Grow Your Medical Or Healthcare Business Online With WordPress
The digital economy has not only revolutionized the way business is done around the world, it has also created significant challenges and great opportunities for the health or medical industry.
Challenges Professional Medical Providers Face Online
Today, more than ever, businesses in the medical and health industry must work harder than ever to remain competitive. Not only do you have to maintain an active presence in the community your business serves, you must also develop a strong digital presence. This includes having a website and learning how to better promote your practice online.
In addition to investing money advertising offline on local newspapers, ads in industry publications and magazines, radio and television spots, etc., businesses in the medical or health industry are now finding that increasingly larger amounts of their marketing budget will need to be delegated towards developing and managing a website that attracts prospective clients, engages visitors, outranks the competition in search engines and social media, and increases their reach online.
This means that your website not only has to look great, your pages have to be fast-loading, and your website has to be easy to navigate, but it’s also important to keep in mind that your site’s needs may change over time and sections may need to be frequently updated. This requires the implementation of a well-planned website and content management strategy.
One other challenge that health organizations (and other businesses) face online, is that you have an average of thirty seconds or less to give users what they are searching for or they will go elsewhere to find what they need.
“Websites have evolved into central information hubs where service information is still present but enhanced with web portals, hyperlinks to state and federal sites, and a variety of free tools.”
Opportunities For Health And Medical Services Providers
As well as facing a number of business and technology changes, there are also loads of online opportunities available for medical or health-related practices that can evolve to meet digital economy challenges and can think strategically about marketing themselves better online.
In this comprehensive guide, you will discover ways and opportunities to drive more traffic and improve your online results.
As well as providing useful website improvement tips, we also place special emphasis on the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress platform to power your medical-related website.
To learn more about the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress platform, see the articles below:
- How A Poorly Built Web Site Can Lose You Customers
- The Business Owner’s Guide To Understanding WordPress
Tips To Improve Your Medical And Health Practice Services Site
In this section we will start with the basics and show you ways to improve your health or medical-related website and get better results online. We will look at what web pages you need, what content you need, layout and navigation structure, etc.
If you need assistance or help planning your health-related website, visit this page: A Cost-Saving Guide To Website Planning For Non-Technical Business Owners
Your Web Pages
Professional business websites require a number of basic pages. Let’s take a look at these.
Services And Products
You need a page that lists your services and any products that you offer. Depending on which area of health or medical services you specialize in, this page can include services like:
- Medical And Surgical – e.g. anaesthetics, pulmonology endocrinology, cancer, hyperbaric medicine, rheumatology, infection control, eye diseases surgical outpatients, etc.
- Dentistry – e.g. preventive dentistry, holistic dentistry, oral hygiene, restorations, dental braces, emergency dentistry, etc.
- Cardiology – e.g. heart monitoring, coronary care
- Prenatal and Neonatal – e.g. birthing, maternity services, etc.
- Child Health services – paediatrics, child development, children services, etc.
- Diagnostic services – breast screens, skin cancer, x-ray, pap smears, MRI scanning, food allergy testing, etc.
- Pathology services – lab testing and analysis, emergency pathology testing, food and water testing, speech pathology, etc
- Counselling services – mental health, alcohol, tobacco & other drug counselling, domestic abuse, wellness coaching, social work services
- Alternative therapies – Chinese medicine, aromatherapy, functional medicine, shiatsu, chiropractic services, hypnotherapy, etc.
- Other medical services – weight management, othopedics, lymphedema therapy, occupational therapy, inherited diseases, prosthetics, sleep therapy, home care, sexual health, medical equipment, etc.
List all of the services you provide, not just the ones you specialize in. Provide your visitors with information that will educate them about what your services do and direct them to your appointment booking page.
The ‘About Us’ page needs to describe your business and explain to visitors what your business stands for, its unique approach, causes that you support, etc.
It should include any awards, accreditations, certifications, recognitions, publications, associations, etc., that could be used to promote your medical services and to set yourself above other competitors.
(List all of your awards certifications, accreditations, recognitions, publications, associations, etc. in your About page. Image sourced from: squaremedical.com.au)
If you are looking for quicker, easier and cheaper ideas to sell more products online, then something you can do, is help your prospects get to know you, your team and your organization better.
You want people to relate to your business. A great way to do that is to have a page that introduces your people. It should include a photo and a brief biography. Since most visitors are probably not familiar with health or medical terms it should tell who they are and what they specialize in. It should also explain what those specialized areas mean. It can also include social buttons so your site visitors can follow individual team members on their social pages.
On this page, make sure to outline your employee’s expertise and qualifications, why they are an invaluable asset to your team, and more importantly, how they can help add value to your clients’ business.
