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There are nearly 100,000 dental practices in this country according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Virtually all of those practices have a website. Very few of those websites are constructed to attract new dental patients.
That last statement probably flies in the face of what you believe, particularly if you’re getting a decent amount of people calling for appointments. You might be one the rare exceptions. But have you ever asked yourself how many more new patients you could be getting?
Where Dentists Go Wrong
The biggest problem with most dentists’ marketing is that they think dentistry is about them. That’s an understandable attitude; dentists are advanced-degreed professionals who have mastered a wealth of knowledge and honed their abilities through diligent practice
Your prospects don’t care. Today, dentists are assumed to be competent, and the vast majority of patients are color-blind when it comes to the difference between a DDS and a DMD. They don’t know and don’t care about the differences in post-graduate training programs. And they won’t read your published papers. Those things impress other dentists, not your prospects.
Your website has to make clear to your prospects why they should choose you to solve their dental problems. That’s where dentists’ websites go wrong; they’re written to impress other dentists. Presenting your prospects with details that only other dental professionals will understand or care about doesn’t answer prospects’ vital questions:
- Will you make me comfortable while I’m in your practice?
- Will you understand my fear or embarrassment?
- Will you explain things so that I can understand?
- Will you make my life better by solving my dental problems?
If you can answer those questions in a way that your prospects can understand and relate to, they have very good reasons to choose you to solve their dental problems. If your website doesn’t give them reasons to choose you, they’ll go elsewhere for their dental care needs.
But First, Your Prospects Have to Find You
By one estimate, 300-500 new websites are being added to the internet every single minute. The competition for people’s attention is fierce, and that competition is largely based on who has the best content. But content also helps determine whether your prospects will find you online.
Google favors content that is expert, authoritative, and trustworthy when it comes to search engine results page rankings. There are two other crucial considerations – your online content has to do an outstanding job of answering searchers’ questions, and it has to be fairly recent. If your content doesn’t meet those criteria, your prospects will be seeing someone else’s website in their search page results.
Dental website content is seldom updated regularly. There’s a sort of “fire-and-forget” mentality among dentists. The exceptions to this rule are sites that also feature a blog. New posts should be added at least weekly with the content meeting the requirements as outlined above.
If you don’t have a blog, or a strong social media presence, you’ve got work to do if you expect to compete for search engine rankings and for new patients.