Having and maintaining a practice website can seem like a huge task. If you’ve never had a website before, or if you created one 10 years and haven’t updated it since, the idea of creating a new one might feel overwhelming. And myths about what is involved in having a practice website abound, such as having a website is too expensive, maintaining a website is complicated, websites are just online flyers, etc.
The good news is, many of those myths are just that – myths. If you’re hesitating about creating a website for any of the following reasons, read on to see why you should reconsider:
1. It doesn’t matter what my website looks like – just having one is enough.
To see proof of this myth in action, all you have to do is visit the websites of local businesses in your area. Local business sites often run the gauntlet from trendy to terrible. As you’re looking through these websites, ask yourself, who would you rather visit – the business with an attractive website or the business with the ugly one? It may not be fair that your business is judged on the basis of appearances, but it is a reality. Having an attractive website won’t guarantee that you beat out the competition, but having an ugly one is a surefire way to give yourself a serious disadvantage.
2. Getting a lot of visitors is important.
While not having any traffic definitely defeats the purpose of having a website, the success of your website isn’t necessarily determined by how much traffic you get. The World Wide Web is just that – world-wide. So while having a lot of traffic can feel good, if that traffic doesn’t live anywhere close to where your practice is located, you might have a problem. When it comes to attracting visitors to your practice website, consider quality over quantity, and use SEO and advertising strategies that will drive local traffic to your practice website.
3. Creating a website is expensive.
Correction: Creating a custom website is expensive. Hiring a design company to build you a website from scratch can result in a beautiful website – and a hefty price tag. But you don’t have to break the bank to have an attractive website. WebDVM4 websites are built from semi-customizable templates. Our talented team of designers will work with you to customize your website to your practice’s branding and colors, making it one-of-a-kind. It’s attractive, unique, and affordable!
4. Websites are too complicated.
Updating a website can look challenging, but the good news is, it’s often not! The backend of many websites can be very intuitive and easy to navigate, meaning that updating your website is a breeze –even if you’re not a tech wizard.
5. Anyone who can code can build me a website.
Maybe you have a niece who can code, and you’re thinking, “This is great! She can build my website for free!” Well, she may have a firm grasp of HTML and CSS, but unfortunately, that doesn’t necessarily make her the best choice to build your professional website.
Websites are a little more than just the sum of their code. A lot of crucial elements go into creating an effective website, including understanding all the necessary information and how to structure it so that visitors can easily navigate your site, knowing how to effectively optimize for search engines, and ensuring that the design is attractive, just to name a few. With so many small details on the line, it’s important to consider hiring a person or company with extensive experience in creating websites that are professional and effective.
6. Having an active Facebook Page is just as good as having a website
This is actually something I stumbled across recently – a veterinary practice that didn’t have a website. Instead, their practice Facebook Page linked to their practice Instagram account, and their practice Instagram account? It linked back to their Facebook Page.
There are two fundamental problems with a set up like this. The first is a matter of building a site on land you don’t own, so to speak. When you create a Facebook Page, that Page may have your practice name on it, but it technically belongs to Facebook. If Facebook decided to get rid of Pages altogether, or if someone reported you as spam, your Page could disappear in a heartbeat. Having your own practice website gives you a lot more control over your online fate.
The second problem is that your Facebook Page is technically an introduction to your website. A Facebook Page or Instagram account is not structured to provide a lot of information about your practice. That’s what your practice website is for. I initially discovered the above practice’s Facebook-Instagram loop because I was trying to find their practice website to learn more. I was actually frustrated to discover that they didn’t have a website – because that’s the easiest place to get the most robust information about that business.
7. I don’t have the time to update my website regularly.
Working in the animal health industry can be intense. Often, there isn’t even time to sit down and have lunch, never mind update your website. But don’t let your website fall to the wayside! Updating it is important for a couple of reasons: your website looks more reliable if the banners don’t still display your holiday hours in May, and regular updates are also a good way to optimize your website for search engines.
If you really can’t spare a moment for an update, not to worry! WebDVM websites come with options for SEO care, so we can do the updates for you. All you have to do is drop us a line or an email.
8. I already have a website. It doesn’t need to be updated.
Unfortunately, all good things come to an end, and that includes your website design from the 90s. Website design is constantly changing and updating, partially because the technology is always improving and partially because aesthetic tastes change. What was considered good-looking in 2005 would probably be considered outdated now.
Aside from attractiveness and changing tastes, there is another good reason to update your website. If your website still looks like it’s from the early 2000s, you may leave visitors wondering if your practice is still around anymore. If your site appears to be 10 years old, viewers may simply assume that you went out of business and forgot to take your website down. Don’t let your practice website confuse visitors. Make sure your design is updated and fresh.
9. My website is just an online flyer for my practice.
If your website functions solely as an online version of a brochure for your website, you are sorely missing out on some big opportunities. Don’t just create an online summary of your services. Use your practice website to take visitors to the next step with your practice. You can create online booking, contact, or new patient forms, or even hook your website up with an online pharmacy. Don’t treat your practice website like a fancy flyer. It’s also another way to generate revenue and get clients through your practice doors.Have we changed your mind about getting a practice website yet? Then consider a WebDVM4 website! We take all the stress and frustration out having and maintaining a website. Click here to learn more, or contact one of our knowledgeable sales reps at 800-375-7994 x 225.