A Slow Website Might be Hurting your Practice

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Have a slow website? We hate to be the bearer of bad news but your slow website is hurting your practice. Why? Well…People are impatient. And that impatience directly affects how much time (not much) they are willing to wait.

Think Mobile

A big part of our Top Ten Essentials to a Powerful Online Presence is page speed. This one matters a lot! We have now reached the point where over half of all visits to optometry websites are done on a mobile device or tablet. If you own a smartphone—and we know you do!—then you probably know that it’s a lot slower when you are using your data plan rather than a local wifi hotspot. Combine that with a slow website and people will definitely bounce off your page and into the arms of a competitor instead of waiting for your homepage to load.

How slow is too slow? A whopping 53% of people will leave a page on mobile if it takes more than 3 seconds to load! Think about the lost revenue potential here. Time is money...wasted.

A slow website can even hurt your Google rankings. In 2018, Google launched its “Mobile First” indexing approach and stated unequivocally that “site speed is a factor”.

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How do I Speed Up My Optometry Website?

Crucial high-traffic pages—especially the homepage!—should load in under 3 seconds. You can test this on pages such as https://tools.pingdom.com/ and Google’s own mobile site speed testing tool.

These tools vary by time of day and traffic volume, so try them a few times and don’t stack requests all at once. They will also give you a breakdown of what the biggest time-kills on a given page are. Some things are not easily fixable, or not all that problematic. But others are.  In our experience, the biggest slowdowns occur from things like…

Images
Don’t overwhelm any page, and especially your homepage, with too many pictures. Even more important is to always make sure pictures are sized properly and compressed. A full-resolution image with no compression could add entire seconds to the time it takes your homepage to load. There are lots on online tools you can use to compress images such as this one.{link is no-follow}

Video
We love video. It’s a fantastic tool to engage patients and personalize your practice website. Just exercise restraint. Embedding too many videos on one page will definitely slow down your page. An advanced trick we recommend for homepages is to avoid video altogether. Instead, take a (compressed) screenshot of the video thumbnail and link that to a different page where the video actually lives. You can have your cake and eat it too!

Widgets or Apps
Have a great tool for “trying on frames” from home? That’s cool! Just don’t stick it right on your homepage. Provide an enticing linked callout instead. The same even goes for your Google map. You don’t have to embed it on the homepage. Instead, use a screenshot to link to your Hours and Location page (where the embedded Google map should live for SEO reasons anyway).

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Just following these three tips will go along way to boosting your load time. Small changes can make a big impact. When it comes to something as essential as your practice website, a bit more speed can profoundly improve your bottom line.

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Did You Know?

At EyeCarePro, we make SEO optimized and beautifully designed websites and provide comprehensive optometry marketing strategy and implementation. Interested in learning more? Fill out the form and schedule a call with us. An optometry marketing expert will be happy to discuss a Homepage that will work best for your online presence.

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Marketing Makes All the Difference.

ODSite - Get a premium website designed with your brand and business goals in mind enhanced with optometry’s best practices. Having a website doesn't eliminate the need for broader marketing but it's a start.

ODEssentials- Take the first steps towards new patient marketing with improved local presence in Google search, reputation management, social media and comprehensive integrated marketing campaigns.

ODCapture - Advanced marketing for any practice, ODCapture takes things up a notch by combining advanced content with beauty, branding, and SEO. ODCapture builds your practice into a recognizable brand to be reckoned with.

ODSpecialty - Become the expert and bring in new patients with expansive content, videos, campaigns, marketing material, and referral resources to grow your Vision Therapy, Dry Eye, Scleral Lens, Low Vision, or Myopia Management/Ortho K specialty practice.

ODMetro - Rise above the competition and lead your market with our most comprehensive marketing package that provides an unbeatable combination of supercharged SEO and personalized optometric marketing services.

ODPPC - Instantly get to the top of the page for Google searches in your area with a highly focused Google Ads campaign targeting the most important keywords for bringing new patients to your practice.