March 3, 2020
by Oral Health
When it comes to searching for a new dentist, our data revealed that a referral from a family member or friend is typically the first step. But step two is a simple Google (or internet) search, which means that your website must be engaging upon first click. Simply put, website content is more important than you think.
Dentists often make the mistake of assuming the success of their website hinges exclusively on it being visually appealing. False.
It’s obvious that your practice website needs the necessities – location, contact information, hours of operation. But have you considered additional content that your patients are looking for? Online reviews, FAQs regarding procedures, educational tools, or perhaps self-published articles could be the reason new patients walk through your front door.
Before you start thinking about the look of your website, you need to have content prepared. The reason for this being that your website should be built around content, not the other way around. Content is the most important aspect when it comes to boosting your SEO ranking. Did you know that Google looks at the content of a website to see how it should rank depending on its relevancy and authenticity to the topic?
From our survey, a mere nine per cent of patients consider website design a criterion when searching online for a dentist. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy an esthetically-pleasing website but you can’t have a beautiful landscape with weak, or even worse, zero content. Your homepage is the most frequently visited page on your practice website, therefore, it should contain all of the necessary information that patients are looking for. Though the look of your website is important, it’s essential to not hyper focus on the design. Create an easy-to-navigate hub for all things related to your dental practice. And be sure to keep in mind that it’s all about the user experience.
An interesting stat from our survey told us that 23 per cent of patients prefer to learn about new technologies and procedures from educational videos. Giving your current and potential patients the option to watch a short, to the point video on various procedures, using different technologies that they may not be aware of, could be a game changer. Having a potential patient feel confident enough to book an appointment after watching an educational video is a win-win – a win for the practice by gaining a new patient, and a win for the patient to feel at ease knowing what their procedure will entail.
Patients visiting your website need to see proof that they can trust you. Potential new patients need to see and believe you can do the things you claim you can do. If you’re a published author in a clinical journal, provide that content. If your practice has won any awards, highlight them on your website. Your education and affiliations also provide credibility to your practice. Be sure to speak to your training and continuing education in your personal biography page.
Remember, potential new patients are always browsing online to learn more about you and your practice. It’s worth taking the time to make sure once they visit, they turn into a new patient!
As seen in the print issue of Oral Health March 2020