A Credit Card Reservation Is Not A New Idea

Requiring a credit card reservation to reserve time in a service based industry is nothing new.

Hotels wised up to this many years ago. Why did they start asking for credit card info? The answer is simple. They lost a lot of revenue on people who booked a room and then never showed. In a service based industry, time equals money. If a customer no shows, and doesn’t tell the business ahead of time that he won’t be there, then that business loses that money AND the opportunity to give that time to someone else. If we lived in a society where everyone was responsible enough to call ahead of time to reschedule, hotels wouldn’t require credit card information ahead of time. But we don’t, and so they do.

It is however, a newer idea to require this info for a medical practice. It’s only when we remember that a medical office IS a service based industry that we can begin to understand that it can be done for a doctor’s office as well.

There are medical offices across the country that have been requiring credit card info for their patients for years-long before we started doing it. I’m just the one that said, “Hey-if you want to do this for your office like we do, here’s how we do it.”

Here’s another office that utilizes a credit card reservation. There are plenty others who do it, too. Imagine if every office did it! Every practice would be filled with patients who value and respect the office’s time-like ours.

I know how well this has worked for our practice. We don’t have no shows-plain and simple. Trust me, we tried a lot of strategies to reduce missed appointments over the years. We stressed value and we educated. We were polite and really friendly. Unfortunately none of those things really had an impact on our attendance numbers. Then we started taking a credit card reservation and THAT’S when our attendance jumped to a minimum of 97% per month. Our patients learn from that very first phone call that we are SERIOUS about seeing them. They show up to that first reservation. They show up to all following reservations. We’ve completely ended that missed appointment game. If you have the RIGHT person answering the phones in your office, you too can improve your patient attendance.

If it didn’t work, would the hotel industry continue to do it?

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