If you want to run a successful dental practice, improving your patient retention rate is critical. You have to invest time and money to bring new people through your doors if you have other dentists in your area. You get a lot more for each patient you earn when you find ways to keep them coming back, and improving your patient retention rate is not as hard as it might seem on the surface.
Get to Know Your Patients
Too many patients know the feeling; they walk into the office and speak with a disinterested receptionist before sitting in the waiting room for 20 or 30 minutes. When they go to the dentist’s office for treatment, the dentist spends little time with them and even has trouble remembering their names.
Instead of following that path, make an effort to know and remember each patient who walks through your doors. Write down their names and any conversations they bring up, and always greet them with a warm smile.
Consider Your Unique Selling Point
Unless you make yourself stand out from the herd, people have little reason to choose you. Finding your unique selling point is vital to your ongoing success. Consider the most common ways to stand out:
- Be the First to Offer a New Treatment
- Be the Best Dentist in Your Area
- Be the Cheapest Dentist in Your area
If you try being the cheapest, you could get stuck in a race to the bottom. Unless you have access to the most recent dental technology, strive to be the best.
Stay in Touch
A lot of patients will walk away because they forget about you or their next appointment. You can increase patient retention by asking people to join a mailing list. To get the most from this approach, send weekly or monthly emails with informative or entertaining facts related to the dental industry. Also, you can get a quick burst of visits by sending limited discounts for routine dental exams.
Go the Extra Mile and Be Memorable
Going the extra mile is one of the most powerful ways to get people to remember you and come back. Getting people to remember is not even that hard, and you can do it by offering a free bottle of water or having a play area for children while they wait. Consider what would impress you if you were at a dentist appointment, and give that to your patients. Think about how you can make your dental office memorable for patients. Is the atmosphere? The people? Is unique furniture? Is it something as simple as the comfort of your dental chair or dental headrest? Find ways to make your office a memorable place and patients will keep coming back.
Increase Patient Retention for a Better Business
Increasing your patient retention rate can improve your bottom line more than you would think. Since you dedicate energy, effort and time to each patient you earn, keeping your patients around for as long as possible is critical. The tips from this guide point you down the right path, but you must experiment and make small changes to see what approach works the best for each situation.
Even if you lose a few people during your learning curve, the improvements you make over the long run are more than worth it. Track your progress by comparing the number of people who seek one treatment to the number of people who come back more than once. As long as you remain focused on your goal, you won’t have trouble getting the results for which you have been hoping.