December 9, 2019
by Oral Health
Your front desk staff are the first point of contact with your practice for many patients, so it makes sense they have such an influence over first impressions. Make sure you’re hiring friendly administrative staff who provide the most positive experience for your patients, whether it’s over the phone or an in-person visit.
Despite over half of dentists believing patient’s demands for dental technologies is too high, 39% of patients remain unaware of any dental technologies. However, having a dentist who owns and can explain these technologies is still seen as important. Take the time to answer your patient’s questions and educate them on the technology you’re using to help gain trust with your patients.
Patients want to stay loyal to their current dentist and often do, however they will leave if unsatisfied with you or your dental team. Take the time to ensure you are creating relationships with all your patients to increase the happiness of your patients and success of practice. Other important factors to staying at a practice include fees, location, and flexibility of appointments.
Nearly ¾ of patients first contact a dental practice by phone and returning patients also trust this method. Make sure you are using communication tools such as a phone to your advantage. All patients have different preferences of communication based on age, occupation, etc. so ask patients what their preferred method is. Find more ways to communicate besides confirming appointments such as following up after major treatments
First impressions matter and it’s important to keep in mind where patients will be having their first impressions of your practice. For instance, the number one factor that makes a patient’s first impression is the cleanliness of your office, so keep it clean! Or with 41% of patients finding a dentist through search engines, your website will be their first impression so make it count.
While word of mouth continues to be a popular way patients find a dentist, there’s a digital alternative that needs your attention: online reviews. Having a platform for online reviews allows you to see what your patients are saying about you and to take control of how you’re perceived by responding.
The reasons for patients denying treatment could include anything from dental anxiety to lack of insurance, however patients are still aware of how important dental treatments are. To ensure your patients are accepting treatment, help them understand why they need the treatment and what benefits it will have. Nearly 2/3 patients would be influenced to accept treatment if educational materials were available in the reception area.
Most patients have dental insurance and are willing to use it. Make sure they know how by helping them utilize the coverage they receive and watch how their trust in you will grow.
With more patients researching your practice online before scheduling an appointment, having a social media presence is beneficial for finding new patients but even more so for engaging with your existing patients. Choose your platforms and commit time to posting useful resources or office updates to stay at the forefront of your patients feeds and minds!
Most patients admit to location influencing the dentist they choose. With no control over when patients’ location changes, you can control the relationship you form with them to create patient loyalty. Be sure to accommodate their busy schedule by being flexible and keep good chairside manner to make sure they are enjoying their time at your practice even if they do not enjoy the commute to get there.
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