A website is the first step toward establishing a doctor-patient relationship. And how will a patient visit you? Yes, through an appointment. Today, online scheduling of appointments has grown exponentially. According to a survey by Accenture, by 2019 online appointment booking will be used by 64% of patients and yield around $3.2 billion. So to save yourself from losing any patients, you need to offer online appointment scheduling for your practice. This will boost your revenue and offer satisfaction to your patients, thereby strengthening your online reputation. Let’s take a look at the benefits of this technology:
With online scheduling, you and your patients are saved from the tedious task of calling, tracking and fixing calls by an automated one-click process. This makes your website engaging and gives you content to talk about your practice in a blog or on a social media page. It offers secure and instant booking via any device connected to the Internet.
Considers patient preference
Like for every other service, patients look for ease and accessibility even from healthcare. Online appointment booking is not just preferred by doctors but also by patients. According to research, more than 40% of people were interested in online appointment scheduling over booking an appointment by phone. There is no loss of time due to being kept on hold during appointment booking via phone that frustrated new patients and decreased conversions. But still, many doctors haven’t offered such a service to their consumers. The elimination of wait time to see a doctor increases patient satisfaction and helps you build a loyal doctor-patient relationship.
No time bar
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Online appointment scheduling offers the convenience and ease of anytime booking. Since you appear 24/7 for their service, your practice is likely to see an exponential growth in revenue and patient acquisition. Most of the time, new patients book an appointment after business hours. Around 34.3% to 63% do this. Thus, it can be beneficial for you to stay available beyond general working hours. Similar to a ticket booking system, online scheduling helps book appointments for the same day, next day or “no-show” slots.
Manual appointment scheduling leads to higher operational costs required to add more resources for a better delivery of service and managing patient growth. For instance, managing 50 to 100 appointment calls on the phone will require more staff members to complete the task during defined office hours. This will reduce their engagement in any other task and make it tough to maintain the required level of service. When appointments are booked online, your staff will be able to devote their major time in providing memorable and delightful experiences to the patients visiting your practice. Further details of online booking act as a database for your emails, thereby increasing engagement via SMS or emails. You can remind your patients of their appointments, send ailment and treatment-related emails, etc.
Online scheduling is a necessity of time. It is likely to help you boost your online reputation. Patients expect much more in terms of availability, timelines and convenience. To save yourself from losing revenue and to attract an Internet-oriented patient base, get tech-savvy.