What Impression Is Your Audiology Website Making?
Written on Monday, August 4, 2014 by Geoffrey Cooling
What does your audiology website say about you?
I have been reviewing a lot of audiology websites lately, some good, some mediocre, some bad. One in particular got me thinking about a post I wrote last year. The post was in relation to how fast someone forms an impression of a business from their website. It can be read here The Effect Of Your Website. It detailed just how fast someone can form an impression of you and your brand, two tenths of a second to get an inkling, but a further 2.6 seconds for that to be reinforced.
Not long is it?
That is not a whole lot of time is it? A little over two and a half seconds helps form an opinion of you. People are an interesting bunch, once an opinion is formed, they will find things to reinforce that existing opinion. They will also need quite a bit of evidence to change that opinion. The reason I bring it up is because of some of the mediocre and bad websites I have viewed.
One in particular sticks out in my mind, I happen to know of the practitioner, their ethos, their practice layout and their ability. They are all of the highest standard, following international best practice guidelines. Anyone who attends this particular Practice knows that they have entered a successful modern Practice where they will be looked after exceptionally well.
This opinion will then be reinforced by the testing procedure, testing equipment and hearing aids used. They will be left in no doubt by the empathetic and caring nature that they are treated. They will leave with the opinion that they have visited a first line, premier hearing healthcare provider of the consultant type.
I hope they never look at their website!
That’s your website, really?
Their website looks like something that was knocked together by a sixteen year old in an hour on his home computer. It is quite dreadful, it is not deployed with brand in mind, there is no uniformity in sizes of pictures used or quality. The home page copy was some canned rubbish, there is no value proposition anywhere on the site. the about us page was a few desultory paragraphs that detailed locations and time of opening.
I didn’t see one call to action on the site except on the contact us page. The overall presentation was pretty bad and not even uniform across the site. In all it was pretty dreadful, it did not reflect the true positioning of the Practice in any way. Instead of supporting the Practice by being a shop window to the world it was damaging the brand of the Practice. I spoke to the Practice owner about it, I didn’t want a report going back to them without me speaking directly to them.
They said that they hadn’t really looked at the site for a while, it had been designed a couple of years ago in haste. They knew it wasn’t great and they had been meaning to get it sorted. So they knew the problem existed but didn’t really understand the ramifications of it. So I explained to them how many visitors they were getting to the site a day and asked them to look at the site and form their own opinion of their brand as portrayed. Their opinion of their brand portrayal after this exercise wasn’t great. They are changing the site as a matter of urgency.
When was the last time you looked at your site?
When was the last time you looked at your site, is it portraying the brand that you want to be portrayed? Your website is no longer a static business card with contact details and location. It is usually the first or second point of contact that a prospective customer has with you. We all know that those prospective customers are becoming more sophisticated and discerning. What is your website saying to this new breed of prospect, what is it telling them about you?
Look at your website with honest eyes, ask yourself what is this website saying about me and my brand? Where does it position me in the hierarchy of hearing healthcare professionals? If it looks like it was knocked together on a Saturday afternoon by a spotty sixteen year old, what exactly is that saying about the care and attention you give? You also need to look at your competitors websites, because your prospects certainly are.
The comparison game
This is a game that everyone likes to play, our prospect’s opinions are unformed. They are then formed by their contact with you and how it compares to their contact with your competitor. This comparison allows them to begin to form an opinion, that opinion maybe be exceptionally and ridiculously wrong, but they only go on the data that they have gathered. So it is important to you that the opinions they form are good, don’t be let down by your website.