group of dentists choosing the best dental software program for their practice

How to Choose the Best Dental Software Program for Your Practice

Trying to find the best dental software program for your practice? Begin with a complimentary demo and free trial of Practice-Web! We’ll:

  • Walk you through a typical patient visit using the software.
  • Pause to focus on solutions that address your concerns.
  • Answer all your questions.

How to Choose the Best Dental Software Program for Your Practice

Trying to find the best dental software program for your practice? We’ve got you covered! This comprehensive guide explores how various features work, what to look for, and how to stack the options side-by-side, so it’s easy to choose the best dental software for your office’s needs. Read through it in its entirety or use the chapters below to jump to the section that interests you most.

What is the Best Dental Management Software?

If you read dental software reviews online, you’ll see the “best dental software” varies based on the review platform. That’s because the ideal choice varies based on your practice and its unique needs. This guide will help you clarify what your practice requires in its practice management system and identify which programs will work.

Types of Dental Software Programs

At the onset of your search, you’ll want to identify which broad categories your new program should fit within. A few of the most common are outlined below.

Server-Based

Server-based dental programs are hosted on the practice’s chosen server. A network of computers within the office then link into it. Practices usually work with an IT company that sets up and maintains the network. It’s typically managed in the brick-and-mortar office, but the server can be in the cloud too. Ultimately, however, the practice is responsible for the infrastructure and its upkeep. Backups, which can also be automated and hosted in the cloud or managed locally, are also the practice’s responsibility.

Pros of Server-Based Dental Software

  • Faster: Because most practices house their server in the office, server-based programs tend to be faster.
  • No Net Needed:  Servers are not reliant on internet connections to send or receive data, practices can always access patient data even if there’s an internet outage. Throttling is not a concern either.
  • Control of Data: Many dentists feel more comfortable keeping their patient data in their control too. This is only possible through server-based technology.
  • Affordability: In addition, server-based programs are generally priced at a fraction of their cloud counterparts, so they’re far more affordable.

Cons of Server-Based Dental Software

  • Choices: Server-based programs are not limited in their capabilities. If you want to access them remotely or back up to the cloud, you’ll have lots of options to choose from. That may not sound like a bad thing, but it can be overwhelming for a practice that isn’t working with an IT specialist.
  • Upkeep: Again, you’re ultimately responsible for the servers and the backup method you choose.
  • Updates: Although some server-based programs connect to the net and will automatically update as needed, you may be responsible for downloading and installing the latest version too.

Cloud-Based

Often referred to as Software as a Service or SaaS, cloud-based dental software is wholly managed and maintained by the company that produces it. Any device you use will connect directly to their infrastructure via the internet.

Pros of Cloud-Based Dental Software

  • Simplicity: Everything is managed by the platform, so you generally don’t need to think about servers or how/when you’ll access it.
  • Always Updated: Most update automatically. You’ll just log in one day and it’ll look or function differently.
  • Automatic Backups: Most will automatically back up your data, which can provide reassurance as long as their service is reliable.

Cons of Cloud-Based Dental Software

  • Reliable Internet Required: If your practice has internet outages or data caps, you can lose all functionality.
  • Slower: Because data has to travel from the cloud to you and back again, systems can be a bit slower.
  • Premade Packages: Sometimes it’s nice to be able to pick and choose which additional services your practice wants. With cloud-based software, everything is typically tied together (communication, billing, imaging) and you have to use the full suite.
  • Expensive: Even though you’re no longer paying for a server or upkeep, you’ll likely pay hundreds or thousands more per month for a cloud platform.
  • Confusing Pricing: Some cloud platforms charge by the user, number of dentists, number of patients, etc. It’s not always easy to know what you’ll pay in advance.
Fast Fact: Server-based dental software is faster and more affordable than cloud-based.

Specialty

Most platforms are designed with the general dentist in mind, so they can reliably handle all aspects of dentistry. However, some are expressly designed for orthodontists, pedodontics, endodontists, periodontists, or oral surgeons.

Paperless

In the modern era, most systems at least offer paperless charts and scheduling. However, if your practice wants to be totally paperless, make sure the software also includes paperless patient forms, patient communication tools, internal communication tools, and digital billing too.

Add-Ons/ Auxiliary Programs

Some dental programs don’t offer practice management. Instead, they specialize in providing an auxiliary service like automated reminders. They can help bridge the gap if your practice management software is lacking. However, these stand-alone systems don’t typically integrate with your practice management software as well as something offered by that company, so you may find your team becomes disjointed jumping between systems or patients getting lost in the shuffle.  

Common Dental Software Program Features

Most practice management software (PMS) will offer the same core features, though they may look and function a bit differently. In this next section, we’ll go over the basic modules and what each does.

Clinical Chart

Electronic health records, or EHRs, became a major buzzword a few years back when healthcare practitioners were incentivized for meeting certain EHR standards. With that in mind, digital dental charts are fairly robust, housing a patient’s full medical history, dental history, and chart notes as well as periodontal charting.

Additional things to consider in the chart module are:

  • Automated Imports: You should be able to import patient form data without having to manually enter it. You’ll be more efficient and reduce errors.
  • User-Friendly: Take the chart module on a dry run and see what documenting a new patient exam is like. You should be able to move fluidly through each diagnosis and be able to identify a patient’s condition at a glance.
  • Streamlined Perio Charting: Bring your hygienists in on this one! Offices often skip full-mouth charting because it’s tedious, cumbersome, and generally requires two people. However, some programs offer hands-free perio charting options and tools to speed the process, so you can have comprehensive documentation for your practice and educate patients.
  • Notes: Look for a program that helps make notetaking easy and boosts consistency by offering automated notes or shortcut keys.
  • Sync: The best programs will keep all your patient logs in one place, whether they’re made from a patient communication tool, a prescribing tool, or other modules. This eliminates the need for manual entry and prevents communication issues.
  • Filtering: With all that data in one place, your charting program should include filtering options, so you can easily see the information that’s relevant to the task at hand.
  • Graphics: Great graphics are helpful for your team and can serve as visual aids for patients to boost case acceptance.
Fast Fact: You can auto-generate chart
notes for greater efficiency and standardization between providers.

Appointment Scheduling

The right dental scheduling software will not only make your days run more smoothly but will help boost your production too. Ideally, your scheduling module will automatically pull patient data when you’re making an appointment, so you won’t need to reenter treatment or recall information.

A few other things to look for in dental scheduling software include:

  • Custom Views: People on your team will require different information. You should be able to change up what information is displayed and how it’s displayed with ease.
  • Tools to Help Build the “Ideal” Schedule: Each type of dental scheduling software will function differently, but you’ll need tools that can help standardize scheduling no matter who’s at the keyboard and built-in features that naturally encourage the team to book in a manner that encourages clinical efficiency. For example, Practice-Web will automatically choose an appointment length based on the procedures selected and makes it easy to see conflicts in the schedule with appointment bars. You can also use appointment rules and blockouts to encourage better scheduling. Because each dentist will have his or her own preferences, these are customizable.
  • Chair-Fillers: Keeping your chairs full is a process that starts with good communication, including notifications at the time appointments are made and up through the appointment day. Automatically generated lists of patients with incomplete treatment, overdue recalls, broken appointments, and so forth are also essential. Ideally, you should be able to reach out to everyone on a list with just a few clicks rather than spending hours on the phone.

Insurance Billing

The best dental software programs also include billing tools for ease of use. This spans the full scope from pre-treatment benefit tracking through collections. A few things to look for on the insurance side are highlighted below.

