Digital strategy and more particularly website design and development is not a “set & forget”
marketing tactic. Technology changes, consumer needs, and preferences evolve, and search engine
algorithms are updated each year.
Therefore, if you are not keen on constantly updating your website and digital efforts, your professional practice online visibility would languish. And when visibility drops, so does chances of your target market finding you.
Whether you run a law firm, a niche medical practice, hospitality venture, a small or medium business enterprise, or a non-profit/non-government org, ..etc., at Synatech Africa our mission is helping your organization succeed online – and it’s precisely why we are providing you with these sign it’s time for a website revamp.
Is your website mobile friendly? How does it look and function on handheld digital devices? Test your website. If you are having a hard time navigating or viewing content i.e (zooming in or constantly scrolling to find content much needed), then your digital front isn’t mobile-friendly.
Why is this a problem? For starters, 81% of your target audience owns a smart device, and roughly 70% of the time people spend with digital media is on a mobile device.
According to Pew Research, this is the smartphone ownership in advanced and emerging economies.
This data shows that the overwhelming majority of your prospective patients are on a mobile device when they visit your website. And if your site is not responsive, meaning the content on your site is not built to automatically adjust to fit the size of a smaller screen, then visitors are not having a positive experience on your site and may form a negative impression of your practice. Research shows that (48%) of people say that if a business’s website does not work well on their smartphones, they take this as an indication that the business simply does not care.
Furthermore, if your website is not mobile-responsive, you could be hurting your practice’s ability to rank well in an online search. This is because Google, in response to the consumers’ overwhelming shift to mobile, has changed its algorithm to favor mobile-friendly websites. Over the past years, Google has launched multiple mobile-friendly updates to its algorithm allowing mobile-compatible sites to rank higher in search results, and it has even switched to mobile-first indexing meaning Google now uses the mobile version of a website as the default for adding web pages to its search results, instead of the desktop version.
If your practice’s website is not yet mobile-friendly, then you should consider a redesign using mobile-responsive technology, to prevent your practice from being overlooked by search engines like Google, or by your potential patients.
- Your website takes a long time to load.
When your web pages load slowly, you run the risk of frustrating your visitors and making them leave your site—especially when they’re on a mobile device, which is when they’re typically on the go and expect faster results.
Research by Google shows that more than half (53%) of mobile users will leave a web page that takes more than three seconds to load. Yet, many businesses (including medical practices) are failing to meet visitors’ expectations, as the average time it takes for a web page to load on a mobile device is 15 seconds.
Slow page loading time is not only bad for your website’s user experience, but it can also have a negative impact on your ability to attract new business.
First, slow load times decrease visitor engagement with your practice by increasing the likelihood of the user “bouncing,” or leaving after they visit just one page on your website. According to Google…
Google infographic showing how the probability of “bounce” increases as page load time increases (by seconds)
Digital marketing industry experts say page speed can directly impact online conversion rates, or the percentage of your website visitors who take an action desired by your practice, like calling your office or filling out a web form.
Here at synatech africa, we recommend keeping your page load time to 1-2 seconds on mobile whenever possible so you can increase patient engagement and boost your online conversions. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that other factors can impact page load times, such as the type of mobile device being used, the network speed (e.g., 4G, 5G, LTE, etc.), and the strength of the Wi-Fi connection. As a result, even when you are following all the best practices for your website, load times may vary.
- Your website doesn’t reflect your practice’s brand and values.
For many of your prospective patients, your website will be one of the first places they look to learn about your medical practice and determine whether the services you offer are right for them. Having a website that doesn’t reflect your medical practice can, at best, make your practice blend in with your competitors or, at worst, give the prospective clients a negative impression of your practice.
Considering that your website is essentially the face of your practice on the Internet, you should ensure it is designed in a way that reflects your practice’s brand—or essentially, your mission, values, and tone of voice. Your website should serve as your practice’s visual identity and tell a story about how you serve your patients and why.
Ask yourself the following questions when evaluating your digital branding:
- Does my website match my practice’s established visual brandings, such as my logo and brand colors?
- Does the site show images of my office and care team to help potential patients get to know my practice better?
- How do the images and messaging make people feel when they visit the site? Is that the impression I want to leave?
- Is the tone of my website content aligned with how I want to communicate with my target stakeholders?
- Are my mission and values (i.e. delivering compassionate care) obvious on my site?
Once you’re able to answer yes to all of these questions, you will be able to show prospective clientele who you really are as a practice, demonstrate your value, create an impression of authenticity, and attract more customers.
A redesigned website and launching new digital advertising would do a better job of highlighting why your practice was unique. Move from having a “boring website” to a site with vibrant colors; images, videos, and artwork of the office environment (which includes ceiling-to-floor wildlife murals and other nature-themed decors); photos, videos, and bios of the team members; and content positioning your firm as true experts and go-to industry leaders in your field.
- Your website leaves visitors feeling lost and confused.
You can have a sophisticated design, valuable content, and engaging videos, but it isn’t effective if you can’t encourage visitors to stay on your site long enough to learn about your practice and develop a desire to work with you and your team.
It’s imperative to have a website that has an organized layout and user-friendly design that allows your visitors to quickly and easily find the information they’re looking for. This includes everything from the way your site’s pages are displayed and structured to the placement and visibility of your contact information and web forms.
It should also be noted that when your website is structured properly, it’s easier for search engines like Google and Bing to find, crawl, and understand your site content, making it more likely that you’ll get your web pages ranking well in organic search.
- Your website isn’t ranking well in an online search.
If your website isn’t ranking on the first page of search engines like Google and Bing for your most important keywords, it’s practically invisible.
Research shows that the first page typically garners 92% of all traffic in the average search. Furthermore, the very first link gets 53% of organic search clicks. It’s no wonder people there’s a common saying in the digital marketing world that “the best place to hide a dead body is Page 2 of Google.”
Bar chart infographic showing that 53% of organic clicks go to the first link (followed by 15%, 9%, 6%, and 4%)
As a result, if your website is not regularly ranking on the first page of the search results (and high up on the page) for your most important keywords, your practice is inevitably losing visibility, as well as the chance to generate new business.
Even given that your organization has an iron-clad reputation in its local community. However, the practice can only able to take that positive reputation so far because it needs more than just word of mouth to succeed—it needed to be visible on the Internet in order to truly maximize its reach.
Our team at Synatech Africa will optimize your website to align with the latest standards set by today’s most popular search engines, and you will finally be able to get your practice consistently ranking at the top of the search.
If your website isn’t getting the visibility it deserves in online search, it’s probably time to update your site and implement a new search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.
Build a website that will grow your practice
To learn more about how you can build a website that gives your practice more exposure online and increases your bottom line, Contact Synatech Africa today. We have experts who specialize in digital marketing for diverse industries including medical practice, hospitality venture, small or medium business enterprise, or non-profit/non-government organizations, ..etc. and we’re happy to help you get your online presence on the right track!
Micaiah M. Kivuva
Director Synatech Africa
Expert On Vertical Marketing