There are a number of steps to take in putting together a quality dental website. Whether you are starting from scratch or you are upgrading your current website, you will want to follow these steps.
Dental Website: Four Areas to Consider
There is more than meets the eye when developing a new website. Let’s discuss the 4 areas you should consider:
Dental Website | One: Design and Development
- Appearance: Design is critical, not only from the stand point it is going to attract and keep someone on your site but that your website is up to date. This conveys, that so are other facets of your practice – waiting room, equipment and treatment methods. Caution – don’t over sell your website design; if you have a dated dingy office, a new patient will probably feel duped if they visit your office and it doesn’t measure up to your website. Also a modern site should be open and easy to digest; using lots of pictures and interactive modules, which will keep potential patients on your site for a longer period of time.
- Content: Here is the hard part. To do it correctly, your content needs to be original. Original content is more likely to be read and convey the personality of the practice. It is also highly rewarded by the search engines. Note: most web companies who tell you they can put your site up in a week to 10 days will most likely use duplicated content, that they use on multiple websites they build. Too much duplicated content will be penalized by the search engines and will hinder your search results.
- Coding: A well coded website will enable you to make the website perform the way you want it to, in order to be unique. But also make it easy for the patient to easily find what they are looking for. It also helps the search engines index what your website is about, so you can rank for the proper keywords.
- On-Page Optimization: A quality website will use the words that you want people who search online for a dentist, to help find you in their online search. For instance, if you are known for Invisalign and you are a primary provider you may want to use keyword terms and phrases with the word “Invisalign” in it. Each page of your site is best optimized when it focuses on one keyword or keyword cluster – remember the keywords need to be used strategically, not overdone and in a context that sounds natural. You also need to use internal links to help potential patients easily find the information they came for.
When interviewing a possible developer, you better make sure they address each of the areas above in depth. Without expertise in all four areas, you will have a subpar website that will not perform well in the search engines.
Dental Website | Two: Interview Developers
Your next step is to interview potential dental website developers to help you find one that can do the job well. Another note of caution here, unless you have extensive experience in development, I advise you to NOT try to develop a website yourself or have your office manager or your brother-in-law do it for you. They will probably use a cookie-cutter program offered by GoDaddy, Wix, or one of the many other DIY programs available. They are limited, hard to optimize – rarely show up in searches and hard to format – and they often look unprofessional when complete.
Most developers I see are usually quality designers, but do the bare minimum in the rest of the areas. Rarely do you find a company that addresses all four areas well. To do so they need a number of employees specialized in each segment.
Dental Website | Three: Budget and Site Size
Budget/Size/Time: Before you budget for a new dental website, you will want to consider a few things. Have a price range in mind before you start the interview process. If they are under or over that range, proceed with caution. A quality website should be between $4,000 to $7,500. A deluxe website will be around $9,000. As one practice told me, “If you want a Cadillac – you are going to have to pay for a Cadillac”.
Most developers will want you to pay half upfront and the remaining half of the payment prior to launch. Remember to save some of your budget back for promoting you website. A well-optimized website will attract some new patients, but fresh content (blogs, social media, and ongoing search engine optimization) will attract the lions share of your new patients.
Also, have an outline of the pages you want and how many there are. 10 to 15 pages should be plenty to provide a patient with all the necessary information they need to make an informed decision. Remember, we don’t have to “data dump” onto your prospects, YOU are the EXPERT. However, we do need to communicate the services and treatments you offer and help them feel comfortable to take the next step … schedule their appointment with you!
Dental Website | Four: Time
Be prepared to spend some time helping to develop a quality dental website, it should take 6 to 8 weeks for the developer. Any holdup will usually be because the practice hasn’t provided content, so get started now.
Download your Free Report: 20 Dental Website Design Tips
Red Star Marketing Offers Custom Dental Website Design and Development
We’re not going to churn out the low-cost, premade content site that you would get by using a lot of “corporate dental website builders”. Also, we are not the high-priced, ultra-customized site builder that gives you way more than you need. Call us and let’s have a conversation about what you want. Let’s see if we’re a match to work together. If so, we’ll get started!
Red Star Marketing is located in Kansas City and works with dental practices locally and nationally on all phases of marketing, including dental website design, internet dental marketing, dental marketing services and dental postcard campaigns. We are always ready to accept new dental marketing projects. For a personalized dental marketing assessment and quote, please contact Karen at 913-244-8105.
This blog was updated on 1/15/22 by Karen Lind Russell