After installing and activting the Advanced Booking Calender WordPress Plugin, there are a few easy steps you should go through to get this plugin up and running.
1. Check the Settings
After activating the plugin you see a new element in the WordPress-Admin called „Advanced Booking Calendar“. Click on it and go to the settings.
The settings are divided in general and email settings. Let’s take a look at them:
- General Settings
Check this email address carefully, since all booking requests will be sent to this address.
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- Page with bookingform
You can select a page where you have placed the bookingform shortcode.You have to add the shortcode [abc-bookingform] manually to this page. The page will be linked, if user selects dates on the single calendar shortcode. If you have not created a bookingform page yet, just ignore this setting. You can come back later and edit the link.
Enter the currency code you are going to bill in.
- Date format
Please select a date format that fits you best. It’s going to be used by all calendars and by the bookingform.
- Price format
The price format is used at all times, when prices are shown.
This plugin can use Browser Cookies, if you want to. Inputs the user does in the booking form regarding his stay are being stored in a cookie for 6 month. No personal informations are stored, only dates and number of guests. If the user later returns to your site, the dates are automatically set.
- Google Analytics
If you use Google Universal Analytics to track visitors on your page, you should activate this setting. Once activated, every calendar use is being tracked. So you can see which month is most frequently checked.
The use of the bookingform is also tracked. It shows whether or not a visitor got a search result and if the next booking step was reached or if a booking request was sent. This is a great way to integrate Google AdWords remarketing feature.
Again: you need an active Google Univeral Analytics account and the tracking code has to be integrated within your website. This setting does not add a tracking code to your site, it just activates the tracking. There are betters plugins to do this job, such as this one.
- Booking Form Settings
Check the input fields in the booking form. On this page you can change, which inputs will show up in the booking form and if they are required or optional. The email address is always required, since guest will receiv a confirmation email after they placed their reservation.
- Email Settings
The email setting are templates which are sent to the guests. On the initial plugin activation those templates are filled with examples. Please check if those examples are ok. You can edit them any time. The placesholders shown on this page will be replaced with actually data, when the emails are generated.
2. Create Calendars, Rooms and Seasons
In contrast to the settings, there are no preconfigured calendars or seasons after the activation. So you have to add them manually. So click on „Seasons & Calendars“ and start by adding a calendar.
„Calendars“ is just a name room types or room classes, which have identical prices and there availabilities are managed as one group.
The name is used many times, especially in communication with the guest. So chose a name that is easy to understand, like „Room Type Standard“ or „Double Room“
- Number of rooms
Enter the number of rooms this room class has. If you have 10 double rooms and a calendar name „Double Room“, just enter 10.
- Max. Persons
This is the number of guests who can stay in one room of this calendar. So in the case of a double room, enter 2.
- Price Preset
This plugin has a great way of editing prices by seasons. But if there are no seasons added, the plugin will use this preset to calculate prices. Even if you have no preset, just enter the cheapest price you are offering this room class for. Just in case, if your seasons are missing a day.
- Information Page
The page selected as information page will be linked on several places, such as the booking form or the calendar overview. If you have not yet created pages for your room types, just set this setting to „Don’t link“.
- Short information text
Enter a short text describing this calendar. It will be shown in the booking form.
Seasons are time periods where the price preset does not fit. You can add a „High Season“ for each calendar with a higher price.
- Season – Calendar – Assignments
In this last setting you can conect a season to a calendar for a time period.
Extras give you the opportunity to upsell additional services or manage a fixed fee like „final cleaning“. You can choose between mandatory and optional extras. Just select the price and its calculation (day/night/person etc.) and the extra will automatically show up in the booking form.
3. Add Shortcodes
This plugin uses four different shortcodes you can put on your pages. We recommend to use one page for each shortcode.
- Calendar Overview / [abc-overview]
The shortcode [abc-overview] shows all calendars and there availabilities by month.
- Single Calendar / [abc-single calendar=X]
The shortcode [abc-single calendar=X] needs a calendar id instead of X. You can find the ids on your calendar settings page and is always a number like 1 or 2. So the shortcode for your first calendar is usually [abc-single calendar=1]
- Booking form / [abc-bookingform]
The booking form fulfils two tasks: finding the right room for users and generating booking requests. Every user action happens onpage via AJAX, so the page does not reload during interactions. We recommend to enter the shortcode [abc-bookingform] on a single page.
This plugin offers an availability check widget. Just go to „Appearance / Widgets“ and add the widget.
If you have any more questions on how to set up the plugin, feel free to contact us.