By: Kevin Rach
Beware, dear reader, and steel your nerves before venturing deeper into this article. The stories contained herein are the unfortunate tales of dentists and patients attempting to connect with each other through mismanaged and long-neglected practice websites. Let this be a cautionary tale to your practice, and take heed, lest a similar gruesome fate befall your own website…
“It Came From 2005!”
It took a full minute, but when the dentist’s website finally shambled out from the darkness of the loading screen, the patient gasped. It was so ancient. So… hideous.
The revolting mass of mismatched and outdated design elements shuffled forward on two poorly constructed footers like an HTML Frankenstein’s monster. “Welcome to my website,” it croaked, jazz muzak auto-playing from its gaping, cobwebbed maw.
The patient suppressed a gag as the non-responsive abomination lurched toward her, oversized images dragging behind its halting, lopsided steps. The lack of content, the stock-only images, the complete disregard for mobile users… they were almost enough to make her pity the aberration. But there was no time. She had to escape – had to find a dentist with a modern Web Presence. After all, if this is what the website looked like, there was no telling what outdated horrors lay within the actual practice…
“In Cyberspace, No One Can Hear You Tweet”
Dr. Igor had nothing but good intentions when he set out on his new experiment. The goal? Using social media to promote his practice and start generating referrals. He set up a Facebook page and a Twitter handle, and started posting regularly. All might have gone well had he not made two crucial mistakes –failing to integrate social media buttons on the main website, and never encouraging a patient to “like” his practice in person.
Dr. Igor has not been seen by a patient online since 2011.
Legend has it that on some clear nights when the moon is at its fullest, if you turn up your speakers and listen very hard, you can just barely hear the whimper of his social media posts mumbling about the importance of semi-annual exams.
“Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter With a Smartphone”
The patient squinted at the cryptic message glaring up through the dark from screen of her iPhone, straining to uncover the secrets it held. Try as she might, she couldn’t decipher a thing.
“These symbols… they must mean something. But what?”
She pinched. She zoomed. She turned the phone sideways and donned her reading glasses.
“It looks like some kind of writing, but I can’t make it out! What’s that say? Den—denta—ta? Dentata?”
She pressed onward, probing for a way to schedule an appointment, but the non-mobile site yielded no answers. As the buttons shrank away from her thumbs, she suddenly felt a creeping unease in the pit of her stomach – the same feeling she used to get as a child while exploring the darkness of her grandmother’s attic. She felt… unwelcome. Something in the site didn’t want her there. Whether an ancient line of long-forgotten code or something more sinister, she couldn’t say. But after one last attempt, she lost the nerve to continue and fled the unusable website, never to return.
There is still time, dear reader. The horrors described here need never haunt your own practice. With the help of a company like Officite, your practice will be safe and sound with cutting edge responsive mobile design, integrated social media, and search engine optimization – the tools your practice needs to survive. Visit www.officite.com, or call 908-2483