Square Appointments vs. Zenoti: Which is Right for Your Salon?

Editorial note: We're committed to providing correct and up-to-date software reviews that help guide you to the solutions that best fits your needs. The Salon Business is a subsidiary of Mangomint (a salon and spa software we love). However, any opinions shared are solely based on our editors' first-hand experience using the tools we review. Learn more...

Square Appointments vs. Zenoti – Two great pieces of salon and spa software for two entirely different types of business.

If you run a salon or spa and are looking for appointment scheduling and management software, then Square Appointments and Zenoti are two popular options worth considering.

Both solutions offer core features like appointment scheduling, client profiles, reporting, and more. However, they differ significantly when it comes to pricing, scales of business supported, and areas of specialization.

Square Appointments shines for solo entrepreneurs or small teams with its free basic plan and seamless integration with other Square products. The simple interface makes it easy for non-tech-savvy business owners to get up and running quickly.

Zenoti, on the other hand, offers more advanced features tailored to mid-sized and rapidly scaling salon chains. With customizable, modular features and detailed analytics, it provides in-depth tools for multi-location reputation management and marketing. However, this comes with a steeper learning curve and a much higher price tag.

Keep reading for a detailed side-by-side comparison of these two leading salon software systems.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti

Let's kick off with an overview of the two platforms we're diving into today.

Square Appointments

Zenoti

Overall score

Note

The overall score considers ease of use, customer service, features, user ratings, and cost. Scores are determined solely by our editorial team.

4.0
3.6

Average price

Note

Assumes you run a business with a mid-size team and have activated the more common add-ons. What you will pay will be lower or higher than this. See the separate section about pricing for full details.

$45 per month
$350 per month

Who is it for

For solopreneurs or small teams in any type of local service business (salon, spa, fitness, repair, cleaning, and professional services) who want access to Square's broad range of products.
Business owners who want a highly-detail-oriented piece of salon and spa software that offers deep data insights and great reporting and who need in-depth reputation management tools to build their brand online.

Ease of use

4
3.5

Customer Service

3
4.0

Countries

U.S., Canada, Australia, Japan, the UK, Ireland, France and Spain.

Available in nearly 50 countries worldwide

Key features

  • Large amount of native integrations with other apps
  • Comprehensive, easy-to-use, marketing tools
  • Best looking POS hardware on the market
  • Free, sophisticated, website builder and online store
  • Integrated email marketing suite
  • Two-way client messaging (via paid add-on feature: ezConnect)
  • Reputation management suite (via paid add-on feature: ezRepute)
  • Employee performance tracking (via paid add-on feature: ezPulse)

A Double-Click on Each System

Let’s review what these systems do and the pros and cons of each in this Square Appointments vs. Zenoti guide.

Square Appointments At a Glance

Square Appointments is a cloud-based appointment scheduling software for salons, spas and really any other local service businesses.

It integrates with the full suite of local business solutions from Square which makes it one of the most complete business management solutions on the market.

At the same time, it is free for individuals and has therefore quickly become one of the most popular platforms for one-person businesses like beauty booth renters and individual professionals.

Pros and Cons

  • Free for individuals
  • Well-designed, easy to use, interface
  • Integration with the full suite of Square applications for endless possibilities
  • Robust core business management (inventory, reports, and client data)
  • Limited flexibility when designing online booking page, booking widget, e-mails and other aspects that you may want to adapt
  • It gets a bit expensive for the growing team that expands with more locations
  • Only available in the U.S. and Canada at the moment

Zenoti At a Glance

Zenoti has existed in some form since 2010, when it was initially founded as ManageMySpa, officially becoming Zenoti in 2015.

Zenoti’s features build on the blueprint established by businesses like Booker and Mindbody, and expand the customizability and capability of those features with control over even the most minute details. The level of detail in data and reporting is a step ahead of some of the other big-name competitors in the industry, and its reputation management features are rather impressive.

That said, Zenoti also falls prey to some of the same mistakes that veteran salon software companies like Mindbody and Booker are still making.

Booker, Mindbody, and Zenoti all suffer from the uglies of bad, outdated user interface design, sporting plain, drab menu systems that tuck away important features in layers of nested menus and strip out crucial information (such as icon labels) you need to find the tools you need at a moment’s notice.

Likewise, Zenoti doesn’t list their fees online, hiding their monthly pricing behind a demo/sales call just as Mindbody does.

