Grow Your Medical Or Healthcare Business Online With WordPress
Medical services practitioners today face an increasing number challenges thanks to the web economy.
Challenges Medical & Health Businesses Face Online
Today, more than ever, health and medical services professionals must work harder and find smarter ways to remain competitive and generate new clientele. Not only do you have to become more involved in the community you serve, you must also develop and maintain an active presence online. This includes having an effective website and learning better ways to grow your services online.
In addition to investing dollars in offline marketing activities, businesses in the medical or health-related industry are now finding that increasingly larger amounts of their budget will need to be assigned to develop and manage a website that will bring in clients, engage users, outperform the competition in search engines and social media, and help increase their marketing exposure online.
This means that your site not only has to look professional, your web pages have to be fast-loading, and your site layout has to be easy to navigate, but even more importantly, your site’s needs will change in time and many aspects may need to be frequently updated. This requires a sound website and content management strategy in place.
Another challenge that health services providers (and other businesses) face, is that you have an average of 30 seconds to provide users with what they are searching for or they will go elsewhere.
“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.”
Online Opportunities For Medical Services
As well as facing many challenges, there are also plenty of online opportunities available to health or medical businesses that can adapt to meet the challenges of the digital economy and who can think progressively about marketing themselves better online.
This guide will help you uncover ways to attract more clientele and see significant improvements in your health-related business presence online.
As well as providing tips and information on cost-effective ways to improve your web presence, we also focus on the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress Content Management System (CMS) to power your medical business website.
To learn more about the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress CMS platform, go here:
- Discover How A Poorly Built Web Site Can Lose You Business
- The Business Owner’s Guide To Understanding WordPress
Practical Tips For Improving Your Medical & Health Services Website
This section explains ways to improve your website and get better results. We show you what pages a health-related website needs, what content works best, navigation structure, etc.
If you need assistance or help planning your medical or health-related website, visit this page: A Money-Saving Guide To Web Site Planning For Business Owners
Your Website Pages
All business websites need a number of basic pages. Let’s review these.
Services And Products Page
You need to include 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:
- Medicine & Surgery – e.g. anaesthetics, nephrology hematology, oral surgery, geriatric medicine, renal, endoscopy, eye diseases surgical outpatients, etc.
- Dental Services – e.g. general dentistry, children’s dentistry, oral health, teeth whitening, orthodontics, emergency dentistry services, etc.
- Cardiology – e.g. cardiac patient rehabilitation, coronary care
- Prenatal/Postnatal – e.g. obstetrics, maternity services, etc.
- Child Health – paediatrics, child development, children services, etc.
- Diagnostic services – breast screens, skin cancer, hearing, women’s health, magnetic resonance imaging, allergy testing, etc.
- Pathology – laboratory testing and analysis, routine pathology testing, food and water testing, speech pathology, etc
- Counselling – mental health, alcohol, tobacco & other drug services, trauma counselling, diet and nutrition counselling, social work services
- Alternative treatments – acupuncture, homeopathy, holistic medicine, tai chi, chiropractic services, hypnosis, etc.
- Other medical services/therapies – weight management, chiropody, fertility services, optical services, medical genetics, artificial limbs, sleep therapy, home and community care, sexual health, medical equipment, etc.
Make sure to 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 these services do and direct them to your appointment booking page.
The ‘About Us’ page should give a description of your business and explain to visitors what your business stands for, its unique approach, philanthropical donations, etc.
It’s important to list any industry awards, recognitions, accreditations, certifications, publications, associations, etc., that you can use to promote your practice and to set yourself above similar service providers.
(List all of your awards accreditations, recognitions, certifications, publications, associations, etc. in the About Us page. Screenshot image source: squaremedical.com.au)
Meet Your Staff
If you are looking for quicker, simpler and cheaper ways to sell more products or services online, then help prospects get to know you and your organization better.
Prospective clients need to relate to your business. A great way to do that is to have a page that introduces your employees or team members. This page should include a photo and a mini bio. Since most visitors are probably not very well-versed in medical terms your descriptions should tell who they are and what they specialize in. You may also want to explain what those specialized areas do. It should include social buttons so your prospective clients can follow individual staff members on their social networks.