  • Company, Plan, and Individual Details: For ease of use, insurance benefit information should be editable at a company, group plan, and individual level, plus have all essential fields to allow you to keep paperless records.
  • Manual Insurance Billing: Your program should allow you to use the latest CDT codes and automatically generate insurance claims using a variety of claim forms. While the latest ADA claim form is standard, your office may work with a Medicaid or other plan which requires an alternate version.
  • Clearinghouse Integration: Clearinghouses connect your practice to the individual insurance companies via electronic data interchange (EDI). Some dental software programs tie you down to a single clearinghouse while others, like Practice-Web, integrate with many and allow you to choose. Ensure your PMS integrates with a clearinghouse that can:
    • Automate Insurance Verifications: With a good clearinghouse and solid integration, your PMS can import benefit and eligibility information, saving your team hours on the phone each day.
    • Send Electronic Claims and Pre-Auths: Practices that send claims electronically can get payments weeks faster than those that send via traditional mail.
    • Electronic Attachments: Some clearinghouses allow you to send x-rays and other documentation electronically, eliminating the need for paper claims altogether.
    • Remittance Advice: Without electronic remittance advice, practices may wait weeks to discover there was an issue with a claim sent but when the process is digitized, you can identify a problem right away and correct it without spending hours on the phone.
    • Electronic EOBs and Payments: For a complete end-to-end solution that can largely eliminate manual entry and trips to the bank, you’ll want an option that allows you to accept insurance payments digitally too.

Additional Resource: Demystifying Electronic Dental Claims: How They Work & Why You Need Them

Bonus Feature:

Patient Billing and Payments

While most practice revenue comes through insurance billing, a good dental software program will feature a robust set of patient billing tools as well.

  • Statements: Even though many practices still mail statements, you can get faster payments with less effort with digital statements, often sent via text or email.
  • Aging Follow-Up: Your patient billing software should change up the message patients are seeing based on the age of the bill. You may also want to explore platforms that integrate with collections companies or payment accelerators to help ensure payments are made while managing everything from a single dashboard.
  • Payment Plans: It’s also helpful to have software that will let you create payment plans for patients. Even if you don’t use this regularly or offer it as a service, it will make unexpected bills easier for your patients to manage and, therefore, more likely to pay.
  • Payment Options: The easier you make it to pay, the more likely and faster your patients are likely to pay. With the right set of merchant services tools, your patients can pay at the office or remotely and the payments will automatically appear in your PMS.

Bonus Feature:

Treatment Plans

The right treatment planning tools can dramatically improve case acceptance and make it easier for your team to manage a patient’s care down the line.

  • Multiple Options: Oftentimes, practices will use the “good, better, best” approach with treatment planning, meaning patients will receive a myriad of choices and will be able to make a decision about which path to follow from there. Your software should allow for this.
  • Estimates: Accurate estimates are important for practice cash flow and patient satisfaction. Ensure your treatment plans pull the latest patient insurance information, so the system can automatically perform all calculations.
  • Graphics: It’s easier for patients to understand their needs and options when graphics are used, so choose a system that automatically creates them based on the patient’s needs whenever possible.
  • Digital Sign and Send: As part of your paperless workflow, patients should be able to sign their treatment plans digitally. You’ll also want to be able to send a copy by text or email so the patient can review it later.

Team Management

Not all PMS will offer team management tools. However, the following options are sometimes present and can help keep your office running smoothly.

  • Timeclock: An integrated timeclock makes it easy to monitor hours, set conditions, and handle payroll.
  • Interoffice Messaging: Being able to message the team as needed keeps the lines of communication open without needing to run back and forth all day.
  • Task Lists/ Pop-Ups: Patient care is the priority, but your staff no doubt has side work that ranges from ordering through contacting patients and maintenance tasks. It’s much easier to track it all when it’s in the same software you’re using everything else for.

Reporting

Data-driven morning huddles help practices achieve 30 percent more production according to Dental Intel research. A robust reporting system gives you access to a wealth of data, so it’s easy to see where your practice opportunities lie.

Bonus Feature:

Why Your Software Company Matters (and What to Look For)

The needs of your practice will shift over time, so it’s important to have software that can grow with you and meet your needs in a cost-effective way.

Longevity

Few dental software companies stand the test of time. Even if a particular company seems to offer a great platform, there’s little assurance they’ll still be around in a few years. That means you could be changing software rather quickly, which can be time-consuming and expensive.

Support

What type of ongoing support can you expect from the dental software company? Do they place restrictions on the number of questions you can ask when you call? Are their reps genuinely interested in helping your practice thrive? Check out online reviews to see what kind of reputation any provider you’re considering has.

