Effective Health and Medical Website Design
In today’s high-bandwidth web access, it takes an average of seven seconds for website visitors, including potential clients to evaluate a website. If a website loads too slowly, something’s amiss and they move on to what’s next on the search results. Then again, if the site loads fast, poor design can contribute to a lack of effectivity for your website. Health and Medical websites need to look clean, organized and easy to navigate, otherwise, turning visitors into patients becomes a challenge. If you already have a website or are thinking of creating one, here are five points to ponder:
Five Elements of Highly Effective Medical Website Design
1) It’s all about presentation
Prospective patients think of doctors as being clean and organized in everything other than their handwriting. Some bedside manners need work too but that’s after the prospect becomes the patient. For the prospect to become the patient, medical practitioners need to have a convincing website. One that’s polished and up-to-date. What would visitors think if the last surgical performance or last successful therapy was from six months ago?
The site needs to be clean and inviting. Free of intrusive ads, but if there needs to be ads, they should be well-placed and out of the way. The site needs to be responsive and not to flashy, in every sense of the word. The design should also be compatible with most mobile devices which is what people use these past few years instead of computers. About 17 million Americans access medical info and services on mobile devices according to comScore and for that to happen, the design needs to be clean and simple.
As mentioned being up-to-date is important and that means posting newsletters, blog posts and other information about whatever practice you’re in. That provides patients information on your work thus boosting their confidence in you and your clinic. Including relevant photos and video is recommended but avoid using more than necessary or risk slowing down your site. Also, if possible, it’s recommended to feature shots that are professionally taken for that good impression.
2) The Right Message
Website visitors are mostly those that need help with specific ailments and conditions while others just want your contact info to sell you something. The former needs to know that they have nothing to worry about. They need to be confident about their prospective physician or specialist. Your website’s main message should be “Choose me, here’s why.”
As mentioned, not every medical professional is blessed with a good bedside manner so it’s recommended that a marketing professional to do the spinning and say, “You are welcome, we are here and we are at your disposal.” Also, if your practice or clinic has something that should be in the Guinness Book, it wouldn’t hurt to include it. Realigned most number of slipped discs in Dakota or how about shaping the best breasts in the Bronx.
So the website looks great. But does it work like it should? Does it easily lead visitors to whatever they’re looking for such as a list of doctors grouped by specialty? Does the website show the clinic’s schedules and allow for booking? One suggestion is to have a concise but easy-to-navigate menu system to quickly lead visitors to your list of services, list of medical professionals, appointment booking page and a FAQ page.
Having an informative FAQ page should spare you from answering common questions from patients. The patients will know what they’re getting into and save time by discussing the finer details when they finally come in contact.
When it comes to website design and functionality, there are tested design principles that need to be followed. Seek out developers that work well with these principles and your wishes at the same time.
4) Meaningful Content
Providing the right information is key to a successful website especially for Health and Medical. Prospective clients look for competence and expertise. Blogs are an effective way of giving information to prospective clients about your clinic’s various services. You could provide layman’s versions regarding the various practices and procedures performed in your clinic, doctor’s profiles, what’s new in medicine with regards to your specialties as well as information about various diseases and conditions treated. As previously mentioned, this content needs to be up-to-date, supported by professional images and short video.
5) Call Patients to Action
Like eBay or Amazon, spur prospective clients into action to add your services to their shopping cart as quickly as possible. This doctor or clinic can help me. Click! If possible, that action needs to happen within the visitor’s first few minutes of being in the website. One way is to include a subtle but noticeable “Contact Us” or “Request for an Appointment” button or link on every page. After absorbing some of the info provided, these buttons and links should always be at the ready, functional and alive.