Grow Your Medical Or Healthcare Business Online With WordPress
The web economy has not only transformed the way business is done worldwide, it has also created growing challenges and great opportunities for medical professionals and financial service providers.
Challenges Health And Medical Services Providers Face Online
Now, more than ever, businesses in the health industry must work harder than ever to remain competitive. Not only do you have to participate in the community you serve, you must also develop and maintain an active presence online. This includes having a dynamic website and figuring out better ways to grow your services online.
In addition to investing money in offline marketing, you will probably find (if you haven’t already) that in order to remain competitive, increasingly larger amounts of their marketing budget will need to be assigned towards the development and maintenance of a website that attracts new prospects, engages visitors, outperforms the competition in search engines and helps to give your business a wider amount of exposure online.
This means that your site not only has to look professional, load fast, and your site layout has to be easy to navigate, but it’s also important to keep in mind that your site’s needs may change in time and some aspects will need to be frequently updated. This requires having a well-planned website and content management strategy.
One other challenge that medical organizations face (as other professions do for that matter), is that your site has around 30 seconds or less to give users what they need or they will go elsewhere to get their needs met.
“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 Professionals
As well as facing many new business and technology changes, there are also loads of online opportunities available for medical or health businesses that can adapt to meet the challenges of the online economy and can think strategically when it comes to improving their online marketing skills.
In this comprehensive guide, you will learn about new ways to drive more traffic and create significant improvements in your online results.
As well as providing useful website improvement tips, we also focus on the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress platform to power your medical-related business website.
To learn more about the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress Content Management System, see these articles:
- How A Poorly Designed Web Site Can Lose You Money And What To Do About It
- Everything You Need To Know About Growing A Successful Business With A WordPress Blog
Useful Tips For Improving Your Website
Let’s start by reviewing some basics. In this section, we’ll look at how to improve your health-related website and get better results. We show you what web pages you need, what type of content works best for medical websites, ways to improve layout and navigation, etc.
If you need specific help with website planning, read this article: Planning A Web Site: A Basic Primer For Non-Technical Business Owners
Professional websites require several basic pages. Let’s go over the pages your need to have and how to set up your website for best results.
Services Description Page
It’s essential to include a page that describes your services or products. Depending on which area of health you specialize in, your page could list services such as:
- Medicine & Surgery – e.g. anaesthetics, orthopedics diabetes, cancer, incontinence, respiratory, bariatric surgery, eye diseases operating theaters, etc.
- Dental Services – e.g. general dentistry, children’s dentistry, bad breath treatment, restorations, braces, emergency dental, etc.
- Cardiology – e.g. cardiac patient education, coronary care
- Prenatal/Postnatal – e.g. birthing, maternity services, etc.
- Child Health services – paediatrics, child development, children services, etc.
- Diagnostic – breast screens, lung screening, oral health, pap smears, magnetic resonance imaging, allergy testing, etc.
- Pathology services – lab testing and analysis, routine pathology testing, insurance and corporate testing, speech pathology, etc
- Counselling services – mental health, alcohol, tobacco & other drug services, trauma counselling, wellbeing, social work services
- Alternative treatments – acupuncture, aromatherapy, functional medicine, meditation, chiropractic services, hypnotherapy, etc.
- Other medical services – diet and nutrition, podiatry, lymphedema therapy, speech therapy, inherited diseases, prosthetics, mobility, home care, sexual health, medical equipment, etc.
List all of the services you provide. Educate your visitors about the benefits of using your services and why they should choose you.
Who We Are
The ‘About Us’ page should give a description of your business and explain to visitors what your business stands for, its unique approach, causes that you support, etc.
Remember to also include any medical or health-related awards, certifications, accreditations, recognitions, publications, associations, etc., that could be used to promote your practice and position yourself above other competitors.
(List all of your business awards accreditations, recognitions, certifications, associations, publications, etc. in the About Us page. Screenshot image source: squaremedical.com.au)
Meet Our Team
If you are searching for simple ideas to sell more products or services online and get people to stay longer on your site, then one of the things you can do, is help visitors 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 employees. It should include a photo and a brief bio. Since most visitors won’t be familiar with medical-related terms your bio descriptions should tell who they are and what their specialties are. You may also want to explain what those specialties mean. This page should include social buttons that will allow your visitors to follow selected staff members on their social networks.
