Few years back, promoting a dental practice was simple and straightforward. Business cards, traditional media and print listings were sufficient enough to keep a dental practice busy.
Today, operating a profitable dental practice requires a competent approach for you to continually attract mediocre patients through a variety of online marketing platforms, the most important of these being your practice website. However, only building a website is not enough.
The design, as well the information that is included in your dental practice website, must be strategically chosen. You do not need potential patients to merely arrive at your website. Instead, these visitors must be motivated by the content that you use and the details that you have shared to call your office for an appointment.
Your website should impress that new patient, but more importantly, it needs to get actually book an appointment.
Fundamental ingredient of a conversion-driven dental website
Offer Something for Free/Providing a great giveaway
Most people love when something is given away for free. So, before you do anything else, your first task is to figure out what services you’re going to offer to your website visitor. Every other patient uses Google and/or Bing to search for a dentist in their area. Having a search engine-optimized dental website means that local people who are looking for your services will be able to find you online.Some visitors are very cautious about free trials as they’ve been wounded by others who use the trials to lock them into something they don’t want. Don’t be that guy! Never deceive your patients with trickery. Managing their appointments should always be quick, easy, and pain free. Instead, follow the best SEO practices
- Include relevant keywords in your title tags.
- Create separate pages for your services/procedures.
- Add basic information, including your business name, address and phone number (NAP) to the footer on every page.
In addition, be sure to create a verified Google My Business page that links to your practice website and optimize your Google profile with relevant categories.
Ask for feedback
The research suggests that 15% of users, enjoying free trials, are likely to go on to become permanent patient with those numbers falling further over time. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t take action to boost your retention rates. When a patient ends their free trial and/or becomes a patient but leaves soon after a short while, ask them why, and – where possible – make changes that address their concerns.
How to build a patient-converting website?
Today, a dental website is not just a digital storefront or a brochure but it is a powerful, around-the-clock marketing tool that attracts and converts patients. However, it is necessary to understand the aspects of your dental practice that are most valuable to your potential patients.
A patient-converting website is designed to provide targeted and valuable content such as blogs, white papers, patient testimonials, videos and many more.
In order to build a dental website that attracts new patients and engages existing ones, you need to provide what they are looking for – access to valuable healthcare content that demonstrates your expertise and educates your target audience. This kind of content attracts new patients, retains existing ones, encourages content sharing and builds trust in your practice. Not to mention, your existence in social websites will guide new patients into your practice.
The best dental websites feature an engaging design that looks great and is easy to use. A new patient will not be willing to waste time trying to search for information about your staff or how to book an appointment. Your website should make it easy to find essential information and look simple and attractive.
Although the ultimate goal is to increase patient engagement, you can maintain consistency by using templates that blend well with each other. Here are some of the details that potential patients look for when searching for dental care providers:
- Dentist qualifications
- Specialty procedures and treatments
- Facilities or office features
- Work hours and location of the office
- Dental insurance and payment options
- Before-and-after photos and patient testimonials
Now, where to start?
The four best practices in dental website design that will help you to stand out from your competitors:
1. Show your prospects the benefits of treatment:
The primary purpose of your website to get more patients to book appointments. Therefore, the most important element is the copy. When potential patients visit your website, they want to know the benefits they will get by taking treatment at your practice. You can write about your education, years of experience, latest equipment and your state-of-the-art technology. However, if you wish to stand out, you will need to engage your patients in a conversation, empathize with their problems, explain how your treatment will make their lives better and guide them on how to book an appointment.
2. Ensure simple and mobile-friendly design:
Your website design should be simple and easy to navigate. However, just professional design and engaging content are not enough. Your website must be mobile-friendly, i.e.; it must display properly across multiple devices. Research suggests many of your patients will be looking at your website through their smartphones, and you should make sure your website displays properly across all devices.
3. Establish yourself as an expert:
Professional design and engaging content can create an impression of credibility. However, specialized content will show that you are a thought leader in your industry. By setting up a blog, and by regularly updating the blog with relevant content, you will establish your brand image by providing valuable information. Posting blogs will also improve your SEO ranking as Google places a high value on fresh, unique and consistent content.
4. Collect online patient reviews:
Just as a last check, your potential patients are going to look for online reviews for your dental practice. According to a Bright Local survey, almost 92 percent of customers read online reviews, and 68 percent of customers say that positive reviews make them trust a business more. If you can bag a testimonial from a well-known face, do so (perhaps by giving free samples to industry bloggers). Testimonials are an excellent form of social proof because not only do they show that yes, other people are loving the experience of getting dental treatment at your dental clinic, but they show how wonderfully they’ve got their oral issues solved. But if not, even a glowing review from an average Joe will still have a positive impact.
Leverage Your Visitor’s FOMO
FOMO, or the “fear of missing out” is that nagging feeling that if you don’t do something – say, check Facebook or go out with your friends – you’re going to miss out on something great. Despite these fears generally being unfounded, most of us are affected by FOMO to some extent, which means that as dental marketers, we’d be crazy not to exploit it.
To book or not to book
There are lots of reasons a visitor might choose not to book an appointment, but a big one is because they tell themselves, “I’ll do it later.” It’s procrastination, basically. In theory, that’s absolutely fine. I don’t care whether a visitor becomes a patient now, tonight, tomorrow, or next week. The problem is that – a lot of the time – later never comes.
Thankfully, the solution to this problem is pretty straightforward. We simply need to show the visitor that if they don’t complete their booking now, they might miss out on the chance to complete their booking at all, (or, at least, at that price).
Redesign Your “About Us” Page for Conversions
There’s just so much more that can be achieved with an “about us” page. Namely, you can use it to sell. In addition to the obvious – your story, mission statement, and staff profiles – you could also include:
- Social proof
- Statements that illustrate why you’re the best at what you do
- CTAs and/or an opt-in form
Implement Live Chat
Visitors love it when their queries are resolved almost in an instant, with minimal inconvenience. Live chat is an excellent tool for turning wanderers into visitors, primarily because it allows you to mediate before an undecided visitor abandons your service. A key feature of most live chat softwares is page tracking, which enables you to create “triggers” that will initiate the conversation with a patient when their activity signals they’re having a problem with their registration or their appointment bookings.