(Add a page that introduces your staff or team members to prospective new clients. Screenshot image source: southperthchiro.com.au)
To learn more about how to create and add an easy-to-maintain directory of staff members in your web site without coding skills, refer to this tutorial: How To Easily Add A Simple Staff Directory On Your WordPress Site
This is a listing of career opportunities available within your business. This page should include training offered, employee benefits, advancement opportunities, social aspects of working for your organization, etc. You can include information about upcoming career opportunities in the medical and health industry.
Maintain a positions available section in this page. If there are no positions currently available, consider inviting people to return periodically to this page, join your announcements list, follow your social pages, etc.
Case studies and testimonials from past clients are a great way to attract potential clients and showcase what kind of services you offer. Adding a page with reviews from clients and case studies also helps your health or medical-related site to establish social proof.
(Add a web page with case studies and client reviews. Screenshot image sourced from: arrowsmiledental.com)
We have written a detailed article about using testimonials, case studies and client reviews get better results online here: Convert More Visitors Into Qualified Prospects Using More Effective Customer Testimonials
Contact Us Page
Having a functional contact page is essential.
It should include some or all of the following:
- Your address
- Telephone number
- Facsimile number
- Email address
- Google Map
- Website address
- Contact form
- Contact name
- Links to social media profiles
- Online chat feature (optional)
If your business services different locations you will want to make this clear when displaying the address and contact info.
Consider also including links pointing to the most commonly asked questions page, main pages, booking form, helpdesk, newsletter, blog, etc.
A blog can be a very powerful marketing tool. Many blogging platforms typically include a content management system that allows you to promote your business using timely content like announcements, updates, useful information, opinions on current topics, how-to videos, media presentations, etc.
If you already have an established health website, then consider adding a WordPress-driven blog to create more exposure for your medical business.
If you don’t have a website yet, or if your existing health or medical website is hard to keep updated or not giving you the results you want, then WordPress can act both as your website and business blog.
Not many people know this, but an expertly configured WordPress site can turn your web presence into an automated traffic machine that will help attract an ongoing stream of new targeted traffic to your web site, simply by adding new content on a consistent basis to your website.
(An expertly configured WordPress site can drive new traffic automatically to your site)
Go here to learn more:
- Website Traffic Blueprint – How To Automatically Get More Website Traffic For Your Business With WordPress
Legal Information Pages
It’s essential to make sure they have a website that complies will all legal requirements online. This is not only important for building trust with visitors, but also to ensure that no laws or regulations are being contravened wherever you provide services.
Adding the legal pages below to your medical-related site will help keep you out of legal hot water with most regulatory authorities, third-party service providers (e.g. Facebook), and other potential sources of threats and legal inconveniences:
- Contact Us
- Privacy Statement
- Terms And Conditions Of Use
- Website Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreement
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Compensation Disclosure
- DMCA Notice
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Linking Policy
- Health and Financial Disclaimers
- Refund Policy
- Video/Audio Terms
We have written a comprehensive article on adding legal pages to your site. To learn more about this go here: The Importance Of Adding Legal Pages To Your Website
Ways To Improve The Content On Your Website
In today’s highly competitive online economy, the practice of content marketing has become one of the key business differentiators.
Provide great content with useful information, advice or tips that will get your readers sharing your web pages and coming back for more. Using content is the most effective way to educate site visitors and prospective clients about using your services and products.
For example, if your business provides weight loss services, then some of the areas you can publish content about include the following:
- What is BMI (what it stands for, what it does, how to calculate yours)
- What calories really are and how they play a role in weight loss
- Characteristics of different diets, e.g. Low carb diet, Mediterranean diet, Weight Watchers diet (what these are, how they work, are they effective)
- How to modify recipes for healthier results (e.g. replacing sugars, fats, etc.)
- And many other content topics
You can also create a series of educational articles that will help your prospective clients gain a better understanding of your medical services, by explaining benefits, procedures, costs (including payment plans, insurance coverage, etc).
Use the same keywords and terms in your articles that readers will be searching for online.
We recommend subscribing to our Content Marketing Email Training Series. You will receive regular training emails with actionable information that will show exactly how to drive more traffic to your web site, save money creating high-quality content for your site visitors and grow your business online using content marketing. It’s not only a great course with loads of useful information, it’s also 100% FREE!
Tips For Improving Visitor Experience
Improving your site’s user experience (known as UX) will help you keep visitors coming back and using your site. This section will show you different ways to improve visitor engagement and UX.
Syndicate Content Using RSS Feeds
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds provide many benefits for your website.
If you provide valuable information, other sites will want to syndicate your content to their visitors.
