The competition for patients is tough. Most patients know they have an increasing number of options for care and they are not afraid to use them. To attract and retain a steady patient load, good patient care is seldom enough. Patients expect you to impress them. Whether you operate a dental or healthcare clinic, don’t underestimate the power of an attractive reception area to give your patients the wow factor they demand. Why are the appearance and design of the reception area so powerful? How can you ensure that your reception area looks great to impress your patients?
Why is the reception area so powerful?
It’s the first thing your patients see when they walk in. The first impression is often the lasting impression. Although we like to call it the reception area, realistically it’s also the waiting area. Patients are more likely to pay attention to details like the paint, wood trim, and chairs while they are merely waiting for time to pass. Patients are likely to draw conclusions about the equipment and care of the facility based on their observations in the reception area. Are there spider webs in the corners of the ceiling? Patients are more likely to conclude that the medical equipment is not properly sterilized. Is the paint peeling and are the pictures dated? Patients might conclude that the providers are giving antiquated care. To help patients arrive at favorable conclusions, it’s vital that their first impression be a good one.
How can I make my reception area look great?
Colours can affect people’s emotions and perceptions. Try to incorporate soothing colours, like gray or green, to make your patients comfortable. Avoid colours that stimulate, like red. You may wish to consult with a knowledgeable construction team when choosing colours to avoid an “institutional” feel.
Adequate lighting will prevent your reception area from looking gloomy. In addition to electric lighting, consider window or skylight placement. A professional journal points out that “natural lighting is airy and restful.” Sufficient lighting will help give your patients a positive view of your office.
3. Style and Materials
Your patients will make subconscious judgments about your clinic based on the style and materials you use in your reception area. Some materials, like glass and chrome, may convey cold and hardness to your patients. Softer materials may send a more favorable message. Wallpaper with a pattern that is too busy could lead patients to ideas of chaos or make them feel anxious. Patients may find a neutral colour palate with a few pops of colour more inviting.
4. Sound control
Patients use all of their senses while in your reception area and will form judgments based on things that cannot be seen. Sounds from medical or dental equipment in use are hardly comforting. The sounds from conversations, even muffled, can raise concerns about confidentiality to the patients waiting in the reception area. Consider using sound-absorbing walls and properly placed speakers to play music to help your patients relax.
Your reception area plays a vital part in attracting patients. Keep it looking great to keep your patients coming back. Please contact us for more information.