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- Free forever plan
- Integrations via Zapier
- Easy to use interface
- Built for teams
- No mobile app
- Limited visual customization
If you’re a small business owner finding yourself bogged down by admin tasks like managing your calendar, you need appointment scheduling software.
Doodle is one scheduling solution that can take the hassle out of managing appointments and help you build better client relationships.
SMB Guide’s Verdict for Doodle
Based on all of its available features, I give Doodle an 8.5 out of 10 score overall.
Its free forever plan and group polling feature are major pluses, especially for large organizations. But the rest of its features are pretty basic, and depending on your needs, may not necessitate a premium subscription.
Here’s a breakdown of the scoring for each individual factor:
In this review of Doodle, I’ve followed SMB Guide’s detailed criteria for evaluating the appointment scheduling software.
Pricing & Plans
Doodle has four different pricing tiers – one of which is a free forever plan with basic scheduling and group poll functionality.
Pricing is based on the number of users. If you have more than 20 team members, you’ll need to contact Doodle for a custom quote for their Enterprise plan.
A nice perk with Doodle is a 55% discount if you choose annual billing over monthly billing when signing up.
Here’s a breakdown of Doodle’s plans:
Doodle’s Free plan is great for individuals who just need a single booking page and 1:1 event type.
- Free forever
- Unlimited group polls
- One booking page
- One 1:1 event type
- Google Meet and Zoom web conferencing
Who it’s for: Individuals who are just getting started with scheduling.
Doodle’s Pro plan unlocks unlimited 1:1 event types, custom branding, and removes annoying ads.
- $14.95/user per month
- $83.40/user per year (with annual billing)
- All Free features
- No ads
- Unlimited time slots for group polls
- Unlimited booking pages
- Unlimited 1:1 event types
- Unlimited email invitations
- Custom branding
- Microsoft Teams and Webex web conferencing
Who it’s for: Professionals who want an automated scheduling solution with more features.
Doodle’s Team plan helps your team increase productivity with activity reports, a handy book on behalf feature, and more.
- $19.95/user per month
- $107.40/user per year (with annual billing)
- All Pro features
- Admin console
- Roles and permissions
- Book on behalf
- Collective event scheduling
- Activity reports
Who it’s for: Business teams who need increased productivity and collaboration.
Doodle’s Enterprise plan provides one-on-one onboarding and training to ensure that your entire team knows how to use the software.
- Custom pricing
- All Team features
- Priority support
- Single sign-on (SSO)
- Onboarding and training
- 99.5% availability service-level agreement (SLA)
Who it’s for: Large teams and enterprises who need more support and customization options.
Appointment Workflow Automation
To get started with Doodle’s appointment workflow, you’ll first need to create a meeting – which they refer to as a “doodle.”
You can choose from two primary meeting types:
- The 1:1 meeting: This is the best option for setting up a simple meeting with your client, customer, peer, or employee.
- The group poll: This is Doodle’s most popular meeting type. Use it to find the best time for everyone in a group to meet.
You’ll then need to create your booking page. Once you’ve created your page, you’ll have a link that you can then share with your clients or teammates so they can book with you.
One small but annoying thing is that I was unable to create a booking page until I connected a calendar to my account.
There was a “Do it later” button, but when clicked, it wouldn’t allow me to continue setting up my booking page. There doesn’t appear to be a way around this.
On Doodle Pro plans and higher, you can customize your Doodle pages with your logo, a background image, and background color.
The branding you set in Doodle will apply across all of your polls, 1:1s, and booking pages. Some users stated they wish there were options to brand each poll individually.
The only way to achieve this is by signing up for separate Doodle subscriptions. On Teams and Enterprise plans, you have the ability to set up branding that will apply to all users under your account.
This can be helpful if you’re a large company and you want everyone to project the same visual aesthetic when booking with clients or stakeholders.
Calendar Management Features
You can connect your Google, Office 365 or iCloud calendars to your Doodle account.
You can connect up to 10 calendars from each calendar provider – this is much higher than the limits on other scheduling tools (Calendly, for example, only allows up to 6 calendar connections).
Your calendar events won’t be visible to anyone, but they’ll be made automatically unavailable for meetings. This way, you can prevent any accidental double-booking.
Time zone conversions are also automatic with Doodle, so you don’t have to worry about mixups if you’re meeting with a client or teammate across the globe.
One thing that I could see being an issue for many people is the inability to reschedule 1:1s. Only meeting participants can reschedule meetings – you’re unable to do so from your end of things.
So that means if you need to reschedule a booked event, you’ll need to ask your participant to reschedule the event from the original booking confirmation email they received.
This adds an extra, unnecessary step that could be inconvenient if an unexpected emergency crops up during a booked Doodle meeting.
And I could see how it might come off as unprofessional in some instances.
Automated Reminders and Notifications
Upon booking a meeting with you in Doodle, the participant will receive an automated confirmation email in their inbox.
When creating a 1:1 or group poll, there’s an option to send out additional automated reminders, though you won’t be able to customize when they’re sent or what they say.
