At Season of Smiles, we want to make sure that your experience with our clinic starts with a pristine experience of our website. This includes a fast, mobile-friendly website that lets you call us easily from your smartphone and find the dental services that you are looking for. Whether you are connected to our website via Wi-Fi or through your mobile data, we wanted you to have the best experience on our mobile device possible.
How We Sped Up Our Website
We worked very hard to increase the speed of the mobile version of our website. We did this by installing a number of plugins and completing a number of changes, including:
- A speed optimization plugin.
- Image compression.
- Code minification where needed.
Overall, these changes helped improve the overall performance of our mobile version of our website so that you could enjoy a better experience on mobile.
Why We Use WordPress for Season of Smiles
First and foremost, WordPress is the standard for dental websites. WordPress delivers a visitor experience that is consistent between desktop and mobile, creates easy-to-use forms for website visitors, and load fast across all devices. WordPress also makes it simple for our practice to deliver blogs that educate you about dental health. WordPress also makes it easy to provide you with photos and videos of the dental practice onto your smartphone.
WordPress is also beneficial for dental websites because of responsive design. With responsive design, the design of the website can be scaled to fit desktop devices, smartphones, and tablets. At Season of Smiles, we use a child DIVI theme to bring you the optimal experience on multiple devices.
WordPress also embraces mobile-first design. Each WordPress theme is intended to deliver a great experience on mobile before it is delivered to a visitor’s browser.
Our Mobile Website Before Speed Enhancements
Before our page speed optimization on desktop mobile, our website took approximately five to six seconds to load on mobile. A good dentist website needs to load in about four seconds or less on smartphone and even faster on desktop. After our page speed optimization, the average load speed time is about three seconds on a smartphone. Here are some of the steps that we took to make sure that our website loaded more quickly for our prospective patients;
- Compressing images so that they were in the smallest format that is suitable for mobile (using a .png instead of a .jpeg file).
- Making sure that off-screen images loaded with a technique called lazy loading.
- Increasing the speed of the first contentful paint on mobile. First contentful paint is when the first elements of the website hit the browser on your smartphone.
The Importance of Caching
One of the ways that we are able to deliver you a fast website on both desktop and mobile is through caching. Caching is one of the most widely available ways to make a dental website, like ours, fast. Caching is set up on Season to Smile’s website and it reduces the size of the html that is delivered to browsers on both smartphone and desktop. Caching is important for mobile websites because it helps you get content to your smartphone fast.
Caching also creates a seamless experience a visitor to our website scrolls down the page. Larger images will load as the visitor goes further down the page. Major websites like Facebook, YouTube, and even Yahoo use this technique to load their website on smartphones and desktop.
Elements of a Mobile-Friendly Website That Every Dentistry Practice Should Have
First and foremost, in addition to speed, a good mobile website for any dentistry practice should employ the following:
- A mobile menu that is easy to use.
- Text that is readable.
- Clickable elements that are placed far apart.
- Easy-to-read reviews so that visitors can understand the positive experiences of current and past patients.
- Important resources, like financial options, that are easy to find on the website.
In addition to these elements, a good dentistry practice website will also have hours, a phone number, and other contact information displayed on the website in a manner that is easy to find. Page speed isn’t the only factor in determining the efficacy of a mobile site. Things such as user experience also play an important role in making sure that a website is easy to use on smartphones.
Why Is a Good Mobile Website Important for a Dentistry Practice?
Choosing a new dentist can often be a daunting task. It is very important that patients be able to access important information like the dentist and staff biographies, a complete listing of the services that are available, and moreover, easy-to-find financial information. A mobile-friendly website is also important to be displayed in search engines like Bing and Google. Here is what Google is looking for in terms of a mobile-friendly website:
- The most important content displayed in a manner that is easily accessible via a smartphone.
- Employment of metadata, text, images, links, videos and structured data.
- A similar experience between desktop and smartphone, meaning users get access to the same content on both devices.
Videos can be difficult to manage on mobile. When a website has a video that is streamed to YouTube, this can slow the speed of the website down considerably on smartphone devices. This is why it’s important to only use video on your website if absolutely necessary. At the end of the day, a good mobile experience on a website will help potential patients find it on organic search.
How Can Our Patients Benefit from Our Faster Mobile Website?
Whether you are a new or current patient, Season of Smiles is proud of its new, faster loading website. Here are some of the things that you might notice on our website:
- Above-the-fold (what you see on your browser) content loads more quickly.
- You don’t have to wait as long for pictures and other content, like reviews to load.
- Important information, like our business hours and phone number, loads more quickly.
- Pages that display our important services information also load faster.
- We also took some time to compress our images in the portfolio, so you can better understand the great experiences of current and past patients.
George is Innovative, passionate, and curious about helping small- to enterprise-sized businesses achieve their objectives when growing their online presence. Among many of his other endeavors, George currently writes for https://diib.com/.