A Hands-Off Way To Reduce No-Shows While Providing A Personal TouchSee how it works
Now you can reduce no-shows and easily update appointments without tying up your staff’s time
No more missed messages, scheduling conflicts, double bookings, or playing phone tag.
The Weave Appointment Confirmation feature lets you instantly communicate with customers in a way that is quick and convenient for both parties.
Two-way text and email capabilities let your customer respond any way they want.
Weave smart technology can interpret your customers’ text responses and automatically update their appointment bookings in your Practice Management System.
With our custom messaging platform, you can easily personalize your confirmations so automated messages seem like they have a personal touch.
It’s so smooth and easy that your customers will practically manage their appointments for you!
Weave can detect if your customer’s text response is positive, negative, or requesting a change.
For example, if your customer responds “Sure” or “You bet” or “I can make it”
Weave recognizes this as an affirmative response and automatically confirms the appointment in your system. Even the ‘thumbs up’ or ‘okay’ emojis!
If your customers respond with “I need to reschedule” or even “I’ll be out of town”
Our smart technology automatically detects a negative response and notifies your office that action is required. Weave even understands different appointment criteria, such as type of appointment, provider, and type of procedure so you can completely customize your message.
With the ability to do much more on one unified platform, more small businesses and healthcare practices are switching to Weave.
Discover how the Weave platform can help you grow your business like never before.
Advanced messaging filters
Choose who is notified of changes or confirmations
Choose when and how often appointments are confirmed
Customize the message to match your business brand or voice
“Set up appointment confirmations,” they said, “it’ll be easy,” they said.
While you intuitively know that you need appointment confirmations for your business, putting them into practice isn’t always as straightforward as it first appears.
As you sit at your desk, setting up your appointment confirmation system, there are bound to be dozens (if not more) questions running through your head. You’re likely wondering what’s the best way to set things up, who should receive messages, and what’s the best way to word them for compliance without sounding bossy or impersonal.
You might decide to build out an “If this, then that” flow chart to figure out which messages go out, to who, and when. The process can be dizzying, but if you have a plan in place, it really can be easy.
To help you plan how you implement your appointment confirmations, start by asking yourself the following three questions:
There are multiple ways to confirm an appointment. Your top choices include phone calls, email, text, or direct mail. We’ll briefly explore the merits of each:
-Phone calls – A phone call is the most interactive option and allows you to communicate directly with a patient. If they have questions, you can answer them on the phone, and if they need to reschedule, you’re already on the phone with them. There’s nothing more immediate than a phone call.
The challenge with the telephone is that not everyone answers the phone, especially when they’re at work. Phone calls also require the time of the person on the other end of the phone. To avoid a game of phone tag, you might need to consider something that’s more convenient and less intrusive.
-Email – Most people today have email, but then again, most people are bombarded by daily pings to their inbox. Often emails from businesses go to spam, where they remain unread forever. Even if you do get to the primary inbox, the chances of having your email opened aren’t great.
One advantage of email, however, is that it’s easy for patients to go back and reference it. If you provide additional information in an appointment confirmation like directions to your office, a link to send a payment, or special instructions, then patients will appreciate being able to find all of that information in one place.
-Text – Text messages are often the preferred way of confirming appointments. Most people open text messages, and often, the message is read immediately. This means that you’ll be able to reach the vast majority of your patients, and you can be reasonably certain that they saw your message.
One thing to consider is whether all of your patients have mobile phones. Also, not everyone is on an unlimited text or data plan, so make sure you check with your patients to find out their preferences before making any assumptions.
-Direct Mail – A friendly postcard can serve to confirm appointments, especially if the date is far in advance. However, “snail mail” is the slowest communication medium. If a patient calls on Monday to schedule an appointment the next day, then this appointment confirmation method won’t work.
Bottom line: Many offices today rely on text message reminders. We recommend evaluating your patient base and determining if it makes sense to use a combination of delivery methods.
Once you’ve determined your delivery method, the next question to ask yourself is when and how often to deliver the messages.
For appointment confirmations, you’ll likely want to deliver the message as soon as the appointment is scheduled.
For reminders, you’ll likely want to determine a schedule that works best for your practice and patient base. An example would be specifying that patients get a reminder text 24 hours before their appointment as well as the morning of.
If you’re calling patients to remind them of appointments, you’ll need to plan for not being able to reach a percentage of patients during working hours and have a plan in place to ensure that they’ve been sufficiently reminded.
Typically, your calls to action would include:
Based on the action the patient takes, you’ll want to determine your response. The confirmation message is relatively straightforward, but the cancel and reschedule messages will take some consideration.
For example, if a patient is canceling, do you want to follow up with an invitation to reschedule? Does someone from your office need to reach out with a call?
A canceled appointment without showing intent to reschedule could mean that the patient found a new doctor or has a complaint about your office. It could also mean that they moved, had a financial hardship, or need to press the pause button on their care for an unrelated issue. Either way, it’s smart to find out the reason.
In the case of a rescheduled appointment, do you ask the patient to call you directly, or do you reach out immediately? If you wait for the patient to call, you could end up waiting a long time if the patient is busy or forgets to contact you.
How you’ll respond to those three actions will depend on your preferred communication style, the staff you have on hand, and how full your appointment calendar is.
Other secondary calls to action you might want to include in a text confirmation are:
-The option to pay a balance
-A link to your calendar to reschedule an appointment
-A phone number to dial
-A link to your website to get more information or download forms
-An invitation to leave a review for your practice
While there’s a lot to consider when you first set up an appointment confirmation system, it can be relatively self-managed once you’ve done the heavy lifting. We do recommend experimenting with different options. Find a communication method and schedule that works best for your office that is consistent with the needs of your patients.
1. How Can I Quickly and Easily Help Customers Feel They’re Getting A Personal Touch?
Automatic appointment confirmations don’t have to sound like robo-text. In fact, the process can act as a tool for creating a deeper relationship with your clients.
Weave allows you to quickly personalize your message, so confirming or rescheduling appointments is a warm interaction with your clients.
You can use shortcodes to automatically personalize your confirmation messages with the customer’s name, appointment type, who the message is coming from. Even let them know you’re excited to see them.
With a personalized message, your clients may not even know the confirmation is automated!
2. How Does The Weave Appointment Confirmation Feature Work?
The challenge with most automated confirmation systems, is that they can’t interpret the context and nuance of human communication. But Weave has the ability to differentiate between positive or negative confirmations, and can even handle reschedulings.
For example, if your client responds “Yes, that still works for me,” the Weave system would recognize that appointment as confirmed. On the other hand, if they texted “I’ll be out of town next week,” the smart technology understands they need to reschedule, and will notify your staff.
The program is so intuitive, it can even interpret emojis like the ‘thumbs up’ or ‘okay’ symbols
3. What If I Want To Manually Confirm Certain Types of Appointments?
Weave is designed to be flexible – adjusting to the needs of your individual practice. You can filter its ability to message customers by appointment type, providers, customer name, appointment statuses, and more!
This allows you to include or exclude customers as needed – so no one gets an automated message that’s confusing or irrelevant.
4. How Often Should I Send Confirmation Messages Before The Appointment?
Weave is completely customizable depending on your preferences, so you can contact customers as often or as little as you please.
However, we recommend having multiple touch points with your clients whenever possible.
It’s a good idea to establish a connection 2-3 weeks prior to the appointment so clients can plan their calendars in advance. If the customer confirms this first message, then simply tell Weave to send a reminder text on the day of their appointment.
If they do not respond, then you can contact them 3-4 days in advance of their appointment.
With Weave, all of this can be automated to save time, effort, and avoid potential mistakes.