Why Dentist Merchant Services Matter To Dental Practices

dentist merchant services

The truth is that choosing the right dentist merchant services provider can mean more to dental practices than it means to other businesses. 


Why? Well, all businesses are affected by the company they choose to process payments due to fees cutting into profits.


However, dental offices are impacted more so because of the higher prices they must charge for important medical services. Choosing the wrong dentist merchant services company can cause a dental business to pay excessive processing fees, but there are even more considerations.


So, let’s discuss all the areas that payment solutions for dentists affect.


Dental Payment Processing Can Get Expensive


The bottom line of any business is the bottom line — profits. 


Money comes in and goes out. The less you pay out in expenses, the more a dental business can profit, scale, and provide world-class care to patients over the long term.


Choosing a payment processor that wants you to succeed is simply a smart business tactic that helps you:

  • Avoid hidden processing fees
  • Lower necessary transaction fees
  • Choose a plan that provides the best value
  • Grow your patient base
  • Operate more efficiently (and make life easier for your dental staff)


At National Processing, we know that low processing fees are the number one factor when the practice owner is choosing a dentist merchant services provider.


We are the only processor that promises the lowest rates, backed up with a $500 Guarantee, that we’re aware of….


Just as important, we believe in transparent fees. We want our customers to understand how payment fees and rates work. 


You can see that transparency in the comparison we did for various processing companies here.


There’s no risk when you choose National Processing due to our unbeatable Guarantee. We don’t even require a contract for high-volume businesses!


Still, we know dentists face unique challenges.


Dentist Merchant Services That Prevent Hassles

Business owners are under constant stress, especially with today’s hectic pace. 


Dentists are under excessive pressures, though (3x as many report anxiety today than in 2003). 


Many studies have revealed high levels of burnout in the dental industry. 


No wonder, with a punishing schedule just to make it through dental school. Add to that, the stress of student loans that would wear on anyone regardless of their resilience. And once dentists open their practice, the workload can seem endless. Ironically, it’s worse for very successful practices.


The thing to remember is that slight reductions in stress mean the world. Small improvements can compound the positive benefits for the entire dentist office. Less stress at work, less stress at home.


Having a payment processor that takes payment worries off your plate is one such improvement:

  • It’s crucial that your provider’s customer service is top-notch
  • Fee structures should be clear and fully explained
  • Modern equipment is a must
  • Your provider should ensure PCI compliance (at minimum)
  • Flexible plans save dental practices money and increase efficiency
  • Volume discounts can save you thousands of dollars


One more thing that dentist merchant services can offer to relieve worries and hassles. Experience. 


There are too many merchant services providers to count (literally). New ones crop up all the time (often as clandestine branches of larger corporations).


National Processing is a private company with over 17 years of experience serving small to medium to enterprise-level businesses. We focus on people, on relationships — with our customers, employees, and community.


Now, we need to talk about seven more factors that affect healthcare merchant services.


7 Specific Dental Payment Processing Concerns

  1. HIPAA compliance is critical and must be considered when choosing a processor.
  2. Integration with office software and SaaS tools is a challenge often considered too late – after signing with a healthcare merchant services company.
  3. Ability to process FSA and HSA cards (flexible spending accounts and health savings accounts).
  4. Pricing plans that lower fees based on low chargeback industries like dental businesses.
  5. Affordable ways to process insurance payments (virtual credit cards, for example).
  6. Shielding the practice from data breaches.
  7. Providing a variety of payment options as consumer behavior evolves with modern options like Apple Pay and mobile wallets.


Another note on choosing the right plan. Your dental merchant services provider should offer a variety of plans so you can choose the one that saves you the most money.


If you are paying a flat fee plus a percentage of each transaction, that may cost you more than you need to pay. Consider the following average U.S. dental services costs below:

  1. Cleaning and exam: $75-$200
  2. Dental fillings: $210-$330 
  3. Dental crown: $500-$3,000
  4. Root canal: $300-$2,000
  5. Dental implant (implant and crown): $3,000-$6,000
  6. Metal braces: $3,000-$7,000
  7. Teeth whitening: $300-$1,000


Be sure to ask potential providers if they offer secure ACH payments (and SOC-2 security).