Pros and Cons

  • Can integrate with a large number of third-party applications via an open API
  • Integrated payments through Zenoti Payments
  • Custom reports
  • Help center and Zenoti University (training) available
  • No free trial
  • Pricing is not transparent + high starting cost (minimum $300)
  • Mobile app has low-to-mixed ratings
  • Requires a 12-month contract

How Do They Compare? Strengths and Weaknesses

When it comes to ease of use, Square Appointments is the clear winner. It offers an intuitive interface that is easy for non-technical owners to navigate.

New Square users can quickly set up core features like appointment scheduling, client profiles, and reports. However, branding and customization options for online booking pages require some custom work with a Zenoti rep, and online booking pages live on Zenoti’s sites rather than your own website.

Zenoti provides far more flexibility for the customization of settings and reports, albeit with a steeper learning curve. Once the initial setup effort is overcome, salons can tailor solutions for very specific operational needs.

This level of complexity lends itself better to larger-scale businesses with managerial staff in place who can dedicate time to learning and teaching the app’s ins and outs to their teams.

Zenoti also scales better, with the ability to standardize processes across all locations of a multi-site brand. However, the dated interface can be less than user-friendly for employees, and the mobile app is broadly disliked by users on review platforms.

For early-stage businesses, Square Appointments’ simple and affordable pricing plans are appealing. Zenoti offers more value for rapidly growing brands, albeit with high upfront costs.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti

Let's kick off with an overview of the two platforms we're diving into today.

Square Appointments

Zenoti

Ease of use

4
3

Design

4
2

Customer service

3
4

Pricing

4
2

Calendar and appointment management

4
3

Online booking

3
4

Point of sale and check out

5
3

Client data

5
4

Client communication

4
4

Inventory management

5
4

Team Management

5
4

Payroll

5
3

Marketing support

4
5

3rd party integrations

5
4

Mobile and tablet apps

5
2

Let’s Talk Features

Square Appointments stands out for its visually appealing and ready-to-use interfaces and templates. Business owners can quickly activate features like online booking and calendar management without the need for much customization.

Zenoti provides a wider array of features to support the operational needs of growing salons. Custom reports, automated SMS and email marketing campaigns, and multi-location inventory synchronization are just a few examples.

A unique offering by Zenoti is its reputation management system, which tracks customer reviews and ratings across hundreds of sites. This allows you to monitor public perception and respond promptly.

Square does set itself apart from Square with the ability to embed a booking widget directly on your site – something that is not available out of the box with Zenoti.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti

Zenoti offers more features than Square Appointments. Let's go through what these features are and where they differ.

Square Appointments Zenoti
Online Booking Square Appointments Zenoti
Website booking widget

Note

Can you integrate the entire online booking experience directly into your website?

Branding control

Note

Can you customize the look and feel of the booking experience to fit your brand?

No-show protection

Note

Can you store credit card details and charge deposits to reinforce your cancellation policy?

Service customization

Note

Can clients adapt their service when they book, and can this change the price and duration of the booked appointment?

Free from account creation

Note

Can clients book without having first to create an account with the software?

Integrated gift cards

Note

Can you sell digital gift cards as part of the booking process?

Calendar and Appointment Management
Customize notification messages

Note

Can you change the text sent to your clients as part of appointment reminders and other messages?

Customize notification timings

Note

Can you change when reminders and other messages go out to your clients?

Client waitlist management
Rooms and resource scheduling

Note

Can you manage equipment, rooms, and other resources required to complete a service?

Repeat appointments

Note

Can you schedule clients for recurring appointments?

Time block

Note

Can you block out time on your calendar?

Processing time

Note

Can you allow for double booking of service providers by accepting appointments during service processing time?

Duration and price by staff

Note

Can you adapt the price and time needed for a service based on who is performing the service?

Automated check-in

Note

Can clients check in to their appointments themselves?

Note

Not by default. Available through Zenoti Go add-on.

Point of Sale/ Check out
Tablet compatible

Note

Can you run the POS on any tablet or do you need special hardware?

Dedicated POS hardware

Note

Does the system provider offer hardware to improve the check out expereince?

Self check out

Note

Can clients check out from their appointment themselves?

Note

Not by default. Available through Zenoti Go add-on.

Route payments to renters

Note

If you have booth renters in your business, can you route payments directly to them?

Cards on file

Note

Can you store credit card details and charge the customer later?

Integrated payments

Note

Does the software offer a first-party payment processing solution?

Client Data & Communication
SMS Notification
Email Notificition
Dedicated business SMS number

Note

Do you get a business phone number that your messages and notifications are send from?

Note

Available through ezConnect premium add-on for an additional fee

Two way SMS communication

Note

Clients can confirm appointments by replying to SMS

Note

Available through ezConnect premium add-on for an additional fee

Forms

Note

Can you create intake forms, store SOAP notes, and have clients sign your forms?

