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How to Provide the Ultimate Guest Experience

Key Takeaways:

  • Guests should be met with a warm greeting and a comfort menu when they come in for their visit.

  • Offering new guests a gift bag or basket for high ticket procedures is a fantastic way to make your guests feel special.

  • Communication is one of the best and easiest ways to provide excellent customer service.

One of the most essential components of creating an outstanding dental practice is creating the ultimate guest experience. From the moment your guests walk through the door to the moment they leave, they need to receive top-notch service. People notice when businesses are exceptional and provide great customer service, and that’s exactly what you want.

The greeting

We talked about “The Ritz Way” and how to impress for success.

When thinking back to “The Ritz Way,” what is the best way to welcome guests when they walk through your doors?

As guests walk in, they should be greeted with a smile and a warm hello. It’s essential to make the greeting personal. If your front office is busy or with other guests, reassure them that you will be with them shortly. It’s better if your team knows the guest by their first name.

Offer a comfort menu

Consider offering a comfort menu to make your guests feel welcome, comfortable, and at ease. Offering specialty items to your guests may help relieve some of their anxieties if they don’t like going to the dentist.

According to the American Dental Hygienists’ Association, anywhere from 50 to 80% of adults in the United States suffer from dental anxiety, some more severe than others. Our clients have seen many guests who suffer from dental anxiety. Why not do anything you can to help your guests feel at ease during their visit? What you put on this menu is entirely up to you. If you want to keep it simple, you could offer water or coffee.

However, why not take it a step further? Are there other things you can offer your guests to improve their experience?

Beyond water and coffee, you can offer specialty seasonal beverages and snacks, like cookies.

Do you have TVs in the reception area? What about your treatment suites? What about WiFi?

Another great option is to offer your guests a pillow and a blanket to help them feel more comfortable.

In addition to free services, you can also list additional services at a charge, such as oral sedation, nitrous oxide, and IV sedation.

If you can take these steps in offering a comfort menu to your guests, you will definitely stand out amongst your competitors.

Guest gifts

Another great way to elevate the overall guest experience in your practice is to offer gifts when you can. Many people enjoy receiving gifts, and it’s a great way to make your guests feel special.

For new guests, it’s a great idea to give them a gift bag to welcome them to your practice. A new guest gift bag can include anything you want, including toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss, and other dental supplies. Include a coffee mug or water bottle with your company logo to ramp it up. Again, you can include whatever you want. Get creative!

If your practice performs cosmetic or restorative procedures that are high ticket, consider giving those guests a more excellent gift, such as a gift basket. This is a great way to show your guests that you appreciate and value them as patients; they will undoubtedly feel it.

How to treat the guest during their visit

Once you’ve wowed the guest with your warm welcome and complimentary comfort menu, the 5-star service needs to continue throughout the entire visit. There are several ways to ensure the guest feels special and taken care of.

Communication is key

Communication goes a long way. No matter what business you’re in, guests always appreciate good communication. It’s essential to communicate with guests throughout their visit and keep them informed during their treatment. Good communication is an integral part of providing excellent service.

A great example of communication is what we like to call verbal handoffs. Say a dental assistant walks a guest back to their treatment suite. Once the guest is seated, the DA talks with the guest about the initial part of their visit and what will happen next. Once the doctor is ready to come in, the DA communicates with the guest, “Okay, Sally, Dr. Smith is going to come in and get started.”

Verbal handoffs should be implemented throughout the guest's entire visit, from beginning to completion. Once the guest is done with treatment, the assistant must take the guest to the checkout desk and do a verbal handoff with the front office staff.

Beyond verbal handoffs, checking in with your guests during their visit is always important to ensure they are comfortable. Checking in ensures your guests that their comfort is your top priority, which is essential, especially in dentistry.

On the flip side, to provide excellent customer service to your guests, they mustn’t be left wondering what is happening during their visit. For example, say an assistant takes a guest into a treatment suite, lets the guest know the doctor will be in shortly and leaves the room. If 20 minutes go by and no one has checked on that guest, they will wonder what’s happening. To avoid this, it’s best to keep a team member in the room if possible. The team member can help pass the time by chatting with the guest and getting to know them.

Making sure your guests are comfortable

The next step is going above and beyond to ensure your guests are comfortable during treatment. Many people suffer from dental anxiety, so it’s important to ensure those guests feel well taken care of.

If you include a pillow and a blanket on your comfort menu, offer that to your guests. This is a great way to put anxious guests at ease.

If you have a guest who has a lot of anxiety and you can tell they are either scared or uncomfortable, consider offering them nitrous oxide to help relax them.

The guest is #1

When it comes down to it, your guests should always be your top priority. If you want your practice to have that “Wow!” factor, providing top-notch customer service will certainly get you there. When people leave your office, the goal is to have them grinning from ear to ear and running to share their awesome experience with friends and family.

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