How to Grow Your Orthodontic Practice
To grow your orthodontic practice, you’ll want to take a few important steps to ensure you’re on the right path. Although it might seem like you don’t need to put too much thought into growing your orthodontic practice, it pays to have a plan in place instead of flying by the seat of your pants. With some careful planning, you’ll be able to take the appropriate actions towards growing your business at the right time. Otherwise, you could end up hurting your business with random actions or making your business struggle with too much growth at once for your staff to handle. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing, so you should be careful what you wish to happen.
As you grow your orthodontic practice, you’ll also want to grow your skills and team. If you have a small team, the first step to growing your business may be hiring more qualified professionals to tackle all aspects of the business. From the administrative side of the business to dental and orthodontic techs, your business will need more manpower as you add on more services or increase the number of clients you can handle in a month or quarter.
Review Your Safety Practices
To effectively grow your orthodontic practice, you should review the health and safety practice standards for your industry regarding medical waste disposal and other key concerns. If you fail to do this, you may lose out on potential customers and even have to shutter your practice’s doors if you violate health and safety regulations. To avoid the worst-case scenario, it’s best to try to follow health and safety practices in orthodontics and stay up to date on the latest research in the industry.
According to the National Library of Medicine, potentially hazardous factors relate to the general practice setting in several ways, including specific materials and tools that cause exposure to vision and hearing risks; chemical substances with known allergenic, toxic, or irritating results; higher microbial counts and silica particles of the aerosols produced during debonding; ergonomic considerations that could impact the provider’s musculoskeletal system; and psychological stress with proven unwanted sequelae. It’s important to include the identification and elimination of these risk factors in a standard practice management program as a key part of orthodontic education. Professional organizations can also help to spread knowledge about potential hazards and methods to deal with them. In short, taking health and safety seriously increases the quality of your business and the potential for growth.
Remodel Your Waiting Area
As you grow your orthodontic practice, you should give your waiting area a makeover. From calling a blind company to give your waiting area some new shades to asking the electrical company to check your wires to ensure that they can handle new types of lighting, you should have a whole roster of contractors that you can call at your fingertips for the renovation projects. Before you begin to remodel your waiting area, you’ll want to think about what types of additions you’d like to make to the waiting room.
Sometimes, it can help customers feel at home and comfortable if you add distractions to your waiting room. For many clients, the vibe of the waiting room and the items they can use for distraction could make or break their impression of your business. According to Clear Touch, it’s important to consider including distractions and tasks for your customers when you’re designing your waiting room. You can’t just go with outdated magazines or soap opera reruns these days because customers expect more from their experience. You can try designing your waiting room around various different activities or stations to offer customers more control over their waiting experience. Some customers may want to get a cup of coffee while others might need to charge their electronic devices and get some work done at a nice technology station. Designing a waiting room that can accommodate different kinds of patients and different scenarios will greatly increase their satisfaction. When you have these items available for customers to use, they will be more likely to recommend your office to other customers and help it flourish.
Upgrade Your Equipment
To grow your orthodontic practice, you should bring your equipment up to modern standards. From compressors to the chairs where your clients sit, every piece of equipment in the office should be safe and updated. If the idea of replacing equipment hurts your wallet, you can consider using used or refurbished equipment as long as you purchase it in a safe way. According to Orthodontics Products, a company that specializes in the particular equipment you’re looking for likely has a reputation that’s easy to learn about, and you can feel confident that they’ll easily coordinate the equipment delivery and installation.
The riskiest way to buy equipment is through online e-commerce sites such as Craigslist and eBay because there is really no way to verify the reputation of the seller or the condition of the product. Buying from another orthodontist directly also presents major complications, such as transporting the equipment safely and installing it properly. There are plenty of horror stories involving purchases gone wrong where the equipment was damaged during shipping. Some retailers may be safer than others to use, so you could ask other professionals in your industry to let you know what they recommend as a dealer for used or refurbished items for an orthodontics business.
Keep Your Space Spotless
To grow your orthodontic practice, you’ll want to hire drain cleaning professionals to unclog the drains if they are giving you trouble. Clogged drains can affect your orthodontic business because they can lead to flooding. They can also make it challenging for you to conduct the processes of your business if you can’t dispose of liquids and other substances.
