A clinic needs to take an innovative approach in order to develop long term strategies that will see significant benefits in time, especially in the areas of internal efficiencies and excellence in client satisfaction. One aim should be to reduce the number of non-revenue generating phone calls to the clinic, while still being able to maintain very high levels of service. This can be achieved, amongst other things, by implementing a strategy of client engagement via an integrated web site. The “Client Portal” web module has been developed for VETLINKSQL users to facilitate this.
It is common knowledge that very few clients, if any at all, will go to a clinic’s web site to seek information on subjects like “arthritis in older cats” – they will most probably “Google” it and read several articles from all around the world. So, this begs the question: Why have a web site except for people to find your address and phone numbers? The traditional approach has been to have a fantastic looking “static” web site and to use SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) techniques to move you to the top of a search list for new clients wanting to look up a clinic. So, what is different about the “Client Portal” concept and our offering via our premier partner www.p2plimited.com
In order to “engage” your clients and their loyalty on a long term basis, we believe that an entire strategy needs to be implemented. The web site and its integration with VETLINKSQL form one part of this overall strategy. For an explanation of the full strategy that involves a Loyalty System with points expiry, Key-Tags, and full Web Site integration, please talk to us. For more information on the Loyalty System within VETLINKSQL and its benefits, please click here
Since we have established that not many people will visit your web site just for common information readily available online, we need to develop a strategy that will attract clients to your web site where they can then be “marketed to” as to the benefits of regular checkups, specials, new services, etc. Add to this an automatic and smart methodology to assist with higher ranking on search engines would all start to make a lot of sense!
P2P Limited is a strategic partner that is able to develop a complete web site for your clinic and then integrate the data that sits inside VETLINKSQL to it. This means that intelligent software is placed on your server that automatically “sync’s” relevant data to your web site each night so that your clients are able to access their own information.
Benefits to Clients and the Clinic
By allowing clients to access their own information, you should over time, reduce the number of incoming phone calls for simple queries such as the ones below, plus many more over time.
- When is my next appointment?
- When is Fluffy’s next Vaccination due?
- Have you an appointment available next Tuesday between 3 and 5pm?
- How many Loyalty Points do I have remaining?
- When are my Loyalty Points expiring?
- How many points are expiring?
- Can you please update your records as I have moved to a new address?
- Can you please remove Fluffy from your records as she has passed away?
- When was the last time I purchased Frontline?
- Which Flea treatment did I buy last time – or the time before?
- What did my cat weigh last time, and before that, and before that?
- Can I please see a graph and also see GLU levels on the same graph?
- Farmer: What is my PAR balance for Prescription Drugs?
- Farmer: Which Drench / Vaccine/ etc did I buy last year, or the year before?
- Etc, etc, etc.
In addition to supplying access to a lot of information to the client, we have other benefits to offer as part of this strategy.
Imagine having a web site where you expect clients to subscribe to a newsletter. One of our clients recently commissioned a web site from a web development company. The site looked very good indeed. It had a Newsletter broadcast module that clients could subscribe to. The Problem was however that they had over 1500 email addresses in VETLINKSQL (and increasing due to new strategies in VETLINKSQL to collect emails at POS) but only 80 people had “subscribed” to the newsletter on the web site after six months. This was after reception staff were encouraged to mention this to clients and handed over a fridge magnet with the website address on it!
We know that client contact starts with your staff at the front counter. VETLINKSQL has an email collection strategy at the Point Of Sale. When printing an invoice/receipt at the front counter, it has a prompt PRINT: Yes, No, Email. Reception staff could promote a “green” practice and encourage emailing the receipt. This automatically brings up an email request form that allows email collection or updating on the spot. Now you have given the client a valid/legitimate reason to supply their email address, and they will willingly provide it.
Since all email addresses are updated to your web site each night, the Newsletter Module as part of the Web Site developed by P2P Limited can access this for broadcast. Going forward, only the VETLINKSQL database needs maintaining – the web site database is automatically up to date at all times. This web list also adheres to the New Zealand and Australian privacy laws and allows the recipient to unsubscribe at any time.
As an added bonus, Newsletters using P2P Limited’s technology can be stored and displayed automatically on a page on your web site in HTML format (not pdf) at the time of sending. This means it can be accessed quickly by users in a graphical format. This filing methodology also gives Search Engines an illusion of the web site being updated with new content regularly – a criterion that many search engines like Google use to rank web sites. This system thereby provides a smart form of automatic SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) on a continual basis for your site.
What users see once they login opening page
The opening page once a user logs in has been designed after consultations with web marketing experts and after taking our overall strategy into consideration. A client’s login ID is their email address (another strategy to give them a reason to supply their email address) and their initial password will be their client number; once in they can change their password.
The first page will default to the “Client Summary” screen. Due to the increasing number of Chinese speaking clients in Australia and New Zealand, it also caters for CHINESE (Traditional) and CHINESE (Simplified) menus. The following details are available here:
Items of interest of the opening page
Account Balance: Amount of money owing on their account as at last night.
