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Medical Practices, It’s Time To Give Your Website An Annual Checkup

As we enter the new year, it’s the perfect time to evaluate where your business stands and how you can improve. There are many factors, but one of the most valuable for medical practices is how your website performs.
To stay competitive, medical practices must use their website to build and maintain patient relationships. Digital marketing for medical practices centers on this one asset. Before your patients can feel rapport and trust with a physician, marketing must capture their attention and get them on the schedule.

Unfortunately, most medical practices don’t focus on this cornerstone of their success.

Even the best medical practice websites gradually develop issues that need to be corrected. As with people, advancing age can diminish performance. Websites look dated, develop broken links and images, and fail to operate as they did when designed.

If you’ve spent much time online, you’ve probably stumbled on a very old-looking website – say, one from 2001. In “human time,” 2001 wasn’t really that long ago. Digital marketing moves so fast, however, that a website that hasn’t changed fundamentally in 20 years may as well be a black and white film reel.

The idea still gets across, but time has moved on!

How Medical Practices Uncover Areas For Improvement On Their Websites
Even if you don’t consider yourself technologically savvy, you can pinpoint problems with your website that a digital marketing agency can help with. One of the most incisive ways to do this is to pretend you’re a patient: Visit your website and try to get some basic tasks done.

For example, you might:

  • Try to find information on your website, such as details about insurance
  • Try to contact your office through your contact form, help desk, or chat
  • Go through early steps of scheduling an appointment to see how it works

Taking the role of a patient allows you to notice issues that might otherwise be overlooked. If information is hard to find, contact features don’t work as expected, or your website is slow, a new patient may be frustrated and look to other medical practices in your area. Every bit of polish on your website makes a difference.

If you are willing to learn a little bit about website analytics, you can go even further.

Medical Practices Can Use Analytics To Keep Their Digital Marketing On Track
These days, almost all businesses operate on data. Data makes it possible to serve patients better and to scale your operations more effectively. Over the last decade, the advent of Electronic Health Records has made much more data available for medical practices, but it is not always obvious how to best use all of it.

In digital marketing, the use of data began more than two decades ago. One of the key tools for understanding your website is your analytics suite. Analytics software automatically captures essential information about how people reach your website and what they do once they arrive. This allows you to optimize their experience.

Most small medical practices use the free Google Analytics suite.

Let’s look at some of the things analytics can tell you and what they mean for your bottom line:

1. Your Website Traffic Figures
Traffic is not the most important metric for website success, but it is one of the first. If you don’t have traffic, there’s no one to convert into leads! Unfortunately, many medical practices get virtually no traffic. All their visits come from established patients – and then, only if there are self-service features on your website.

Medical practices can be caught off-guard by learning they have a website that is doing nothing to drive commercial success. If this describes you, it’s important to establish a plan to get targeted traffic: Either search traffic through content marketing, paid traffic using online advertising, or both.

2. Your Bounce Rate
Once you have traffic, your website’s next goal is to serve those visitors well. That comes down to basics like whether your website is easy to use and needed information can be found with a minimum of fuss. Bounce rate represents the percentage of your visitors who leave your website seconds after arriving and do not engage.

A high bounce rate means two things:

  • Many people are not finding what they’re looking for when they first reach your website
  • What they’ve seen has convinced them that looking for what they need is a waste of time

Some of your bounce rate is caused by a mismatch between the visitor’s needs and your services. Whoops, they were looking for a podiatrist, not a pediatrician. But it can also indicate that your website is hard to use. If most of your visitors are using a smartphone but your website is not mobile-friendly, they won’t stick around.

3. Your Website’s Speed
Speed is a factor in patients’ perception of quality and your ranking in search engines. Good pointers on speed can be found in seconds using Google’s free PageSpeed Insights tool. If speed is consistently slow, your hosting service may be at fault. Many small-time developers convince medical practices to use a specific hosting company, which pays them a monthly commission, instead of choosing the right host for the job!

4. Your Popular Content
Medical practices can gain traction with informative blog posts, videos, and more. Your most popular content gives you an idea what your visitors are most interested in and allows you to post more along those lines. Are you getting a lot of traffic from a particular website or social platform? That can be a clue about where to focus your social media or advertising for maximum impact.

It’s time for your website wellness check. New York Ave interprets the signs and gets you on the path to more leads, appointments, and repeat business. To learn more, contact us.

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