Category: Website Design

Five Reasons to Improve Your Site’s Security

Is your medical website secure? You probably understand why it’s important to have a secure site, especially when you’re dealing with sensitive medical information, but there are plenty of other reasons why cyber security is essential if you are providing medical care.

Patients put their lives in your hands. They trust you to provide the best care and look out for their well-being, and this goes beyond their bodies. They also want to know the information they share with you is secure. Securing your website and the information it contains is as important as protecting your patient’s medical privacy in your office.

These days, doctors’ websites are used for a variety of things: patients are able to schedule appointments, pay their bills, view test results… the list goes on and on. Securing the information you exchange with patient is crucial to maintaining their trust and ensuring your office is viewed as professional.

According to security experts, medical information is big business. Some believe it is more valuable to hackers than credit card information because it allows criminals to buy medical equipment and drugs for resale, and create fraudulent insurance claims. To avoid leaving your patients vulnerable, you must establish a secure system featuring SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) that encrypts patient data and ensures privacy.

Why is SSL one of the most important features you can add to your practice’s site?

Improves Trust with Patients

Patients are more aware today than ever before about their privacy rights and if they believe you are putting their medical information at risk, it’s going to affect your relationship. It’s your role to restore and build trust with your patients, and the last thing you need as you are working to do this is to expose your patients to a security breach. Not only is securing your site the right thing to do, it’s going to prove to your patients that you really care about their well-being and will do what it takes to protect their security.

Increases HIPAA Compliance within Your Site

All exchanges of information on your medical site, even something as simple as a comments form, should be encrypted with SSL technology. This ensures the data traveling through the internet is safe and, the system authenticates the receiving server to verify its identity, reducing the risk for information to be intercepted.

Keep in mind, not having a HIPAA compliant site can get you into trouble, not just within the medical field, but also within the civil and criminal court systems. SSL is an investment you won’t regret.

Boosts Website Conversions

You’ve invested a lot of time and money into your website, so you need it to convert site visitors to patients. The best way to ensure a high return-on-investment is to provide a secure site that establishes trust with visitors. Most people consider and verify site security before moving forward with a relationship with a medical provider. If a patient is reassured during his or her visit to your site, they are move likely to take that next step.

Increase PCI Compliance

If patients make bill payments or buy products or services on your site, you need to be sure their credit card information is secure. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) offers a guideline for businesses dealing with the major brand credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. They can help you implement security policies and online processes to protect breaches and cardholder data theft.

Credit card institutions can levy fines as punishment for merchants who are PCI noncompliant and increase the fines steadily. They can also levy fines if there is a data reach and those fines can legally be based on the amount of money stolen in a breach. These institutions also fine a merchant when a data breach occurs and base the fines off of the amount of cardholders affected by the breach.

Boost SEO

One final reason to increase the security on your site? It makes your site more valuable to your marketing plan. Google places a high priority on user security and the search engine tends to emphasize sites that are doing it right. Here’s more information about HTTPS at Google.

Granted, improving your security alone isn’t going to get you to the top of the results, but it is going to make a difference, and since successful SEO is all about putting together all of the puzzle pieces, security needs to be a priority. And there’s speculation that the emphasis on SSL is only going to increase with time.

When patients see the small lock sign in the address bar when they visit your site, it makes a difference. It establishes trust and shows you take your obligation as a medical professional to protect your patients seriously. If you’d like to know more enhancing your website’s security, give us a call! We include SSL with our Website Management service.

Responsive Website Design – Benefits for Your Medical Practice

More and more people and prospective patients are accessing the Internet using mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Unfortunately, not all websites are designed for this type of access and those that aren’t are not creating a great user experience.

responsive medical website
It is becoming increasingly important for websites to provide a web presence that is usable and user friendly for mobile devices. Responsive website design makes attractive and efficient sites possible, regardless of the device used. With a responsive website for your medical practice, prospective patients can access one website on all devices.

Understanding Responsive Website Design for Medical Websites

Responsive website design was named for its ability to respond to a device regardless of how a site is accessed. The images, content, and structure of the site are the same no matter the device. When a responsive site is accessed using a smartphone or tablet, the site “reacts” to fit to the smaller screen, so there is no need to worry about creating different sites for various devices.

A responsive site uses grids and proportions instead of pixels to fit into the screen. More and more people are using mobile devices – we see 20-25% of all traffic for our medical websites being from mobile devices.

A prospective patient is very likely to search on their iPad or iPhone for a physician after work rather than sit in front of a home computer; especially if they’ve been sitting in front of a computer all day.

In the past, websites needed a regular version and a mobile device version, but responsive site design has eliminated this need. In addition to creating efficiency with only one site, there are numerous other reasons you should consider a responsive design for your medical practice.

Mobile Market is Growing

There are few people out there not using a smartphone, tablet, or both. Statistics show about one-fifth of all Google searches are performed on a mobile device. It is predicted that mobile usage will surpass desktop usage during 2014 and that the mobile market will only continue to grow.

Not only that, Google also prefers responsive design. Responsive website design is more efficient for Google bots to crawl, index, and organize because they have only one URL and the same HTML across all of the various devices. Not only does this mean less work for Google, it also means it is easier for users to share and interact with content.

