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Reservations support

How to Setup Mobile Booking

To enable customers to book tee times through their smart phone, you will need to activate GolfNow Reservations Mobile Booking. Unlike most GolfNow Internet features, Mobile Booking is not setup through the Internet Dashboard. Contact the Marketing Team to activate Mobile Booking. Prior to contacting us, please be prepared to provide us with an image that you would like to use as your course icon. An ideal image size is 72 x 72 pixels, however the Marketing Team can likely adjust the size of your image if needed. Mobile Booking works with mobile devices such as the iPhone, Android and newer Blackberrys.

Configuring Your Website

In order for Mobile Booking to be successful, your golfers must know how to access it. To avoid golfers having to navigate around your entire site to find Mobile Booking, there are three recommended approaches to designing your site.

  1. Setup your site to detect mobile browsers and immediately redirect to the Mobile Booking Interface.
  2. Create a mobile-friendly version of your web site. Optimize it for easy navigation with modern smartphones and tablets. Keep in mind that mobile users want to perform their tasks quickly, so avoid navigating through many different pages to access tee time bookings.
  3. Create a mobile-specific URL such as www.yourgolfcourse.com/mobile or m.yourgolfcourse.com with the Mobile Booking Interface framed inside of your normal site layout.

NOTE: If using Method 3, framing your online booking link within the mobile-specific URL would also be acceptable. Since the regular booking pages identify mobile browsers and break the frame, the Mobile Booking Interface will still load properly. Page loading times may also take a bit longer however.

From the golfer’s perspective, Method 1 is highly recommended. If a customer is not already familiar with booking through your site, requiring a golfer to memorize a separate URL will likely make Mobile Booking difficult to find, particularly when using a mobile browser. Also consider that navigating through a website on a phone, regardless of how mobile-friendly it is, can be more time consuming than most users prefer. Keep in mind that smartphones generally promote their speed and efficiency, so try to keep the number of ‘clicks’ to complete a tee time reservation to a minimum. The Mobile Booking Interface has been designed to accomplish this.

QR Codes

A recent trend in the marketing of websites, products, coupons, business cards and many other items involves the use of QR codes. A QR code (quick response code) is a type of two-dimensional barcode that can contain any string of data that a marketer is looking to provide quick access to via a QR code reader. In the past few years, mobile phone cameras have become the target audience of these barcodes. Android and Blackberry users have been familiar with QR codes for some time, and lately better Apple IOS apps have been released to allow these to be read. Popular barcode reader apps include Barcode Scanner in the Android Market, along with ScanLife and Google Goggles for nearly all major mobile platforms.

Below is an example of a QR code that stores the URL of a GolfNow Reservations demo booking site. When scanned with a barcode reader, the device will automatically bring up GolfNow Nationals Golf Course’s Mobile Booking in the browser.

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 5.56.13 PM

Adding these codes to email newsletters, cart signs, score cards, even your regular website homepage is a great way to promote Mobile Booking. Typically very little explanation is necessary as to what the golfer is to do with a QR code. Users who see them generally know what they are and how to read them.

There are many free QR code generators available online. One of the more popular ones is provided by Kaywa (http://qrcode.kaywa.com). Simply copy your URL into the text field, click Generate, and save the image.

NOTE: Be sure to test the image before distributing it.

iOS Icon

iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad users can choose to bookmark the Mobile Booking Interface to their home screens, allowing quick access to online bookings with a look and feel similar to regular App Store apps. When saved to the Home Screen, a custom icon will be downloaded. Using your course’s logo allows better branding of your mobile bookings.

Create a square PNG image of your course logo or other design. The size should be at least 72 by 72 pixels to accommodate both the iPhone and iPad. A file size of less than 50 kb is recommended to avoid a lengthy download process, particularly in areas where 3G data coverage is not available. When saved to the Home Screen, the device will automatically round the corners on the image and add a gloss effect.

When the image is ready, send it to the GolfNow Reservations Marketing Staff and they will link it to your Mobile Booking Interface.

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 5.56.19 PM

Limitations

Currently the Mobile Booking Interface does not support profile management, Specials (regular or pre-paid) or Find-A-Game. This functionality may be added in the future.

Best Practices

  • Use a good image icon that will brand the facility: an ideal image size is 72 x 72 pixels
  • Use a QR Code on your scorecards, bathroom stalls, flyers, cart signs, around the pro shop, menu, bar and grill stand up menu. Visit goo.gl to make your QR Code.
  • Include the link to your mobile booking in your email blast: make sure people know you have it. Contact your web provider to create a mobile landing page for your customers.
  • Have the staff mention mobile booking – “I saw you booked online, do you know we have mobile booking?”
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