Small Biz

MyTime launches iOS app to become ‘Uber’ of local business bookings

Above: MyTime's CEO Ethan Anderson in the center.

Image Credit: MyTime Facebook
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What do oil changes and yoga have in common? You can book them both on MyTime.

MyTime is an online appointment superstore where people see all open appointment times for specific services. The company announced the release of its iOS app today and is now active in the Los Angeles and San Francisco areas.

Over two million businesses are in MyTime’s database, with 80 different types of services.

People search for the type of service they are looking for and can book, reschedule, and cancel appointments through the app. MyTime syncs with the scheduling systems of local businesses and processes the payments.

“Consumers are changing their habits and taking care of things like booking appointments outside of normal business hours now,” founder Ethan Anderson said in an e-mail. “It really speaks to the 24/7 ‘always on’ society we live in. In the pilot over 40 percent of our bookings happened at nighttime, when the businesses were closed for the day and couldn’t have otherwise taken bookings.”

Booking during off-hours is one of the benefits MyTime has for businesses. Companies can also offer discount pricing to fill appointments during their off-peak hours.

MyTime takes commission off new customers who book through MyTime, but not for existing customers. It also offers a suite of tools to help businesses keep their current customers.

For users, the app can help them manage all their appointments in one place. They receive notifications when its time to rebook, can leave ratings and reviews, and share recommendations with friends.

Many local businesses, like the types MyTime works with, don’t have a lot of technological expertise or resources to set up robust online booking systems or wage online marketing campaigns. However, consumers are coming to expect an “Uber” for everything, where they can easily book services online, and especially from their phones.

But getting small businesses to use new software is tough, and there are a lot of companies out there trying to sell it to them, whether its for payments, loyalty programs, or online booking.

Mindbody, which was founded in 1998, provides software that helps health, wellness, and beauty businesses integrate online booking into their sites. ClubLocal lets users book home repairs and services online. Many of the offerings out there are focused on specific verticals, unlike MyTime which wants to offer everything.

For a business like MyTime’s to work, it needs to build up a strong two-sided marketplace where there are enough options for every type of service. I did a search for a manicure near my house, and only found one result that was on the other side of the city.

The company is still pretty young through — its Los Angeles pilot launched in February. It is also backed by a hefty $3 million in seed funding from Upfront Ventures, Dave McClure, Brian Lee, David Tisch, and Jason Calacanis and others.

MyTime is based in Los Angeles.


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