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Synchronize with other calendars

Please note that the features described on this page are only available to subscribers. You can try them out for a week by clicking the button “Start free trial” on the “Synchronization” page.

SuperSaaS offers different ways to connect your appointment schedules to other online calendar programs. You can either let the availability of a schedule depend on a Google Calendar or you can publish appointment information from your schedules to a calendar program such as Outlook on your computer or a phone.

Let your SuperSaaS availability depend on a Google Calendar
Show your SuperSaaS bookings in an external calendar

Let your SuperSaaS availability depend on your personal calendar

SuperSaaS is able to connect directly to Google Calendar and use its free/busy information to determine your availability in SuperSaaS. If you want to use the free/busy information from a program such as Outlook you would need to set up a sync from Outlook to Google Calendar first.

Google Calendar

When you link a Google Calendar to a SuperSaaS schedule, appointments in your Google calendar will show up as unavailable periods on your SuperSaaS schedule. This way, customers can only book when both your personal calendar and your general opening hours allow them to. Only the free/busy information will be synchronized, so your customers will not see any of the details from your personal appointments. If you would rather publish your SuperSaaS schedule to Google Calendar then you can follow this tutorial.

Using this type of Google synchronization can also be useful if you want to define complex opening hours. You can create a complex pattern of repeating appointments in Google Calendar that leave your desired opening hours available.

These are the steps needed to set up synchronization:

  1. In your Google calendar, click on the name of the calendar you would like to synchronize and click on the dropdown arrow that appears.
  2. Choose Share this calendar
    Click on share
  3. Select Make this calendar public and Share only my free busy information.
  4. Click on Calendar details and copy the calendar ID that shows under Calendar Address, as shown below. If you have only one Google Calendar, the ID is probably equal to your email address. Google Calendar ID
  5. On your SuperSaaS dashboard, navigate to Supervise > Synchronize. Here you can now fill out the calendar ID. The software will verify the connection upon clicking Save changes and a message at the top of the screen will indicate whether the connection was established successfully.

Once this is set up, the SuperSaaS system will regularly check your Google Calendar for updates. The frequency with which the availability information from Google calendar is updated depends on how often your schedule is accessed. Whenever someone uses your schedule, the system evaluates whether its copy of your information is older than 15 minutes and if it is it will update the information. This update process can take a few seconds and it may take a second page refresh for the updated information to display. This should not be a problem for users, since they always use more than one page before they can make a booking. Updates are retrieved up to 5 months into the future, so you may want to ensure your users cannot book further in advance.

If you want to put an appointment in your Google calendar that you don’t want to show up as unavailable time in SuperSaaS, you can click Edit event details in Google Calendar and select the option Show me as: Available. If you want to still be able to make appointments yourself during times indicated as busy on your Google calendar, then check the Allow the administrator to ignore time constraints option on the opening hours tab.

Trouble shooting

Ensure the time zone is set correctly, both in Google Calendar and in SuperSaaS. Time zones do not have to be the same on both calendars, but times will be translated as appropriate if the time zones differ, so you should make sure that such a translation happens intentionally.

Using availability in Outlook in SuperSaaS

To let your SuperSaaS availability depend on your Outlook calendar, you will need a third-party sync program to establish a sync between Outlook and Google Calendar first. Google Calendar is free to use and easy to set up. So you do not need to actively use Google Calendar to manage your schedule, you can simply use it as a bridge between Outlook and SuperSaaS.

There are several sync programs available:

You only need to sync the Outlook calendar with Google, there is no need to sync any contacts and tasks. Via the advanced settings you can set the sync frequency, which you can set to every 5 minutes or even less.

After you’ve set up the sync between Outlook and your Google Calendar, set up the sync between SuperSaaS and Google as described above. Once the sync program has completed the initial sync, busy times from Outlook will be blocked on your SuperSaaS schedule.

Publish a SuperSaaS Schedule to another calendar program

You can publish your schedule to any calendar program that can subscribe to an industry standard iCal feed, such as Microsoft Outlook, Apple’s iCalendar or Google Calendar. The iCal link is one way; when you change something in your SuperSaaS schedule, it will be reflected in, for example, your Outlook calendar after it has synchronized. But the appointments cannot be edited in Outlook. You can also use the webcal link to show your bookings on the calendar of your mobile phone. The mobile version of our website (m.supersaas.com) is however generally a better choice as it lets you edit appointments too.

These are the steps needed to set up synchronization:

  1. To set up a subscription, first find out the “webcal” link to your SuperSaaS schedule. You can find this link via the settings Supervise > Synchronize
  2. If you use Google Calendar, then you would need to go to the main calendar view and click on the dropdown arrow next to Other calendars.
  3. You can now select Add by URL and add the webcal link.
Choose Add by URL Insert address
Note that the frequency with which Google updates the information is not under our control and can take several hours. Updates to Microsoft Outlook should take about 15 minutes when default settings are used.

On a subscribed calendar, the data is kept separate from the other appointments on your calendar; on a Google Calendar this is the other calendars section. It is not actually merged, so you can easily delete it again without affecting your other appointments.

If you want to merge the appointments from your SuperSaaS calendar with those of your calendar program, then you can download them via Supervise > Download and upload them into your calendar program. In that case, however, the appointments can no longer be automatically updated. A middle ground is to have the SuperSaaS system automatically send you confirmation emails with a small iCal attachment each time an appointment gets made. This allows you to add the appointments to your calendar with one click. You can add an iCal attachment by including the magic word $ical to your email confirmations.

The frequency with which the data is updated depends on the calendar program used, not SuperSaaS. The iCal protocol is quite inefficient as it requires the transfer of all calendar data for each update. This makes that most calendar programs choose not to update too frequently. Also, the iCal protocol only allows for a limited number of data fields to be sent across. This means that none of the custom fields you have defined in SuperSaaS will be transferred.

If you are a programmer, you can avoid these limitations by using the SuperSaaS API. This is more efficient and provides all relevant data fields, but requires the technical proficiency to build an interface.

The iCal interface does not provide authorization measures. So, if you are concerned people might find out your webcal link and use it without your knowledge, you can block it. On the Configure > Access tab, near the bottom of the screen you can select Block access with calendar programs. After selecting this option synchronization via iCal will be disabled.