In August, 2006, we conducted a survey of 64 cosmetic dentists who are doing Internet marketing. The results reveal the power of Internet marketing and the goals that can be attained.
Those surveyed were asked what percentage of their work came through referrals from their websites. They were also asked for their comments on what they found effective.
A common thread through the responses was that patients referred from websites were high quality patients—they were well informed, were committed to treatment, and were ready to spend money for quality care.
A dentist from Toronto commented: “We currently get 80 percent of our new patients from referrals by existing patients. We get 14 percent of our business from the Internet. The difference is the Internet business we get is almost entirely cosmetic, full-mouth reconstruction, and implants, whereas referrals tend to be general run-of-the-mill dentistry.”
Others made similar comments, that responses from their websites were more heavily weighted toward cosmetic and large-ticket cases. Prospective patients can research a dentist’s credentials, see examples of his or her work, and it seems that they trust this information more than the recommendation of a friend.
There was a wide variation in the effectiveness of the web sites. Twenty percent of respondents said their websites generated ten percent or less of their business. Another twenty percent said their websites generated fifty percent or more of their business. The average was about in the middle—around twenty-five percent of their business came from Internet referrals.
Some who had very effective websites were reluctant to talk about it, lest their competition figure out how strong a marketing tool this was. While some of those with ineffective websites seemed to be oblivious to the success that they could be having. They attributed their lack of success to their location. But dentists from every variety of location were finding great success. The reportedly most effective website was in a rural area, which goes against some of the prevailing wisdom.
At Infinity Dental Web, we specialize in dental websites. Contact us for your Internet marketing needs