Grow Your Medical Or Healthcare Business Online With WordPress
The digital age has not only transformed business globally, it has also created a growing number of challenges and opportunities for health professionals.
Challenges Professional Medical And Health Services Practitioners Face Online
Today, more than ever, businesses in the health and medical sector must work harder than ever to remain competitive. Not only do you have to participate in the community your business serves, you must also develop a strong web presence. This includes having a website and searching for smarter ways to market your medical services online.
As well as investing dollars in offline marketing, you will probably find that in order to remain competitive, increasingly larger amounts of their marketing budget will need to be directed towards developing and managing a website that can attract prospective clients, engage visitors, outrank the competition in search engines and social media, and help increase your marketing reach online.
This means that your site not only has to look great, load fast, and be easy to navigate, but even more importantly, your site’s needs may change in time and sections will need to be frequently updated. This requires the implementation of a sound web and content management strategy.
Another challenge that health services professionals (and most other professions) face, is that your site has only around thirty seconds to give visitors the information they need or they will leave the site.
“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 The Medical & Health Profession In The Web Economy
As well as facing many challenges, there are also loads of online opportunities available to businesses in the medical or health-related sector that can adapt to meet the challenges of the digital economy and think strategically when it comes to improving their online marketing skills.
In this guide, you will learn ways to drive more web traffic and improve your online results.
As well as providing general website improvement tips, we also focus on the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress Content Management System (CMS) to power your medical or health business website or blog.
For more information about the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress platform, go here:
- How A Poorly Constructed Website Can Cost You Customers
- Understanding WordPress – A Business Owner’s Guide
Useful Tips To Improve Your Website
This section will show you how to improve your health-related website and get better results online. We will look at what web pages you need, what type of content works best, ways to improve layout and navigation, etc.
If you need additional information about website planning, check out the detailed step-by-step guide we have written here: The Web Site Planning Process - A Money-Saving Guide For Non-Technical Business Owners
Basic Website Pages
Professional websites require several basic pages. Let’s review the pages your should have and how to set up your health or medical website for best results.
Services And Products Description Page
You need a page that describes your services and products. Depending on which area of health or medical services you specialize in, this page could include services like:
- Medicine & Surgery – e.g. anaesthetics, neurosurgery endocrinology, plastic surgery, rehabilitation medicine, rheumatology, gastroenterology, ophtalmology operating theaters, etc.
- Dental Services – e.g. cosmetic dentistry, children’s dentistry, oral health, veneers, crowns and bridges, orthodontics, emergency dentistry, etc.
- Cardiology – e.g. heart monitoring, chronic heart conditions
- Prenatal/Postnatal – e.g. obstetrics, midwifery, etc.
- Child Health – paediatrics, child development, children services, etc.
- Diagnostic – mammography, lung screening, hearing, women’s health, MRI scanning, food allergy testing, etc.
- Pathology – laboratory testing and analysis, routine pathology testing, fine-needle aspiration cytology, speech pathology, etc
- Counselling – mental health services, alcohol, tobacco & other drug services, domestic abuse, wellbeing, social development services
- Alternative treatments – acupuncture, reflexology, hydrotherapy, massage therapy, chiropractic, hypnotherapy, etc.
- Other medical services – weight management, sports medicine, reproductive endocrinology, stomal therapy, inherited diseases, prosthetics, hearing aids, home care, sexual health, medical equipment, etc.
List all of the services you provide. Provide your visitors with information that will educate them about the benefits of using your services and why they should book an appointment.
This page should give a description of your business and explain to visitors what it stands for, its unique approach, philanthropy, etc.
This page should also include any industry awards, accreditations, certifications, recognitions, publications, associations, etc., that can be used to promote your medical services and to position yourself above similar service providers.
(List all of your awards recognitions, accreditations, certifications, associations, publications, etc. in the About Us page. Image sourced from: squaremedical.com.au)
Meet Your Staff
Are you searching for simple ideas to sell more products online? Then make it easier for prospective clients to get to know you, your team and your business better.
Your business needs to be relatable. A great way to do that is to have a page that introduces your staff or team members. This page should include a photo and a mini biography. Since most visitors will not tend to be familiar with health or medical terms your descriptions should tell who they are and what their specialties are. You may also want to explain what those specialized areas do. This page should include social buttons that will allow your prospective clients to follow individual staff members on their social networks.
