Hot take: you should compare yourself to others more often. But not to individuals (or individual dental practices). Those sorts of singular comparisons—I’m not as toned as that one girl at the gym, our office isn’t as new as the competitor across town—will do nothing but drive you crazy. But comparing yourself to large groups—to statistics—is another thing entirely. Comparing yourself to large-scale trends is one of the best ways to set goals and keep you and your team motivated. In that spirit, let’s take a look at the kind of numbers it takes to perform as well as the top 10% of dental practices across the nation.
How fast do high-performing dental practices grow? Our data shows that the top 10% of practices grows 26% or more year over year. For a practice that did $800,000 in business last year, that means they will do $1,008,000 or more this year, on pace to grow to $1,270,080 next year.
Maybe you’re a small-town practice and you can barely imagine doing nearly $1 million in any given year, or maybe you’re a multi-location practice or DSO and only doing that much would be a disaster. No matter which end of the spectrum you land on, 26% growth is a goal that can work for your dental practice.
High-performing practices don’t just prioritize filling chairs with new patients. Getting new patients in your front door only does so much if you’re continually leaking current patients out the back. Of course, some attrition is inevitable. But average attrition is 27%. That means the average dental practice loses more than a quarter of their active patients every year. That’s a big leak, and one you can definitely slow if you make it a point of emphasis at your practice.
One of the best ways to decrease your attrition is by focusing on your pre-appointment percentage. It’s a stat that seems like it should be intuitive—of course, active patients should have an appointment on the books. We find that with most practices, unless they are actively tracking this number, they assume their pre-appointment percentage is far higher than it actually is. High-performing practices don’t typically do anything magical, they just use the tools already at their disposal to track down patients without appointments and get them scheduled. If you’re not sure what your pre-appointment percentage is or where to find it, don’t hesitate to reach out and let us help you. We can help you run a free practice evaluation to quickly show you how your dental practice is performing in all areas, not just pre-appointment.