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What Truly Goes Into Building An Eye Care Website?

I answer this question every day when I am consulting with Optometry and eye care clients. It all starts by explaining how important a website is, and the fact that it’s the foundation of all marketing efforts. All roads lead to your website, whether you are producing digital advertising, social media, or traditional marketing.

Let’s go over a couple of interesting statistics:

  • 70 – 80% of consumers say they research a company before booking an appointment
  • 95% of your current patients visit your website but also visit competitor websites as well

Source: Google Internal Data Sept 2017. US & Canada

I also often chat with eye care practices that already have websites. These websites are likely templated, meaning they have a theme or set option for design and often have limited functionality. Templated websites do offer some benefits, usually in cost and development time. Still, they lack many other benefits of a custom-built website such as personalized designs, uniquely written content, specialized medical pages, strong SEO foundations, and enhanced functionality.

Think about it with this analogy related to cars. Templated websites are like economy cars (think Ford Fiesta or Toyota Yaris), and custom websites are more like sports cars (think Porsche or Mercedes). We think about building custom websites like building a powerful sports car that can go fast and win races. Websites are an extension of your Optometry practice and, in many cases, the first impression a consumer will have of your business. In order to win the online race, your website needs to show up for searches (unique content, among other things), engage a consumer within seconds (unique custom design) and convert into calling or booking an appointment (functionally, navigation and web development). So much goes into building a high-performing website that most business owners don’t see or understand, so we wanted to share some of that information.

If you missed it, we produced a webinar in June on this exact topic. You can watch the recording here. We brought in a few of our top experts at Marketing4ECPs from design, content and web development. They each took a few minutes to chat about what was truly important in each of their areas when building a website. Here are the points each of them talked about:

Design & Function – Sonia Perera – Graphic Designer

  1. Branding Consistency
  2. User Experience (UX/UI) + Growth-Driven Design
  3. The Visual Journey
  4. The Little Details that Make a Big Difference
  5. WOW/First Impression

Content – Kaia Pankurst – Senior Content Strategist

  1. The ideal website paragraph is no more than 3 sentences
  2. Effective website content should sit at a 7th-grade reading level
  3. The average digital user consumes content in an “F” or “E” shape
  4. Users expect digital content to be much more casual & conversational than print media
  5. Focusing content on user intent creates a better user experience

Web Development – Salim Dharsee – Senior Web Developer

  1. User Experience
  2. Mobile Friendly
  3. Speed
  4. Maintenance & Security
  5. Focusing content on user intent creates a better user experience

Building a fantastic website takes time and the effort of an entire team of experts. It often runs over 100 hours of labour, not including account management or technology costs involved in the build. Just think about what it would take you to research and write 10,000 words of unique (not copied from somewhere else) content, ensuring the content is optimized for search engines and geography – and that’s just one area of the website build.

If you’re still on the fence about building a custom website for your practice, remember it’s the foundation to all of your other marketing efforts. When you create a strong foundation, it supports the rest as you move forward. It will pay for itself quickly by showing up for more searches online and converting more consumers who land on it into booked patients. A great website will grow your practice!

Take some time (only 20 minutes) to watch the recorded webinar here.

Take this quick website self-evaluation.

Or better yet, book a meeting with me, and I will audit your website and marketing to give you some great intel into where you are doing well and where you can improve.

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Trudi Charest / Co-Founder

Trudi has spent her career trying to help eye care business owners run a better business. From her early days working in retail optical as an Optician & Corporate Trainer to an award-winning sales rep for Bausch and Lomb, Trudi carried her passion for the industry through to Eye Recommend, eventually breaking off and starting her own ventures.

More articles by Trudi Charest
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