Essentially, your dental website acts as a storefront – and it is open 24-hours a day. When your practice is closed and your receptionist has gone home, your website needs to uphold your brand and convey information to your patients. It needs to convince them to make an appointment with you, and there are essential elements that every dental practice website should include in order to achieve this.
Making an appointment is what’s known as a goal, and all your website efforts need to be focused in achieving this goal. Your dental clinic website needs to do a good job at persuasion, and at encouraging patients that yours is the practice most suited to their needs.
How Setting Goals Benefits Your Marketing Strategy
A strategy without goals is really just hoping for the best and doesn’t set the stage for anything measurable. By setting goals you can measure the efficacy of your marketing efforts – and evaluate your return on investment.
A lack of goals being achieved means something: either your strategy needs work, or your dental practice website isn’t quite up to standard.
Use An Intuitive Website Structure
We can’t tell you how often we assess dentist websites to find that the site maps they are using are not intuitive. What do we mean by intuitive? Well, there are essential pages and pieces of content that modern users expect to find when they are browsing online. Meeting this expectation really helps your audience to navigate around your website and find what they are looking for.
Why is this important?
Well, put your users’ journeys into context. If your patients are making comparisons between your practice and the one across the road they want to compare like with like.
If they have been very impressed with a competitor’s biography (because it highlights their experience and professionalism) and they cannot find the equivalent information on your dental website, they won’t be as impressed. If your dental clinic website isn’t up to standard, your audience may assume that your practice isn’t either.
Another important tip to remember is to separate all your services and areas of specialty. A patient who needs a dental implant doesn’t want to land on a general dentistry page and then be expected to find his or her way to your info on dental implants. The user wants to type a search query in and land on exactly the right information related to their search.
This means that if your dental practice offers both general and cosmetic dentistry, you should separate the content. An even better idea is to specify and further separate which services constitute general dentistry and which fall under cosmetic dentistry – and then to dedicate a page to each of them.
What Do Patients Want To See On A Dental Website?
Your mandatory site map should include these pages, with these labels. While it is tempting to get creative or use labels that might stand out (in your mind), to a user they may just be confusing.
A home page
Your home page should welcome your audience, illustrate your values and mission and provide quick links to the important content sections.
An about us page
Your About page should detail your unique selling propositions, as well as your professional history. Tell potential patients how you arrived here, what you did before this point, where you studied and who you are accredited by.
All of the elements on your dental clinic website build credibility, elevate your professionalism and paint you as an industry thought leader. It is also important to tell a human story – in what is sometimes a sterile environment – and give your patients something or someone to relate to.
A services landing page
Your services landing page should connect and link to all the sub-pages that it holds. This applies to the menu structure and the on-page content – and make sure the order on both is the same. You want to make it easy for your user to find what he or she is looking for, not challenge their ability to hold attention!
Dedicated pages for services
Very often patients search with a specific problem in mind so it really does help to create pages for each of the services that you offer on your dental practice website. Your pages should also be goal-oriented, which means all the effort you place on the page should be directed towards getting a user to make an appointment.
Contact information really does need its own page, and that is because most users expect to see it on a dental clinic website. Over and above this, each page should feature contact details to make it easy for your patients to get in touch.
And while you might prefer to receive booking enquiries over phone calls because it is easier to manage, remember that each patient is different, and everyone has their own preferences. Be sure to include a live phone number for visitors on mobile. If a patient is searching on mobile it is often easier simply to tap a number and call than to send an email.
Also remember that modern audiences really love to chat. So whether you embed a live chat on your dental clinic website, make use of Facebook messenger or have a Business WhatsApp line, don’t forget to include chat as a communication channel.
Yes, blogs have been promoted out of the ‘nice-to-have’ and into the essential list. That’s because today’s patients want to be informed and they want to know that their dental provider is going the extra mile to keep their dental practice website up to date.
Want to know how to improve your dental website? It’s time to get professional! Take us up on our offer for a free consultation, and let’s get your website up to speed.