These reminders are automatically triggered based on your invitation inputs and whether or not you applied a deadline.
With group polls, reminders are sent out to people you invited to the group poll who have not yet voted.
If you want your automated reminders to be more customized than that, you’ll need to look into another tool, unfortunately.
Client Management and Communication
Doodle doesn’t store meeting information in any kind of client database. If you need client management features, you’ll need to look into other scheduling solutions.
User Interface and User Experience
Doodle has a pretty bare-bones (but still aesthetically pleasing) user interface. Here’s what your dashboard looks like when you log in for the first time:
Your booking pages, calendars, contacts, and any pending Doodle invitations are visible straight away.
Overall, I found the user experience to be pretty intuitive. I didn’t have any trouble figuring out where things were or how to set them up.
Integrations, Compatibility, & Supported Platforms
From what I found on their integrations page, Doodle integrates with nine different third-party platforms.
That’s not a lot, but if you connect your Doodle account to Zapier, you’ll be able to build your own workflows with its 3k+ connected apps.
You’ll need to be a paid subscriber to do so, however. While Doodle is primarily web-based, there is an app available for iOS and Android devices.
Doodle’s first line of support is their Help Center. There’s also an automated chatbot that can help you with simple queries if you’d rather not search through the Help Center.
To access it, just click on the support widget on the bottom left of your screen – however, you’ll need to be logged in to do so.
If you need help for a more specific issue, you can contact Doodle support by completing a short form. Only email support is provided for these tickets.
Phone support is not available.
Doodle — Unique Features
Book on behalf
This feature allows you to book meetings on another team member’s calendar without having to wait for them to get back to you.
One use case for this might be if you’re trying to schedule a candidate interview with your company’s hiring manager.
If you have multiple people on your team, the Admin Console will allow you as the account admin to pull different reports, set up company-wide branding, make decisions about which integrations your team members can use, and more.
What the Experts Say About Doodle
These are Doodle’s ratings on some of the most popular review sites:
- Capterra: 4.6/5 stars (1755 reviews)
- G2: 4.4/5 stars (2062 reviews)
- Trustpilot: 1.1/5 stars (163 reviews)
With the exception of Trustpilot, the overwhelming majority of reviewers had very few negative things to say about Doodle.
Here are a couple review excerpts from real users:
“The fact that we can see how many people are available at what times makes it super convenient when organizing last-minute meetings or events – no more guessing whether enough people will turn up. Doodle has certainly made it a lot easier to plan ahead.”– Michelle B., Senior Client Service Manager
“The interface makes creating online surveys, scheduling events, and more incredibly easy. I especially appreciate the fact that it’s so easy to understand, with clear text and appropriate colors. I was surprised at how effective this tool can be for collecting data through surveys; even better was the ability to instantly email these forms electronically without any hassle on a variety of different devices.”– Hailey Y., Software Engineer
Doodle is an excellent scheduling solution, especially when it comes to group polling. But if you’re working solo or aren’t part of a large team, you might find that it’s a bit overkill for your needs.
If that’s the case for you, here are some of the top Doodle alternatives to consider:
Setmore is a scheduling software that allows you to accept payments – a feature that Doodle lacks. You can even take advantage of Setmore’s payment feature on their free plan.
That’s pretty generous if you ask me.
- Starting Price: Free – $12/user per month
- Best For: Small to medium-sized companies that rely heavily on appointments.
Square Appointments is a cloud-based scheduling software that integrates seamlessly with other Square products – including payments, invoices, and loyalty programs.
This makes it a no-brainer if you’re already a Square user.
- Starting Price: $0 – $29/location per month
- Best For: Small businesses owners that offer services by appointment or businesses already utilizing Square’s other services.
Calendly is one of the most popular scheduling tools out there. Compared to Doodle, it’s more focused on 1:1 meetings rather than group meetings (though it does still have group functionality).
- Starting Price: Free – $12/seat per month
- Best For: Everyone from small businesses to Fortune 100 companies looking for a tool to make it easier to schedule and remember meetings.
Getting Started with Doodle
Doodle is an awesome scheduling solution for companies that rely on a lot of team and organizational meetings. Their group polling makes finding time that works for everyone nearly seamless.
To get started, sign up for a free account and create your first group poll today.
Who founded Doodle?
Is Doodle free?
Doodle offers a basic plan that’s completely free to use. Under their free forever plan, you’ll be able to set up a booking page, create group meetings, and set up web conferencing with either Zoom or Google Meet.
That said, to access Doodle’s best features, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan.
Is there a better alternative to Doodle?
Calendly is a more well-known scheduling tool than Doodle. It’s designed to handle a variety of event types, including 1-on-1s, group, collective, and round-robin meetings.
Doodle is a lesser-known software, but is more focused on group meetings.
At the end of the day, choosing whether to go with Doodle or another scheduling alternative comes down to personal preference and your specific business needs.
Doodle is the fastest and easiest way to schedule anything — from meetings to the next great collaboration.
Product Brand: Doodle