Client notes

Note

Can you store notes about clients on their profile?

Client files and images

Note

Can you store files and image on in the client’s profile?

Note

Can upload files to forms, but not client profiles

Inventory and Product Types
Inventory tracking

Note

Will the system keep track of stock levels, notify you when it’s time to re-order?

Purchase orders

Note

Can the system create automatic purchase orders for you?

Retail
Memberships
Packages
Gift cards
Team Support & Payroll
Fully integrated payroll

Note

Can you run payroll and cut paychecks directly through the software?

3rd party payroll integration

Note

Does the software allow you integrate and share data with a 3rd party payroll solution (e.g. Gusto, ADP, Paychex, etc)?

Payroll reports
Commission support

Note

Can you track and report on commission for service, retail, and other product types?

Multi-location support

Note

Does the system have specific support for businesses with multiple locations

Booth renter support

Note

Can the system help with rent collection, payments, and other booth renter management tasks.

Marketing Support
Email marketing
SMS marketing
Website builder
Client marketplace

Note

Does it offer a platform where potential clients can browse businesses using the software?

Add-on offers

Note

Can you promote service add-ons/upsells as part of the online booking flow?

Cloud & Mobile App Access
Full-featured mobile app

Note

Can you access all software features in the mobile app?

Web browser
iPad
iPhone
Android

Integrating with Other Platforms for Additional Features

Square Appointments makes it easy for you to connect to other business apps without complicating operations. Integrations with Square’s ecosystem of products help streamline everything from payments to inventory management.

Zenoti offers great flexibility for integrations through its open API. Developers can build customized two-way data workflows to external services that evolve alongside the business.

This is only advantageous for larger brands with the technical bandwidth to configure these connections. Most small or early-stage salons may find this overkill, and prefer Square’s library of simple integrations more than adequate for their operations.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti

These platforms both offer third-party integrations.

Square Appointments Zenoti
Custom integrations

Note

Does the platform allow you to create new integrations to support your business-specific needs?

Native integrations

Note

Built-in integrations that you can activate as needed

The Square App Marketplace offer a lot of integrations. Some popular examples are:

  • Quickbooks
  • Jotform
  • Wix
  • WooCommerce
  • Quickbooks
  • Xero
  • Smartkart
  • Wisely
  • Gantner
  • Gympass

Pricing

Square Appointments starts with a free plan for solo businesses and scales up transparent pricing tiers as teams expand.

Zenoti doesn’t offer traditional monthly plan pricing – they intentionally don’t list pricing anywhere on their site.

You have to submit your contact information via a demo request form on Zenoti’s website and wait to be contacted via phone by one of their sales representatives before you can find out a single detail about Zenoti’s pricing.

If low cost is important to you, then you will be better off with Square or another low-cost alternative on my list of the top salon on spa software for 2024.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti Pricing

Square is more attractively priced than Zenoti.

Square Appointments Zenoti
Average Price
$45 per month
$350 per month
Trial Options
Free base tier plan
No free trial
Minimum contract length
Cancel any time
12 months
Plans
  • Free: $0/month (only very essential features)
  • Plus: $29 per location (includes core features like client notifications and cancellation policy)
  • Premium: $69 per location (includes more sophisticated features like resource management).
  • Unlimited calendars on all plans

Zenoti doesn’t offer transparent pricing information on their website. These are the “recommended packages” they offered us as a potential salon client:

“Recommended Option #1” – $350 (per month, per location)

  • “Salon Core Package”
  • ezConnect (two-way SMS feature)
  • 7500 marketing emails
  • 1000 marketing texts

“Recommended Option #2” – $450 (per month, per location)

  • Everything in Option #1, plus
  • “Marketing Plus Package”
  • Custom-branded client-facing mobile app
  • ezRepute (review management feature)

“Recommended Option #3” – $500 (per month, per location)

  • Option #1, plus
  • Smartbot (AI powered chatbot feature)
Plans
  • Free: $0/month (only very essential features)
  • Plus: $29 per location (includes core features like client notifications and cancellation policy)
  • Premium: $69 per location (includes more sophisticated features like resource management).
  • Unlimited calendars on all plans

Zenoti doesn’t offer transparent pricing information on their website. These are the “recommended packages” they offered us as a potential salon client:

“Recommended Option #1” – $350 (per month, per location)

  • “Salon Core Package”
  • ezConnect (two-way SMS feature)
  • 7500 marketing emails
  • 1000 marketing texts

“Recommended Option #2” – $450 (per month, per location)