Some of the benefits of having other businesses syndicate your content, include:
- All of your updates are in one place
- your content distribution doesn’t rely on email
- Your feeds can be shared online
- Users can subscribe to your RSS feed
- It provides links to your content
- RSS feeds can be submitted to RSS directories and aggregator services
- There are multiple ways readers can receive your content (e.g. subscribers can read the content on their mobile device using a feed reader)
- RSS is built into WordPress
There are also a number of benefits when it comes to adding syndicated content to your site from other websites, such as the fact that you don’t have to write, manage or update the content.
To find RSS feeds with loads of useful content for your website, visit sites of medical-related government departments or respected industry bodies.
For example, here are a few useful RSS feeds you could consider adding to a medical or health site:
- US Department Of Health And Human Services – e.g. Latest news feed: http://www.hhs.gov/rss/news/hhsnews.xml, etc. You can also choose specific feeds, like feeds on women’s health issues (e.g. Emergency preparedness, Healthy aging, Heart health and stroke, Minority women’s health, Pregnancy, etc.) here: http://womenshealth.gov/news/rss/rss-feeds.html
- US National Libraries Of Medicine – For a directory of RSS feeds from well-known medical journals, publications and websites (e.g. Journal of Neurophysiology, Neuroanatomy, CDC USA, The Journal of Physiology, Molecular Biology and Evolution, etc.) go here: http://www.healthplusplus.com/wiki/List_of_RSS_feeds_on_health
- National Institutes Of Health - Find various health-related feeds here: http://www.nih.gov/Subscriptions.htm
- US Food And Drug Administration (FDA) – Find feeds on fda-related news and topics like criminal investigations, food allergy reports, tainted products marked as dietary supplements, vaccines, blood and biologics, etc. and podcasts here: http://www.fda.gov/AboutFDA/ContactFDA/StayInformed/RSSFeeds
- Department of Health UK (https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-health) – Latest news: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-health.atom
- The Department Of Health (Australian Government): http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/xml/rssLatestNews.xml
- Department Of Public Health (Australia – State Level): e.g. NSW – http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/pages/rss.aspx
- Centers For Disease Control And Prevention (www.cdc.gov) - Get various feeds on health-related news and topics and podcasts here: http://www2c.cdc.gov/podcasts/rss.asp
- Medical News Feeds: You can search medical news feeds by going to publications like the NYTimes RSS feeds section (e.g. Medical research: http://www.nytimes.com/services/xml/rss/nyt/Research.xml)
- MedicineNet.com – Daily Health and Medical News: http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/dailyhealth.xml. You can also choose individual feeds here (http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/article.htm) (e.g. Alzheimer’s Disease, Arthritis, Nutrition, Food, & Recipes, Oral Health, Sexual Health, Infectious Disease, etc.)
- Medical News Today – MNT Featured Headlines: http://rss.medicalnewstoday.com/featurednews.xml
- MedicalNewsToday.com – You can also choose specific feeds here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/newsfeeds-rss (e.g. Hypertension, Multiple Sclerosis, Eczema/Psoriasis, Body Aches, Endocrinology, Tropical Diseases, Tuberculosis, etc.)
You can also search online for general RSS feeds, e.g. “medical rss feeds” or search for feeds on specific topics, e.g. “viruses rss feeds”, “preventive medicine rss feeds”, “personal monitoring rss feeds”, etc.
(Add RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds to improve your website’s user experience.)
Provide Checklists And Charts
Adding checklists and charts to your site is a fantastic way to increase user engagement, add value to your visitors and provide something unique. They can provide useful step-by-step instructions and resources to perform a task. Charts and checklists can also be great instructional tools.
You can provide online or downloadable checklists, charts and forms (or links to these) covering a range of subjects such as:
- Booking appointments
- Checklists for pre or post surgery
- Health checklists for specific conditions
- Dental checklists – e.g. first visit, maintenance program, general dentistry, etc.
- Weight loss and nutrition program checklists and charts
- General charts & infographics (e.g. caloric level of different foods, sleep requirements at different stages of development, etc.)
Provide Other Tools
Providing unique tools and applications on your site can help increase visitor engagement and add value to your visitors. Calculators, for example are useful tools to add to your website. Other applications could include things like diagnostic tools, and even recipes.
In part two of this guide, we will look at a several WordPress-based tools you can use in your website that can help improve your seo, improve user engagement and drive more traffic to your business.
This is the end of section one of this article on ways to build your medical or health-related business presence online.
Click on this link to continue reading:
- The Ultimate Guide To Successfully Building And Growing Your Medical Services & Health-Related Presence Online Using WordPress – Part 2
"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum