There are so many small and big things that bring people pleasure and delight. But all of them lose their appeal when we are sick. It’s our strong belief that nobody will argue the fact that human life and health are the most precious, even priceless riches nature generously endows us with the moment we make our first breath or even earlier (in safe and comfortable mother’s bosom).
When nothing bugs us, we even forget of the valuables we possess. Good health is our natural state and we can neither see nor touch it. But when we fall ill, the wonderful, bright world around us fades immediately and nothing brings the long-awaited relief. Only thereat we immediately recollect how happy we were not so long ago.
Unfortunately, technological progress has its flip side, which is not as rosy as the front one. Due to utmost simplification of all processes that demanded lots of strength and efforts from our ancestors, current people became physically weaker, which resulted in new generation diseases that emerged from decreased physical activity, genetically modified food, radiation coming from various objects, supplying us with energy, air and water pollution and many other factors. All mentioned above negative aspects are usual companions of any serious technological leaps, so we should take them as necessary evil and try to pull through with minimal casualties. That’s why, most of current people strive to maintain healthy lifestyle, work out, eat healthy food and so on. Nevertheless, despite all these hard efforts, we get ill from time to time. What do we do first then? Of course surf the internet in search of good clinics, doctors, witches or just any information related to our case. What sites engender our confidence? How to create a medical website looking credible enough for the visitors to entrust their health to you without any fluctuations? Read on and you will get to know not only useful, businesslike tips on medical websites design, but see the examples of the most popular and successful of them.
Building up a Trustworthy Medical Website – Tips and Advice
We understand that your medical website is aimed on reaching out the maximum number of patients looking for your services. So, it should encourage them to act accordingly. We hope our recommendations will help you create a really user-friendly website that works for your benefit.
- Unique page for each procedure. As a rule, clinics provide multiple treatments, so you’d better create a separate page with comprehensive information on each procedure. People browse the net typing treatments’ titles. This is a great way to rank well in search engines for specific keywords related to each service you render.
- Include case studies and testimonials. Posting testimonials from satisfied patients as well as case studies of the treatments you have provided together with their effects, work for you professional image. They characterize you as an experienced doctor skillful enough to cure patient’s disease safely and efficiently.
- Online appointment requests. The availability of online patient registration form, allowing visitors request an appointment through your site is more private and easy than a call to the office or personal visit. You can introduce fields (the fewer – the better) with all necessary information for your personnel to contact a patient as soon as they receive the request.
- Choose a design that loads quickly. Don’t test users’ patience; the result is easy to predict: your customers will click the close button.
- Easy navigation. If the navigation seems complicated to the user – he/she just abandons the website and moves to the next one, which looks clear and understandable. Please note that visitors should be able to find contact details and about company info in a few seconds.
- Accessible contact details. Your company name, address and phone number should appear on each page to be easily found by the users.
- Desktop and mobile devices compatible. Responsive design considerably enhances user experience as more and more people prefer smartphones and tablets for browsing.
- Photo and video galleries. Before and after surgery photos as well as patient education videos raise customers’ confidence in your services.
- Provide answers to frequently asked questions. FAQs page, where all essential information is already systemized for visitors can be very helpful both for new and current patients.
- SEO optimize you site. No matter how beautiful your website design is, it doesn’t make sense if potential patients are unable to find it. Ethical on-page and off-page strategies such as detailed keyword research, unique content, link building, social media presence and PPC ads will definitely increase web traffic to your website.
- No amateur designs. An amateur design is a way to nowhere. Broken links, misspelled text, small, illegible pictures will ruin your reputation even before the patient tries out your services.
- Go custom! Try to showcase your practice’s brand in unique, professional and expensive manner.
- Animation is distracting. People come to medical sites not for spectacular animated effects. That’s why reserved, modest Java scripts are preferable for the purpose. However, dynamic, interactive websites are better than static ones.
- Write content first. Content should rule medical site design and not vice versa. Otherwise, creating design before the content you take the risk of having a bash at matching the incompatible things later.
- Avoid large text blocks. Headlines, subheadings, bulleted lists, highlighted keywords and short paragraphs – all these make text easy for scanning. Use text styling because typical visitors are not patient enough to find a needle in a haystack. Visual accents help the reader filter what he/she is looking for.
- Try not to use stock photos. Remember that photos are the most prominent design elements on your site, so it’s better to make sure that nobody else is using them.
- Clear calls to action. Don’t wait that the users will guess where to click themselves, don’t make them think: use clear calls to action, urging them do what is required. “Contact us”, “Make an appointment”, “Call our consultant”, “Click to continue”, “Call now” – are the examples of possible options.
