Acquiring new patients for your dental practice is much harder today than it was ten years ago.
1. The number of active dentists is outgrowing the population (see chart).
2. Dentists are retiring at a later age and the number of students graduating from dental school is growing each year
3. New online marketing tactics such as SEO changes and social media strategies are being introduced each year.
So, we thought, what better way to launch our blog than to give you five easy ways to attract and acquire new patients. Hope you enjoy.
1. Have a Clean Website That Converts
Think of your website as a dental office, but online. Imagine walking into a dental office and seeing magazines are strewn everywhere, no clear direction to the front desk, and old, worn out furniture. Not a great look. A poorly designed website can have the same effect. Unfortunately, this is the case for many dental websites today.
Your website needs to be clean, simple, and easy to navigate. Visitors should be able to quickly find what they need, and the most important things should be the easiest to find.
90% of new patients will look you up and compare you to your competition before making a decision. Your website is often the first impression a new patient has of your practice, be sure it is a positive one.
2. Set up Online Scheduling
Here’s a tip, don’t use your contact forms as an online scheduler. Patients today are mobile and time-strapped. They want answers when and where they want them and lack the patience to wait. If they can’t get through to your office right away, they’re calling the next office. By giving patients visibility into your schedule, you allow new patients to book right then and there, without the need to visit your competition. Additionally, new patients are often searching for a dentist during times when your office is closed. By offering online scheduling, patients can schedule during a time that is convenient for them—weekends, holidays or after hours.
3. Generate Lots of Positive Reviews, Frequently
Imagine you’re walking down a street looking for a restaurant. You see two restaurants side by side, one has a patio full of customers that seem to be enjoying themselves and the other is quiet and empty. You’re more likely to eat at the restaurant that’s full. Now, more than ever, customers are savvy and want to see credibility and proof. Poor online reviews, or even too few online reviews, will hurt your chances of attracting new patients. What’s the best way to generate reviews? Simple. Ask for them. By having your team get into the routine of asking for reviews, you not only improve your chances of generating positive ones, but you’ll also notice a renewed commitment from your team to provide quality service.
The knowledge that patients may leave a review at the end of their visit, is a strong incentive for your staff to go out of their way to make the patient visit enjoyable. Improving reviews can also be a fun monthly goal. Providing a prize (or just bragging rights) for generating reviews is a great way to get started and quickly boost patient satisfaction and loyalty.
4. Pick up your Phone
On average, less than 70% of phone calls are picked up at a dental practice. Every missed call could be a potential new patient. One way to avoid this is to have a reliable Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system or use a service that will schedule appointments on your behalf when you are unavailable. Your missed call rate should be less than 5%. Ensure you’re tracking these metrics so that you can hold your team accountable.
5. Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Referrals
Did you know that after a positive experience, 83% of customers would be happy to provide a referral? As with reviews, all you need to do to capitalize on this is to ask. Go ahead, be bold! Ask for a referral. After all, if they had a great experience, why wouldn’t they want to recommend you to a family member or close friend?
If your practice is looking to acquire new patients, CareCru’s Donna can help you with all 5 of these tips and more.
Schedule a demo today to see how Donna can help your practice!