Independent Practice Website Tips
Vetwebsite’s main aim is to promote independent UK vet practices and make their bespoke websites stand out from the corporates.
Having designed and maintained UK practice websites for the last 10 years; a few of these independent practices have been bought out by a corporate.
The most recent is a very large group taken over by one of the larger corporates. The response from their clients when the announcement was made via their Facebook page was:
Has ownership changed? Do the profits now go to a larger organisation? I must admit, when it comes to animal care, I like the thought of it being very much a local, family run business.
It’d be good to know the reason behind this though – I’ve been bringing my dogs here for nearly 25 years and always been so happy with the wonderful staff.
I’m not a fan of (corporate group) at all so will watch with caution what happens to this lovely, lovely practice.
Will prices be going up?
What we need to remember is that a company is as good as it’s staff, and as the staff remain the same as when it was (independent practice) our animals are still in the safest hands.
So from these quotes from concerned clients, it seems obvious that what clients want is still the ‘family run feel’ of an independent practice with dedicated staff working for the practice; not for a corporate.
With this in mind, it is so important to have a practice website that portrays everything personal about the practice.
Corporate websites are very impersonal – maybe just mentioning the main vets and nothing more. Some of the newer corporates have introduced latest news Blogs but these tend to be for the corporate; not specific to the practice.
Veterinary practices are local businesses and clients love to read about how Milly is finally an RVN and Judith is celebrating her 25th year working as the friendly receptionist at the practice or how Daisy the Irish Setter swallowed a pair of tights and how your team were able to save her.
Social media and Facebook can cover all of that you may be thinking; and yes I agree, Facebook has a huge part to play in local businesses; however each post is so transient, and it should be the practice website that portrays the caring ethos of the staff; not the practice Facebook page.
Only by having a fully up to date and well maintained website with local news and latest pet information, will you attract a client to sign up or use the direct dial buttons to book that appointment at your independent practice rather than at the corporate down the road.
Arielle BVSc MRCVS