Development

Find out what changes the company has recently made to the software. Updates are a positive sign that the company will grow with you and that they’re still committed to providing a cutting-edge product.

Choosing the Best Dental Software Add-Ons

Practices have needs that go beyond what traditional practice management software covers, such as communications, prescribing, and marketing. While you can purchase stand-alone products to handle, these tasks, integrated options sometimes referred to as e-services or Smart Tools, provided by your PMS company will typically work best as they leverage the same interface and keep you in your natural workflow. A few examples of these are outlined below.

Patient Communication

An effective patient communication strategy is at the heart of every well-run practice. Because most patient complaints are rooted in poor communication per the BMJ, and clear communication not only makes things run smoother but can boost your production as well, it’s important to have the right tools available.

While it may be true that you can often purchase third-party patient communication tools if your core dental software doesn’t offer them, ensure they integrate with your software to avoid silos. For example, if a patient messages you, you don’t want their message to land in a separate program that you may or may not check right away. You want those messages in your natural workflow, just as pwConnect, Practice-Web’s patient texting service, works.

Additional Resource: Essential Guide to Refining Your Patient Communication Strategy

The root cause of most patient complaints is poor communication.

Patient Texting

 A full 97 percent of the population admits to ignoring calls from businesses and unknown numbers according to ZipWhip research. Not surprisingly, 78 percent of practices say they play phone tag at least somewhat often. Postcards aren’t any better, costing a typical practice $3,394 per month ($35,700 per year!) in missed appointments, labor, and materials costs.

Conversely, text messaging is 209 percent more effective and 95 percent of texts are responded to within three minutes per SMS comparison data. As you compare patient texting tools, ensure your program offers:

  • Automated Text Reminders: Your texting service should connect directly with your dental software to automatically send out appointment reminders and confirm them in your system when patients respond affirmatively. This alone can save your practice hours of confirmation calls and phone tag each day!
  • On-Demand Texting: Ensure your program also lets you send out messages as needed to individuals and groups.
  • Two-Way Texting: Once patients realize you can text them, they want to text you for everything too! Two-way texting, especially when your landline and text number are the same, eliminates barriers for patients and allows you to communicate effortlessly in real-time.
  • Attachments: The ability to send text message attachments opens doors for practices. From sharing treatment plans through billing statements and post-op instructions, texting puts critical data in the hands of patients quickly and easily. As not all patient texting services offer this, be sure you select a provider that does.

Bonus Feature:

Mass Email

More than 90 percent of adults between the ages of 18 and 64 use email per Statista. It’s a useful tool for connecting with patients who don’t text and for longer communications. Plus, it can help you build relationships between visits and allow you to send critical information to your entire patient base with just a few clicks. When you’re choosing between providers, be on the lookout for:

  • Drag-and-Drop Builder: With drag-and-drop builders, you can send custom, branded, and professional-looking emails regardless of your technical background.
  • Analytics: At a bare minimum, you’ll want to be able to track opens and clicks. That way, you can see what types of content and subject lines your patients respond to and increase engagement over time.
  • Simplified Import: Extracting your patient emails and importing them into your email program can be time-consuming and cumbersome. Whenever possible, use an integrated solution that will automatically pull your patient details.

Patient Portals

Although you can obtain consent to send patients info via text and email, they’re not, by their very nature, HIPAA-compliant. The easiest way to send messages and maintain HIPAA compliance is through specialized patient portals. In patient studies, 45 percent of report wanting to be able to use a mobile device to check their health info too. Your patient portals can serve both purposes, allowing for free-flowing communication between the practice and patient and delivering essential info 24/7.

Fast Fact: 45% of patients want to check their health information on a mobile device.

Dental Practice Marketing

It’s easy to think that marketing your dental practice is all about attracting new patients, but the reality is your existing patients are far more likely to take you up on your offers and they can help you attract new patients through word-of-mouth marketing too.