ACH processing is a smart option for saving on payment fees — which can be as high as 3.5% of the transaction with credit card payments. 


ACH payments also encourage simplified recurring payments, can improve cash flow, and save time versus other payment methods. Hassles get reduced with this easy payment option! So much so, that it might be worthwhile to offer incentives to patients to choose or switch to ACH payments.


*Average gross revenue for general dental practices was $666,000 in 2020 (specialist dental practices $935,760), according to the American Dental Association.


What about growth?

dentist merchant services

Dental Practice Payment Systems To Scale Your Business

It’s troubling that so many features of payment processing platforms go underutilized.


Business owners are often unaware of the tools and data inside payment systems that are meant to help increase the customer / client base.


Finding and retaining new patients is a big deal for dentists. Even when successful, it can require tons of effort. But with feature-rich payment platforms, that effort can be greatly reduced for the entire staff. For instance…


Dentist Referral Programs


You can automate many aspects of referral programs using payment processing tools. Or enhance current tools (such as email marketing platforms) by integrating them with payment software.


A specific example would be segmenting your email list using payment data. A “VIP segment” could be automatically created for patients who have spent over $5,000, and special offers or gift card codes could be emailed to them.


The same strategy could be utilized for a segment of patients who have referred over five people to your practice. Studies show personalized approaches are increasingly effective for marketing.


More referral ideas using dental merchant services and integrations:


  • Giving rewards to both the referring patient and the new patient
  • Thank you cards (snail mail) automatically triggered by referrals
  • Special rewards for staff and vendors who bring in new patients
  • Charitable donations made in the name of people who refer family and friends (especially if monetary rewards are restricted)
  • Automate requests for testimonials and referrals

Please don’t underestimate the opportunities waiting to be used inside your payment processing system. If you’re unsure how to implement features that can grow your dental business, get in touch with your provider representative.


If they can’t assist you? Then consider changing to a provider willing to go the extra mile. After all, when your business grows, your growth benefits the dentist merchant services company too.


Time to wrap things up.


Summary: Why Dentist Merchant Services Matter 

Dental practices have a lot on their plate. From the outside, things look pristine and well-organized, as a dental office should. However, the inherent stress can take a toll on dentists and office managers in particular.


Accepting payments may be an afterthought (until a major problem springs up). Yet, over the course of many years, not having to worry about cash flow, connectivity, versatile payment options, or excessive processing fees is a giant relief.


National Processing Guarantees you that relief with our dentist merchant services. You will save money or we’ll give you $500. See our reviews to see what other business owners like you say about our first-class customer service.


Start saving here with National Processing.




What are common payment methods accepted by dentist merchant services providers?

Credit/debit cards, ACH/bank transfers, and patient financing options. The best providers offer a wide range of payment options to match modern consumer behaviors and preferences.


How can payment solutions for dentists improve cash flow for a dental practice?

Automated payment posting, simplified invoicing, and flexible payment options help dental offices get paid faster and reliably. Be sure you don’t overpay for solutions you don’t need, though. And don’t sign a contract that’s unclear about fee structures. Intentionally vague contracts will likely cost you extra money and hurt cash flow and profits. Ask the provider’s sales rep for example invoices for a hypothetical dental office. That will give more clarity on real-life payment fees you can expect. 


Which dentist office managers’ frustrations can healthcare merchant services alleviate?

Excessive paperwork and manual processes. Digital tools inside payment platforms reduce tedious, redundant, and time-consuming tasks that take managers away from more critical job duties.

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Shane McLendon

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Customer focused

If we can't beat your current rates, we'll give you $500!*

We happily accept merchants processing any amount. Price guarantee for merchants processing $10,000 or more per month. Free terminals and other promotions depend on processing volume, credit and qualifications.

Customer focused

If we can't beat your current rates, we'll give you $500!*

We happily accept merchants processing any amount. Price guarantee for merchants processing $10,000 or more per month. Free terminals and other promotions depend on processing volume, credit and qualifications.