Dental patients don’t care about your equipment
Your dental patients don’t really care about all of the fancy equipment in your practice. The reason why a lot of dental websites don’t perform very well is that they show pictures and talk about things that do nothing but stroke the dentist’s ego, not things patients actually want to see or are interested in reading about.
In this video, we’re going to break down what types of content and photos on your dental website will ACTUALLY help you attract new patients.
A common request we get from our dental clients is to feature all of the fancy equipment they’ve purchased at their office. They want to show off their CERC machine, or their CBCT scanner, or their dental laser. They want to make sure everyone knows that their office is not like everyone else, they’re “state of the art”
Now I get it. You’ve spent a lot of money to equip your practice with the best equipment. It’s natural to want to make sure this is front and center on your website so everyone knows it. However, here are two main reasons why this doesn’t actually work.
your equipment might not be that special
The first reason is that in 99% of cases you don’t actually have anything that’s really all that special. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve spoken with dentists who are showing off their fancy new laser or intraoral camera or whatever fancy gadget they bought, and they feel that this will help them really stand out, they feel like they are one of only a few dentists that have this type of equipment (because that’s what the sales rep told them), and they feel they need to REALLY promote this (because again, that’s what the sales rep told them to) and then I go on Google and find 20 or 30 dentists in their area that all have the exact same equipment.
This is something that happens ALL THE TIME, and you have to remember that dental supply companies have some of the most talented sales people on the planet. They are absolute experts at getting dentists to buy a bunch of fancy gadgets by making them feel that this will really help them stand out from other dentists… and unfortunately… in 99.9% of cases this is just not true.
Now it’s important to have up to date equipment, to do better dental work, to do it faster, to do it more efficiently, but if you think some piece of equipment is going to help you stand out or give you a big edge over other dentists in your area you are sadly mistaken.
Why you shouldn't feature your dental equipment
The second reason why talking about your equipment on your website doesn’t work is… patients don’t really care. A patient has a very limited attention span when they visit your website and you don’t want to squander that time by talking about things they have little-to-no interest in.
Let me give you a good example here. Imagine you are trying to sell tickets to a cruise vacation. Instead of talking about how they’re going to discover the world, they’re going to dance the night away in beautiful cities, they’re going to enjoy the sun and the warmth… no,no,no… you instead run an advertisement talking about the diesel engines that power the cruise ship, how big they are, how much horsepower they produce. You talk about how your cruise ship is equipped with the LATEST and the BEST navigation system. We’re not like other cruise ships, we connect with much better GPS satellites for our navigation, we’re state of the art. Instead of our position being accurate on the map to 5 meters, our navigation system is accurate to 2 meters. Order your tickets today!
How successful do you think this would be? This is why so many dental websites produce little-to-no results. They are built to impress the dentist and stroke their ego rather than actually impress patients. You have to remember that when you’re trying to sell someone on Invisalign for example, that person is considering whether they should do Invisalign or if they should go with their friends on a cruise. And the cruise companies do a much better job of marketing their services than dentists do.
focus the content on the benefit your equipment provides not what that equipment is
So what should you talk about on your website and what pictures should you show? Well when it comes to content you want to focus mostly on what a patient can expect from coming in. If someone is looking for Invisalign for example, you don’t want to spend a lot of time explaining what Invisalign is like most dental websites do, because nobody is going to land on your Invisalign page not knowing what Invisalign is and read your content and say “ohh.. that’s what that Invisalign is. I never knew. I don’t need Invisalign, but I was curious to find out what it was.”
You want to have a bit of that content explaining the service more for SEO reasons to help Google understand that you actually do provide this service. The vast majority of your content though should be around things like:
- How is this treatment carried out?
- How long does it take?
- Does it hurt?
- Do I need to take time off work?
- What can I expect to happen when I come in to YOUR office.
- How do YOU do this procedure?
- Why do YOU do it that way? Why is that better?
You want to talk about what makes you different from other practices. This is where you can sort of touch upon your equipment, but make sure it’s not the main focus, or you’ll lose people’s attention. For example, if you have a CEREC machine, you can say that “Our office is equipped to do same-day crowns.” You would focus the content on the benefit your equipment provides not what that equipment is, because again patients don’t care.
Talk about the dentist
You can also focus a bit of content on the dentist who provides the treatment. For bigger cases like implants or ortho, people will want to know that the dentist who’s doing the work is an expert. While you can’t necessarily state that you’re an expert because this may go against the advertising guidelines of your governing body, you usually can say something like “Dr. so and so has been practicing dentistry for 30 years and has performed over 2,000 implant cases.” or “Dr. so and so has been doing implants for 15 years and regularly teaches at the local university.”
Again you want to review the advertising guidelines for your state or province and make sure you don’t break any rules, but you can have usually have a nice section on a page talking a little about the dentist from the angle of “this is how their experience is going to benefit you as a patient” much like you do when it comes to dental equipment. You don’t want this section to talk about how “Dr. So and so has 4 kids and he enjoys hiking and fishing on the weekends” because… nobody cares. It has to revolve around the patient and their needs.
What type of photos to use
Now when it comes to photos, you want to follow the same examples you see with vacation advertising. Pictures of happy patients, pictures of your staff in the practice, smiling, having fun, pictures of kids coming in for their first checkup, pictures of staff events, etc.
What you DONT want is pictures of an empty office. You don’t want pictures of an empty operatory showing your equipment, or pictures of your sterilization area or your CBCT scanner. Nobody is going to look at a picture of an empty dental chair with a bunch of sharp and pointy instruments on a table beside it and think “wow that looks fun!”
We see this all the time and I can tell you it is going to tank the conversion rate of your website.
Again, think of it like the cruise vacation. You want to show pictures of guests having a blast on the ship, having a wonderful vacation, you don’t want to show pictures of the engine or pictures of empty rooms on the ship or random equipment.
What your photos need to convey is that you have a nice and modern office, you have warm and friendly staff, and patients seem to be having fun and are happy to come to your office.
Things like photos and content usually seem trivial to most dentists but the reality is they can either make or break your business. The success of a cruise ship is not based on how state-of-the-art their ship systems are or how many certifications the captain holds. It’s largely based on the marketing that attracts passengers and the experience those passengers have once they are on the ship.
The same happens with dentistry. Your success as a dentist is much more dependent on your ability to attract patients and the experience those patients have when they come into your office, than it is on your clinical skills. This isn’t to say that quality dental care isn’t important, it is, but dentists often neglect many other areas of their practice which leads to poor results over the long term.