Patients are the lifeblood of any medical practice, and a dental clinic is no different. To stay profitable and have the resources you need to further develop your practice, you need ample foot traffic regularly. But how can you increase the number of patients who choose your dental clinic over your competition? Read on for several tips that will help you out.
Be present online
As a practising dentist, your online presence might not be on the top of your priority list. However, when it comes to your dental clinic, being visible online can make a huge difference in the traffic you get. Nowadays, most people do at least a quick Google search before making any kind of decision. Needless to say, a profile on Google My Business and any other online directory will be necessary for local searches.
You also need to create a solid website. A modern, professional-looking website that has all the information a prospective patient might need will present you in the best light possible. Make sure your website is well-organized and add real photos of your staff. You can also dab into content marketing and write blog posts that will further prove your expertise and credibility while also serving as great resources for your visitors. Even if you already have a website, consider whether there is room for improvement. For instance, optimizing it for mobile-friendliness is paramount, since most people use their smartphones to look up information.
In addition to your website, it’s also a good idea to be present on social media. Since some social media sites function as search engines in themselves, having an updated profile for your clinic will increase traffic to your website. Social media is also a profitable way to stay in touch with your patients.
Improve the patient flow
A key thing to think about when you want to grow your patient base is patient flow. It refers to how patients move through your clinic, from the moment they schedule their appointment to the moment they leave. If you manage to create a seamless flow, patient satisfaction will increase, and you can expect them to come back and refer you to their friends and acquaintances. There are several things you can do to improve your flow and make your practice more efficient in this regard.
Firstly, making sure that your clinic is approachable (that there is enough parking space) and your signage is clear will save your patients some frustration. Secondly, you should work on your scheduling. While you might want to squeeze in as many appointments as possible, over scheduling will result in long waiting times and dissatisfaction from your patients. It might take some time to fine-tune your scheduling approach, but it’s recommended to tackle this issue. It’s a good idea to introduce virtual visits to save time on consultations when it’s possible.
Create a positive experience
To increase your patients in the long term, you have to focus a lot on satisfaction, as we already mentioned. Visiting a dental clinic is rarely something that people enjoy doing. So making sure that their visits are as pleasant and stress-free as possible is of crucial importance. Your staff’s attitude is something that will greatly affect how your patients feel at your clinic.
Train your staff to always exude a friendly atmosphere. But beyond that, it’s also extremely important to teach your staff well so that they are knowledgeable about the procedures and prices you offer and can answer questions patients might have. If they cannot do that, it can easily paint your clinic as unprofessional.
Update your practice
You want to make a great first impression on patients as they step into your clinic. Needless to say, unless everything looks polished, they might not feel like they are in good hands. Not only is it imperative that your interior looks modern and clean, but it’s also a good idea to think about upgrades when it comes to your equipment. While it is certainly an investment, looking into dental fit-out solutions can only benefit your practice.
Besides keeping up with the advances in the dental field, it’s also a good idea to keep your mind open to tech improvements. Since most people nowadays lead a life filled with technology, accommodating to their habits by introducing small changes to your clinic will appeal to younger patients. Take, for instance, allowing them to book their appointments through your website instead of having to phone in.
Continue developing your skills
If you want your clinic to keep developing and drawing in more and more visitors, you also need to work on developing yourself. One should never stop learning, so you can consider furthering your skills by learning about new procedures and introducing some of them to your clinic. After all, patients nowadays might be looking for modern solutions to their problems, and if you are the one who offers them, they might be compelled to choose your clinic. Even just being up-to-date with all of the trends in the different branches of dentistry will give you a head start, but you may even be able to expand your clinic with time.
Writing about yourself on your website is important, but what will be even more convincing for your prospective patients to choose you is feedback from fellow patients. Therefore, it is a good idea to encourage online patient reviews. If they had a positive experience, they will probably happily write a few words that will be very valuable for your future. You can do this in several ways, one of which is sending out follow-up emails that will prompt them to share their thoughts. You can also simply create a survey that will streamline the process for them. You can later share these reviews on social media to reach even more people.
Nurturing your relationship with your patients and making sure they are comfortable and satisfied are the pillars of growing your dental clinic. Add to this making sure that you get enough exposure and your efforts do not go unnoticed, and you will be on the right path to success.