Gazelle Smart Routes use traffic information provided by Google Maps to calculate the average traffic you will experience on a given route. When "Traffic" is enabled, Gazelle will add time to your routes at certain times of the day.
How to Turn this Feature On
Click Here for step by step instructions.
Estimating traffic for a specific time/day of the year.
Google's real-time traffic notifications are familiar to anyone using Google Maps as a navigation tool. Goolge Maps now has enough data to predict just how much traffic a given route will experience on a certain day of the year. They also make this information available to companies like Gazelle who license their Maps product.
How does it work?
Google traffic predictions estimate the average traffic that can be expected along a future route, such as what a route will probably look like in Los Angeles on next Oct 2, from 9:00-9:50am local time.
Will I see the traffic data on the Smart Routes
Yes and No. When traffic is enabled Gazelle will take this into account behind the scenes and adding extra time to each of your routes at certain times of the day. The only difference between having this feature on/off is which Google data set we use to calculate the estimated drive time for a given route.
Note: If you click on a route that has more than a 10% delay, we will display this information on the booking page. If a midday route is available that has less traffic we will display info so you can make an informed decision.
How will this affect my scheduling?
Example: Middle of Day
Turning "Traffic" on will cause Gazelle to penalize appointments that require a drive time during a congested time of day. In this scenario appointments in the middle of your day will be ranked better than appointments during rush hour.
Example: Friday Afternoon
Think about two different "Friday Afternoon" appointments. Typically, the Friday traffic before a major holiday is much worse earlier in the day because people take off work early as they attempt to get out of town. These two days could theoretically have a different route calculation depending on the average traffic patterns for that day of the year.
Example: Rush Hour
If the only appointments you have available are during "Rush Hour", and the following week you have a ton of mid-day openings; you might see the Smart Routes recommend your mid-day appointment next week above the rush hour appointments from this week. It just depends on how bad your rush hour traffic is on each day.
Gazelle Traffic will also help with Bottle Neck areas of your city by booking appointments in such a way as to avoid these location and/or times of day. For example, long-standing construction zones, border crossings, bridges, and other high congestion areas will be a variable in the Smart Route's calculations.
Do I need to adjust my service area?
Possibly. Your service area is a radius around a certain address. When you (or a client) uses the Smart Scheduler Gazelle finds all possible routes and flags any that are outside of your desired travel radius. Self-Scheduling clients do not see flagged routes, but you do when you use Smart Routes to book an appointment.
In the case of clients on the far edges of your service area, the likely result will be that the system omits routes that have heavy traffic and favors routes in the middle of the day when traffic is less intense. This may result in clients futher away being guided towards "open days" over the next few weeks, rather than days with openings that require sitting in a lot of traffic.
For example, assume you have a 60-minute travel radius and the system finds 4 routes that are usually 55 minutes without traffic. However, with traffic 3 of the 4 routes each average 65 minutes. In this case, the system will allow the client to self-schedule only the one route that fell under your 60-minute rule. But if you are using the Smart Routes to book the appointment it will display all 4 routes to you with notices for the other 3 routes that are outside your normal radius. It is important to remember, the system is looking at each route, not just the client's address.