You’re fresh out of dental school and are ready to take the world by storm. You’re going to take strides to open up your own dental practice. Every time you close your eyes, you can see what it will look like.
You already have prices in mind and have been looking up dental equipment. The only problem is finding a building that can accommodate your dreams and figuring out how you’re going to fund your company.
Some practitioners can’t do it without signing on a partner or two. You’ve also got to market your practice or it won’t go anywhere. It can be a lot.
It’s a good thing that you have us here. Carry this checklist with you to make sure you don’t miss a single step of the opening process.
1. Write a Solid Business Plan
No matter if you’re opening up a family dental practice or a bakery, the first step is to come up with a solid business plan. Every night you’ve been kept awake by thoughts of your business, go write it down.
You have to include everything in the plan, from possible practice locations to where you’re going to get your funding. You need to think up a list of short and long-term goals. Create a fictional patient base, so you know who you’ll be marketing toward when you get to that step.
2. Consider Signing on a Partner(s)
It can be hard to get a good footing in any industry without a few partners to back you up. This being said, it might be a good idea for you to take your business plans to a few other dentists.
If they like what you have in mind, they might consider signing up with you. Partnering up won’t have the same rush as opening up a business yourself, but you’ll have a few people who can split the costs with you.
The downside to partnering up is that it’s going to be hard to find a person who has the same goals as you do. If you can’t find anyone, or you think partnering up is a bad idea, try to get financing on your own first. Remember that you can always go back to this step later on during the opening process.
3. Choose a Location
The most crucial aspect in opening up a dental business is deciding where you’re going to put it. You can’t pick any old spot. You have to do a lot of careful research.
Everyone needs a dentist, which is a good thing and a bad thing. It’s a good thing because you can pretty much guarantee to get some customer base wherever you go. It’s a bad thing because you’ll also be surrounded by competition at all times.
Research the population of the town or city where you want to place your business. Once you do that, look up your competition to get a good feel for what they’re doing.
You should also consider making your practice available for walk-ins. If you place your business in an area that sees a lot of foot traffic, you’ll attract the people walking by.
4. Figure Out How You’re Going to Finance Your Business
Getting dental practice loans is a huge process. You have to go to a bank and hope that they give you the money you need to set up your business. If your credit isn’t good enough, there’s a good chance you’ll be denied.
If this is the case, you may have no choice but to find a partner to join up with you. You can also ask family and friends for help. It’s a lot of money to ask people for, but they’ll be a little more forgiving than your average loan company.
5. Choose Your Equipment
Now that you have your funding, you can choose your building and fill it with your dental hygiene supplies. Equipment is going to take the largest chunk out of your expenses.
You need furniture for the waiting room and your staff, medical billing programs, computers, and more. Remember when you’re buying equipment, cheaper isn’t always better. Do your research to make sure you get the right programs and tools to suit your needs.
6. Get All the Legal Stuff Out of the Way
It can take months to get your licensing and government insurance out of the way. That means you need to start on it sooner rather than later.
You’ll have to get an identifier number, get registered with the DEA, and meet other requirements that your state has in place. You also need to register for state taxes.
It can be a lot. That’s why it’s a good idea to hire a lawyer to help you through this process. It’s their job to make sure you don’t forget anything.
7. Market Your Business
It can be hard for you to get your dental practice off the ground if nobody knows about you. It’s important to get the word out before your opening day.
You’ve got to come up with a killer marketing strategy. Create a beautiful and functional website where people can sign up for an appointment. If you don’t know the first thing about setting up a website, it might be a good idea to enlist the help of an experienced web design company.
You also need to pay attention to your SEO rankings. If your website isn’t at the top of the Google results page, nobody will see it. An SEO firm can assist you with this.
Talk to the newspaper company about putting your practice’s name in the paper. Get in touch with a local radio station and see if they’ll give you a shout out.
Open the Dental Practice That You’ve Always Dreamed of
There’s a lot that goes into opening your own dental practice. Many get discouraged by all the marketing and business planning. We’re here to tell you that it’s not as bad as it seems. Take a deep breath and go down every step in the checklist that we’ve provided.
Businesses are hard to open and easy to close. Check out our blog daily for tips on how to keep your dental practice from shutting down.