Having a polished web presence is now one of the most essential tools for all industries. When it comes to healthcare marketing, a website can be an educational tool, and it can help an organization reach more potential patients and customers. It can help build brand trust and, above all, make a service, product or brand accessible to the population.
By reviewing top healthcare sites across the web, we have done the hard yards for you and developed top tips to help you build a website users and patients will love.
Make sure your organization’s or practice’s full name is present as soon as the webpage loads. It should appear in the top left-hand corner in eye-catching font so the user knows he or she is in the right place.
With the advent of the Internet, information is consumed at an alarming rate, and it’s not just consumers that want it. It’s patients, people requiring reassurance, advice or validation for their healthcare choices. Make sure your healthcare website is a success by ensuring you have engaging, helpful and educational content. Ensure this content is clear and concise—in this case flowery writing is not your friend.
Your website is your online face, and it will likely reach more people than any other medium. It is important for a healthcare website to maintain a professional theme consistently throughout. It may even help to have a design element that portrays your field of expertise. Remember, professional doesn’t necessarily mean boring.
When people are looking for healthcare, they want to be assured they are getting top-of-the-line care. A sneaky way to induce that feeling is to optimize your website to make it run at top speed. This shows users your organization is efficient and forward thinking. If your load time is more than 3 seconds, you are guaranteed to be losing users, so use these tips to get it running "insanely fast."
Like you respond to your patients and clients, your website should respond to its users. Users are accessing the web from many more devices nowadays, and it’s important to ensure your website is compatible with them. Creating a responsive website ensures your web-layout responds to the environment it’s accessed from. This enables the user to visit your website on-the-go and gather information, fast, with no annoying layout problems. A non-responsive website can turn away users at an alarming rate.
There needs to be a cohesion and obvious hierarchy to the organization of your website. A confusing web-layout and navigation system is the way to lead users to exhaustion and mistrust. Figure out what your main message and call to action are, and make these attributes eye-catching and obviously important by using font, size and placement.
The entire purpose of a healthcare website is to reach more potential consumers or patients. This means it is of paramount importance to have clear and easily accessible contact details on your site. It reminds the user there is a human behind the screen that cares about their needs. It is good practice to present your phone number and physical address on either the header or footer of your site. This way, if the user needs to contact you, he or she can do so with ease. If the contact details are hard to find, a user is likely to move on to an alternative option.
Often healthcare websites will post content derived from professional journals or other official sources. And while this is seen as good practice, it may be more lucrative to produce your own original content. Not only will producing clever and personal content based on those sources portray your organization as a thought leader in the space, something that anybody looking for a healthcare service will be sensitive to, but you will also be improving your search engine rating. Relevant, quality and frequent publishing of original content can take your website a step above the rest.
Your website represents your brand and your work, so any mistakes made in the web-world reflect poorly on your work in the real world. Make sure every word is proofread and double-checked because a sloppy website sends the message your work is sloppy, too. Nobody wants sub-par healthcare that lacks attention to detail, so it’s worth remembering your website is your online face—it needs to look good if patients and consumers are going to trust you.
By utilizing these tips, you will be well on your way to putting your best face first in the world of web, increasing your communication with your target community. What are your top tips for making your website the face of your healthcare marketing? Share with us in the comment section below.
Crystal Mathieson is Activate Design's customer services extraordinaire, handling accounts, hosting and domain support, phone enquiries, print distribution, refereeing between staff and The Arcade Machine, and generally ensuring the lines of communication are always open... and friendly. Crystal also has a way with words some might call ‘vegete.’ She enjoys being overly clever with colloquy, using her skills with writing and language to work with clients in producing keyword-rich content for websites, brochures and newsletters. Find out more about the team at Activate Design here.