On this page, make sure to highlight each team member’s qualifications, why they are an asset to your team, and more importantly, how they can help add value to your clients’ business.
(Make sure to add a staff description page. Screenshot image sourced from: southperthchiro.com.au)
To learn more about how to easily create and add an easy-to-manage simple team directory in your website, go here: Step-By-Step Tutorial: Adding An Employee List Directory To Your Site
This is a listing of job or career opportunities available within the company. It could include training, employee benefits, advancement opportunities, social activities promoted or encouraged by your business, etc. It should include information about career opportunities in the medical or health industry.
Include also a positions available section in this page. If there are no positions currently available, consider inviting people to return periodically to this page, subscribe to your newsletter, follow you on social media, etc.
Testimonials and case studies are a great way to attract prospective clients and showcase what kind of services you offer. Adding a web page with case studies and testimonials from previous clients also helps to provide prospective clients with social proof.
(Add a web page with case studies and client reviews. Screenshot source: arrowsmiledental.com)
We have written a detailed article about using case studies, testimonials and reviews to grow your business online. For more details: Improve Your Conversions Using Knockout Testimonials
Contact Us Page
A functional contact page is absolutely necessary.
It should include some or all of the following information about your clinic:
- Company Name
- Street address of clinic
- Google Map and directions
- Web URL
- Contact form
- Name of person to contact
- Social media web addresses
- Chat (optional)
If your business services multiple locations you want to make that clear when displaying your address and contact information.
You can also include a few links point to commonly-asked questions page, useful pages, online booking form, helpdesk, newsletter, blog, etc.
Add A Medical Or Health Blog Section
A blog can be a very powerful business marketing tool. Blogs are built around a content management system that is easy to use and allows you to promote your business using timely content like news, product releases, educational articles, opinions on current topics, videos, infographics, etc.
If you already have an medical or health-related site, then consider adding a WordPress-powered blog to create more exposure for your business.
If you don’t have a website yet, or if your existing health or medical site is very hard to keep updated or not delivering you the results you want, then WordPress can serve both as your website and business blog.
Not many businesses know this, but an expertly configured WordPress site can turn your web presence into an automated traffic machine that can instantly drive new visitors to your website, simply by publishing regular content to your website.
(WordPress can automate your traffic generation)
Go here to learn more:
Having a compliant website is essential. This is not only important for establishing trust and credibility with prospective clients, but also to ensure that you are not breaking any laws and regulations wherever you do business.
Adding the following legal pages to your medical site will help keep you out of trouble with most regulatory authorities, third-party service providers, and other potential legal threats or inconveniences:
- Contact Us
- Privacy Statement
- Website Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreement
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Compensation Disclosure
- DMCA Notice
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Links Policy
- Health Disclaimers
- Refund Policy
- Video/Audio Terms
We have written a detailed article about adding legal pages to your website. Go here to learn more about this: The Importance Of Adding Legal Pages To Your WordPress Site
Improve The Content On Your Website
In today’s globally competitive economy, committing to the practice of content marketing has become one of the key differentiators for businesses.
Provide great content with useful tips, information or advice that will get your visitors sharing your information and coming back for more. Using content is the most effective way to inform and educate your visitors and prospects about using your services and products.
For example, if your business provides weight loss services, then some of the areas you can write about include the following:
- Emotional causes for weight issues (possible causes, how to identify yours)
- Advice on ways to develop portion control habits (smaller plate, don’t put food on the table, more vegetables)
- Characteristics of different diets, e.g. Atkins diet, GI diet, Weight Watchers diet (what these are, how they can benefit you, how effective they are)
- 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 informative articles that will help your your prospective clients gain a better understanding of your services, by explaining benefits, procedures, terminology, etc.
Include keywords and terms in your content that your readers will search for online.
We recommend subscribing to our Content Marketing Email Training Series. You will receive regular training emails with easy-to-digest information and practical tips that will show exactly how to drive more traffic to your website, save money creating high-quality content for your site visitors and grow your presence online using content marketing. It’s not only a great course with loads of useful information, it’s also completely FREE!
