In an era dominated by the relentless pursuit of information and fast-evolving digital landscapes, the necessity for health professionals to establish a robust online presence has never been more evident.
The Digital Age in Healthcare
For decades, health professionals made it through without investing much money in marketing their practices.
Back in the late ’90s when I was still managing a clinic, we spent fairly enough on our signage, informational booklets, brochures, and business cards. Most doctors avoided blatant advertising because of ethical reasons. Also, they wouldn’t want to sound like desperate for patients. Instead, they relied on word-of-mouth referrals. While that strategy certainly was effective, the days of relying solely on it are fading.
In this age of rapid technological evolution, health professionals stand at a crossroads where embracing the virtual realm is not merely an option but a strategic imperative. A website is not just a digital business card but a powerful tool for connecting with patients, showcasing expertise and authority, fostering public trust, and advancing the practice of healthcare.
Today, several health professionals, hospitals, and clinics have a website, but the concept of marketing their practice hasn’t reached its full potential. There are a few doctors who question whether or not they need a website and many who don’t think it’s an important part of their business.
The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 hit the healthcare industry badly. It affected the front-liners responding to the call of duty to the point of burnout. It also affected healthcare professionals and wellness centers who had to close their offices for safety reasons. It drove rapid and unexpected changes in the healthcare industry.
Consumers, patients, or clients become more reliant on information to keep up. Personalized services, access to telemedicine, and online health tools became more important to these types of consumers.
The Numbers Don’t Lie
According to a study conducted by Pew Research Center, 80% of Internet users look for health information online. 66% of Internet users look online for information about a specific disease or medical problem; 56% of Internet users look online for information about a certain medical treatment or procedure; 44% of Internet users search online for doctors or other health professionals; and 36% of Internet users search online for hospitals or other medical facilities. Another study said that 77% of patients check for online information before scheduling an appointment
With numbers like that in this age and time, when Google is not just a noun but also a verb, it pays to have a website.
Why Should You Invest in a website?
There is no doubt that a website is one of the most powerful tools to promote your healthcare business. You can drive most sales if you opted for a customized healthcare web design. Not only a customized website helps you target your customers, but it will also help your business stand out. Here are the reasons why:
24/7 Online Presence
A health professional should be like an entrepreneur. Having a website is like opening your clinic’s front door. You may have a physical office building but a web page serves as your virtual office space.
With a website, patients can find you irrespective of business hours. They can get information about your healthcare services whenever they want. Your website serves in rendering quality help to patients and acquiring new ones. It also provides convenience by gaining information in the comfort of their homes.
Healthcare consumers expect reputable hospitals and other facilities to have an effective online presence. They always seek answers to their health-related questions. Thus, the role of a doctor’s website in educating patients about various health conditions, treatments, and preventive measures are becoming a priority. Having a website with this valuable information may highlight your services to your potential patients or clients. This will then build your authority, credibility and capture more views, web visitors, and clients. At the end, people will trust you.
Another issue about having a website is the domain name. Although anyone could set up a website for free, the domain name will be like yourname.website.com. Not only it is long, but it also gives an impression that you have not invested enough in your brand.
If you want your website to be more professional, invest in a domain name like yourname.com. (or .net, .org, .co, etc.). Paying for a domain name lasts for a year or even more. Make sure you pay the dues so others may not get it once it becomes available in the domain name market.
Since your name becomes the domain name of your website, it becomes the brand. It now gives you and your profession (or business) a face. This is something that will differentiate you from others.
You may think that social media can do the trick. Here’s the thing: you don’t own the domain name of the social media. So if you have a Facebook page, for example, any content that you put on your page is stored on Facebook’s servers and you do not have control over their servers. What if Facebook no longer exists? Where will your content be?
“Domain names and websites are Internet real estate.”— Marc Ostrofsky
Extends Your Reach
Your healthcare website has the ability to reach out globally. Potential customers, patients, or clients sitting from anywhere in the world can access your healthcare web page any time of the day. This provides global exposure that paves the way for expansion.
Also, your website can act as a marketing tool. Most people tend to remember the brand or the person’s name so there is a tendency to search for it. How could a potential patient find you if you don’t have a website?
And speaking of marketing tools, you may also promote your products, book, or announce an event. With different e-commerce features, having these can go into your website. Or you could link them back to another website like Amazon if you don’t know how to set up a web store.
Provides Online Quality Customer Service Experience
When websites were not yet popular, people have to queue for hours to book their appointment. Once they booked their slot, they have to wait for their number to turn up for the check-up. The entire process is quite time-consuming. But with a healthcare website, the burden will be lighter. Your website will provide all the relevant information to them which will save them time. It’s like having a home where you can entertain your visitors even if it’s during off-office hours.
Gains Insights Into Patients
With a website, you can find out who your visitors are by using analytic tools. You will also get to know about their preferences so you can adapt. You will also be able to explore the type of treatments that people are searching for online. This will aid you in adding that treatment to your service offerings.
Websites Are Easy to Set Up
A healthcare web page has three important elements which I will call the ABC: About, Blog, and Contact You can set up a simple website with WordPress or Wix. With so many themes (templates) to choose from, designing a healthcare website comes easy.
So if you’re interested in having a website, we can discuss your web development project at your convenient time.
Should a health professional invest in a website? Absolutely. It has become a necessity to invest in a healthcare website. Not having a website is taking yourself out of the game and seriously limiting the visibility of your business. It is an indispensable marketing tool to flourish in the online marketplace and drive sales for healthcare businesses.
If you don’t have an online face for your healthcare business yet, then you should hire someone who knows web development. I’ve been creating WordPress and Wix websites since 2012 and still continue to do so. Feel free to contact me and inquire. Who knows? I may be the
write right person to do your web content.