Your Practice’s Website is THE Cornerstone of Your Marketing
You know your site needs to look appealing and provide valuable information. Of course, that alone isn’t necessarily going to guarantee a line of patients outside your door, right?
There’s a lot more to great web design than a pretty homepage and spiffy animations.
(Trust us: we’ve built plenty of medical practice websites and seen many—built by others—that might have looked great, but just plain didn’t work.)
Let’s explore the three key factors that will make your website an effective marketing tool—one that does deliver the patients you want to see.
Why Unique Content is So Important
We’re starting with content for a pretty simple reason:
For most practices, this is where things go completely off the rails.
Developing unique and effective content is one of the most difficult aspects of building an effective medical website, but it’s also one of the most valuable.
- Informs and delights readers
- Mirrors the communication style and tone that you use with your patients in the office
- Is specific about the technology and procedures you use in the office (where appropriate), rather than just repeating generic information
- Establishes trust and builds relationships between the physician and patients
- Is unique (i.e., is not from a shared third-party library)
That last point—uniqueness—matters because of how Google prioritizes pages in search.
See, the whole point of an information library (aside from patient education) is to help draw more search traffic in your local area.
In other words, if somebody is suffering from intense heel pain near your office, and you have a page about plantar fasciitis on your website, you’re more likely to show up near the top of the results page on a search about the topic.
But Google can tell whether your page is truly unique, or just copied and recycled from countless other sites across the net. And if it flags your page as duplicate, you get penalized in search rank.
Writing the copy fresh not only allows you to fill it with your own distinctive personality and style, and highlight your office procedures and approach, but will also just plain perform better in search results. Plus, it’s more fun to read and more likely to trigger a conversion!
Looks Matter—You Want a Visually Appealing Website
Some web developers promise you a website in a matter of days. Buy your domain, pick your template, drop in some copy for the homepage, and you’re off to the races. They might even throw in a “patient library” of pre-written canned content about bunions, ingrown toenails, and other conditions.
Could you do that? Sure, you could. If you’re not all that concerned about getting more patients, that is.
However, if you really want a great website that actually works, you’re going to have to be a little more intentional about planning and strategizing than “pick your template.”
Before we start to build your website (and we will build it from the ground up), there’s a lot of things we need to take into account.
- Your branding. What are your logo and colors? (We can help you develop these if you don’t have any or you need a refresh.)
- The target conditions you treat and services you provide. What areas of the practice do you really want to grow? What do you specialize in? What separates you from your competition?
- The demographics of your area, and your target patients. Do you deal with mostly an elderly community, or young and active families? Are you happy with your current patient demographics, or are you trying to target a specific type of patient?
- Your current marketing efforts and internal systems. Your website can be built to integrate with existing (or new) database marketing efforts, online scheduling calendars, or even include a portal where patients can pay their bills, access their medical records, refill prescriptions, etc. Which of these systems do you currently have in place? Which would you like?
The answers to these and other questions inform every aspect of your digital marketing strategy, including how your new website will be built, designed, and optimized.
In other words, the goal is to give you the best possible foundation and platform to reach the specific, unique, and personal goals you’ve set for yourself and your practice—not just a generic, template-based site that looks and sounds just like everyone else’s.
Don’t Forget About User Experience!
User interface (UI) and user experience (UX) is crucial.
See, it’s not enough that your website looks beautiful graphically, with all the right colors and images. And all the great content in the world won’t matter if users don’t know what’s there, can’t find what they’re looking for, and have no idea what they’re being asked to do.
If your website is badly organized—and visitors have a bad experience—they aren’t going to read the content you’ve written. More importantly:
They aren’t going to fill out a contact form or call for an appointment!
Instead, they’re going to click away and find another website they can understand. Google will hear that loud and clear, and direct search traffic away from you and toward your competitors.
What does great UI and UX look like? Glad you asked. Users need:
- To know where they are. Right from the first instant they hit the homepage—without even scrolling—they should be able to tell, “yup, this is a podiatrist in my area with high professional standards.” Engaging colors and graphics, as well as a clear headline are hugely important.
- To know what they can do. When users seek a specific page or piece of content, they need to know right away where they can find it—and it shouldn’t take more than one or two clicks to get there. That means well organized menus, eye-catching call-out boxes, clear and understandable headlines and buttons, etc.
- A reason to do it. You need to give compelling reasons for why a potential patient should schedule an appointment with you. That includes well-placed calls to action and a high emphasis on how your services can meaningfully improve the lives of your patients—not just dry, technical information about qualifications or treatment procedures.
Beyond these basics, there are a few other important things to be concerned about:
- Load speed. If users have to sit around and wait for a webpage to boot up, they lose interest and click away. Poor page speed can be caused by a variety of factors—inefficient code, too many ultra-high-res images or videos, poor server performance, an outdated CMS, etc. When we build websites, we optimize them for high performance—without sacrificing aesthetic appeal.
- Mobile responsiveness. In this day and age, more than half of people who visit your website are doing it on a mobile phone. So even if your website is a thing of beauty on a desktop or laptop, you’ve got a big problem if it looks like junk, is hard to use, or runs poorly on a phone. We build websites with responsive designs, meaning the layout changes depending on the device—and looks great and runs smoothly on ALL DEVICES.
Get a New Website and Start Converting Visitors into Patients!
Your marketing efforts need to be connected for optimal results—and, whether you’re aware or not, the hub of this connectivity is your website.
For this reason, website design is one of the most important services we offer.
After all, the online face of your practice is your website, and it’s hard to overstate the importance of that when we live in an online world.
Make sure your site:
- Represents your practice
- Features unique content
- Has visual appeal
- Is user friendly
Choose VMD Services to build your site, and you can trust that all those things are done and visitors will have the best possible online experience—one that makes them want to contact your office to schedule an appointment!
All you have to do is give us a call at (833) 823-3335 today.