With the 2015 year well underway, the changes to technology, equipment, and software in the healthcare industry haven’t slowed down and are still evolving every day. This “evolution” of healthcare IT is changing the way practices must approach and handle patients and their growing number of needs. With online trends consistently popping up it can be hard to stay in the loop of all of it, but with optometry software and other resources available to eyecare providers today, it is becoming a much more attainable and realistic goal to be an innovative leader with your practice!
3 Optical Business Trends You Can Keep Up with Using Optometry Software
Improved Patient Marketing Strategies
In 2015, more precise and targeted marketing strategies will prevail compared to sporadic shotgun approaches of the past.
The practices that can clearly define the best ways to reach their target market will become more efficient and prepared in 2015. Social media has evolved so that interactions between patients and practices can happen more frequently - and with proven real results. Programs within EHR software allow you to manage patient information and create patient profiles, that can help determine the demographics of your patient base. A better understanding of loyal patients will help practices understand the best ways to reach and market to new customers whether it's through social media or another marketing channel.
Price and Value
In 2015, the role of online sales in the optical industry will expand even more, and extend more pressure on practices nationwide. This is mostly due to the fact that it’s easy for patients to use one of many readily available technologies online to find competitive pricing on a product, ultimately causing eyecare providers to compete against the Internet for customers in 2015.
The trend of price comparing means optical businesses must figure out a way to more efficiently deliver their product, and develop a strategy that promotes their products as a unique offering with added value. The customer, should be able to recognize the true value of purchasing from you and be swayed to stay clear of Internet “deals”. This can be accomplished by being thorough, as buyers will be ensured they are getting the best deal per invested dollar in the purchase. Clearly communicating and displaying the advantage of buying from a trusted professional, rather than online is what will separate top optical businesses from others.
The rise of the ePatient as an optical business trend is gaining importance daily due the need for more mobility. Patients increasingly want more accessibility to their health information through electronic communication tools. So how can eyecare practices better accommodate and prepare for ePatients in their practice?
EHR software is the first step in providing better and more coordinated care for patients. EHR software will allow ODs to securely display and provide health education, exam results, and specific treatment instructions for patients in an efficient manner. Jumping on board with greater accessibility for the patient in 2015 will also increase flexibility for ODs and make everyone's lives a little easier. Increasing mobility will give eyecare practices the freedom to choose which device works best with their workflow, and will help create a customized patient experience specific to each practice. Quick and secure sharing of information is now being recognized as the future of healthcare IT, so getting a head start is a big advantage!
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