Services are the types of appointments customers will be able to book.

They can be provided by all staff or only by specific team members.

Group services into Categories, which customers will be able to choose from before they select a service. For the plugin to function properly, each service must be included in a category, which means that you'll need to create at least one (default) category and put all services in it.

Create and edit categories and services from the Services section in Bookly.

Services section in Bookly

Each category may have its photo and description. Click on the Categories button. You’ll see a new arrow next to the category title, which opens additional settings.

Categories of services in Bookly

An image of the category can be added to the email templates with the {category_image} placeholder.

The category’s description will be viewable in the booking form if you enable the Show category info option in the Appearance > Service tab. You can also insert this text into email notifications with the {category_info} placeholder.

Appearance section in Bookly

The order of services in your booking form

Click on the Services order button and use drag & drop to set up how your list of services will be viewable in the front-end booking form. You can reorder this list at any time.

The order of services in Bookly

Table settings

Click table-settings-btn.png in the upper right corner of the page to choose columns that you want to include in the Services table. Reorder the columns by using the drag & drop option.

Services section – Table settings

General Settings

Please note that settings described below are available with Bookly Pro installed and activated. The free version of Bookly has limited functionality.

Service image

Upload a photo or an image of the service and then display it with the {service_image} code in Email Notifications and Appearance.


Color-code appointments of the service in your Bookly calendar. This color will not be shown to your clients at any point. Coloring mode of the calendar can be set in Settings > Calendar > Coloring mode.

Service color in Bookly


Use "public" by default. The "private" setting is for the times when you need to take down a previously active service.


Service cost will be shown to the client during booking for their review and confirmation of the booking. Setting the price here does not require that you set up online payment because you can give clients the option of offline payment, too.

Service settings – visibility & price


Providers are your staff members that clients can choose from as the person providing the service. A service has to be assigned to at least one provider to appear in the Service drop-down menu in the booking form.

Service settings – assign providers

Providers preference for ANY

Allows you to define the rule of staff members auto assignment when customers schedule an appointment on your website and don’t have a staff member preference (when they select ANY option in a 'provider' drop-down).

Bookly will automatically choose a staff member for any selected service as per your settings.


The feature works as follows:

  • Specified order – appointment will be assigned to the available staff member in a specified order of priorities;
  • Most/least occupied that day – appointment will be assigned to the most/least occupied staff member on the date of appointment (see how it works when customers book unscheduled appointments here);
  • Most/least occupied for period – Bookly will assign the appointment to the most/least occupied staff member taking into account provider's occupancy at a selected period;
  • Most/least expensive – appointment will be assigned to the staff member with the highest/lowest service price. If the price is the same, the system will select the first staff member in a list.

Pick random staff member in case of uncertainty

When enabled and both employees meet the criteria chosen in "Providers preference for ANY", the system will pick a random staff member. When disabled, the system will take the first staff member from the list.

Services section – settings

Available payment methods

Set a custom payment method available for the particular service only. For example, you can disable a ‘Local payment’ option for your staff members’ services via Zoom, Google Meet, or other software for online meetings.

Services section – settings


In this field, you can write any kind of text and then have it automatically used in notifications to clients, booking form wording, etc.

Appearance section – service info

To show the service description to the customer at the 1st step of the booking process, enable the Show service info option in the Appearance > Service tab.

Appearance section in Bookly

Time Settings


It is the length of an appointment. You can set it from 5 minutes to 7 days. You can set start and end times of the appointment for services with the duration of 1 day or longer. This time will be displayed in notifications to customers.

Service duration in Bookly

Time slot length

This setting allows you to divide the length of the day into slots – time interval which is used as a step when building all time slots for the service at the Time step. This setting overrides global settings in Settings > General > Time slot length. Use Default to apply global settings.

Padding time

Determine a short time period around an appointment used for clean-up, preparation, or just rest. That time cannot be used for another booking. For example, you can set padding for 15 mins after appointment with 1 hour service duration. This means that the next available time slot for booking will be 15 mins after the booked appointment. So if the first appointment is at 08:00 am, the next availability will be at 09:15 am.

Advanced Settings

Create online meetings

Currently, Bookly PRO supports integrations with Zoom, Google Meet, Jitsi and BigBlueButton. Read more about set up here.

Limit appointments per customer

Set the limit of service bookings per customer in any given period. Restriction may end after a fixed period or with the beginning of the next calendar period – new day, week, month, etc.

Advanced settings for services in Bookly

Example #1: if you limit the number of appointments to 2 upcoming bookings, this will mean that a customer won't be able to book more than 2 appointments during the available booking period which depends on the free time slots availability and values set in Number of days available for booking, Minimum time requirement prior to booking.

Example #2: if you limit the number of appointments to 2 bookings per 24 hours/7 days/30 days/365 days, this will mean that a customer will be able to book only 2 appointments during the selected period. The restriction will end after this period is over.

Example #3: if you limit the number of appointments to 2 bookings per day/week/month/year, the restriction will end with the beginning of the new day/week/month/year.

Once your customer exceeds the limit, they will see this message:

"You are trying to use the service too often. Please contact us to make a booking."

This message can be changed in the Appearance > Done tab > Form view in case the number of bookings exceeds the limit.

Bookly PRO Appearance section

Final step URL

This setting allows you to create separate final pages (Thank You page after successful booking) for specific services.

Minimum time requirement prior to booking & canceling

You can set these periods for each service separately. If you use Default, then these values will be taken from global settings.

When you duplicate a service, it is created with the 'Private' visibility.

Duplicate a service in Bookly

Watch this video tutorial to get a better understanding of how to create Services and Categories in Bookly.



Basic Setup


Critical Settings

Booking Form Appearance

Publish Booking Form on One or Several Pages of One Website.


How to create custom appointments

There are services missing in "Choose Service" dropdown in booking form.

How can I set default Service, Category & Employee value via http GET?

Can I hide Category / Service / Employee fields from the booking form?

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