Is your practice not capturing after-hours leads and missing out on potential revenue?
Patients interested in making an appointment may be doing their research online, typically after-hours when it’s most convenient for them. Why? Most people are busy during the day, and it is not until things settle down in the evening or when they wake up first thing in the morning that they have time to connect. The problem is your office may be closed and unable to respond, making if challenging for converting these new potential patients. Here are a few ways you can improve your chances of reaching after-hours leads and increasing the number of new patients to your practice.
Capture the lead and exchange information
One of the most important options you can offer your patients, especially those researching out after-hours, are online forms. If they’re ready to book, add an “Appointment Request” form to your site. Adding a HIPAA-compliant appointment request form to your practice website will allow you to capture patient leads when those potential patients are on your site and interested in taking the next step.
Promptly review and respond to form submissions
Now that you’ve captured their interest, be sure to promptly respond to their request. Setup a daily schedule to login to view all form submissions and contact the patient back. If you cannot reach them, be sure to leave a message. If they don’t call you back, set a reminder for yourself to call again the next day.
If patients are considering a certain procedure or service you provide, it can be helpful to inform them on your website while you are unavailable. Having an informative video can help patients feel like you are speaking to them.
Educational or diagnostic forms
If you have a practice that requires more education prior to an office visit, consider a form to help patients assess their condition, rate their pain, or explain their needs. This can help your patients feel informed and heard while they wait for a reply.
Expand Your Availability
Answer the phones earlier
In a perfect world, there would always be someone on the other end to answer a phone call. Although this may not be doable, you may consider opening your phone lines by just an hour or two. It is common for patients to call first thing in the morning before they get on with their day, so having someone staff the phone lines just one hour early could greatly improve your chances of seeing them in the office.
A website chatbot can help patients get answers to questions or navigate your website while you are unavailable. Often, these chatbots can appear right when a patient may abandon their research. Directing patients in the right way and getting them helpful information may translate to solid leads.
Expand phone coverage
Expanding phone coverage to the weekend may greatly improve the patient experience. Start small and expand where you can. Even if you can’t have a full day of coverage on Saturday and Sunday, adding some weekend coverage will increase your patient leads.
Auto Thank You
When a patient submits an online form or a request, an auto “Thank you” with specific details about when you will get back can go a long way. This can confirm an email address to make sure they know they’ve entered their information correctly and the thank you response will stay in their inbox, as a reminder, until you get back in touch with them.
Communicate When They’ll Hear Back
Information about your practice hours or how they can contact you instead of waiting for a call is valuable information to retain the lead.
Consider Text Message Automation
Many avoid unknown phone numbers, so you may consider automated text messages to connect with your patients. This can get information to potential patients quickly and conveniently. Also offering patients the ability to text the practice who can quickly answer questions, book or confirm an appointment and more. Our HIPAA compliant chat and text platform, for example, can provide automated responses to provide answers to commonly asked questions. This makes it more likely you’ll reach and convert patient leads outside of your normal hours.
You don’t know what you don’t know. This is simple. If you don’t know when people are calling, you may not know how to expand your services effectively. The answer – track your calls and know when a call comes in. This will help you to capitalize on those unanswered leads.
Your practice can also track how many patient leads are being submitted via forms. There are HIPAA-compliant marketing platforms to track new patient leads from calls and submissions through scheduled appointments and periodically follow up with them with additional information.
Ready to get started? Contact Practis today!