  • Everything in Option #1, plus
  • “Marketing Plus Package”
  • Custom-branded client-facing mobile app
  • ezRepute (review management feature)

“Recommended Option #3” – $500 (per month, per location)

  • Option #1, plus
  • Smartbot (AI powered chatbot feature)
Add-ons
  • Email marketing: $15/month
  • SMS marketing: $10/month
  • Square loyalty: $45/month
  • Square Payroll: $35 + $6 per user/month
  • ezConnect – In-App Two-Way Text Messaging: $29 – $169 per month per location
  • ezRepute – Reputation Management Suite: $189 per month per location
  • Smart Bot (Web / IVR): $150 – $400 per month per location
  • ezPulse – Employee Performance Tracking Suite: $49 per month per location
  • Credits (Email & SMS Marketing Campaigns): $180 – $1500
Add-ons
  • Email marketing: $15/month
  • SMS marketing: $10/month
  • Square loyalty: $45/month
  • Square Payroll: $35 + $6 per user/month
  • ezConnect – In-App Two-Way Text Messaging: $29 – $169 per month per location
  • ezRepute – Reputation Management Suite: $189 per month per location
  • Smart Bot (Web / IVR): $150 – $400 per month per location
  • ezPulse – Employee Performance Tracking Suite: $49 per month per location
  • Credits (Email & SMS Marketing Campaigns): $180 – $1500
Credit card fees
  • In-person: 2.6% + 10 cents (2.5% + 10 cents on paid plans)
  • Online (card): 2.9% + 30 cents
  • Manually Keyed-In: 3.5% + 15 cents

Credit card processing rates through Zenoti Payments:

  • Card Present
    • All cards except Amex: 2.45% + 10c
    • Amex:  2.95% + 10c
  • Card Not Present
    • All cards except Amex: 2.95% + 10c
    • Amex:  3.25% + $0.10
Credit card fees
  • In-person: 2.6% + 10 cents (2.5% + 10 cents on paid plans)
  • Online (card): 2.9% + 30 cents
  • Manually Keyed-In: 3.5% + 15 cents

Credit card processing rates through Zenoti Payments:

  • Card Present
    • All cards except Amex: 2.45% + 10c
    • Amex:  2.95% + 10c
  • Card Not Present
    • All cards except Amex: 2.95% + 10c
    • Amex:  3.25% + $0.10

What Do Users Think of These Platforms?

To read more about our experience testing these software suites, we invite you to explore our comprehensive reviews of Square Appointments and Zenoti.

However, if you’re interested in hearing firsthand accounts from everyday business customers, take a look at the user review scores below.

Square Appointments vs Zenoti

Let's compare scores for these systems on the major user review sites.

Square Appointments Zenoti
4.4
4.4
4.3
4.2
4.9
2.6
4.7
1.4

What Alternatives Should You Consider?

Square Appointments and Zenoti are both great choices for entirely different types of businesses.

If you’re still not sure if either is the right choice for your business, take a look at these alternatives and see if they’re a better fit for you:

Mangomint is the highest-rated software for salons and spas. If you have a team and you want the best customer service in the industry, I highly recommend you give them a try.

GlossGenius is a great option and my recommended alternative for independent professionals.

Mangomint vs GlossGenius

A quick comparison of the two Square and Zenoti alternatives.

Mangomint

GlossGenius

Overall score

Note

The overall score considers ease of use, customer service, features, user ratings, and cost. Scores are determined solely by our editorial team.

4.9
4.4

Average price

Note

Assumes you run a business with a mid-size team and have activated the more common add-ons. What you will pay will be lower or higher than this. See the separate section about pricing for full details.

$245 per month
$48 per month

Who is it for

The highest-rated software for salons & spas. Designed for businesses with a team who want the best design experience, smart automations, and the flexibility to integrate with other systems.
For independent professionals who want to start accepting payments and get appointment scheduling, a website and marketing up fast without compromising on the experience of their brand

Ease of use

5
5

Customer Service

5
3

Countries

U.S. and Canada

U.S.

Key features

  • Modern, intuitive, and easy to use
  • Smart automations that help cut down on time spent managing business operations
  • Open data ownership and no contracts (you’re not locked into anything)
  • Can integrate with any other platform who allows for integrations
  • Highest-rated customer service on the market
  • Premium beauty-inspired interface design
  • Professional-looking website in just a few clicks
  • Integrated payment and card reader with customizable design
  • Affordable, transparent, flat fee pricing

Conclusion

I hope this comparison was helpful in your search for the right salon and spa software for your business!

For more great software alternatives, please read my list of the best salon and spa software of 2024.

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