Integration with Microsoft Bookings

Microsoft 365 offers two online scheduling services: Microsoft Bookings and Bookings with me. If you need the service that’s end-user-oriented and can reduce your administrative burden by delegating the configuration to end users, go for Bookings with me. You can learn how to integrate it with CodeTwo Email Signatures 365 from this article.

Microsoft Bookings is an online booking service that lets a company create a shared booking interface for multiple users. For example, a healthcare center can create and configure a centralized booking page that will be used by patients and the physicians who work for the center. You can also use Bookings to let your customers or associates book time with you instead of sending them a meeting link.

Being a Microsoft product, Bookings syncs with other Microsoft 365 apps, such as Calendar or Teams. You can also easily integrate a link to your booking page into email signatures managed by CodeTwo Email Signatures 365 to:

  • promote your intuitive booking interface and, consequently, promote your brand;
  • let your customers easily access your booking service, which translates into more conversions; and
  • save time otherwise spent on long email conversations to arrange for all the details.

If you want to add a booking page link to email signatures, you need to set up the integration in both Microsoft Bookings and CodeTwo Email Signatures 365.

Note that the service is available only with the selected Microsoft 365 business plans.

Microsoft Bookings configuration

With Microsoft Bookings, you get a rich set of mostly self-explanatory options to configure and personalize your bookings service. That's why, for the sake of this presentation, we will discuss configuration in the most general terms only. If you need a comprehensive guide on setting up Microsoft Bookings, we recommend watching this walkthrough video.

Initial setup & configuration basics

To start using the service, you need to sign in to the Microsoft Bookings web app with your Microsoft 365 credentials. The app is available at book.ms. You can also access it via the app launcher in the Microsoft 365 portal (Fig. 1.). 

Accessing Microsoft Bookings from the app launcher in Microsoft 365.
Fig. 1. Accessing Microsoft Bookings from the app launcher in Microsoft 365.

If you haven't used Microsoft Bookings yet, you will need to create a booking page first. You can either create:

  • a common page for your business that will include all your services and all your staff that provide them - on accessing it, customers will need to choose both a service and a staff member; or
  • a template page as a base for individual pages for all/selected users in your organization* - on accessing these, customers (or associates) will not need to choose a staff member but a service only. 

Either way, the common page or the individual pages will store bookings only. They will not show events or any other data from other Microsoft 365 calendars in your organization. However, they will take events from your staff's personal Microsoft 365 calendars into account when showing availability hours.

* Microsoft Bookings vs. Bookings with me

Instead of creating individual booking pages for your users on your own, you can reduce the administrative burden from yourself by asking these users to use Bookings with me and configure the integration themselves, as shown in this article. However, when choosing the preferred booking service, keep the following drawbacks in mind:

  • With Bookings with me, you do not have any control over your users’ booking pages, and adding a booking page link to a signature requires end users to take certain actions, too.
  • In Microsoft Bookings, adding a new booking page results in creating a new mailbox in your tenant, so you eventually might end up with lots of mailboxes to manage in your Microsoft 365 tenant.

To create a new booking page, click Create shared booking page (Fig. 2.).

Adding a new booking page.
Fig. 2. Adding a new booking page.

If you've chosen the first option (single, company-wide booking page), use the wizard to define the basic settings for your booking service, such as page name, business hours, staff, services provided, etc.

If you've chosen the second option (multiple booking pages), use the wizard to create a booking page that will serve as a template for individual booking pages of your users. You can provide any details you want, e.g. name it Template booking page.

Finally, click Create in the last step (Fig. 3.).

Completing the wizard to create a new booking page.
Fig. 3. Completing the wizard to create a new booking page.

After a couple of seconds, your page will be created and you'll be taken to its dashboard. Using the menu on the left (Fig. 4.), you can configure different aspects of your booking service. If you've chosen to create multiple booking pages, configure only these options that will be common to all or majority of your users (e.g. currency) to avoid unnecessary editing later on.

  • Business information - start with this page to set up basic information about your company such as name, logo, currency to pay for services, or phone. 
  • Services - use this page to add & configure each of your services that will be available to book. In the multiple booking pages scenario, it's a good idea to populate your template booking page with all the services your users will provide.
  • Staff - add people from and outside of your organization who will provide services. In the multiple booking pages scenario, it's a good idea to populate your template booking page with all the users for whom you plan to configure individual pages. By default, each user will be assigned the Team member role which is OK because allows them to manage bookings and availability.
  • Customers - you do not have to configure this initially - customers can be added later, including automatically based on the bookings made. 
  • Booking page - define all aspects of your booking interface - continue to the next section, to learn more. In the case of the template booking page, skip this menu altogether.
  • Calendar - once the booking page is live, you or your users can use this menu to manage calendar, including add bookings for customers or add time off.

Company-wide booking page dashboard with the main menu on the left.
Fig. 4. Company-wide booking page dashboard with the main menu on the left.

Configuring the common booking page for your business (scenario #1)

The Booking page settings is where you can find a booking page link to use in your signature(s).

First of all, you should decide who can access your booking page (Fig. 5., item 1). If you provide services for customers, you need to choose Available to anyone. That way, anyone who clicks the link will be able to access the booking page.

If you want to let your associates book meetings with you, you will be likely to select Available to people in your organization. Thanks to that, the booking page will be available to people in your Microsoft 365 tenant only.

