Every dental practice is juggling hundreds of tasks each day. Between managing new patients, scheduling appointments, maintaining paperwork, answering patient questions, and dealing with insurance – we know your to-do list is never ending.
To make the most of your time, you’ve probably turned to a variety of software platforms that promise to ease your burden and streamline your life. In this blog post we’re covering three of the most common types of small business software that dental practices use. First up, patient engagement software.
What it Does: Patient or customer engagement software empowers you to stay connected with your patients over multiple means of communication. It often includes a web dashboard that funnels all your communication channels to one inbox. It sometimes offers a ticketing system or a way to manage workflows with your own internal team.
How it Helps the Practice: Customer engagement tools help you stay tapped in to your patients, aware of any issues, and highly responsive. It’s a great way to avoid ever missing a patient message and making sure you keep your patients front and center.
How it Helps Patients: Like the name implies, these platforms make your practice more accessible to patients. It means a patient can reach out via text message or webchat instead of waiting on the phone. Often, practices that use patient engagement software will conduct surveys to check in on satisfaction and make adjustments quickly if they notice problems.
What it Does: Reputation management is all about boosting your online visibility and making sure you can show off your happy patients, with a goal of attracting new prospects. Often the biggest benefit is that this software can send out review or survey invitation text messages to patients after an appointment.
How it Helps the Practice: By automating the review process, you quickly increase your number of reviews, which helps your practice become more visible online. As you rise in the search rankings, more prospects will find you and your practice will grow. You’ll also stay tapped in to patient insights about your practice that you can use to improve.
How it Helps Patients: Patients turn to Google when looking for a new provider and 87% of searchers will look at your reviews first (Forbes). By making sure you have a strong online presence, you give your prospects a chance to find you and decide if they’re going to make an appointment. This software also gives your current patients a voice to express any concerns and get a quick response.
What it Does: Practice management software is behind much of the administrative work at most small and medium-sized practices. It manages daily operations, financial functions, patient tracking, and appointment scheduling.
How it Helps the Practice: One of the biggest benefits is the time you save by streamlining your operations. It can also be a big help for budgets by keeping things organized and making sure schedules and appointment reminders run smoothly. The estimated annual loss from missed medical appointments is $150 billion per year, and a good scheduling software can help (Zippia).
How it Helps Patients: When everything at your practice is running smoothly behind the scenes, patients will feel the difference. It translates to office visits that start on time, paperwork that gets submitted to insurance correctly, and plenty of available appointments when a patient calls to schedule.
Since you probably want to avoid toggling back and forth between different systems all day, one big green flag to look for in software is that it offers solid integrations. That way, you can use complementary systems that can pull data back and forth when needed and still ultimately make your life easier.
There are also some cases where one platform can fulfill multiple needs. For example, Swell is a customer experience platform that provides every tool you need to get and keep new patients – meaning it also includes reputation management and integrates seamlessly with your practice management software.
Learn how Swell can help you manage your patient experience and supercharge your online presence. Book a Swell walk-through.