Although we live in a world of digital everything, people still rely on a phone call for urgent matters. As research shows, when dealing with urgent or complex problems,66% of customers are more likely to seek a real person on the phone. Even though customers often have numerous communication options, the telephone is still by far the most immediate, personal, and convenient of them.
Responding to Patient Calls Is Crucial for Establishing a Connection with Your Patients
This applies particularly to healthcare, which is one of the top industries where customers prefer the phone to other channels of communication. That makes answering every call promptly and professionally a priority for healthcare practices. A missed call is a missed opportunity, and leaving your patients in the dark when they need to reach your practice is going to affect your business in several ways.
Delay in Response Will Negatively Impact Patient Attrition
In the medical industry, a missed call can sometimes be the difference between life and death for a person. Since we are not 911 or the ED, even if this a slight over exaggeration, patients still feel this way. That’s why patients expect immediate assistance when they call their doctor's office. Each time your line’s busy, you send them to voicemail or patients can’t reach your office after hours, you are leaving their needs unresolved.
Customers will only call twice before moving on to another business
[Source: BT Today]
If this situation repeats, patients will grow increasingly frustrated and will be inclined to seek assistance from other practices. When they are unable to obtain phone support, they will not come back to your practice again. If your practice is loosing patients because of missed calls, the total patient lifetime value for your practice will also be in decline.
Over one-third of all practice calls go unanswered. Look for a solution that allows you to answer all incoming calls and even outsource all of your scheduling needs. This will give your inhouse staff a break and offer a competitive advantage over your competitors.
Unanswered calls Damages Healthcare Facility Reputation
Another serious consequence of missed calls for your practice is your online reputation. Patients who cannot get through to your facility often won’t keep their frustration only to themselves.
74% of callers are likely to choose another business after a negative phone experience
Nowadays, people are very keen on publicly sharing negative customer feedback. And there’s hardly anything more detrimental to your practice than disappointed patients eager to generate some negative online reviews of your business. According to Zendesk, 95% of customers share bad experiences with others. One way to avoid damaging your practice’s reputation is by providing patients with continuous, professional support over the phone.
Missed Calls Equal Missed Revenue Opportunities
Unanswered calls affect your practice revenue, both in the short and long-term. In a short-term perspective, every phone that goes unanswered may be a missed revenue opportunity. In the long run, a large number of missed calls impact your business as they generate churn.
It’s estimated that 67% of customer churn could have been prevented if the customer’s issue was resolved at the first engagement. That’s some food for thought. If a new or existing patient reaches out to your practice and receives no help, there’s a high chance they won’t give it another try.
85% of people whose calls are not answered will never call back
Think about every missed call as a would-be patient who goes to your competitor because they couldn’t get through to your office. How much revenue does a single patient represent to your practice, on average? Now multiply that by the number of calls you miss every day. That’s how much money missed calls are costing your business.
Never Miss Another Call with 24/7 Medical Answering Services
Things can get hectic at a doctor’s practice. Your receptionists may be too overwhelmed with work to handle phone communication, or you may be lacking sufficient staff to cover all incoming calls 24/7. However, phone calls are a business opportunity for your practice that you cannot afford to miss.
Medical answering services will help you keep your patients informed at all times and allow them to always reach your practice in an emergency. By providing this service, you will be able to recover lost revenue and improve the patient experience to enjoy a greater profit.
Would you like to see if after-hours answering services are suitable for your healthcare business? Click on the button below and start a FREE trial, no strings attached.