How Is PetWellClinic Is Rethinking Modern Veterinary Care?
There’s no easy way to say it.
Going to the vet can be stressful.
Not only for the pet and the owner, but even for the veterinarians and assistants themselves.
The stress of booking appointments, sitting around at the clinic with an anxious pet, dealing with costs, technology and insurance issues, it all can amount to quite the headache.
Meanwhile, as we illustrated in our 2020 Pet Industry Snapshot, the 85 million homes with animals in them means pet franchises have been booming. The pet market has reached nearly $100 Billion recently. Particularly with an increasingly remote workforce, if there was ever a moment to have another four legs around the house, 2020 was it.
These two undeniable trends have collided, and we wanted to share our perspective on how pet care can be improved. Or should we say, how it is already being improved.
At Oakscale, in July of 2020 we made a high conviction bet on the pet industry, specifically by taking on an emerging concept called PetWellClinic, which has since blossomed to 80+ units under development nationwide. Over the past year, we’ve learned a lot about running and scaling a veterinary franchise, namely, how the experience compares with the traditional options available to pet owners.
We’re biased obviously, but we truly believe PetWellClinic offers a superior experience. To show how, we’ll break down the entire customer/pet journey:
- Making Appointments
- Wait Time
- Clinic Experience
- Pricing Transparency
- Overall Experience
It’s 2021 and making appointments is effectively a thing of the past. Need a ride? One will be there in 5 minutes. Have a sore throat? Just walk into an urgent care. Dinner reservation? OK, well you got us there, but technology is heavily involved and there’s no longer a need to call the restaurant.
So where is the vet industry? The vast majority (we’re estimating 98%) not only require appointments, but they are so behind technologically that people often have to pick up the phone and talk to a real live human being (the horror!) to get an appointment.
At PetWellClinic, there’s no need for an appointment. Just pick the day and time that works best for you and bring in your dog or cat. You can even put your name on the list online before you leave home so that you’re first in line when you arrive.
Most veterinary clinics are booking appointments weeks or even months in advance. If it’s an emergency, you can and should head to an emergency room. However, what if it’s not an emergency, but it’s not something that can’t wait for 2 weeks? For example, if your dog is coughing, it’s something you’d like to get checked out now but not something that justifies paying an ER bill.
That’s where PetWellClinic saves the day. Address all of your pet’s preventative needs, wellness checkups, and minor ailments and illnesses at your own convenience, even the same day Fido starts coughing.
We’re all familiar with how appointments work, whether it’s for ourselves, or for our pets. YOU need to arrive 10 minutes early to complete paperwork. THEY will get to you when they get to you. And as it turns out, the national average for “getting to you” at the vet is 17 minutes PAST the appointment time.
At PetWellClinic, the average time of the entire visit, including waiting time, is just 30 minutes. The entire experience is designed to be respectful of you, your pets, and your time. You’ll not only find it efficient, but you’ll find that you’re treated with kindness and openness throughout your visit.
Many veterinarians do not post their prices online nor in the clinic so it’s a gamble every time you go.
PetWellClinic believes in openness and transparency. That’s why prices are posted for everyone to consider, and all exams and/or treatments are paid for upfront so that there are no surprises.
You’re also likely to find that the pricing is more affordable than other vets in town.
Back to our point earlier about the year being 2021 (the future!). The majority of vet clinics still require good old fashioned pen and paper. And they often require it at every visit so you can make sure everything is “up to date.” If you need a copy of your pet’s vaccine records, just give them a call from your landline and have them fax it over.
PetWellClinic integrates technology into its experience without taking away from the human nature of veterinary care. Information is entered onto tablets at the clinic, or can be done online before you arrive. That information is stored securely and accessible to you through an online portal 24/7. The best part? The next time you come in, just type in your phone number and you’ll be recognized, greeted, and prompted to check-in.
There’s no doubt that PetWellClinic offers more convenience and accessibility than any other veterinary clinic out there. But people are often skeptical about how the experience can be better than a typical, appointment-based vet. They assume it’s a chaotic scene with doctors running around and cats chasing barking dogs.
Part of the reason the PetWellClinic experience isn’t anything like the scene described above is a bit of “secret sauce” baked into the technology. But the real key is that the business model itself allows for seamless operations despite unpredictability.
Most clinics are set up to be all things to all pets. This means vets are often tasked with being a radiologist, dentist, surgeon, and general practitioner all in one day. In order to do this, they need predictability through appointments. Complex procedures are unpredictable in terms of timing so they cannot accommodate walk-ins if the vets are tied up in surgeries all afternoon.
PetWellClinic simplified it’s business model to eliminate any complex procedures, and thereby eliminate unpredictability. They offer the majority of services and treatments (close to 90%) that are the reasons people typically take their pets to the vet. By only offering a simple, predictable menu of care, they can easily accommodate walk-ins no matter how busy it gets.
The cherry on top? By eliminating complex procedures, PetWellClinic also eliminates the need for expensive equipment, additional real estate, and additional staff which means they can offer more affordable pricing to valued clients and patients.
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As investors and franchisees ourselves, we’re confident that PetWellClinic is barking up the right tree. It’s the cat’s meow. This brand is truly scratching an itch in the marketplace. Okay enough animal puns. We’re boring the tails off of our readers.
BOTTOM LINE: Since August 2020, we have awarded 80 franchises to top operators and significantly increased year-over-year same store sales while managing the challenges of the pandemic. That’s unheard of.
Clearly, this isn’t the future, this is right now.
Oakscale is thrilled to help pets, their owners and veterinarians alike discover that going to the vet doesn’t have to suck. If you’d like to learn more about this franchise, drop us an email here!
Now if you’ll excuse me, my puppy just peed on the kitchen floor, and I need to go steal the neighbor’s copy of The New York Post.