The traditional dental office is dead.
No, I don’t mean the design, décor, or even the technology.
What’s making its way out of the dental industry?
The traditional locationsfor dental offices, which are often tucked away in an office park or hidden away inside a large office building.
In recent years, especially since the downturn, dentists have decided to bury the office; not let the office bury them.
But where are they moving?
Enter: Shopping Centers
The downturn and growth of Amazon have caused a massive shift in the way consumers shop.
Big box retailers are shrinking their footprints so as to avoid the fate of Sears and Radio Shack.
This modification to their retail locations has opened the doors for many non-traditional retail uses to take advantage of the amenities offered by retail centers.
Here’s why this benefits dentists and medical practitioners, especially:
Traditional retail relies heavily on visibility and exposure to drive-by traffic.
Because of this, behemoths like Target, Kroger, Kohl’s, and so on spend an immense amount of time and money to locate the perfect site where they know their target demographic will shop.
They want to be on main roads or near interstates – essentially in the middle of the consumers’ day to day life – so that the consumer never forgets about them.
Visibility leads to awareness, which leads to sales.
Dentists can now be more visible than ever before.
No longer are dental offices relegated to a small sign on a placard in the lobby.
Pylon, monument, and storefront signage are in!
Ever wondered why Starbucks locates on the right side of the road as you drive to work?
They know that if they make it as easy on the consumer as possibly to turn into that drive-thru, they have a better chance of pulling them in.
If the Starbucks fanatic had to turn left across four lanes of traffic just to get their coffee, they’ll likely drive a mile further down the road and find a more convenient location.
Make it as easy as possible on your customers.
Dentists: your patients don't want to drive around business parks searching for the right building then attempting to navigate those older, neglected hallways.
They can pull right up to the office’s front door in a retail location. In markets like Nashville, where everyone prefers to drive, it’s a must-have.
As I stated earlier: path of least resistance!
No matter how amazing you are, even if you won Nashville’s best Dentist 10 years in a row, if you are in a location that is difficult to find, impossible to park, or simply out of the way of your market’s life, they won’t come see you.
Shopping centers are the ultimate convenience for consumers.
Busy moms juggling multiple children prefer to have a single destination to accomplish all of their errands – if you have children, you already know how difficult it can be just to mobilize the troops.
Think about it: locating your practice within a shopping center gives patients the opportunity to get their teeth cleaned, pick up supplies at Target, grocery shop at Kroger, and grab Chick-fil-a on their way out. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that.
Quit spending all that money on mailers.
Has it really brought you that much business anyway? Let’s be honest.
If you’re anything like me, you throw away any piece of mail that isn’t addressed to you in handwriting – why do you think your mailers are any different?
Having signage in front of your target market every time they go shopping will bring a significantly better return to you and your business.
Not to mention, it will require less effort on your part.
Just your presence in the shopping center lends you an immense amount of credibility – you’re among the retail gods!
Your name and brand will be top of mind whenever that prospect starts to think about their dental health.
Add your new location to your marketing strategy.
Don’t be among the dentists behind the curve.
Do you really need another reason to move your practice into a retail setting?
The best and most successful dentists in the business are taking advantage of the retail opportunity that has been presented to them, and they’re reaping the rewards.
Be smarter about your business – abandon the traditional office space and revamp your practice.