Health Literacy: Is Your Website Patient Friendly?
Great Dental Websites

When potential patients search for a dentist in your community and land on your website, how likely are they to stay? Part of keeping a potential patient on your site depends on how easy it is to use and eye-catching graphics. Another aspect to consider is the language on your website. Is it easy to understand? Can the layperson digest it easily or is it filled with technical and scientific terms that the average person may not understand?

According to the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, ensuring effective communication is essential to promoting health literacy.

Use Plain Language

With a background in dentistry and science, it’s easy to forget that many members of the community do not speak the same technical language that you do. Try putting yourself in the shoes of the potential patients walking past your clinic each day and speak to that demographic.

Pitfalls To Avoid:

Complex dental jargon – Scientific language you use with your colleagues and staff each day may sound intimidating to patients, and they may feel embarrassed to ask for an additional explanation. It’s best to stick with the common language people use each day when discussing oral health.

Heavy-handed technical terms – A simple procedure can sound intimidating to an untrained ear when explained in technical terms. Don’t assume that the average patient has a grasp on equipment names and instruments used in the surgery.

Using a dry or generic tone – A cold, generic or dry tone can chase a patient away from your site straight away. Consider reaching out on a personal level regarding what patients in your area really care about. Some examples include avoiding pain, having a beautiful smile or being able to eat their favourite foods. If you focus on the benefits of dentistry, you can reach people on a deeper level.

Too much information – Knowledge is power, but too much information in the form of website content can overwhelm the average person. You can explain procedures and treatments in detail in the clinic where you can answer questions and show examples of their options.

Intimidating language – Using threatening words or phrases such as drill or shot can trigger anxiety in a fearful patient. It’s acceptable to use less descriptive terms such as polish, remove or apply.

A Helping Hand

If you are considering a new website, Great Dental Websites offers custom copywriting services to ensure that your content reflects your practice style and keeps your new patients on your site. The goal is to entice the members of your community to arrange a booking.

Our experts can consult with you to identify what aspects of your website are working well as well as those areas that could use a professional polish.

Call us on 61 2 8935 0600 for a consultation.

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Great Dental Websites
Great Dental Websites helps dentists realize the greatest return on their local digital marketing investment through world-class marketing services and an intuitive, dental-specific website management platform. Since 2007, we have designed unique, modern dental websites for over 900 practices in the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

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