Bonus Points: If using the Bonus Points Loyalty System within VETLINKSQL, the user will be able to see their points balance, the next expiry date and the quantity that they are about to lose out on. Clicking the “Shopping Cart” on the right of that will take the user to a page where the clinic may display specials, or it could direct them to the clinic’s online store. The aim here is to make sure that they rush in to save $20.00 that is about to expire, and spend $150.00 in the process. To understand the Loyalty System and its benefits to your business, please read the Loyalty System Strategy – Click here to go there now.
A shopping cart link with “Click here to view promotions” is supplied. An HTML page will be provided to all P2P Web Site clients so that they may update these promotions easily. Alternatively, we are able to direct this link to a full online shop.
The graphical calendar is displayed automatically to the month where the client’s next appointment or reminder is due. Moving the mouse over the appointment or the reminder will show a pop-up with the actual details. On the right hand side of the Calendar, ALL Appointments and Health Care Reminders will be shown with icons depicting DUE and OVERDUE status.
The calendar can be seen in the default month view, or the user may view a Day, Week, or even a Time-Line view.
Clicking on any date cell on the calendar will allow the user to request an appointment with one of two choices. This form is then emailed by the site to the clinic. Once the clinic staff member makes the appointment, VETLINKSQL will prompt that staff member to email or TXT the confirmation back to the client. The email format is compatible with Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar – this means that the client can choose to “save” it directly into their personal electronic calendar on their computer – which could then sync to their phone or PDA for seamless integration!
Other pages profile
This page allows the user to view their profile and then request changes by selecting edit. This may include anything from address changes to their preference settings for receiving information via eMail, SMS, or by PHONE.
Note: Neither the data on the web site nor the data in VETLINKSQL is able to be modified. The user simply modifies an online form which is then emailed to the clinic. Once the information is updated in VETLINKSQL by clinic staff, the nightly update will update the web site. It is only one-way traffic to the web site. Clients DO NOT have access to the clinic data at any time and they DO NOT have access to any standard clinical notes! Special “To Web” notes may be posted from VETLINKSQL under certain conditions with intent.**
This section is a “web application” that allows the user to search historical information on purchases in several ways between selected date ranges by simply typing a few letters of the name of what they are looking for. For example, a client may want to see which Flea Treatment they had used previously, a Farmer may want to see which Drench or Mastitis product they had bought two years ago, and so on. Finally, it is a simple way for them to access their own invoices directly rather than the clinic having to fax it out.
VETLINKSQL has a comprehensive large animal prescription management system. This section allows the Farmer to see up to date usage and allocations as well as balances of all prescribed products with expiry dates. This assists the Farmer with information at any time of the day or night and it assists the clinic in not having to send out mail or faxes, or answering phone calls for such information (impact on staff productivity).
This menu item gives the user a full transactional audit trail of their loyalty points, showing all allocations, claims, and expiry dates.
It is of no benefit to have a “loyalty” points system if it is to remain static. Continual client engagement is very necessary. For this reason, one good strategy could be as follows:
Each time that a clinic sends out a Vaccination, Dental, or any other reminder or marketing initiative (email/SMS/Letter) the content of that correspondence could say
ABC Vet Clinic
Dear Mrs Smith
Please note that Fluffy is due for her dental check................
Do you realise that you may have Loyalty Points that are about to expire? Why not use these points to further reduce the cost of this procedure? To see if you have any points, and if they are about to expire, please logon to www.yourclinicname.com and enter your username and password that are shown below:
Your User Name: @email
Password: @Client Number (unless changed)
If your User Name above is blank, you have not provided us with your email address which is in fact your login. Please call the clinic to activate this account for you to access your pets personal information as well as have access to Newsletters and Specials!
The above strategy provides a valid reason to engage your client on to your site; it also provides an email address in the process for your Newsletters and Marketing campaigns! It also means that they can keep tabs on upcoming and overdue reminders.
This section shows all reminders for all pets in more detail with coloured icons. The user is able to search with date ranges as well as “status” such as “Due”, “Overdue”, and “Completed”
This area allows the user to view all appointments in a list or calendar view.
This section separates every patient with key information with the following columns: SUMMARY, TRANSACTION, REMINDER, VITALS, NOTES. Clicking on each will further expand and show detailed patient specific information.
This area provides specific animal details for the one selected onscreen.
This section will provide all searchable transactions for the animal selected. Search options include a date range as well as product search by entering a few letters of the product/service name.
This area displays all relevant reminders for the animal selected. All due and overdue reminders are colour coded for easy identification. Search options are also available on status.
The VITALS area is particularly interesting. This shows the vital details taken such as Weight, Temperature, etc and allows the user to graph it in various formats on-screen, either independently or concurrently to see trends. For example, they may want to graph WEIGHT with GLU to see if there are any relationship. Several choices of graph types and colours are available to the clients.
While clinical notes from VETLINKSQL are not uploaded to the web, a special clinical notes form called “To Web” is available under clinical records when consulting. If this has been populated then it will show here for the client to retrieve.
For more reading on our web partner, please visit www.p2plimited.com.