A website is a website, right? After all, once you have one, it gets to work in the background reeling in potential patients while you sleep.
That statement may be right in part, but the truth is that not all websites are created equal. In fact, a badly functioning or old website could be doing your dental business more harm than good.
As a dental content writer, I get to see a lot of dental websites, and I mean a lot. While some of them are clean and contemporary, easy to navigate, and regularly updated, others are about as far removed from this as possible, with poor or clunky navigation, outdated promotions and content that hasn’t been updated since the Stone Age.
So, while the former may indeed be assisting your business, the latter will be doing more harm than good
Someone is looking for a dentist and they walk past your door. Upon first impressions they see that the shop door has chipped paint, the window houses a substantial crack and when peering inside, the reception area looks tired and jaded.
Are they likely to walk in and enquire about an appointment? Probably not.
And it’s the same with your dental website. Your website is essentially your online storefront; and in a world where 98% of consumers use the internet to find out about local businesses before they get in touch, it’s easy to see how an old website can badly affect your patient footfall.
Is it time for a rebrand?
If your website is five years or older, then it’s probably time for a facelift.
Improved search engine rankings – Search engines continually crawl websites looking for changes. If they see that you’ve made recent updates or changes, they’ll index your website more frequently, leading to improved rankings.
Increased traffic – While an old website can kill new patient footfall, a rebranded website that is more responsive, user-friendly and easy to navigate will increase on-site traffic while ensuring users spend more time on your site.
Improved trust – As users spend more time on your site, they get to know your services and treatments and what makes your clinic tick. No more high bounce rates. This, in turn, helps website visitors to build up a level of trust long before they book an appointment.
Increased footfall – Because your site is now receiving more traffic and the framework and content align to show you in your best light, you should start to receive more qualified leads. A steady stream of leads means your website is doing its job and provided the training is in place, increased leads should equate to increased patient footfall.
The bottom line is that a quality dental website generates more enquiries – Fact!
So how do you know if your old website needs a refresh?
Take an impartial view
Get a member of staff to go through your website with an impartial view. If it isn’t easy to navigate, the content is out of date, or pages seem to take an age to load, then you could probably benefit from a website refresh.
Outdated content woes
Evidence suggests that Google devalues websites that haven’t updated their content in the last six months or more. The longer this goes on, the lower down the search engine you’ll drop. If this is the case, it might be time for a refresh.
Alternatively, if your video content or sliders still use flash animation (this was phased out at the back end of 2020), it may no longer play using certain browsers. Flash animation problems could be the cause of any bugginess and as a result, is a good indication that it’s definitely time for a refresh.
Not optimised across all devices
Finally, if your old website is optimised for desktop use only and doesn’t adapt to fit tablet or mobile applications, then it’s time for a change. According to research, around 32% of all website visits are now conducted via a mobile device, so if you want your website user experience to be the same across all platforms, you could do with a revamp.
The bottom line
Customer experience is everything and primarily starts with your dental website. A poorly functioning or old website creates an unfair impression of you and one that could kill your business without you realising it.
With this in mind, it’s well worth spending some time ensuring your online shop window is the best it can be. If that means a website revamp, the investment is going to be worth it.
If you don’t want to fall foul of decreasing footfall and need a steady stream of quality, informative dental content, get in touch with the team at Dental Writers. Drop me a line at email@example.com and let me know how I can help you today.