- Pay attention to the quality of your content. Your website content should be useful, helpful, concise and effective. Search engines are hunting for such kind of content, as the ranking of search results are based on quality factors. Keep in mind that awesome content is a drive of marketing. This simple strategy will help improve your company’s marketing efforts. How to check if your content suits these parameters? You can use the engagement metrics, for example.
- What is the goal of your website? It should have the one or several for sure. How otherwise are you going to build a hierarchy of intent for your brand touch-points? By the way, the purposes of a website may not be direct sales, sign-ups or transactions, more suitable for e-Commerce websites. Clear purpose just helps to deliver the message of each site section to the user better, which improves user experience and brings your enterprise closer to its goals.
- Never stop to perfect your website. Launching a website is just the beginning of a story with no end. Test, measure and re-design your website often to be up-to-date as technologies and trends change so fast that not following this advice you are going to look as absurdly as a cave man, pulling a heavy, freshly murdered mammoth along the central street of current New York city with all its skyscrapers, fashion boutiques and other modern architecture. Make web analytics a habitual part of your regular daily activities. Use it to improve site messaging, user pathways, navigation and the overall performance of the website. Listen to experts’ and users’ opinions about web design.
- Browse your competitors’ websites. Do this not to copy their designs, but to define strong and weak points as well as previous users’ experience when they searched for a doctor or medical information.
- A medical practice like any other brand needs its story. So, tell it to your patients, give them the weighty arguments to choose you and stay loyal for years.
- Post bios of each physician you employ. Show that there are real people made of flesh and blood, professionals in their field, with their families, hobbies and life outside the office standing beyond your clinic. Patients are more inclined to trust people they no in person than complete strangers.
- Create a welcoming about page. Visiting your about page is extremely important. It’s like the first meeting, first date, and first impression. If it is negative, there is minimal opportunity to change anything for better. If your about page answers only two questions: “Who are you?” and “What’s there for the visitor?” – it is perfect.
- Tweet for your business sake. Twitter is a service allowing friends, family, and co-workers communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages. People write short updates, “tweets” of 140 characters or fewer. Most people follow you on Twitter because they like the messages you tweet that bear some value to them. Tweets can serve as a good support for your business profile.
- Build your audience by blogging. Don’t try to blog for everybody as your efforts might go to waste. Write for the targeted audience that is interested in your posts even if it’s not vast at all. Focus on mid-sized, established blogs, having their constant audience. Link to them on your blogroll, and reference them in your posts. As a rule, bloggers keep careful track of who’s linking to them, and they’re likely to visit your blog and leave comments if they see they’re getting traffic from you. If they like your blog, they return the favor by linking to you -and then their audience finds you. Smaller blogs are more likely to appreciate reciprocal links and be open to making connections with you than blogs getting thousands of views per day.
- List medical expertise. Visitors want to be confident that they make an appointment with really qualified professional. This information should include education and years of experience in the field, as well as any other relevant information.
- Use legible fonts. It’s very annoying when you struggle with the text trying to figure out what is written. You can improve readability by applying large fonts contrasting with background color. Legibility is a kind of respect you demonstrate to the visitors. It tells that you want them to read your content.
- Design for the targeted audience. Who is your website intended to? Physicians, patients, investors or partners? It’s obvious that there are no designers in this list. So, make your website attractive for the targeted audience even if web designer doesn’t agree with all your ideas.
- Carefully select a content management system for your website. A CMS like Joomla or WordPress will allow you not only produce a great-looking site in hours but easily update the posted information. These CSM packages are extremely powerful and absolutely free, which is not less essential.
Image source- marketingcharts.com
Maybe this guides list can be continued further and if you have more tips on decent medical website design, you can leave them in the comment section below. Summarizing everything stated above, we can word some main ruled of excellent medical website design: clean, simple layout, focused on the targeted auditory; easy to use, user-friendly navigation; quality, readable, perfectly styled content; interactivity; bright, cheerful or slightly muted colors and friendly icons instead of lifeless tones; high-resolution product and physicians images; no “dentist’s office” feel; strong visual appeal, etc.
In order not to be unreasoned, we gathered an imposing collection of medical websites to visualize our pieces of advice. Some of them were named among the most popular and frequently visited medical websites on the web. (See the chart above). Browse them and answer the main question of our blog post: What is so special about these websites? Are you ready to entrust your life and health to medical companies standing behind them?… Do you know the answer? Congratulations! You’ve done a good job and grasped the essence of the entry!
American Cancer Society
National Institute of Mental Health
Queens Dental Group
New York Dental Partners
Dr. Joseph Thayil
Benefits Check Up
Up to Date
American Heart Association
American Lung Association
American Red Cross
American Sleep Apnea Association
Les Turner Als Foundation