As we all know, service providers in all industries try to generate extra cash by selling products that complement their offering. For example, hairdressers don’t just give you a haircut – they also recommend shampoos, styling products, and other hair treatments that are good for your hair type. In this way, they provide a better, more holistic service while generating additional revenue sources for themselves.
Makes sense, right? So why is it any different when speaking about podiatrists?
As doctors, podiatrists often shy away from selling products in their practice. “We hear so much about why some podiatrists won’t dispense products,” says Hal Ornstein, DPM. “One of the biggest reasons is the ethics—the perception of the patient looking at the doctor or the practice as trying to be a retail store, like you’re just nickel-and-diming them. It is so untrue.”
Offering an assortment of podiatry-related products and services does not make you greedy in the eyes of your patients. On the contrary – adding specialized products to your offering makes you and your practice more valuable in the eyes of patients. If you think about it, you’re saving patients an extra trip to the local pharmacy, plus the headache of picking a product out of the abundance of confusingly similar packages at the pharmacy. Dr. Lowell Weill of the Weil Foot & Ankle Institute, validates the fact that convenience is highly valued by patients in his post on how to improve patient care while increasing revenue in Podiatry Today.
Patients clearly appreciate having access to products that they would otherwise have to seek out for themselves at stores or online. Additionally, by integrating specialized products such as orthotics and various foot creams into your practice, you can create supplementary revenue from every customer. In fact, the single biggest opportunity for podiatry practice revenue growth is arguably in retail products.
If you’d like to start selling revenue-generating items in your practice, below is a list of providers that you can contact today.
We met with Kumy from MD Private Label and loved the beautiful and natural gift packages and podiatry products he showed us. If you want to appeal to the health-conscious patient, the natural ingredients in their products are what you’re looking for.
MD Private Label’s products are made for professional podiatrists and can only be purchased through doctor’s offices like yours. They are not available in drugstores, mass merchants or through online retailers such as Amazon or Ebay, and therefore can become a reliable revenue stream for your practice.
We met with Dia-Foot at the conference in Frisco, Texas. They were showcasing their Telic flip flops which were colorful and fashion-forward while still being practical; The Telics’ superior weight distribution and arch support make them super comfortable! Additionally, Dia-Foot sells diabetic inserts and various types of orthotics.
Since patients tend to foster a high level of trust with their podiatrists, they tend to prefer to buy orthotics and orthopedic shoes directly from their doctors to ensure they get a product that is right for them. Dia-Foot products are a great way to serve the needs of your customers and generate additional revenue for your private practice at the same time.
Blaine Labs offer a variety of products for fungal care, skin care, wound care, and pain management. Plus, they do private labeling so your customer will see your unique design and your practice’s name on the packaging, as opposed to a generic brand that they may find at the local pharmacy. Supplying their products helps you address the more common, day-to-day concerns of your patients with ease while staying top of mind.
Simcan is a family run business that has been selling quality socks for over 20 years. Their socks are specially designed to be worn safely by those with diabetes and other health conditions that impact the foot and lower leg. They provide the highest level of comfort and quality possible.
Other providers include The Tetra Corporation – which supplies an assortment of products to remedy dry skin, brittle nails, fungal problems, and a host of other podiatry concerns – and Footsteps which sells premium off-the-shelf orthotics and top quality orthopedic soft goods.
Furthermore, as Dr. Weill recommends in his post in Podiatry Today, once you feel confident about your retail offerings – you should try to move into shoes. “Patients are always seeking shoe gear advice and recommendations from their podiatrist,” says Weill.
VASYLI Medical offers an incredible variety of beautiful modern shoes by Vionic, and integrates its podiatrist-designed support into every pair. Vionic is all about gorgeous, comfortable shoes, or as they put it: “Style. It doesn’t have to hurt.”
Still not convinced that you should sell products? Try to add services to your practice instead:
We recently met Sigal and Aaron from BritaMed at the CPMA conference in Toronto. Sigal and Aaron highlighted that many podiatrists resort to adding additional services to their practice when they want to increase revenue. BritaMed’s laser products allow podiatrists to do exactly this.
By incorporating high power laser technology into a podiatry practice, practitioners are able to widen their service offering, improve their image, attract new patients and ultimately – contribute to their bottom line.
BritaMed’s high powered lasers can be used to treat many different types of conditions, such as soft tissue inflammations (e.g. Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles Tendonitis, etc.), toenail fungus infections, Solitary & Mosaic Warts, foot Telangiectasia and dermatology lesions. As such, podiatrists that have chosen to purchase these robust laser devices use them on a daily basis and quickly see returns on their investment.