settings/users.

User interface improvements

We made some interface improvements. The two most noticeable are the new /settings page, and the new /settings/design page.




New Home Page, Appointments Report, Provider Photos & Bios

I hope all of you had a great three-day weekend.

We have a few new features to announce.

New Home Page

We have created a new home page which  acts as both a dashboard, summarizing your your business, as well as a launching point to get into the deeper reports.  Below are a few screen captures of the new home page:


You can see widgets that show upcoming appointments, scheduling statistics, and a chart showing what your week will look like.

home-page 2

New “All Appointments” Report

There is a link below your upcoming appointments called “view all my appointments” which takes you to the brand new “all appointments report”.  The report has live search, so you can instantly look up just about anything, e.g. all upcoming appointments offered by a particular provider, all appointments for a particular client, all appointments matching a particular service, or even all three criteria at once.

You can also export  your entire appointment history.  You can use this to run your own analysis in Excel or Google Docs, or import it into other software, like an accounting pack

all appointments reportA quick note about security: as always, accounts that have “provider” security level do not have access to client or appointment data,including this report. And their home page will only show a subset of the data, e.g. just their own upcoming appointments.

New Provider Photos & Bios

You might have noticed that  the new home page shows photographs of service providers. Well, now you can (optionally) upload a photograph of each Schedulista user.

If you are a multi-provider business, you can include a provider bio and both the photograph and the bio will show up on your public scheduling page.

provider photos and bios

Rotating Quotes

At the top of the page, we added a rotating list of awesome quotes —  because who doesn’t like to see awesome quotes.

motivational quotes

That’s all for now. We hope you enjoy!


Limited Offers

Have you ever wanted to offer a service that  was only available between two dates?

Have you ever wanted to offer a service privately — so that it did not appear in the list of your other services, and was available only through a private link?

We have a new feature called Limited Offers that lets you accomplish both of these things.


An example of a private service that is not limited by date:

You can read instructions on how to implement limited offers in Schedulista here:

And setup instruction on private services here:


Credit Card Capture — Charge for No-Shows.

A few months ago we sent out a customer survey. One of the questions we asked was for you to rank potential features.

The most popular request by far was for the ability to capture a credit card at the time a client schedules online.

In fact, more than half of you asked for this feature. Great news: Here you go.

Online scheduling credit card capture.

You can now take a credit card at the time your client schedules an appointment. If your client misses an appointment without canceling, you can charge the client.

If your client misses an appointment without canceling, you can charge the client.

For our credit card processor, we partnered with Stripe. Stripe is a fantastic service. It is free to sign up, and there is no monthly charge. If you charge a credit card, you pay 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction. What is really great is you never actually see the credit card number or other details. In fact, we don’t even have access to them. Stripe keeps all of the information secure, and only shares a unique token. This approach yields the highest security and the highest PCI rating.

It is really easy to set this up. You can find instructions here.


Flex Time

We added a new way for you to manage your schedule. We call it Flex Time.

It is now easy to take the day off, or even open up a day that you typically  don’t work.

The image below illustrates how you might open up one Saturday between 10am and 2pm.

Works Hours

We also made it much easier to adjust your overall work hours. You can now do this directly from your calendar.

That’s it. Easy.