Mass Texting

Even though we previously touched on texting in the patient communication section, it’s important to mention text message marketing by itself, particularly because many services that allow you to send text message reminders or one-on-one messages do not allow you to send mass texts for marketing. Here are a few examples of when you might want to send mass texts:

  • End-of-Year Reminders: Give patients a nudge to use their insurance benefits and complete treatment before the year concludes.
  • Start-of-Year Reminders: Reach patients who used all their benefits last year and still have incomplete treatment that they have fresh benefits to use when their year rolls over.
  • Summer Reminders: Reach all parents of children with treatment and recall needs at once and nudge them to book during school breaks like summer.
  • Schedule Updates: Reach all your patients at once to notify them if you have an emergency closure and/ or are reopening. This is also great if your practice hours change and you want to let everyone know at once.
  • Discounts: Offering a special on cosmetic treatment? Let everyone know at once. You can also target specific groups, such as those with dental implants in their treatment plans and so forth.

Mass Email Marketing

When you send your patients regular emails, you keep your practice at the top of minds, build relationships, and help solidify your providers as the authority on oral health concerns. Make sure your provider allows you to:

  • Promote Specials: Without some form of external marketing, less than 10 percent of your patients will hear about practice specials any given month.
  • Send Newsletters: E-newsletters have a 70 percent higher response rate than postcards per Dental Economics data. Include a mix of helpful information and promos to keep patients engaged and opening your messages.

Reputation Management/ Online Reviews

Nearly 90 percent of the population reads online reviews according to Bright Local research. On average, they read about 10 reviews before making a decision and 73 percent will only look at reviews added in the past month. Further research shows people are willing to pay 31 percent more for a company with good reviews and data from Harvard echoes the sentiment, indicating each additional star a business has on Yelp corresponds with an additional five to nine percent boost in revenue. Plus, online reviews are good for your search engine rank which is essential if you want to attract the 18 percent of people studies show will automatically choose the first dentist they see listed in Google.

But, how do you get those reviews, particularly when it takes 40 positive reviews to overcome one bad one per Inc. Magazine? Simply put: with an online reviews and reputation management tool for dentists. As you explore the options, look for one that’s:

  • Automated: Requests for reviews should be automatically sent after a patient’s visit while the information is still fresh.
  • Vetting: While you can send reviews to every person, you never know what will turn up. Instead, it’s preferable to have patients rate your practice internally first. That way, you can catch any issues and make corrections if need be before something becomes a public affair. Those who leave positive remarks for your internal surveys can then be sent a second link to review you on external sites, giving your practice a leg up.

Additional Resource: 5 Ways Online Reviews Build Stronger Dental Practices

Fast Fact: Nearly 90% of patients read online reviews before selecting a dentist.

Clinical

In addition to communication and marketing tools, you’ll also find a variety of clinical applications you can use in conjunction with your software.

Teledentistry     

In recent years, dentists have found a myriad of ways to leverage teledentistry tools. It’s often rebranded as “Virtual Smile Consultations” and used to draw in new patients. Nearly three-quarters use it for prescribing remotely, particularly in states that require visual contact with patients as a requirement, per Dentaquest. Best of all, 97 percent of patients report being satisfied with their telehealth visits.

The catch: most platforms are not HIPAA-compliant. During the pandemic, more than 40 percent of dentists offering teledentistry services took advantage of temporarily relaxed HIPAA guidelines and turned to services like Skype. Going forward, that’s not an option, so using a dedicated teledentistry tool is a must. A few things to look for in your teledentistry service include:

  • HIPAA Compliance: Again, most standard video conferencing software is not HIPAA compliant, so make sure the one you select is.
  • Interoperability: Patients and dentists alike may be accessing the video conference from different types of devices, so it should work in any browser without the need for special downloads.
  • Archive: Recordings should become part of the patient’s record. Ensure the service you choose creates cataloged archives that are easily accessed as needed.

Additional Resource: 10 Essential Steps to a Successful Teledentistry Launch

Bonus Feature:

Electronic Prescribing

New prescribing laws are sweeping the nation. The majority of states now require electronic prescriptions over paper at least some of the time and it’s a requirement for participation in some government programs. A good electronic prescribing tool is a must.

