Is It Time for a Website Redesign?
Take a look around your dental office – what do you see? Are there comfortable chairs to sit in, updated magazines to read and perhaps even a television to watch? Is it decorated in an updated palette? Is there plenty of space for the staff to do their work, patients to sit and for you to attend to said patients?
Odds are good that you understand the importance of creating a pleasant atmosphere for your patients and answered yes to most of those questions. Now imagine what it would be like if your office was small, crowded or stuck in the 1970s. What if you had to perform exams in the same room as your patients waited, or if all you gave them to read was a copy of Reader’s Digest from 1980? It’s safe to assume that your business would suffer tremendously from such a workspace, but did you realize that an outdated website can hurt you just as much? An antiquated website is the online version of olive green shag carpeting or hard, uncomfortable chairs – it will leave your visitors frustrated, uninterested and less likely to give you their business.
Ten Signs your Website is Due for an Update
Your website is often the first impression you give to the world and should always show your practice in the best light. But how can you know if yours is outmoded? We have ten easy ways to tell if your website is ready to go the way of the dinosaurs.
• It’s Slow – Like 100-year-old tortoise slow. If your website takes longer than three seconds to load, you’re going to lose visitors. Studies have shown that 40% of internet users will give up on a site that doesn’t load almost immediately, and if you’re losing online visitors, you’re going to start losing in-office patients, too. Although speed upgrades can be pricey, it is far less costly than the revenue you lose from a frustrating website will be.
• It’s Little – As technology has advanced, monitor resolution has also increased. Websites that aren’t built to be optimally viewed in the most recent 16:9 HD view will appear severely dated and will give the impression that your practice is outdated, too.
• You Can’t Even Find Yourself on Search Engines – If your website doesn’t come up on the first result page, you’re in trouble. Having your site optimized so that it easy to find is one of the fundamentals of having a successful online presence and if you can’t find your site during a cursory search, potential and current patients won’t be able to either.
• It Only Works with Older Browsers – If your site is only accessible via Internet Explorer, it is outdated by at least seven years. Many users access the internet via Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Apple’s Safari, and if they can’t get to your site that way, you’ll be missing out on potential new business.
• It isn’t Mobile Friendly – Approximately 30% of the 90 million people that have smartphones and/or tablets use them to access the internet. If your site is inaccessible from mobile devices, you’re losing out on incalculable amounts of potential revenue.
• It Doesn’t Link to Social Media – Social media has become the king of the internet, with 58% of people worldwide considering themselves regular users of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and others. Social media sites give you a chance to interact with your patients in a relaxed and modern way, so for the convenience of your patients, your website should link to your social media pages.
• It’s All About You – Although it might seem counterintuitive, your website should focus more on your patients than it does on you. Granted, it needs to include information about you and your practice, but the main emphasis should be on what you can do for your patients.
• Your Online Image is Stale – Is your website stuffy, poorly designed or look like it’s stuck in the 90s? If so, people are going to assume that your practice is just as outdated. Your site should show visitors how you are keeping current with new products, techniques and services. New logos, layouts and fonts will catch people’s eye and show you for the modern dentist you are.
• It Doesn’t Aim at your Target Market – Do you specialize in pediatric dentistry or are you a general practitioner? Is your clientele mainly older, or do they come in all ages? Whatever your patient base is, your website should target them with appropriate images and language.
• Your Competitors have Updated – Although what you do isn’t strictly a competition in a Coke vs. Pepsi sort of way, standing out in the dental crowd does still matter. If your main dental competitors have recently updated their websites, you should, too. Neglecting to do so will leave them looking shiny and new in comparison, which can hurt your bottom line.
If your website is suffering from any of these shortcomings, it’s time to splurge on an upgrade. Sprucing up your online presence will make a tremendous impact on spreading the word about your practice, which equates to business growth for you!