It’s the simplest software to use to get your website up and running. You’re going to need a website. You don’t need a fancy custom website, but even the simplest, one-page website online will help you establish some major credibility with those considering your services. If people see your ad in the paper, they’re going to check your website. oday, a business without a website is going to be tough to get off the ground. They’ll want to see some information like FAQs or a list of services.
Sometimes, I don’t even trust businesses without websites. For example, I need to get a bridesmaid dress tailored for my girlfriend’s wedding in a few weeks. Someone told me about this fantastic tailor. The shop is a bit out of my way, so I went to google. I could not find this woman’s website! Her business has a google account, so I see the address and phone number, but no website. I can’t look at pictures. I don’t see testimonials. Let’s just say, I’m having a hard time deciding whether or not this place is worth the drive.
Not to mention the millions of other questions her lack of a website brings up. Does she take debit or only cash? Do I have to factor in a trip to the ATM on my way down? This might not seem like a big deal, but when your patients are busy people, these things are a big deal. You need a website.
You can pay a bunch of money to a web designer to get your website up and running. Or you can easily make one yourself with Wix. It’s a service that is free to get started with. You can drag and drop photos, and edit the text yourself. It’s very user-friendly. There are paid options if you want to remove the Wix branding, which I recommend doing. There are other drag-and-drop website services, like Squarespace and Weebly, but I prefer Wix because of the layout selection.
Anyway, get your website up. Make sure it includes a submission box for inquiries. This way, patients can reach out to you and you can follow up with them.
Curve is my cloud-based eHR. It’s awesome. Now, if you have a mobile dental service that’s based from home, you can’t rely on a server-based system. You’re going to need a cloud-based eHR. Cloud-based eHRs can be accessed from a web browser on any computer. It’s incredibly convenient. Curve is the most robust cloud-based software that I could find when I was looking and I’ve been very happy.
Not only is it just convenient to be able to pull up radiographs and my schedule from anywhere, but Curve’s software also allows me to set up automations. Yep, I can automatically text alert and email alert patients of their upcoming appointments & I can automatically wish them a happy birthday. Curve also has a convenient patient portal that allows a lot of paperwork to be completed before appointments. Patient’s can also log in to the portal to view their invoices online. Finally, Curve integrates with my credit card processor of choice, which makes it very convenient. I’m very happy with Curve as my eHR.
Don’t forget, you’re going to need to do bookkeeping. Quickbooks syncs with your business bank account to make record keeping SUPER easy. You can view monthly P&Ls, estimate taxes, and have an easy bird's eye view of everything. You can also track your mileage in Quickbooks which is super important. Quickbooks is something accountants are super familiar with, too, so come tax time, they can easily log in to your account and do their thing. Keeping track of finances is probably the last thing you want to do as a dentist, but it’s necessary and Quickbooks keeps it simple.
Voice Over Internet Protocol. You’re going to need a business phone number to avoid giving your personal phone number to any one. Before you start adding a new line to your phone plan, consider VOIP. This service allows you to download an app on your phone and accept phone calls from a different number. You can set hours for this other number, so the incoming calls will either ring your phone or go to voicemail. If you have a virtual assistant, they can use this same number on their phone during certain hours, too. It’s a much more affordable, convenient way to establish a business phone number.
I hope these software recommendations gave you some useful insight as you’re beginning your dental home care practice. There is no shame in humble beginnings. You don’t need a custom website, another phone line or to hire an expensive bookkeeper just as you’re getting started. You can build your own baby website, use your same cell phone, and keep track of your own numbers while you’re establishing yourself. Feel free to splurge on the eHR, though!
Whether you decide to pursue dental home care or not, consider supporting those in need of it by contributing to the Home Smile Care Foundation. The Home Smile Care Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded by myself and my loved ones that offer financial assistance to patients who cannot afford at-home dental care. Visit homesmilecarefoundation.org.