The vast majority of options leverage the SureScripts network, which now has data on 98 percent of the population. It links practitioners with pharmacies for easy prescribing and allows providers on the network to see helpful data like other prescriptions a patient is taking and which pharmacies can accept the prescription. However, once you move past this network, prescribing tools vary quite a bit. A few things you’ll want to look for include:

  • Synchronization of Data: Ideally, your e-prescribing platform will integrate with your PMS, so you don’t need to manually enter patient data in the prescribing tool and any medications you prescribe are automatically added to the patient’s chart. This boosts clinical efficiency and safety.
  • In-Workflow Alerts: Stand-alone products may offer alerts, but if the dentist isn’t actively using them, they’re easy to miss. That puts you back at square one with back-and-forth calls between pharmacies. Instead, look for a platform that integrates with your PMS, so refill requests and issues with prescriptions appear in the dentist’s natural workflow and aren’t overlooked.
  • Favorites: It sounds simple, but the ability to mark commonly prescribed medications and nearby pharmacies as favorites is a huge time saver that isn’t offered on all platforms.
  • Medication Information: For years, Lexicomp for Dentistry has been the gold standard when exploring contraindications and oral side effects of medications. It normally costs hundreds of dollars but some services include it free, so be on the lookout when you’re exploring your options.

Additional Resource: ePrescriptions: Why Dentists Need Them and How they Work

Bonus Feature:

Paperless Forms

Paperless patient forms are beneficial for clinicians and your business office alike. Patients love them too. It They can complete their paperwork before their appointment when they’re relaxed and have time to go through everything. Practice-Web, for example, offers paperless forms free to all practices with paid Support. These can be sent via a link or shared through your practice website. Patients can fill them out anywhere on any device. They automatically import into the software, saving time and reducing manual entry too. However, around 15 percent of the population does not have a smartphone, per Pew. It’s helpful to have a digital in-office option too. In these cases, a dedicated iPad app with patient forms is a huge help. It allows practices to be totally paperless regardless of what kind of device a patient has (or doesn’t have).  A few forms you practice should consider digitizing include:

  • New Patient Forms
  • Health History Updates
  • Financial Agreements
  • Treatment Plans
  • Consent Forms
Fast Fact: Practice-Web dentists saved 683 trees last year by going paperless.

Business Office

There are additional tools your front office may use in conjunction with your PMS to improve efficiency and revenue. We’ll explore a few of the most common below.

Call Pop/ Smart Caller ID

Sometimes referred to as Call Pop, Smart Caller ID automatically pulls up patient information each time a call comes in. Oftentimes, you’ll see essential details, like balances, recall status, treatment plan, insurance, and family info. Armed with this info, teams work more efficiently. They can make the most of each call to boost revenue and patient satisfaction. Some programs also include call logs. This lets you check missed calls and follow up with new patients who aren’t in your system.  

Merchant Services

Most practice management software options include some form of payment ledger. The best ones will handle all your payments for you, offering features like merchant card processing, so you can ditch terminals and process everything in your PMS.

Pay-by-Text

Nearly half of all consumers would use a pay-by-text service if they felt it was secure. Yet, just two percent of businesses offer it per ZipWhip. Many practices leverage it to accelerate patient payments by sending out payment requests as insurance payments are processed. Others simply use it as a contactless payment option or in conjunction with their virtual visits and patient portals.

Patient Payment Plans

Many practices turn to third-party financing companies to fund patient payment plans. But, these can be incredibly expensive for the practice—especially if you’re offering patients a promotional interest-free period. Whether you’re looking for a way to offer all patients easier ways to pay for treatment or simply need a solution that helps patients with the occasional unexpected bill, it’s helpful to have an affordable patient payment plan solution.

eInsurance Options

We covered insurance options in the core software section. It’s important to note that the EDI options discussed are not typically part of the core features. However, practices with full EDI adoption (eligibility, claim submission, remittance advice, status inquiries, payments, pre-auths) save an average of 30 minutes per patient seen. This amounts to more than $41,000 in annual savings.

