While a website may be the last of a healthcare organization’s concerns, overlooking its importance can have significant implications on your organization. Enhancing your website in ways that streamline use, build patient trust, and offer valuable information to patients is key to maintaining a top-of-mind facility.
Healthcare patients used to begin searching for a new provider through referrals from friends and families, but now, the search for a new provider is starting online. With 57% of healthcare customers beginning their search online, it’s crucial that your website is up to date and optimized for new and existing patients.
After building many websites in the healthcare field, we understand nuances specific to the industry that can have a huge impact on patient experience. Here are our top 5 ways to enhance your website for your patients.
1.) Do prioritze navigation and accessibility
Having a website that is easily navigable and accessible is essential for creating an optimal user flow. This ensures that your patients can move through your website without getting lost, confused or overwhelmed amidst the large quantity of content a healthcare website typically holds.
Linked text, clear calls to action and efficient menus are all ways in which you can make your website more user friendly for your patients.
When it comes to accessibility there are a couple big things to consider: accessibility for all and accessibility for those on the go. Adhering to the latest guidelines, and ADA compliance, is crucial for ensuring your website is accessible to all your patients, including those with disabilities.
Mobile responsiveness is another variable your website must account for. As a healthcare organization, if your website does not format properly on mobile devices like phones and tablets, then you are creating a disconnect with your patient which can lead to frustration on their end.
Patient relations can be fostered through the clear communication channels a properly designed website can provide.
2.) Do provide relevant resources and information
Offering a large selection of resources relevant to your diverse patient base and their needs can help create a website that serves your patients as much as it does your healthcare organization.
From studies, to digital brochures, pricing and insurance information, directories and more, your resources can mean the difference between an average and truly helpful online experience.
By providing access to documents and other support resources, patients feel like they’re truly cared about and their health is being invested in by someone other than themselves.
Chat features are another great resource to include if your healthcare organization can afford it. Giving patients the ability to talk with someone helps to humanize their interaction with your organization, leading to an increase in trust and rapport.
3.) Do invest in applications
There are three big applications and functionalities that your healthcare organization should prioritize on your website: patient portals, appointment scheduling, and telehealth services.
These three services can make patient data more accessible, internal and external scheduling procedures more efficient, and provide increased accessibility to patients who can’t make it to the clinic for an appointment.
4.) Do support online bill pay
Having the software in place to collect payment online is another crucial way to make your website more user-friendly. While there will always be patients that prefer to pay a more traditional way, online bill pay is the solution for those looking for a more efficient process.
Depending on the system being used, more often than not you can send out messages alerting patients of a bill, reminding them of an upcoming payment, or sending a virtual receipt.
5.) Do keep an updated website
As a healthcare organization, your website should be a reflection of your operation. You keep your facility clean and offer patients the latest medical technologies – so why should your website be any different?
Keeping your website organized and updated are two fundamental ways to enhance your website for your patients. Here are some recommendations for keeping your website updated:
Link social media accounts or create an image gallery so your patients can see your staff, facility, community interactions and other important features that may subconsciously influence an existing or potential patient. Doing so also helps build trustworthiness and humanizes your healthcare organization.
Display any certifications, awards or other achievements your organization receives, be sure to have them mentioned on your website – even if it’s just in your latest news section. This solidifies your credibility and builds confidence in patients that you are a reputable organization.
Utilize reviews and other positive testimonials on your website or social media accounts so potential patients can be confident in your services, treatments and other operations.
Practicing good search engine optimization, or SEO, can help our healthcare organization stay top of mind and at the top of search results. The stronger your SEO is the more patients you will have visiting your website. The higher you are in the search results the stronger the correlation tends to be between your organization and quality services or treatments.
Updating the resources and information on your website is crucial to providing the most accurate material for patients – especially when it comes to treatments offered, payment plans or insurance.