So you just spent weeks, if not months, working on your medical website; compiling and writing content, reviewing images, drafting the right messaging, and scrutinizing every word in every paragraph. After getting your website just right and launching it, it’s tempting to just ignore what happens next. Unfortunately, your website is not a “build and forget it” kind of thing. A successful website is a work in progress that needs ongoing attention so that it can attract new patients and service existing ones. Maintenance is essential whether it’s your yard, your car, or yourself. Your website is no different.
Here are a few things to take a look at on an ongoing basis:
Keep your content fresh.
Simply having a website is not enough today. If you expect patients to find and interact with your site, you must provide them with new and useful content to keep them engaged. Providing tips and information about health topics related to your practice will keep them informed and coming back. It is a good idea to review your content at least once a year to ensure accuracy. If you license patient education content from a third party, confirm that the vendor also reviews and updates content on a periodic basis.
Keep track of your visitors activity.
Analyzing your website statistics will help you better understand what works and what doesn’t, all based on your goals and expectations. This information will help you identify any needed improvements as well as what pages patients visit the most and what will help drive conversions and acquisition.
Check your links.
The web is constantly changing. If you are linking to other websites, you run the risk that those links may break in the future. If there are broken links, your visitors may become easily frustrated, and you may see drops in your search engine placement over time. It’s a good idea to periodically run your site through a broken link checker to catch any issues.
Check your online forms.
If a patient fills out a form online they expect ease in both the process and the flow of communication. If your form doesn’t work, or you are not actively communicating with people, you may be leaving dollars on the table in the form of potential patients. Try completing your forms from your website to see if they are working properly and that staff respond. It’s also a good idea to step into the patients’ shoes and attempt to fill out your form. Do your form questions make sense? How long does it take to complete? Is it intuitive? Good form design can directly correlate to higher utilization.
Actively test your site on all browsers and devices.
Just because your site may look great on a desktop using Chrome doesn’t mean it looks good on a phone using iOS. You should continue to test your site on different devices using different browsers. Browsers roll out updates all the time that may cause a problem as your site gets older.
Verify your site remains accessible and compliant.
As of January, 2018, healthcare organizations need to comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 AA for their websites and electronic communications. When adding content to your site, website editors may forget to add “alt” tags or upload uncompressed images, making your site non-compliant. Be sure to vet your site against these guidelines to remain compliant.
Check any custom coding.
Sometimes custom coding is used when building your site to achieve a desired look or functionality. Be sure to periodically test those features as browser or plugin updates may make them break. To keep your site working properly In the future, it may be necessary to reach out to your developer and update your code.
Do you need help keeping your website updated?
Practis is here to help. Please give us a call today at (704) 887-5300.