On top of maintaining the pipes and drains, you should give your business a good cleaning if you want it to excel. Thankfully, you don’t have to do all the cleaning yourself. If you have the space in your budget, you can call in the commercial cleaners to tackle the job. They’ll be able to make sure that your office is clean to the degree that it needs to be as a customer-facing business that serves the general public. If you hire a team of commercial cleaners who have experience cleaning dental offices and orthodontic offices, you may get ahead of the game. After all, they’ll have experience in cleaning a dental office so they’ll know what cleaning supplies they should bring and what techniques they should use to make your place sparkle from the waiting room to the orthodontic chairs and beyond.
Renovate Your Bathrooms
While this might seem unrelated to your goal to grow your orthodontic practice, it pays to have a restroom that people want to use. If your bathrooms are dirty or outdated in your orthodontic practice, it can give the impression that other aspects of your commercial plumbing services are equally unusable. It can also make clients unlikely to refer other potential clients to your business since they may have a negative impression of your orthodontics practice based on their experience with your bathroom and other facilities. Although the bathroom might seem like it’s not a big deal, everything is a big deal in pleasing the customers in an orthodontics practice. While you might wonder how renovating your bathrooms could lead to more business, it’s all about maintaining a professional appearance and instilling confidence in your customer base that your business takes the little details seriously.
When you’re renovating your entire practice, you should consider making any toilet repair that you’ve been putting off a priority. Since you’ll already have to make calls to contractors and take money out of your business to invest in the renovations, it pays to choose to prioritize the most practical renovations before you move on to more cosmetic ones. Practical things like fixing broken toilets and resolving leaking sinks will make it so that your renovations aren’t just putting a bandaid on the issue or dressing up your practice to look better than what it is.
Offer Affordable Pricing
To grow your orthodontic practice, you should make your services affordable by accepting major insurance plans in the area. If you only accept cash or credit payments, you may miss out on a lot of potential patients who would prefer to pay through insurance. By keeping your prices competitive, you’ll attract more business to your orthodontic practice from providers who are maintaining high prices for their services that are outside of the budget of most of the residents in your area. If you want to stay in business, you should think about how low you can go with your prices before it starts to hurt your bottom line.
Although it’s important to appeal to customers with all kinds of budgets and incomes, you should still think about how much it costs for you to run your business when you’re setting your prices. If you price your business so low that it puts you out of business, you won’t be able to enjoy any kind of growth for it. You also may end up giving the impression that your services are too good to be true if you price them too low. Some customers may worry that they’ll “get what they pay for” if they go for your services when they’re priced so much lower than the average in your area. By pricing your services slightly below average, you won’t lose confidence in your customers but you will have the potential to attract new customers who have a tighter budget.
Repair Your Parking Lot
As you pursue your goal to grow your orthodontic practice, you should think about how your parking lot sign and other aspects of your parking lot are impacting client satisfaction. Some clients might not appreciate parking at your lot if it has a lot of potholes or if the asphalt needs to be replaced. Your parking lot is like the first impression that your business gives to customers who visit it. When the parking lot doesn’t look good, it may make clients think that you don’t maintain your facilities. For an orthodontics business, this can erode trust in the quality and even safety of your business. To avoid that kind of doubt in your customers, you should maintain your parking lot. Patch up any areas that may be too rough for vehicles to access. Additionally, during the winter, make sure to prepare your parking lot for precipitation like snow and sleet by laying down salt and following the recommendations of your local municipality. Hire plowing services often so your parking lot is accessible during snowy or other wintery weather conditions. This will make it so that customers won’t have to cancel their appointments for preventable reasons like not being able to find parking or park safely.
Make a Marketing Plan
According to Dandy, regarding online marketing, Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a form of paid digital marketing and it works well for first-time campaigns since you only pay for ads when they’re clicked on. The volume of consumer data that platforms like Google and Meta have collected has made it easier today than in the past to share your content with people who will click on it. Running ads on YouTube, Google, Facebook, or Instagram is another way to help you reach plenty of possible patients at a relatively low cost.
To grow your orthodontic practice, follow our tips above. While they are by no means conclusive or exhaustive, they will give you a launching point to figure out how you want to build your business from the ground up or bring in more clients than what you currently have. They can also give you a starting place for branching out into the orthodontics industry if the business currently doesn’t provide those services. Although expanding a business of any kind takes hard work and dedication, it will ultimately be worth it when you can sit back and enjoy the fruits of your efforts. Also, your team will be proud to be part of a growing orthodontic business.