Sales scheduling tools are everywhere.
Just look at the title of this article: Chili Piper vs. Calendly vs. Acuity vs. ScheduleOnce vs. TimeTrade.
And those are just a few of the most well-known ones.
We often get asked how Chili Piper compares to the other sales scheduling tools out there.
You probably already know where this article is going. We like our product. A lot.
However, different teams have different needs. Chili Piper might not be for everyone. This article isn’t a hard sell on Chili Piper, so you can relax
Instead, we’re going to deliver an even-handed survey of Chili Piper vs. Calendly vs. Acuity vs. ScheduleOnce vs. TimeTrade. Just like we promised.
But first, a little glimpse into what makes Chili Piper’s scheduling tool unique…
Chili Piper is a scheduling platform. While the other tools we’ll cover in this post were built to help you book appointments without going back and forth over email, we take an all encompassing approach to scheduling.
We integrate with many more systems (like your marketing automation and sales enablement tools) and offer other process-related features like meeting and lead distribution based on advanced rules.
Now that we’ve covered that important point, let’s dive into the question you came here for: how does Chili Piper stack up against Calendly, Acuity, ScheduleOnce, and TimeTrade.
That’s a lot of platforms to compare.
Five to be exact.
It’s hard to get all the facts to be able to make the right decision.
That’s why we’ve decided to take a thorough look at how today’s top scheduling tools stack up against each other.
With the help of this guide, you can better understand what features can help reduce your team’s workload and keep your sales meetings running smoothly.
The chart below helps you get a quick view of what each tool has to offer. If you want to learn even more about specific features and what sets these tools apart, make sure to check out the detailed breakdown below as well.
Before we hop into the unique features of each tool, let’s give a quick look at what each scheduling experience looks like…
Now that you have a general understanding of how these tools look and compare, let’s dive into the nitty gritty of the features that might speak to the needs of your business.
When it comes to closing deals, timing is everything.
Not only are businesses expected to respond to prospects in a timely manner, but also lock down a meeting window that makes sense for both parties.
The ability to suggest meeting times does double-duty of encouraging prospects to make up their minds quickly and only schedule during hours that vibe with your sales teams’ schedules.
Chili Piper offers suggested times via email. After someone has requested a meeting, they can either choose between recommended times or see a full calendar to pick a time that works best for them. This sort of flexibility is a win-win for reducing no-shows and keeping your teams’ calendars booked.
(By the way, we tested sending suggested times in an email versus sending a link to calendar and here were the surprising results.)
Meanwhile, Calendly allows users to include one-off meeting invitation timeslots via email through their Chrome extension. This feature works alongside your team’s existing calendar to ensure there are no potential conflicts.
Integration with Salesforce is the one common thread between all of these solutions. That said, functionalities with Salesforce vary from tool to tool.
A core requirement is the ability to log a meeting as a record in Salesforce, which all the these tools do.
But Chili Piper also includes some unique capabilities: the ability to route a meeting to a rep based on Salesforce data, for example the size and location of a prospect.
Sales teams can get up and running with Chili Piper in a matter of hours. Access to the Salesforce API is granted via OAuth 2.0, so it’s a 3 click process that takes a few seconds.
Calendly, ScheduleOnce, and TimeTrade have Salesforce integrations which need to be installed by an administrator.
This process could take weeks to install depending on the back-and-forth between Salesforce and your sales ops folks.
Acuity provides integration via Zapier only.
Juggling between sales tools can be a huge time-sink.
When your team is already spending a bulk of their time in Salesforce, the ability to book from there is flat out more efficient for everyone involved.
Chili Piper offers two-click booking via your prospect’s Lead or Contact Salesforce profile. The booking icon is available via a chrome browser extension or can be added manually in Salesforce to any object (Opportunity, Case, Account, etc….) as a button or link.
After clicking the icon, you can add the meeting in question to your own calendar, your lead’s calendar or pass it off to a colleague.
