Many of our clients ask, “Does it matter if I use real photos of my patients and my practice, or will generic stock photography work for my website?”
Your website is a billboard in the middle of the ocean, and it needs specific strategies and support to get noticed. Internet users are constantly becoming smarter and faster at assessing websites, and in-turn, are using your website as one of their deciding factors when deciding on a dentist. Your website often serves as your first impression to a potential patient, so it is an investment worth making.
Studies show that the photography you use does matter, and that there are huge benefits to using professionally shot photos of your actual patients, your team and your office. These authentic photos allow the visitor to connect to you, your team, your current patients, your website and the services that you offer. The photography on your website is intended to make the visitor relate to your site, and generic stock photos of smiling models (which are often sold online to multiple users or sometimes available for free) can come across as too perfect or overly staged, which is not relatable.
Visual Website Optimizer’s recent article states that professionally shot photos of your actual patients, your team and your office can improve website conversions and that generic stock photos are generally ignored. Photos are essential to your practice brand and the message that you want the public to absorb. These photos should be used to your advantage and be effective at attracting high-quality patients.
Another reason to avoid using stock photos is the potential of your competitors using the same, or similar, images. Despite the size of the stock photo pool, if a competitor is using the same or similar images, your potential patient could be confused and feel a lack of originality. If stock photos are the only viable option for your website, there are sources available where you can determine who else is using that photo.
It is important to view photography as an investment, one that can be used for years to come. Your original photos can also be used in subsequent marketing materials, such as direct mail, print advertisements, flyers, newsletters, referral postcards, welcome packets, and more.
Hire a professional photographer and allow your original photographs to tell the story of your practice and build strong relationships with potential and current patients from the start.