On this page, make sure to highlight your person’s experience, how they contribute to the success of your team, and more importantly, how they can help add value to your clients’ business.
(Add a ‘meet the team’ page. Screenshot image sourced from: southperthchiro.com.au)
For a detailed tutorial about how to add an updatable list directory of staff members to your web site using free WP plugins, go here: How To Easily Add A Simple Employee List To Your WordPress Site With No Coding Skills
Job Opportunities Page
This is a listing of job opportunities available within the clinic. It could include training offered, benefits, advancement opportunities, etc. It should include information about additional career opportunities in the medical 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 contact list, follow you on social media, etc.
Case studies and testimonials are a great way to attract potential clients and showcase your services. Adding a page with case studies and client reviews also helps your medical business to establish social proof.
(Add a page to your site with case studies and client reviews. Image source: arrowsmiledental.com)
We have created a comprehensive article on using testimonials, case studies and user reviews get better results online here: How To Improve Your Sales Conversions Using Captivating Client Testimonials
A contact page is crucial.
Your contact page should include some or all of the following information about your consulting practice:
- Business Name
- Address of clinic
- Facsimile number
- Google Map
- Web URL
- Contact form
- Request for more information – who to contact
- Social media links
- Live chat feature (optional)
If your business services several locations you will want to make that clear when showing your address and contact info.
Consider also including links to an FAQ section, useful pages, booking request, helpdesk, newsletter, blog, etc.
Add A Blog Section
A blog can be a very powerful marketing tool for your business. Most blogging platforms typically comprise of a content management system that is simple to use and allows you to promote your business by publishing timely content such as events, new releases, training articles, discussions on current topics, promotional videos, media presentations, etc.
If you already have an existing medical or health website, then consider adding a WordPress blog to promote your medical services.
If you don’t have a website yet, or if your existing health or medical-related website is hard to manage or not delivering you the results you want, then WordPress can serve both as your business website and business blog.
Very few people know that an expertly configured WordPress site can become an automated traffic system that can help deliver targeted traffic to your site, simply by publishing content to your website on a consistent basis.
(WordPress can drive traffic automatically to your website)
For more info, see this article:
Legal Information Pages
It’s important to have a compliant website. This is not only important for building trust and credibility with prospective clients, but also to ensure that no laws or regulations are being contravened in whatever area you provide services.
Depending on the services and products you provide, adding some or all of the legal pages below to your site will help keep you out of legal hot water with most regulatory authorities, third-party service providers, and other potential legal threats or inconveniences:
- Contact Us
- Terms And Conditions Of Use
- Website Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreement
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Compensation Disclosure
- DMCA Notice
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Links Policy
- Health and Financial Disclaimers
- Refund Policy
- Video/Audio Terms
- and others
To learn more about adding legal pages to your website, see this article: What You Need To Know About Adding Legal Pages To Your WordPress Site
Tips On How To Improve Your Web Content
In today’s globally competitive economy, the sooner you start to engage in the practice of content marketing, the quicker you will begin to see results and differentiate yourself from competing businesses.
Providing great content with tips, advice or information will get your readers to share your information and come back for more. Content marketing is a great way to educate your visitors and prospective clients about using your services.
For example, if you provide products that help people manage their weight, then some of the areas you could write content about include:
- What is fiber and how can it help you with weight loss?
- How to ask for support for your weight loss efforts (friends, family, weight loss seekers)
- Incorporating exercise into your busy schedule
- How a personal chef can help you lose weight (what they do, is it affordable)
- 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 health services, by explaining benefits, procedures, terminology, etc.
Use keywords and terms in your content that prospective clients would search for.
We recommend subscribing to our Content Marketing Email Training Series. You will receive a comprehensive series of training emails with actionable information that will show exactly how to drive more traffic to your site, save money creating high-quality content for your site visitors and grow your website using content marketing strategies. It’s not only a great course with loads of useful information, it’s also completely FREE!
Tips For Improving Visitor Experience
Improving your website’s user experience (known as UX) helps keep visitors coming back and using your site. This section will show you different ways to improve visitor engagement and user experience.