ScheduleOnce and TimeTrade also allow you to book via Salesforce, albeit setting up your booking icon requires a bit of legwork. Either through tinkering with the API or adding a custom button, users can integrate scheduling with contacts via the Objects page.
If you’re tired of the manual legwork of deciding who’s the best fit for a meeting, the ability to automatically route responsibilities to the right people is a game-changer.
Lead routing capability adds power, simplicity, and success to any sales team.
Through round-robin routing, there’s no second-guessing who the best fit for your next meeting might be.
Chili Piper rolls out its round-robin routing based on actual meeting counts, taking into account territory assignments, account ownership, vacations, weights and other adjustments (like no-shows and cancellations).
Chili Piper’s main differentiator with routing is that you can also route leads based on qualification rules. For example, let’s say you have seperate teams that handle SMB, mid-market, and enterprise. You can setup rules in Chili Piper to route leads based on which tier their company falls in.
Calendly, ScheduleOnce, and TimeTrade offer a basic round robin functionality, allowing teams to distribute meetings based on their availability or equal distribution.
By default, Acuity’s scheduling is based on a round-robin format which automatically assigns meetings to whoever has the least booked. Users have the options of adjusting their settings to restrict or open up booking options for prospects.
Anything that can save on behalf of your sales team is a point in your business’s favor.
Customizable calendar templates allow your team to quickly fine-tune their sales messages for each and every prospect without reinventing the wheel.
For example, Chili Piper offers templates for general meetings, trainings and discovery calls. This allows sales teams to personalize their warm welcomes and plug-in relevant information for prospects.
Because of our direct Salesforce integration, Chili Piper is the only solution that can provide dynamic tags to personalize the meeting templates from Salesforce fields.
Acuity also offers businesses the opportunity to customize and save templates organized by tags.
ScheduleOnce boasts a template editor that allows you to access generic, “default” templates in addition creating custom ones.
Robust reporting is crucial for both assessing the accountability of your team and finding ways to tune up your sales process.
Specifically, the ability to see top-performers, no-shows and which meetings are driving the most sign-ups are a major plus. Within the Chili Piper dashboard, you can also see the number of meetings scheduled, meetings attended and meetings canceled by individuals on your team.
With Chili Piper’s Concierge functionality in your web forms, you can also get detailed reporting on which prospects took which action on your site (more on Concierge at the end of this guide):
Acuity’s also allows for custom reporting on appointments including volume, duration and price. For example, you can run reports on all scheduled appointments, paid versus unpaid appointments and cancels versus no-shows.
Group meetings shouldn’t have to be more complicated than a one-on-one, should they?
The ability to onboard multiple users at once means that your sales team can squeeze even more out of their schedules.
Chili Piper allows you to assign mandatory or optional attendees for group meetings, meaning that your opportunity isn’t necessarily sunk if a member of the group cancels or no-shows. The assignees are likewise capable of choosing which times work best for them.
Acuity group meetings let users set parameters on group meetings (number of attendees, etc.) and provide confirmations for each individual that joins in. ScheduleOnce’s group sessions operate similarly, allowing for multiple bookings and confirmations within the same event minus the “mandatory” attendee option that Chili Piper offers.
No-shows are a massive pain for any sales team. Oftentimes, eliminating them boils down to a simple reminder. A combination of email and SMS reminders ensure that you’re in all of your prospects’ inboxes. In short, your meeting becomes a can’t-miss affair.
Chili Piper offers completely customizable automated reminders in addition to day-before, hour-before, and minute-before reminders via email (and, optionally, SMS reminders). These notifications only go out IF the prospect has accepted the meeting.
For example, if a prospect scheduled a meeting 3-4 weeks out, you can setup a reminder to be sent out the week before your meeting. You can also set reminders by time of day (7am the morning of the meeting, for example) and even response status in case a prospect has not accepted a meeting invitation.
Our team uses a combination of these reminders to get our no-show rates as low as 8% every month across the entire team.
Calendly includes an optional text field for reminders in addition to their email ones.
