Any time that Google makes an update or has a new version of one of its tools, companies that provide online marketing to dentists rev up their selling machines. Do Not Fall For It! You don’t need to trade your email address for a whitepaper or consultation about G4. The product’s purpose is simple to understand.

GA4 is a version of Google Analytics with a specific purpose, and it’s not beneficial to everyone.

The standard (old, but constantly updated) version is now called Universal Analytics. This “older” version is constantly updated. It collects a more than adequate amount of data for managing any dentist’s, practice management company’s, or dental consultant’s website. In fact, the data includes detailed and complex information. We only need a fraction of the recorded data to manage SEO for our clients.

The ONLY reason you’d need GA4 is if you have both a website and an app, and you want to track data on both in one place. Most dentists do not have an app, nor do they need one.

If you do not have an app for your office, you do not need GA4. 

But here’s what you do need…

However, I strongly suggest you have both Universal Analytics and Google Search Console installed on your website. Analytics tracks data and Search Console tells us how your site is indexed, which pages have issues, and what those problems are so that they can be corrected. Google Search Console is just as important as Google Universal Analytics. Both are free, as is GA4.

Should you buy an app for your dental office?

As you probably know, apps have many functions. They can provide games, data collection/recording, bill pay, and other functions. Dentists don’t need to offer these things via an app. Personally, I hate downloading an app only to find it’s pretty useless. It makes me feel like the company behind the app wasted my time. This is not a message you want to send to your patients!

In my opinion, an app doesn’t offer patients any time-saving or service-enhancing benefits. A modern, interactive website should be sufficient, and preferable, for most patients. If someone wants your website on a phone’s home screen, that’s easy to do with an icon/link combo on the device itself. (I’m not sure why anyone but the dentist would want this, though.)

Identiwrite does not create apps. Honestly, I can’t recommend a company that does. If in the future I see value in apps for dentists, then Identiwrite will start building apps, or I’ll find a reputable company to offer my clients the service.

Orthodontists are an exception because of the immense scheduling management. Apps for orthodontists can provide scheduling, as well as quick access to braces-safe recipes, first-aid tips, and reminders about compliance.

A few other dental industry-serving companies may also benefit from an app. Dental consultants, speakers, conventions, and other companies might invest in an app that proves valuable for information transfer and client retention.

Want to add a payment portal to your website?

One service an app can provide is a payment portal, but your website can do this, too.

Most PMS (project management software) provides a payment link we can add to your site. However, if you want to add a shopping cart or payment portal to your site, we can do that for you. Plugins like WooCommerce and Paypal Shopping Cart are easy to install and manage.

If you have questions about Google Universal Analytics, GA4, Search Console, or updating your website with user-experience-enhancing tools like a payment portal or scheduling app, call me — Shauna Duty — at 940-395-5115 or email shauna@identiwrite.com. I have a wealth of info in this brain of mine, and I will be happy to share it with you!

Learn more about G4 from Google — not from salesmen — at this link.