Are you a dentist that is finding it difficult to attract new clients? Chances are it’s because of your dental facility’s online presence. This can be a frustrating issue because of how hard you have worked to pursue your career in the dental field.
Though you currently have patients that have kept business steady, you are interested in increasing clientele for your dental practice. However, this seems like a challenging goal to accomplish.
Why is it so hard to attract new patients to my dental facility? It’s most likely because patients can’t find your facility online, or your dental website. Your dental facility may not even be in the eyes of any of your targeted audience. There are many reasons why your website isnt working as effectively as it should be, and why your dental facility’s name is not reaching its targeted audience. In the end, it all comes down to your digital marketing strategies. Continue to read further if you are interested in common digital marketing mistakes that are often made by dental practices, and how to fix them to reach your targeted audience.
Why Your Dental Facility is Not Attracting New Patients
There can be a number of reasons why your dental facility is not attracting new patients. First and foremost, you must deliver exceptional services and customer service to your patients. If you can confidently check this off of the list, it is most likely because of your website and the number of times your dental facility is displayed on the internet, if at all. It is no surprise the internet has become a valuable resource and is used by hundreds of millions of people per day. For this reason, it’s crucial to consider your website as a marketing tool. Here is what you can fix on your website if you have run out of marketing ideas.
Your Dental Website’s SEO
While searching the internet, consider how many times you have scrolled passed the first page of the search results. Chances are, you do not navigate further than the first pages of search engines. The same goes for the rest of the online users. According to Moz, over 75% of people do not scroll past the first pages of results when searching the internet. So, if your dental website is not present on the first pages of search engines, patients will not be able to find you on the internet while searching for a new dentist in their area.
In order to increase your website’s visibility on search engines, you will need to improve your search engine optimization (SEO.) According to HubSpot, 61% of marketers have seen significant improvement in website visibility when they boosted their search engine optimization. SEO is one of the most important marketing strategies for your dental practice.
What is SEO for dentists?
SEO for dentists focuses on organically optimizing your website to increase its visibility on the most used search engines such as Google, and improve its online presence. SEO requires constant website maintenance in order for it to effectively work. There are many SEO strategies such as link building, blogs, content, website speed, mobile use, and many more. Optimizing your dentist’s website means putting in countless hours, however, the hard work normally comes full circle as you will watch new patients pour into your dental facility.
Your Dental Practices’ Web Presence
We have briefly mentioned web and name presence, which is how often your website, facility name, and doctor name appear on the internet. In other terms, it’s anything and everything about your business that exists and lives online. Now you may be wondering, isn’t my beautiful web design enough? While your website design is important, its web presence is equally as important. I know what you’re thinking — effectively marketing my dental practice is an overwhelming task. While it can be overwhelming, there are plenty of marketing agencies that can take the burden off of your back. If you can manage it yourself, start increasing your online presence in the following ways:
- Claim online directories for dental practices
- Stay active on social media
What are online directories for dental practices?
Online directories for dental practices are websites that list professionals in the dental field. They normally include a picture, bio, and reviews. Online directories allow patients to find dentists and read more about who they are, and what patients have rated their services. Additionally, it allows dental professionals to increase their online presence. There are many online directories for dental professionals but the most popular ones include Google My Business and Yelp.
What Social Media Apps do Dentists Use?
Dentists may use any social media app to market their services, expertise, and facility. The more accounts you have for your dental facility on social media apps, the better. However, it is important that you remain active on the accounts that you have. This can significantly increase your dental practice’s online presence and attract new dental patients. If you don’t know where to start with creating social media accounts for your dental practice, we recommend beginning by creating a Facebook or Instagram account.
Dental Practice Patient Reviews
According to PatientPop, nearly 80% of patients search reviews prior to furthering their dentist-patient relationship. Patient reviews contribute to your dental facility’s online reputation. Having a positive online reputation is extremely important to potential patients.
Furthermore, if your dental facility does not have patient reviews, or has very little, this can contribute to a negative online reputation. Similar to a restaurant, you will most likely choose the restaurant that has reviews over the restaurant that does not have any. In a way, reviews establish credibility and trust among web searchers and influence them to contact you for their dental needs. Potential patients do not want to go to a dentist, they know very little about. Patient reviews allow potential patients to learn more about you, your services, and your facility.
How do I increase patient reviews for my dental facility?
As previously mentioned, it’s important to provide patients with an excellent patient experience and services that confront their needs. If your dental facility is not doing well, chances are the reviews you receive won’t be positive. Secondly, you need to ensure you have a presence on online directories in order for patients to submit their reviews. Once you have an active profile on online directories for your dental facility, you can send satisfaction surveys to your patients after they have received care from you and your team. This is a great dental marketing strategy that can help you generate more reviews. Another marketing strategy to gain valuable feedback for your dental facility is by encouraging patients to share how their visit to your dental facility was. We suggest that you mention how patients can leave a review, instead of sending emails over and over again.
Patient Wait Times
As dental facilities are often quite busy, the only available appointments they have are typically 1-2 months out. Patients often wait a long time to get an appointment with their dentist, or they wait long wait times in the waiting room for their dental appointment. This significantly impacts whether they will be returning to your facility, or finding a new one. Patients don’t want to wait a month or more for dental services, especially if it is regarding a major concern or issue. One bad experience is all it takes for patients to leave a bad review, and look for another dental facility. In order to avoid this, consider the following:
- Leave a few appointment slots open each day
- Open your office an hour earlier or an hour later each day
While these are small changes, they can significantly help the growth of your business. When a patient has dental concerns, it is likely the only thing they care about is getting an appointment as soon as possible. As with any service, patients and customers consider the wait times and convenient availability when making an appointment.
How can I best manage appointments to ensure I have availability?
There are a number of ways you can manage your appointment booking schedule to make sure you have a few open slots each day. The most effective way would be to incorporate an appointment booking capability on your website. This is an effective marketing strategy because it leaves your dental facility with a more organized appointment booking system, and it leaves patients happy and content with their services. This is very beneficial for the following reasons:
- Patients are able to quickly book appointments online
- Minimize the work your employees need to keep track of
- Block off times for new patients and additional open slots
- Block off days that you are unavailable
- Become organized with appointments
Another way to manage appointments would be to assign this job to your front desk receptionist. If this is out of the question because of how busy they are, hire an appointment bookkeeper. You’d be surprised at how busy they are and how much it does help your dental facility.
How do I minimize wait times for my dental patients?
The best way to minimize the amount of time patients wait for their service is by organizing your appointment schedule better. Again, an appointment booking software may work best when trying to avoid frustrated patients. Additionally, you can consider ways to bring a better patient experience by investing in your waiting room so time goes by quicker for the patients who are waiting.
You are aware of the outstanding services that you offer patients. It’s time to spread awareness about your dental facility. Increase the number of times your website is seen by potential patients on the internet by investing in effective dental marketing strategies. If you’re willing to invest the time and money into these marketing strategies, you’ll witness your patient intake increase.