Once you've configured everything as intended, you can finally publish your booking page by clicking Save at the top. You can also click the link (Fig. 5., item 2) to access the page yourself to see how it looks like from your customers' perspective. At the end, use the copy button next to the link to copy it for a later use in our software.

The settings available for the booking page.
Fig. 5. The settings available for the booking page.

Configuring individual booking pages (scenario #2)

If you decided on the option involving creating individual pages for all/selected users in your organization, you'll need to create booking pages based on the first template page. To start, click Back to all booking pages (top left corner of the template booking page dashboard) or simply sign in at book.ms (if you're not signed in) - you'll get to the Microsoft Bookings main dashboard.

Next, click Create and choose your template booking page as a base for your first user's booking page (Fig. 6.).

Creating first user's booking page based on the template.
Fig. 6. Creating first user's booking page based on the template.

In the first step of the wizard, click Edit to edit services and staff. Since you want to create individual pages, choose just one user and services they'll offer for booking (Fig. 7.).

Editing staff and services for an individual booking page.
Fig. 7. Editing staff and services for an individual booking page.

The Name field in the next step is important because it will be included in the booking page link. A good idea is to use consistent naming convention across all your users. That way, individual booking pages will be easier to manage and integrate with third party services like CodeTwo Email Signatures 365. For even greater ease of integration, we recommend that you use values of attributes from your Entra ID (Azure AD). In our example, we are using the following format: '{First name} {Last name}' (Fig. 8.).

Info

The space(s) between the values are removed in the booking page link, so its format should be something likehttps://book.ms/b/{firstName}{lastName}@yourdomain.com

When you create a booking page, it is added to your tenant as a new mailbox. The mailbox name is defined based on what you type in the Name field of the booking page creation wizard. As there can't be two identical email addresses in a tenant, you cannot use your user's username when defining a name for that user’s bookings page. For example, if you have a user [email protected] in your tenant, you can't name a booking page MeganB. You need to use something different like Megan Bowen.

Defining individual booking page name.
Fig. 8. Defining individual booking page name.

Finally, similar to the first scenario, choose who can access this page to book appointments and then click Create (Fig. 9.). You'll be taken to your first user's booking page dashboard, where you can configure all the options that need to be set up individually for that user.

Configuring individual booking page visibility.
Fig. 9. Configuring individual booking page visibility.

Repeat the steps from this section for the remaining users (staff). Remember to stick to the same naming convention (the Name field) when naming the subsequent booking pages. 

Based on the naming convention you adopted, prepare a generic booking page link in the format that will apply to all users. In our example, it will be: https://book.ms/b/{First name}{Last name}@consultit.com.

How to add the booking page link in CodeTwo Email Signatures 365

Now, when your booking page is up and running, it’s time to configure CodeTwo Email Signatures 365.

  1. Go to app.codetwo.com and sign in using your admin credentials.
  2. On the signature rules’ list, choose the signature which you want to add the booking page link to. It can be, for example, a company-wide signature that applies to all users, or a signature for a group of users for whom individual booking pages have been configured.
  3. To go straight to editing the signature’s design (template), hover your mouse cursor over the signature’s thumbnail and click Edit signature (Fig. 10.).

    Info

    If you use Small as your preferred signature rule list view, you need to click your chosen signature, go to the Design step, and click Edit signature.

Opening the selected signature template for editing.
Fig. 10. Opening the selected signature template for editing.

  1. Once the template editor opens, put the cursor in the place where you want to add the link. If necessary, add a new line to the signature by pressing Shift + Enter. Next, click Meeting link on the editor’s ribbon (Fig. 11.).

Inserting a meeting link
Fig. 11. Inserting a meeting link.

  1. In the Insert meeting link window that opens, set up the options, depending on how you configured Microsoft Bookings:
    • Common booking page for your business (Fig. 12.)
      • Type: choose Custom link.
      • URL: paste the link you copied from the booking page dashboard, e.g. https://book.ms/b/[email protected]
      • Label and Picture: those fields let you decide whether to add the link to a text fragment, image, or both.
      • Click OK when finished to insert the booking page link into your signature template.

      Configuring the link to the common booking page for your business in the CodeTwo template editor.
      Fig. 12. Configuring the link to the common booking page for your business in the CodeTwo template editor.

    • Individual booking pages (Fig. 13.)
      • Set up all the options as in the scenario #1, except for URL.
      • URL: paste the generic booking page link you prepared. In our example, we'll insert https://book.ms/b/{First name}{Last name}@consultit.com that uses user's First name and Last name Entra ID (Azure AD) attributes to turn this general link into an individual one linking to that user's booking page. If you enter the address manually or need to use different placeholders, the Placeholders button may come in handy.
      • Click OK when finished to insert the link that will take recipients to sender's individual booking page.

      Configuring the generic link in the CodeTwo template editor.
      Fig. 13. Configuring the generic link in the CodeTwo template editor.

Save your changes by clicking Publish & Close (or Apply & Close > Save & Publish if you opened the editor from the signature rule editing pane) - changes will be applied instantly. From now on, every email recipient will be able to use the link in the signature to access booking page and easily book appointments (Fig. 14.).

Accessing the company-wide booking page via link in the email signature.
Fig. 14. Accessing the company-wide booking page via link in the email signature.

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