Online Scheduling

Research shows more than three-quarters of patients want to self-appoint and 40 percent of appointments are booked after hours. That means an online scheduling tool can help fill your chairs, attract new patients, and boost patient satisfaction.

Bonus Feature:

Additional Dental Software Considerations

Looking beyond basic features and functionality, there are a few more things to take into consideration when choosing the best dental software program for your office.

Interoperability

Look for a PMS that works well with a variety of other programs, especially x-ray and imaging software. For example, Practice-Web bridges with more than 50 programs, so you can bring your preferred ones with you.

Security and Compliance

Although security and compliance are easy to overlook until there’s a problem, you’ll want to ensure each person has his or her own login with specific permissions and that the system is secure. A few areas to consider include:

  • HIPAA Compliance
  • General Security
  • User Permissions
  • Auditing

Converting Your Database vs Starting Fresh

If you’re not presently maintaining digital patient records, then you’ll be starting off with a blank database. If you are already using a PMS, then you’ll want to find out what the database conversion process entails for any software you’re considering. Not only will you need to find out exactly what imports and what does not, but you’ll need to get pricing on the conversion too, as it’s generally not included in quoted startup costs unless you ask about it.

At Practice-Web, we give each dentist a conversion checklist. It walks you through each section of the software, so you can see how your data looks in advance. We also include a free test conversion of data to make the process as easy as possible.

Dental Software Prices

It can be difficult to compare dental software prices. Packages differ. Companies may charge by the user, dentist, location, or alternate scheme too. In our research, we found Practice-Web to be the most affordable dental practice management software. Competing server-based dental software offering fewer features topped out at around $350. Cloud-based options range from around $250 per month for stripped-down versions to well over $1,000 per month.

Bear in mind most platforms do not include training. Setup/ install and database conversions are almost always an additional expense too. These dental software prices are not usually included in any base pricing you’re offered. You’ll need to ask about them and any e-services or Smart Tools your practice may want to leverage.

If dental software prices are a major consideration for your practice, you can check out Practice-Web’s transparent pricing here. Or, request a consult with one of our software experts here.

What is the Best Dental Management Software?

Although we’re certainly biased toward Practice-Web, we also recognize that there is no singular best dental management software. How your practice operates and what it needs will vary based on all the factors outlined here. If you think Practice-Web might be the best dental management software for your needs, start with a free demo. Our team will walk you through how to use the software and set you up with a free trial version, so you can explore it on your own too.

Dental Software Program FAQ

Need quick answers? We’ll go over some dental software program FAQs below.

What is Dental Software?

Dental software helps practices manage everything from patient scheduling through records and billing. Some of the best dental software also offers advanced patient communication, clinical, and marketing tools too.

What Are the Types of Dental Software?

Generally speaking, there are two types of dental software: server-based and cloud-based. Server-based is usually housed in the dental office or on a cloud server the practice is responsible for. Cloud-based software is managed and maintained by the company that produces it.

What is the Best Dental Software?

The best dental software will vary based on your practice needs. We find most dentists are thrilled when they discover they can get a powerful and affordable program with Practice-Web.

What Are Dental Software eServices?

Dental software e-services, also called Smart Tools, are additional programs that work in tandem with your practice management system (PMS). They help you do more, work more efficiently, or generate more profit. Examples include patient texting, electronic prescribing, mass emails, and teledentistry software.

What Software Do Dentists Use?

Most practices use general practice management software. It’s specifically designed for dentists and includes electronic health records (EHRs), scheduling, billing, and more.

What is the Most Popular Dental Software?

Helping dentists thrive for decades, Practice-Web is one of the most popular dental software options on the market today.

How Much Does Dental Software Cost?

Dental software cost varies depending on the features and the type you choose. Our research found Practice-Web to be the most affordable by far. Other server-based options cost hundreds more per month. Cloud-based dental software costs more than $1,000 more per month in some cases.

Which Dental Software is Best?

It’s difficult to know which dental software is best without testing them for yourself. If you’d like to explore Practice-Web, please contact us for a complimentary demo and free trial version.

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