Generally, doctors are meticulous when it comes to how they care for their patients; however, this is not always the case when it comes to their practice website. If you’re a practicing physician, you’re not expected to be a cardiologist and a website designer, although that would be impressive. There are many ways you can optimize your website that you may not be aware of and common mistakes to keep in mind, so that your medical website performs optimally.
1. Not mobile-friendly
Mobile optimization has become a huge SEO ranking factor, especially as more and more users are searching for products and services on their phones than ever before. If your site isn’t mobile friendly, you will not rank as well in search results compared to other practices within your area. This is especially relevant for medical practices, since local search is at an all time high at nearly 94% of smartphone users according to Google. Patients are expecting a great mobile experience and if the site looks like it was built in 2005, they’ll move on.
Quick Background: Mobile-friendly refers to a user friendly site that has been optimized for smartphones. The text should be easy to read and content should appear seamless as you scroll down and transition between pages.
2. Missing HTTPS Protocol
HTTPS allows secure communication, so that user information is protected across the internet. While you generally think of this in relation to e-commerce sites, it’s equally important for practices, so that patients feel more comfortable using your web and don’t have to worry about their private health information potentially getting compromised.
3. Outdated Design & Content
Many medical sites look like they were built over 10 years ago with tons of whitespace, outdated graphics, cluttered content and poor usability overall. The design should make it easy for patients to find the services they need, learn more about your practice and easily find your contact information to book an appointment. It shouldn’t be a stressful experience, especially since it may have taken them a lot of courage to start their search for a doctor.
4. Slow Website
It’s important that your site load in 3 seconds or less, so you should absolutely consider optimizing it if it’s any longer than that. The main reasons for slow web pages include file size of images, the CMS you use like Shopify or WordPress, which plugins you use in the CMS and the web hosting plan. Use Google’s Pagespeed Tool to check how your website loads on both desktop and mobile.
5. Adobe Flash Videos & Animations
Due to poor performance Adobe is retiring Flash officially by the end of 2020, but Apple removed it from all of its devices back in 2010 and Google has since removed flash from Chrome, so make sure to remove these animations from your site immediately.
If you don’t have a background in website management along with your medical degree, as is expected, Doctor Your Web can provide a free consultation for your healthcare website.