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds can help to improve your visitor engagement and user experience in several ways.
If you provide content that adds value to others, other sites may 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
- Content distribution doesn’t rely on email
- Feeds can be shared and picked up by other sites online
- Feeds allow for subscribing
- A feed provides a way for external links to point back to your content
- Your feeds can be submitted to RSS directories
- There are a number of ways readers can receive your content (e.g. read your content on their mobile device using feed readers)
- RSS is built into WordPress
There are also benefits to providing great information on your website from other sites, such as the fact that you don’t have to write, manage or update the content.
You can find RSS feeds with loads of useful content for your website by visiting sites of relevant government departments or key industry bodies.
For example, here are examples of feeds you could add to your site:
- US Department Of Health And Human Services – e.g. Latest news feed: http://www.hhs.gov/rss/news/hhsnews.xml, etc. You can search by departments and select specific RSS feeds, like feeds on women’s health issues (e.g. Breast cancer, Healthy aging, Illnesses and disabilities, Minority women’s health, Violence against women, etc.) here: http://womenshealth.gov/news/rss/rss-feeds.html
- US National Libraries Of Medicine – For a list of feeds from well-known medical journals, publications and websites (e.g. Rheumatology, Nutrition Journal, Journal of Cell Biology, American Chemical Society, BMJ Evidence-Based Mental Health, etc.) go here: http://www.healthplusplus.com/wiki/List_of_RSS_feeds_on_health
- National Institutes Of Health - Get many health-related feeds here: http://www.nih.gov/Subscriptions.htm
- US Food And Drug Administration (FDA) – Find RSS feeds on fda-related news and topics like criminal investigations press releases, FDA drug shortages, product recalls, drugs, etc. and podcasts here: http://www.fda.gov/AboutFDA/ContactFDA/StayInformed/RSSFeeds
- UK Department Of Health (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. Victoria – http://www.health.vic.gov.au/rss/newsfeed.xml
- Centers For Disease Control And Prevention - Get many RSS 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 in major news publications like the NYTimes feeds section (e.g. Research: http://www.nytimes.com/services/xml/rss/nyt/Research.xml)
- MedicineNet.com – MedTerms Medical Word of the Day: http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/dailyword.xml. You can also select specific feeds here (http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/article.htm) (e.g. Lung Conditions, Mental Health, Nutrition, Food, & Recipes, Depression, Prevention & Wellness, Heart, etc.)
- Medical News Today – Featured Headlines: http://rss.medicalnewstoday.com/featurednews.xml
- MedicalNewsToday.com – You can also choose individual feeds here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/newsfeeds-rss (e.g. Urology/Nephrology, Acid Reflux/GERD, Fibromyalgia, Neurology/Neuroscience, Back Pain, Cosmetic Medicine/Plastic Surgery, Huntingtons Disease, etc.)
You can also search online for general feeds, e.g. “medical rss feeds” or search for feeds on specific areas, e.g. “nuclear medicine rss feeds”, “aid rss feeds”, “fitness rss feeds”, etc.
(Using RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds can help to improve your medical-related website’s UX.)
Add Charts And Checklists
Adding checklists and charts to your site is a great way to help increase visitor engagement, add value to your visitors and provide something unique. Checklists and medical forms can give them step-by-step instructions and resources to perform necessary steps. Checklists and charts are great instructional tools.
You can provide a range of online or downloadable checklists and forms covering subjects such as:
- Booking appointments
- Checklists for pre or post surgery
- Health checklists for specific systems
- Dental checklists – e.g. first visit, active maintenance program, general dentistry, etc.
- Fitness and exercise program checklists and charts
- General charts & infographics (e.g. caloric level of different foods, sleep requirements at different ages, etc.)
Add Unique Tools
Providing unique tools, gadgets and applications on your site is a great way to increase visitor engagement and add value to your visitors. Calculators are useful tools you can add to your website. Other applications can include things like nutritional tools, or even recipes.
In part 2, we take a look at a several online tools you can add to your website using WordPress plugins that improve search engine optimization, improve user engagement and drive more visitors to your business.
This is the end of part 1 of this article on ways to build your medical-related business web presence.
Click here to read Part 2:
"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