Category: Author: David Hall
I’m calling this week 2 of the impact of the COVID-19 virus pandemic on dental practice because, before last Tuesday we weren’t seeing any reduction in appointment requests. That all started last Tuesday, March 17, when the American Dental Association published its recommendation encouraging dental practices to postpone any elective procedures.
Last week our data showed appointment requests received by our clients down by 64.8% from their normal level.
Measuring from Friday morning of last week through last night (Thursday), this week’s data shows an average of about the same—down 66.7% from the average. But if you look at the past three days, which would be the same days of the week that we looked at last week, there is a slight uptick in appointment requests—down by 58% from normal, which is an increase of 19% from last week. We’re hoping this is the beginning of a trend.
We have clients all over the United States, and some of them are under mandate to be closed to anything but emergency procedures, some are closed by choice, and some are staying open as much as they can be within the guidelines that have been issued. Some have confided in us that the restrictions are very hard on them financially. These figures that I am reporting, by the way, are the requests initiated by patients and so they represent the effect of the pandemic on the thinking of patients rather than on the policies of the dentists, dental associations, or governmental policy.
About dental emergencies, we’re noticing a huge click-through rate on emergency pay-per-click ads that we’re running for some clients. For health care pay-per-click ads, the click-through rate is usually 2%. Our pay-per-click specialist, with her skills, gets about 3%. But for these emergency ads this past week, our click-through rate has been 12% – quadruple the normal rate.
We’ll be following this through this pandemic.