Constructing and designing a website is a lot of work, regardless of whether it’s a business or personal site. Creating an effective medical website follows many of the same rules and a properly built site can advance a private practice, boost revenues, save time, and offer useful advice on health related products, says the Allied Health Institute. Many medical professionals aren’t taking advantage of the many advantages a proper website can give them so here’s some tips on getting started and maintaining a useful and informative site.
1. Use Already Established Platforms
There’s no need to build a new CMS from scratch when there’s already a wealth of open source platforms like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, and Magento available. These sites provide functionality and ease of use along with a number of plug-ins and support.
2. Desktop + Mobile
Mobile devices are now used extensively to access sites on the Internet and there’s nothing that sends a user running faster than a poorly formatted site. According to John Rampton in an article on Forbes, creating a useful medical website means incorporating responsive design for desktop and mobile.
3. Immediate Engagement
It takes roughly five seconds for a user to decide to stay on a website or hit the ‘back’ button. A website must be compelling enough to keep readers around to take a look. If the site looks like it has the information the user wants, they’ll start exploring further.
4. Basic & Clean Navigation
It’s best to go with basic categories and put the header where people expect it (at the header) rather than trying to be too creative. Unlike a graphic design site, a medical website requires usability and convenience rather than creativity.
5. Text Size Matters
Choose a font size that makes it easy for all people to read. Those looking for medical advice will often be in the older age range and they certainly prefer a larger font to a smaller one.
6. Use SEO from the Beginning
Search engine optimization, SEO, is super important thing to keep in mind with websites and ignoring it is almost a guarantee for failure. Start with appropriate title tags, URL chains, H1 and H2 tags, and keywords when creating content. Many free SEO plug-ins are available on established platforms.
7. Images are King
One of the important aspects of SEO and a great way to draw more traffic is image incorporation. That being said, according to Derek Halpern, the founder of Social Triggers, it’s key to make sure the images are labeled correctly for SEO and that they are a reasonable size and quality. Images are great at drawing people in, non-loading or slow-loading images are good at chasing people away.
8. Proper Messaging
No one wants to guess what an article is trying to say, especially one that’s about medicine. Keep all content and features clear, concise, and formatted in an easy to read manner.
9. Fresh Material
Setting up a website isn’t enough to stay relevant and outdated content doesn’t do much for drawing in traffic. Adding a blog and continuing to create fresh new content is what will keep the site relevant to readers and search engines.
10. Social Media
People love social media and things they can share easily. According to Leo Sun of Business Dictionary, finding a way to incorporate Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any of the other myriad of social networks is a wonderful way to brand any site and an important part of marketing.