When searching for medical providers online, the factor which influences potential patients the most is the medical provider’s website. There are five components which any website for a medical practice must have in order to successfully convert patients. These five components serve two main purposes: the fulfillment of information needs and the building of confidence in the provider.
The five components of a successful website are as follows:
First, a medical practice’s website must have a professional and appealing aesthetic. An outdated or poorly designed website speaks volumes to potential clients, creating a negative experience and connotation around your practice. A website that is hard to navigate, or which does not convey information quickly and efficiently, will frustrate potential patients and cause them to explore other options. Information that should be immediately available includes location, main services, information for existing patients and the front desk phone number. User-friendly design is crucial.
Secondly, having an “About” section is a fantastic way to share the practice staff’s background, interests, and their involvement in the local community. A doctor can highlight his specialties and educational background. This allows patients to build confidence in the physician’s abilities and to decide whether the practice will be a good fit, saving both parties time and effort. Thoroughly listing the services your practice can provide will also help improve your search ranking for those services.
Third, a portal with patient resources will save both you and your patients a great amount of time. For example, the ability to book appointments will increase the possibility of a website being a one-stop destination for patients. Having the ability to book online will also save your front desk staff time that would otherwise be spent booking appointments on the phone. Within this portal, patients could also be able to download new patient documents and to manage their bills online.
The fourth essential feature for a medical practice website is responsive design. Now more than ever, people are searching for providers on their cell phones. Having a website that can successfully load onto a cellphone is crucial. A website that only works on a laptop or desktop will drive away potential patients who prefer their cell phones. Is it important to consider the following questions:
Is the important information on the website easy to find on a cellphone?
Will the website load quickly on different browsers?
Does every part of your website respond correctly to being opened on a cell phone?
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, websites should have clearly defined calls to action throughout their layout. These are subtle (or not so subtle) ways of encouraging a visitor to the website to book an appointment, call for a consultation, etc. The wording on your site should prompt action.