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Top 10 Medical Website Design Tips

1. Research your competitors’ websites to establish your position in the market
It’s important to research your competitors’ websites to fully understand what the patient experiences when they are doctor shopping. You never want to copy to look of a fellow competitor as it confuses patients and can damage your brand long term. Instead, when evaluating your competition determine their strengths and weaknesses – as well as your own – to best decide how you want to position your practice in the market.

2. Make sure the website “tells your story”
Too often physicians lose sight of the fact that establishing a brand in the market is just as important for medical practices as it is for a restaurant or a real estate agent. It’s important that you establish your place in the market and then use your website to support your brand by effectively portraying to patients why they should not only chose your practice but remain loyal to your brand.

3. Make is easy for visitors to find what they are looking for
Medical websites can often house a great deal of information – educational resources, appointment instructions, patient forms, maps/directions, etc. Make is easy for visitors of your site to find exactly what they are looking for by utilizing a simple navigation menu and “hot spot” buttons featuring the most popular needs, such as “Make an appointment” or “Meet our doctors”.

4. Experience matters – Choose a web design agency who specializes in health care
You wouldn’t go to a primary care physician in need of specialist just like you shouldn’t choose a web design agency that caters to all industries. It’s important to choose a web designer that specializes in health care. They will better understand your position in the market, what patients are looking for, and will adhere to health care specific requirements such as HIPAA compliance.

5. Utilize the expertise of a medical marketing specialist to write the content
By relying on medical marketing specialists to write your content you’ll ensure that the messaging is on point with your brand – aka the website will more powerfully “tell your story”. You specifically want to find a marketing specialist with medical writing experience as they will best understand your industry and how to position your practice in the market.

6. Optimize, optimize, optimize!
It doesn’t matter that you have a fabulous website if no one can find it. With 68% of people seeking their medical advice online, you can rest assured that they are also using the internet to doctor shop. Therefore, it’s vital to invest in search engine optimization (seo) services to ensure patients can easily find your site when searching specific keywords on the internet.

7. Maintain a consistent brand
Your brand establishes who you are as a practice and it’s what patients will remember you by when talking to their neighbor down the street. Your logo, your services, the doctor’s experience, how friendly your front desk staff is…these are all pieces of a puzzle that establish your overall brand. Once you’ve established your brand it’s important to keep it consistent in order to build long term recognition and loyalty. It’s the same reason why some people chose Coca-Cola over Pepsi – brand loyalty. The same goes for your website. If your physicians are known for the innovative procedure they perform then state-of-the-art care should be a focal point of your site.

8. Pursue a design theme that is attractive but simple
Your website design says a lot about who you are as a practice. If your website looks out of date then patients often assume so is the medical care you provide. Your web design should be attractive but simple – more is not better. Excessive flash and fancy intros may frustrate your visitors looking for specific information. Don’t go overboard. Your site should be user friendly for even your most computer illiterate patients.

9. Don’t forget a call visitors to action
Websites are basically an extended version of a practice brochure and provide a lot of helpful information. However, when it comes to potential patients it’s important that you not only give them the details they are looking for but then call them to action. Every page should include a “contact us” or “schedule an appointment” button. Your website can be a powerful tool in increasing your patient volume but only if you use it as such. A contact form is a must since it allows potential patients to ask a simple question, for instance, before scheduling. Be aware – it can also be a test of your practice’s service. Contact the patient back within 24 hours and your chance of converting them to a new patient is significantly increased. Wait anymore than 48 hours and they’ve likely already scheduled somewhere else.

10. Hire a professional photographer
There’s nothing worse than an attractive, modern website complete with physician headshots straight from the 80’s. Or worse – fuzzy pictures in bad lighting taken in the hallway while the doctor was in between patients. Take the extra step to hire a photographer who will come to your practice and utilize the proper backgrounds and equipment necessary for a professional look that presents your docs in the best light.

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