More Traffic = More New Patients — We Hope
In the first three parts of this series we talked about why you need to blog for your dental website, the purposes of blogging for your dental website, and why fresh content makes a difference. Here in Part IV of this series of articles, I am going to talk about how to use the traffic generated from your blog posts to learn about your visitors, and hopefully bring in new patients. Note that some of the steps here will require the help of your web developer or SEO person, so instead of listing the technical steps, I’m going list what data you should ask for, and what conclusions you can make from the data. Generally speaking, most of the data you will need is available for free in Google Analytics.
And remember, the goal here is to evaluate your user engagement, and try to provide your visitors with the most relevant information. Doing so is a big part in converting these visitors from “visitors” to new patients.
- Bounce Rates: The bounce rate is a measure of visitor engagement and interest. While most blog posts usually have a high bounce rate in general, if a blog post has a low bounce rate, it suggests that this topic is one of interest to your visitors. Look at least a few months of data (because you need to have a few blog posts in place about different subjects first) and find the posts with the lowest bounce rates. Note these subjects and write more blog posts about these subjects. For example, if your whitening blog posts seem to generate particular interest, then write more about whitening!
- Number of Pages Viewed and Time on Site – the absolute number of pages viewed isn’t always that helpful a metric, but you can look at the sessions (visits) from the visitors to your blog posts and examine their behavior on the site. You might find that the visitors who viewed your blog posts about Invisalign looked at more pages on average, or spent more time on the site than average. This data can also be very helpful in trying to figure out what your visitors are interested in. And once you know what information your visitors are looking for, you can provide them more of it.
- Percentage of new visitors to your website that came via blog posts: Figuring out where your visitors came from is one of the critical steps in converting visitors into patients. If the majority of your new visitors are coming via your blog posts (and therefore likely via organic search), it might be worthwhile to increase the frequency of your blogging to generate even more traffic.
The above three data sets aim to help you figure out if people like what they see (and read) when they visit your website, and learn what topics are of the most interest to these visitors. The remaining information below is not a data point, but a general explanation of the minimum features you need on your website to have the best chance of converting these interested visitors.
a) your phone number should be in the header and footer of all pages, and should be easy to find and easy to read (and clickable on a smartphone).
b) you should have a clearly marked and easy to access contact page (a contact form would be great, too!)
c) you should display your office hours on your contact page, and possibly in the footer, as well
d) you should have “Calls-to-Action” (CTAs) throughout your website such as “Call Now” or “Click here to schedule a free consultation”.
e) you should especially focus your CTAs on pages with the highest level of user interest
Having now read all four articles in this series, I hope that you now have a better understanding of how blogging on your dental website –even once per month – has the potential to easy (and very inexpensively) drive traffic to your website, and new patients to your office.