A little over a year ago, Spot Color Studio helped our dental office complete our new website and we officially launched summitdentalhealth.com. It was an exciting day and an event we eagerly anticipated after months of designing and writing content for the brand new website.
My husband, Brad Hagedorn, DMD, recently purchased the office from a retiring dentist and one of our first tasks was to get a web-presence up and running. Knowing the power of technology as a source of information for those searching for a new healthcare provider, we knew that establishing an online presence was crucial to the strength of our new Cedar Mill business.
While typing in summitdentalhealth.com for the first time and watching our website appear was exhilarating, we quickly learned that the launch of this site onto the internet was simply the very beginning.
Here are the five things we did after we launched the site:
- First and foremost, we continued to sift through the website with a fine toothed comb searching for mistakes that had gone unnoticed during the creation and editing process.
- We then asked family members to do the same, knowing full well that the site needed fresh critical eyes.
- Afterwards, we invited friends to cruise over the Summit website testing out its ease of use.
- We reached out to all of our current patients introducing them to site and offering an incentive for anyone who was willing to submit a feedback through one of our new online forms, giving us an opportunity to test the form and how best to respond to the submissions.
- Finally, we made an attempt to update our business information with the details and address of the new website in as many online business directories as we could think of. A website that no one knows about was not going to be a website that received much traffic.
After the website we added social media through Facebook and Twitter. Being new to social media, we dove in headfirst in hopes of making the appropriate information available for the right consumer.
As the weeks and months passed, we continued updating news at the office, adding blog posts about relevant topics for our patients and posting our latest promotions. We came across a few bumps in the road too, reminding us to check more frequently to be sure there are no dead-end pages, that information is up to date and that all of our forms for patients to contact us are in working order.
Slowly the Summit Dental site is making its way up the list in Google keyword searches. Being a small, new business owner, our budget for advertising is very limited. We continue to work hard to keep our website fresh and improve the content to serve our current patients and increase the opportunity for future patients to come across Summit Dental. The challenge is finding the time to devote to maintain the site and knowing what will be most the effective target keywords.
To answer the questions I posed in the title of this article, to launch a website and leave it unmanned would be no more effective than doing so with a NASA space shuttle. Despite all the planning and hard work it takes to get it up and running, if a website is launched onto the worldwide web and left to float there to fend for itself, it will be serving little purpose and will most certainly not land where you want it to or accomplish the goals you have in mind.
Our website is a living document in need of care, maintenance, and direction for it to remain relevant and hopefully someday soon reaching our mission of achieving the number one spot on Google.
Jessica Hagedorn is the marketing director for Summit Dental. She and her husband Brad Hagedorn, DMD, have been in the office since 2011. You can visit their website at summitdentalhealth.com.
Visit Spot Color Studio’s website at: spotcolorstudio.com for more information about their marketing and web design services.