Improving User Experience
Improving 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.
RSS Feeds – Content Syndication
An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed provides plenty of benefits for your business.
If you provide content that adds value to others, other businesses 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 kept in one place
- your content distribution doesn’t rely on email
- Feeds can be shared and picked up by other sites online
- Users can subscribe to your RSS feed
- A feed provides a way for links to point back to your content
- Your feeds can be submitted to RSS directories
- There are multiple ways readers can receive your content (e.g. view your content on their mobile device using a feed reader)
- It’s built into WordPress
There are also benefits to providing valuable information on your site from other websites, such as the fact that you don’t have to write, manage or update the content.
You can find many useful RSS feeds for your website by searching online for relevant government departments and industry bodies.
Below we have listed some examples of useful RSS feeds you could consider adding to your site:
- US Department Of Health And Human Services – e.g. Blog posts RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/SelectedHhsBlogPosts, etc. You can also choose individual feeds, like feeds on women’s health issues (e.g. Body image, Health care for women, Heart health and stroke, Minority women’s health, Smoking and how to quit, etc.) here: http://womenshealth.gov/news/rss/rss-feeds.html
- US National Libraries Of Medicine – For a list of feeds from various medical journals, publications and websites (e.g. BioMed Central, CDC Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal, BMJ Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, BMJ Tobacco Control, Neuropsychopharmacology, etc.) go here: http://www.healthplusplus.com/wiki/List_of_RSS_feeds_on_health
- National Institutes Of Health (www.nih.gov) - Get various health-related RSS feeds here: http://www.nih.gov/Subscriptions.htm
- US Food And Drug Administration (FDA) – Get FDA-related feeds (e.g. criminal investigations, MedWatch safety alerts (human medical products), tainted products marked as dietary supplements, drugs, etc.) and podcasts here: http://www.fda.gov/AboutFDA/ContactFDA/StayInformed/RSSFeeds
- Department of Health UK (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. NSW – http://www.health.nsw.gov.au/pages/rss.aspx
- Centers For Disease Control And Prevention (www.cdc.gov) - Get various RSS feeds on health-related news 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 choose specific RSS feeds here (http://www.medicinenet.com/rss/article.htm) (e.g. Lung Conditions, Asthma, Migraine Headaches, Pregnancy, Sexual Health, Skin, etc.)
- Medical News Today – Medical News Headlines: http://rss.medicalnewstoday.com/featurednews.xml
- MedicalNewsToday.com – You can also select individual RSS feeds here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/newsfeeds-rss (e.g. Hypertension, Caregivers/Homecare, ADHD/ADD, Emergency Medicine, Primary Care/General Practice, Nutrition/Diet, Psychology/Psychiatry, etc.)
You can also just search online for general RSS feeds, e.g. “medical rss feeds” or search for feeds on specific subjects, e.g. “psoriasis rss feeds”, “myeloma rss feeds”, “MRI rss feeds”, etc.
(RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds can help to improve your medical or health website’s user experience.)
Checklists & Forms
Checklists and charts are a great way to help increase user engagement and add value to your readers. They can give them useful step-by-step instructions and resources to get necessary tasks performed. Forms and checklists can also be great instructional tools.
You can provide forms and checklists (or links to these) covering a range of subjects such as:
- Booking appointments
- Checklists for post-surgery recovery
- Health checklists and charts for specific systems
- Dental checklists – e.g. first visit, caries prevention program, cosmetic dentistry, etc.
- Fitness and exercise program checklists and charts
- General charts & infographics (e.g. acidity level of different foods, sleep requirements at different stages of development, etc.)
Add Online Tools
Providing unique online tools and applications on your website can help increase visitor engagement and significantly add value to your potential clients. Calculators are great tools to add to your website. Others can include things like diagnostic tools, and even recipes.
In the next section, we will look at a several online tools you can use in your medical or health site using WordPress plugins and themes that can help improve your search engine optimization, increase user engagement and generate more web traffic to your business.
This is the end of section 1.
Click here to read Part 2:
- Online Business Tips For Health Services Providers – How To Improve SEO, Improve User Engagement And Drive More Web Traffic With Plugins And Themes
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