InSight

How Dentists Can Increase Revenue

Financial Planning Dentist

There is a wall street mantra, “you can’t cut your way to growth” and that is as true for your dental practice as it is for any publicly traded company. Focusing on increasing revenue is still your best bet for expanding the bottom line. For most dentists, the best way to profit is to increase revenue and put an emphasis on effort that allows you to expand the top line. We review some of the steps other dentists have taken to increase bandwidth, reach, diversity and scale your income.

By Kevin T. Taylor, AIF®

Increase your client acquisition rate

Increase Dentist Revenue

Of surveyed dentists the acquisition rate ranged between 20% to 30%. The average acceptance was 24%. This means that almost eight out of ten prospects you meet with each month are finding treatments recommended by you at a different office, or not at all. Expanding that case acceptance rate to even 50% would increase revenue twofold for the dental office on the same number of prospects. How do you get there? By making two changes to the way you approach patient acquisition. 

ProcessFor our dentistry clients the client acquisition is a documented sequence of events that every prospect goes through. The focus on this pattern becomes repeatable and helps both to determine where prospects exit the sequins and gets your whole team into an organized way of doing business. But it’s key to also remember that people will do business based solely on the way they feel about a person, place, idea etc. So your process should be centered around a way a prospect feels about a decision at every step of the way. The process you implement should reflect that customer centricity and by thinking about every element of what the client goes through and the experience you are hoping to convey. 

Teaming Up – Use the case presentation moment as a “team event.” Take this step away from solely being the doctor’s responsibility, and give elements of the presentation to office staff beyond yourself. This change pays dividends in both the way a client feels about their relationship with the office, and offloads some of the management of the engagement onto other people in the office. The presentation of your case cannot be based upon teaching the patient dentistry, that won’t move the needle for patients who decide to do dental treatment based on the way they feel about your team and you, not just the education you provide.

Expand your capacity to Increase Revenue

increase revenue dental practice

The amount of time you can commit to performing the technical aspect of dentistry the more capacity for revenue you will have. This shouldn’t be a revolutionary concept. Our clients focus on increasing revenue need to focus on total capacity by adding additional treatment space, hiring more staff, or adding another dentist or hygienist to the practice. These are all pretty straight forward, so to go a step further they also increase capacity to do more dentistry by increasing their efficiency.  How often are you rescheduling for hygiene? A General Practice should be 80% +.  Are you hygienists doing the rescheduling?  If not, they should be.  Don’t miss out on easy opportunities and don’t assume people are or aren’t doing something. Some other successful examples are setting up a routine for the rooms they visit, setting timelines, scheduling next visits, offloading the sterilization process, and gaining speed on dental procedures through organization. The summation of all these activities allows the dentist to get through more lucrative work, more quickly.

Expand your capacity outside your practice – Sources of revenue are not limited to your professional capacity to earn, your profession should be viewed as a platform for generating income. Our dental professionals use their practice income to seed revenue generating activities in and out of the office. They find real estate, financing, medical lending, owning other practices, and other business opportunities to expand their network of income and leverage their profession and their income. Most dentists have at least one source of income beyond the office that they rely on either personally or professional. 

Expanding the menu of procedures up market

increase revenue dentistVeneers, implants, endodontics, and crown and bridge are examples of procedures that for our clients have had a higher profit margin and ultimately increase revenue. Offering these types of procedures expands the range you can bring to clients, and given their margin is a more effective use of time that can raise the top line. An important consideration is that the sheer size of the fee isn’t necessarily indicative that it‘s more profitable for the practice. Keeping time, and capacity in mind is the origin of scale when stretching up market. 

Expand your market – You can increase the number of prospects you can review treatment plans with by doing more internal and external marketing. But our clients have noted that not all marketing is the same. Word of mouth is still the most popular, but often the hardest to manage and grow. While a concerted effort in online and traditional marketing can be costly and outside the skill set of many dentists. Regardless of the method, what is most important is focusing on ROI and scale, and likely bringing in resources to assist in this field.  

It can be difficult to determine what strategy will have the greatest effect for your practice, and it is likely a combination of some or all of the above. Our Certified Financial Planners who specialize in dentistry can help contextualize what your current efficiency metrics look like, benchmark them with other practices, and help you build a platform for generating wealth and cash flow for yourself and your practice. 

Increase Revenue by expanding your total market

You can increase the number of prospects you can review treatment plans with by doing more internal and external marketing. But our clients have noted that not all marketing is the same when it come to an increase revenue objective. Word of mouth is still the most popular, but often the hardest to manage and grow. While a concerted effort in online and traditional marketing can be costly and outside the skill set of many dentists. Regardless of the method, what is most important is focusing on ROI and scale, and likely bringing in resources to assist in this field.  

It can be difficult to determine what strategy will have the greatest effect for your practice, and it is likely a combination of some or all of the above. Our Certified Financial Planners who specialize in dentistry can help contextualize what your current efficiency metrics look like, benchmark them with other practices, and help you build a platform for generating wealth and cash flow for yourself and your practice.

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