On this page, don’t be afraid to show the human side of your team members with personal stories, hobbies, etc., but make sure to highlight your team member’s expertise and qualifications, why they are an invaluable asset to your team, and more importantly, how they will help add value to your clients’ business.
(Add an employee description page. Image sourced from: southperthchiro.com.au)
We have created a detailed tutorial about how to easily create and add an easy-to-manage directory of employees or team members in your web site here: How To Add A Simple Employee Directory To Your WordPress Site
This is a listing of career opportunities within the company. This page would include type of training provided, benefits, opportunities for advancement, social aspects of working for your organization, etc. You can include information such as the job outlook and additional career opportunities in the health-related industry.
Maintain a positions available section in your page. If there are no positions currently available, consider inviting people to return periodically to this page, subscribe to your announcements list, follow you on social media, etc.
Reviews from clients and case studies are a great way to attract potential clients and showcase what type of services you offer. Adding a web page with reviews from clients and case studies also helps to establish social proof online.
(Add a web page with case studies and reviews from clients. Screenshot image sourced from: arrowsmiledental.com)
We have written a comprehensive article about using case studies, testimonials and client reviews improve your business online. Go here to learn more about this: Learn How To Achieve Better Results Online With Captivating Testimonials
Having a clean contact page is crucial.
It should provide:
- Business Name
- Your physical location
- Facsimile number
- Email address
- Google Map and directions
- Website URL
- Contact form
- Request for information – contact details
- Links to social media networks
- Live Chat/Skype (optional)
If you have different areas you should make this clear when showing the address and contact info.
You can also include links pointing to commonly-asked questions page, main pages, online booking request, helpdesk, newsletter opt-in form, blog, etc.
Add A Blog
A blog can be a powerful business marketing tool. Blogs are built around a content management system that allows you to easily promote your business using timely content like announcements, new releases, educational articles, informative posts, promotional videos, media presentations, etc.
If you already have an existing health or medical site, then consider adding a WordPress blog to promote your services.
If you don’t have a website yet, or if your existing medical or health site is very hard to keep updated or not delivering you the results you want, then WordPress can act both as your website and blog.
Very few people know that an expertly configured WordPress site can turn your web presence into an automated traffic machine that can help begin driving targeted visitors to your web site, simply by publishing new content to your website on a regular basis.
(An expertly configured WordPress site can automate your traffic generation)
Go here to learn more:
- Website Traffic Blueprint – How To Automatically Attract More Website Visitors For Your Business With WordPress
Having a compliant website is really important. This is not only important for building trust and credibility with prospective clients, but also to ensure that no laws and regulations are being contravened wherever you practice.
Depending on the products and services you provide, adding the following legal pages to your medical or health site will help keep you out of legal hot water with most regulatory authorities, third-party service providers (e.g. Google), and other potential legal threats or inconveniences:
- Contact Us
- Privacy Statement
- Terms And Conditions
- Website Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreement
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Compensation Disclosure
- DMCA Notice
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Linking Policy
- Health Disclaimers
- Refund Policy
- Video/Audio Terms
Go here to learn more about adding legal pages to your website: Adding Legal Pages To Your WordPress Site
Improve The Content On Your Website
In today’s fiercely competitive global economy, the sooner you start engaging in the practice of content marketing, the quicker you will begin to see results and differentiate yourself from other competitors.
You will want to provide great content with tips or information that will get your visitors sharing your information with others and coming back for more content. Publishing content is a great way to educate site visitors and prospects about your services.
For example, if your business provides weight management services, then some of the areas you could cover in your content include:
- Overweight vs. Obese – what are the differences?
- The role portion control plays in helping you achieve weight loss results
- Incorporating exercise into your weight loss program
- How a personal chef can help you lose weight (what they do, is it affordable)
You can also create a series of informative articles that will help your your prospective clients understand your services, by explaining benefits, procedures, terminology, etc.
Include the keywords and terminology in your articles that readers would search to find you online.
We recommend subscribing to our Content Marketing Email Training Series. You will receive a comprehensive series of training emails with easy-to-digest information that will show you how to drive more traffic to your site, save money creating useful content for your visitors and grow your website using content marketing. It’s not only a great course with loads of useful information, it’s also 100% FREE!
Improve User Experience
Improving website user experience (known as UX) helps to keep visitors coming back and engaging with your site. This section will show you ways you can improve your visitor engagement and user experience.
