Getting your practice on the Web
Your web site is marketing and it should be treated as such. You don’t have a website simply because everyone says you should or because you wanted something pretty. Your website needs to help your business succeed.
Is your website working as hard as it should? Is it bringing in new clients? Could it be doing more? Maybe it needs a redesign or a refresh. I know mine does. So, while I’m giving it a much needed facelift, I’m also reviewing what I want my website to do for my practice.
So before you run off to hire that web site designer, you need to answer the question:
What do I want my website to do?
This isn’t as crazy a question as it sounds. Every marketing expense should have a strategy behind it and your website is not exception. So what can a website do?
Let’s look at each of these and see how they can help your grow your practice.
When people search for a service provider on the web, your website should say “Pick Me! Pick Me!” Recruiting new clients should be one of your site’s primary functions and all of the information on your site should help potential clients decide to become current clients.
Potential clients and current clients can both be served by educational material. It can help establish credibility with potential clients and assure current clients that they made the right choice by coming to you.
This is how you let your current clients know what’s new. Have you added a new technique, service, pricing? Do you now take insurance, credit cards, or sell gift packages? This is how you get current clients coming back to your site and keeping you in mind. The more you are in their mind, the more often they will come back for your services.
Now let’s look at my site to see how I’m doing.
The home page is a short summary of what I do, why you might want to get a massage and that I take insurance. I have a page that describes my services focused less on jargon and more on benefits to the client, a page for people who have never had massage before, and a page that lets them know about me. This covers some of the basics. I’d give this a PASS.
The only thing I have here is the page “My first visit”. The services page is a tiny tiny fraction of what I could be doing. I’d give this a FAIL.
Other than the Continuing Education page, there’s nothing here. This is definitely a FAIL.
Now the question is: what do YOU need to have your page do? Your needs will change as your practice and the environment changes. My practice is at the point where I still need to recruit, but I also need to nurture the relationship with my current clients. My current page fails to do this, so my redesign needs to help me do this.
What about you? If you are just starting a new practice, your page will need to be centered on Recruit. If you are under competitive threat, you will need to have more time on Inform.
If you currently have a website
Review your website for how it performs. Are you getting enough new clients? Are you getting return clients? What do you have in the 3 categories and what do you need to add or change? Is it time to update your site?
If you don’t have a website
Before you make any decisions on where to get one, you need to decide what you want your site to do. You can launch the site before you have everything done and add stuff as you get the information done.
Figure out what you want your site to do for you based on where you are at in your practice and write that down. In future articles, I’ll share with you how and where to go to get your practice on the web.