Acuity keeps a detailed log of email and text reminders to give users peace of mind that attendees are in the loop. Reminders in Acuity cannot be sent sooner than one hour prior to the appointment in question, though.
In addition to its standard reminder options, ScheduleOnce allows for an automatic follow-up email in its reminders dashboard.
TimeTrade offers standard email reminders in addition to their text-based ones.
There are a couple of scheduling features that are unique to Chili Piper that we wanted to point out here.
This feature allows you to reserve specific blocks directly in your calendar for certain meeting types. For example, you can choose to show as available for training only Thursdays from 10:00AM to 2:00PM in your time zone.
(For more on this feature, check out support article here.)
Inside the Chili Piper dashboard, you can then see utilization reports by each person on your team:
Chili Piper’s Meeting Series functionality allows users to book a series of meetings through a singular URL.
You can set how often you would like meetings to recur or for the link to be good for one-time use. Adjust the occurrences to how many meetings you would like to occur in the series. Select the date, time, and meeting template you would like to use for the meetings.
When it comes to customer success, training, and onboarding your clients, there are times when you may want to limit the number of bookings by single individuals or by a company.
An example may be that your client purchases a set number of training or onboarding hours. Or maybe you have that one client that takes up a bit too much of your time because they have unlimited access to your public calendar.
With Chili Piper, you have the ability to limit the number of meetings a certain person or company can schedule, based on the timeframe you decide.
Once they hit their limit, Chili Piper shows a friendly message explaining to the client that they’ve already booked a similar meeting.
The more integrations and flexibility your scheduling platform has, the better. Each of the tools highlighted above offers Salesforce integration, in addition to other third-party email marketing, CRM and sales communication platforms.
Some integrate directly while others require a connection through Zapier.
Of course, we can’t talk much about these tools without talking about the price tag.
Instant Booker is $15 per user per month.
Adding the Concierge service, featuring real-time qualification, routing, and scheduling directly from forms and app is a $150 per month platform fee. There is also a user license fee of $30 per user per month.
Concierge Live offers real-time call routing, video conferencing, and scheduling directly from your forms and app. The platform fee that includes Concierge Live is $400 per month.
Calendly offers 5 plans starting with their Basic which is free for individuals.
Their other plans are:
Pricing increases with the number of seats, features, integrations, and customizations needed.
Acuity Scheduling offers three plans starting with their Emerging plan which is $14 per month.
Their other plans are:
Each of their plans can be started with a free 7-day trial. The number of staff/locations, features, and customizations vary between each plan with the Powerhouse being their full-featured plan.
ScheduleOnce offers three plans beginning with their Starter plan which is free for 25 users.
Their other plans are:
Features, integrations, services, and level of support vary between plans.
TimeTrade is now Engageware which offers multiple products including appointment scheduling. They do not openly provide pricing details on their website. To get pricing for their product you must schedule a meeting with their team.
Our customers find that what really sets us apart from the other tools mentioned here is other process-related features.
For example, one of our products (called Concierge) cuts down the wait-time between prospects filling out a form and actually getting in touch with your team.
Concierge qualifies the lead in real time (based on rules you control) and offers that person a simple way to immediately start a call, hop on zoom for a live demo, or schedule a meeting for later upon submission:
Companies like Twilio, Gong, and Intuit use Concierge to schedule and quickly call their inbound leads because of our…
Booking via Concierge represents a simple, streamlined path from your website to your sales team.
Our other solution named Handoff allows you to setup rules to qualify leads and route them to the right rep in real time based on advanced round robin rules, territory assignments, account-based ownership, and more. Goodbye spreadsheets!
Of course, it all depends on your team and budget, doesn’t it?
We’re pretty damn proud of what Chili Piper has cooked up for businesses hungry to streamline their sales. We believe our platform and its features speak for themselves, whether it be the smart automation behind our scheduling solution or Concierge’s ease-of-use.
Either way, we appreciate you doing your homework on the sales scheduling tools out there.
If you’re interested in what else Chili Piper can do to help you book more meetings or convert them faster, feel free to get a personalized demo with us today.