Add RSS Feeds
An RSS feed provides many benefits for your business.
If you provide information that adds value to others, other sites may want to syndicate your content.
Some of the benefits of having other businesses syndicate your content, include:
- All of your content updates are kept in one place
- Content distribution doesn’t rely on email
- Your feed can be shared
- Users can subscribe to your feed
- It provides links to your site
- Your feeds can be submitted to RSS directories
- There are various ways your readers can receive your content (e.g. read your content on their mobile device using a feed reader)
- It’s built into WordPress
There are also benefits to adding syndicated content to your site from other sites, such as the fact that you don’t have to write, manage or update the content.
You can find many useful RSS feeds by visiting sites of medical and health-related government departments or industry bodies.
Here are examples of useful RSS feeds you could consider adding to your website:
- US Department Of Health And Human Services – e.g. Blog posts feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/SelectedHhsBlogPosts, etc. You can search by departments and select individual RSS feeds, like feeds on women’s health issues (e.g. Emergency preparedness, Fitness and nutrition, HIV/AIDS, Minority women’s health, Screening tests and vaccines, etc.) here: http://womenshealth.gov/news/rss/rss-feeds.html
- US National Libraries Of Medicine – For a directory of feeds from various medical journals, publications and websites (e.g. The Journal of Experimental Medicine (JEM), American Association of Neurological Surgeons, The Journal of Immunology, Neurology.org, BMJ Postgraduate Medical Journal, 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
- FDA – Find RSS feeds on fda-related news and topics like FDA drug safety, food allergies, tainted products, animal and veterinary news, etc. and podcasts here: http://www.fda.gov/AboutFDA/ContactFDA/StayInformed/RSSFeeds
- UK Department Of Health (www.gov.uk) – 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. Western Australia – http://www.public.health.wa.gov.au/feed/?types=news
- Centers For Disease Control And Prevention - Get many health-related feeds and podcasts here: http://www2c.cdc.gov/podcasts/rss.asp
- Medical News Feeds: You can search medical news RSS feeds in major news publications like the NYTimes feeds section (e.g. Health news: http://www.nytimes.com/services/xml/rss/nyt/Health.xml)
- MedicineNet.com – MedTerms Medical Word of the Day: http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/dailyword.xml. You can also choose individual RSS feeds here (http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/article.htm) (e.g. Medications, Asthma, Chronic Pain, Oral Health, Exercise & Fitness, Heart, etc.)
- MedicalNewsToday.com – Featured Headlines: http://rss.medicalnewstoday.com/featurednews.xml
- Medical News Today – You can also select specific RSS feeds here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/newsfeeds-rss (e.g. Schizophrenia, Immune System/Vaccines, Pregnancy/Obstetrics, Hearing/Deafness, Diabetes, Allergy, Psychology/Psychiatry, etc.)
You can also search online for general RSS feeds, e.g. “medical rss feeds” or search for feeds on specific topics, e.g. “alternative medicine rss feeds”, “back pain rss feeds”, “MRI rss feeds”, etc.
(RSS feeds can help to improve your website’s UX.)
Adding Charts And Checklists
Adding checklists and explanatory charts to your site is a great way to increase user engagement, add value to your visitors and set yourself apart from the competition. Checklists and medical forms can provide step-by-step instructions and resources to perform a necessary task. Checklists and forms can also be great educational tools.
You can provide a range of online or downloadable forms and checklists covering areas such as:
- Booking appointments
- Checklists for post-surgery recovery
- Health checklists for specific systems
- Dental checklists – e.g. first visit, active maintenance program, general dentistry, etc.
- Weight loss and nutrition program checklists and charts
- General charts & infographics (e.g. caloric level of different foods, the importance of sleep at different stages of development, etc.)
Providing useful online tools, gadgets and applications on your website is a great way to increase visitor engagement and add significant value to your potential clients. Calculators are useful tools for your website. Others would include things like nutritional tools, or even recipes.
In part two of this detailed guide, we look at a number of online tools you can add to your site using WordPress plugins that can also help improve seo, improve user engagement and generate more traffic to your business.
This is the end of part one of this guide on ways to build your medical-related web presence.
To keep reading, click here:
"This is an awesome training series. I have a pretty good understanding of WordPress already, but this is helping me to move somewhere from intermediate to advanced user!" - Kim Lednum