How to Get Patients from the Web
- Date: March 12, 2014
- Author: eDentalImage
- Comments: 0
“A website shouldn’t just sit there and look pretty- it has to work for you.”
That’s one of our marketing mottos at eDentalImage. And while we’re definitely passionate about great web design and branding, we’re marketers at heart- that means everything we do is designed to boost your presence, find you an audience, and boost sales.
Let’s start with a little web marketing primer. Here’s how the eDentalImage program will work for your dental office SEO.
Building Traffic, Getting Visitors, and Generating Leads
Your website is like your marketing’s home base. You want to make sure that the majority of your efforts are focused on your website and that you have a lot of traffic coming to it from organic searches and referrals from other sites: local directories and your social media pages, for instance.
Your eDentalImage subscription comes with an SEO plan. Whatever package you choose, you’ll get the basics covered (and then some) to get your website ranked and in front of potential patients on the web. Keep in mind that the more advanced your SEO plan, the faster you’ll see traffic inflow results.
Once you’ve got solid traffic and a good number of visitors coming to your website, it’s time to make those visitors paying patients. But hold on! There’s a process here.
Your website visitors need to be persuaded. Here are a few tricks to wining and dining website visitors:
- A picture is worth a thousand words. Put photos of your team, your clinic, your employees at work, and your happy patients on your homepage. Show them how friendly and trustworthy you are.
- Be catchy. Instead of “About Tommy’s Dental Practice,” how about “30 Years in the Making: The Story of Tommy’s Dental Practice?” Include your location, “Serving Tommyville with Reliable, Quality Dental Care.” Or totally appeal to your customers, “We’re here to serve- and to service! Teeth and People are Our Passion!”
- Make them an offer they can’t resist and give them plenty of opportunities to convert- more on this in a little bit.
- Show them the proof! Put some of your best patient testimonials on your Home page, on your side bar, and make sure to include a full page of testimonials just a mouse-click away.
In the world of marketing, potential patients are called leads. When you have any web marketing strategy in place, you need to think about how you’re going to turn those leads into patients, this is called converting the leads.
So, how does a website visitor become a lead and what do you have to do to convert them into a future patient?
Here’s a term you need to know: call to action. This is anything on your website that prompts visitors to do something. Buttons with captions like “Sign up Here!” and “Schedule an Appointment” are popular among dental office owners, but a well-placed message that says “Call Us!” with your phone number or a promotional offer can work well, too.
A visitor becomes a lead when they click on that button, call you, or claim your promotional offer. And in order for them to become a patient, you need to get in contact with them and get them into your clinic. In other words, you need to show them your value and establish trust as soon as possible.
Studies show that web leads are at their hottest when businesses follow up within 5 minutes. Without a sales team waiting by the phone, this might not be possible, but you should aim to return any missed calls and follow up with scheduled appointments from your website at the end of each day.
The process of converting leads to patients is critically important. A lot of businesses pay big money for consultants to tell them how to do this. Want our point of view? Every industry is different and so is every office. We’ve got some tips on how you can handle web-savvy patients, though, and here are a few pointers to get you started:
- Be familiar with your website. Know what’s on it and how and where leads are funneling straight to you.
- Be vigilant. Your clinic is online now, and you have to be online as well, at least some of the time! Make sure that online appointments and contacts are forwarded to your email and check your email 3 times a day: once before you open, once at lunch, and once after you close the office.
- Be personable. A website is impersonal, but you have several opportunities to counteract that. Follow up with any leads from your website with a phone call- this will definitely make an impression with potential web clients.
- Coach your team. Unless they never answer the phone or interact with patients, every employee needs to know what’s going on with the website and what they need to do with website leads.
And there you have it! This is just a brief overview of the functional aspects of web marketing with your website. Feel free to browse our blog for more detailed topics and tips, or download our free eDentalImage Web Marketing Guide to get the complete toolkit and learn the tricks of the trade.