Frequently, I encounter physicians, therapists, veterinarians, and small health facilities who are frustrated with the lack of anticipated results from their websites. When I examine the content and design they ask me to review, it is immediately apparent to me and my team what went wrong: They built their website for the wrong audience and the wrong purpose.
Many clinicians have never been trained or educated about marketing, branding or advertising. When I ask them to describe the goal for each piece of content I find, they admit the goal was to get something online and try to make it onto the first few listings for a search on their geographic area and their specialty. Many web designers haven’t been trained and have little or no experience in how to market healthcare services. They use templates that can be used by real estate professionals, lawyers, attorneys, upholsterers, piano tuners, and plumbing contractors. Often they try to be creative, trendy, and appeal to their customers’ vanity and ego.
Clinician and health facility websites are not an exercise in vanity.
A clinical or health facility business website is a tool patients or family members prospects use to find a solution to their problem. Nobody visits your professional website to be amused or entertained. They rarely come to a private clinic website to learn about their disease either. And they really didn’t come to be amazed or impressed by your extensive CV. Their intention is to learn if you offer a solution that will satisfy their need and learn how to get in touch with you. Read More
Treat your website as a communication tool
The websites I help design for clinicians and health facilities help patients find the information they need. If your website helps them solve their problem, chances are high that if you participate with their insurance plan and are located where they are willing to travel, and open during the hours they can schedule an appointment, they will probably move further into your sales funnel, schedule an appointment, and become a new patient.
A reasonable budget for framework, design, consulting, purchase of your domain name, software and theme and graphic elements licenses, email addresses, Hosting + CDN, professional photography, video production, SEO editing, and getting the website where it needs to be listed on various social platforms and GPS mapping programs, etc., will cost about $10,000 all in. Many physicians express surprise that a WordPress website has costs associated with design and development and all the other things like hosting and email.
Here's What You Should Be Prepared to Discuss
In our complimentary 15 minute introductory call, I’ll want to know about:
- What kind of content you would like to include
- What you want each piece of content and each page to achieve
- Your experience with content creation (blogs, videos, podcasts) and content marketing
- Your experience interpreting website analytics
- Who will help you maintain the site once it is developed (if not us)
- Your thoughts on social media posting frequency, goals and objectives and who will take responsibility for this on your staff
- Your experience with digital marketing and traditional mass media marketing
- If you’ve done any work to build your professional brand image and message and branded graphic assets
- How you describe your target ideal patient
- Frustrations and challenges you’ve encountered in the past and what you did to over come them, if anything
- What did your efforts produce in terms of results
- Budgeting for a new site, content editing for SEO, and social media marketing management, if any
- Any questions you have for me and my team
A typical medical practice website includes the following framework/pages:
Menu Tab Pages – Basic Framework Content
- Front page that includes how patients benefit from doing business with you, a description of your ideal patients, a sidebar with hours, phone, fax, address, map, a list of on-site clinical services available, a link to your patient portal – if applicable
- About the doctors and clinical team (Clinical Staff photos and CVs/Biosketches) multilingual translations – if applicable
- Business details: Financial, appointment and medication refill policies and insurance plans and programs with which you are contracted
- Contact page
- Resources (optional) (e.g., your blog, podcasts, videos, monthly newsletter archives, standard forms, diet plans, aftercare info (e.g., casts, sutures, etc.), bp log, blood sugar log, weight loss log, sleep log, pharmacy discount card, etc.)
Non-tabbed pages that are available in the footer
- HIPAA Privacy (boilerplate templates customized with your details are fine)
- Web Use Policies (boilerplate templates customized with your details are fine)
- Social media links to your Facebook page, etc. (if you use them – these take 5 minutes to create and add)
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