Responsive Design has the Ability to Increase Conversion Rates

More and more people are using their mobile devices for finding information online. Research has recently shown nearly 70% of all mobile device users made a purchase within the last month. The less work users have to do to finalize their purchase the better, and responsive design makes the process easier. Responsive designs are able to adjust to any screen, so developers control how the conversion elements display on mobile devices.

What does this mean for a medical site? It means patients are more likely to follow through once they arrive at your site. The information you want to share with patients will be easy to access and you stand a better chance of getting visitors to your site to take the action you want. Also, since responsive sites aren’t prevalent, you will stand out from your competition. A prospective patient may visit a competitor’s non-responsive site and find it difficult to use, and then leave the site.

Social Media

If there is one thing users of mobile devices access when online, it is social media sites. Estimates show more than half of all social media interaction occurs on a mobile device. Social media also continues to carry a great deal of weight in the marketing world and as more and more Internet users incorporate social media into their everyday lives, its impact in physician website marketing will continue to grow.

One of the main things people are doing when using social media is sharing content. In order for this to have the greatest impact, the content must be accessible to as many people as possible.

For instance, if a Twitter user posts a link to the medical content on your site and 30% of people clicking the link from their phone are unable to access the information, you just lost nearly a third of your potential audience. However, with a responsive medical website, people are able to access your content, regardless of the device they use. You ensure your content is accessible to 100% of users. As more and more medical websites feature important content, easy access across all platforms is essential for making the most of your investment.

Optimal User Experience

Responsive website design results in medical sites that are more user-friendly. Instead of zooming and shrinking to see everything on a screen that is smaller than a desktop, all of the content automatically adjusts when the site loads. This makes it as easy as possible for visitors to utilize your site.

Studies have shown that when a visitor arrives at your site and is not happy with what they see, there is more than a 60% chance they will head elsewhere. A positive experience with a site increases the likelihood a person will trust the site enough to follow through and make contact.

When your site does not offer responsive design, the message you give patients is that you care very little for the experience they have when they arrive at your site. Think about your use of responsive site design as you would designing a brick and mortar office: If a patient walks in the front door and is greeted by a wall that prevents further access, he or she will turn around and leave. On the other hand, if the patient enters and encounters a pleasant atmosphere that feels friendly, inviting, and comfortable, the odds of that patient settling in and feeling comfortable increase. Your site should create this environment regardless how the prospective patient accesses your website.

Easier to Manage Marketing

Every medical website owner knows how much work it takes to manage a site and ensure it ranks high on search engines. Imagine having to do double or triple the work. That’s what happens when you do not implement responsive design. You will need to run separate SEO campaigns for each URL. A single responsive site means a single SEO campaign.

The bottom line is, as a business and website owner, you need to stay on trend and adjust to the market, but you also need to make smart decisions. Responsive website design allows you to do both. Not only are you able to keep up with the competition, you implement a strategy that makes everything about managing your site easier. Responsive website design is a win-win for everyone involved.

All medical websites developed by Physician Designs are now fully responsive. We can create one website for your practice that will work on all devices.

Is Your Medical Website Costing You Patients?

Did you know the design for your medical website determines how long a visitor stays on your site and whether or not visitors scroll to read all of the content on a page? Research indicates more than three quarters of all site visitors do not bother scrolling during their first visit to a site. This means that more than 75% of the people who find your site never see more than just a few words written “above the fold.”

Locating key content in the right location on your physician website means the difference between a visitor glancing at your site and that same visitor sticking around to learn more about your medical practice. As a matter of fact, good medical web design can improve conversion rates by up to 50%.

physician-website

Organizing Your Medical Practice Website

The first thing that can be done to improve a website for your medical practice is to organize the site and its content to make it easy to navigate and find information. The quicker visitors find the information they need, the more likely they are to stay on the site and learn more about you and your medical practice. Providing easy-to-find information about your bio and medical services also helps you build trust with visitors. The best way to organize a site is to think about why visitors searched for the site in the first place. The most likely reasons a person searched online for a healthcare professional are:

• finding a local physician to treat their medical problem
• determining if their insurance is accepted
• learning more information about the practice and physician
• Scheduling an appointment

Improving a visitor’s ability to accomplish these tasks increases the value of your site and increases the chances of converting that person into a patient.

If your site is not already doing these things, now is the time to make a change. A medical practice’s website design can be improved with the following three items.

Your Home Page Should Clearly Describe Your “Brand”

The home page of your site needs to share important information with site visitors. It should include what your medical specialty is, who you are, who you provide care, and why what you offer is different than anyone else in your field. Your home page does not need to include elaborate details, but it must offer clear information about the heart of your practice.

Good medical website design communicates important details about your brand and determines whether or not visitors want to learn more about your practice.

Create an Easy to Navigate Design

Too many websites are confusing and not user friendly. The easier your site is to use the likelier patients are to use it. Remember, not all of your current and potential patients are web savvy and even those who are do not have time to waste searching all over your site for what they need. Burying important features beneath layers of pages someone might like to read will not enhance your site.

Good website design features a navigation menu that is prominently featured and consistent on every page of the site.

The menu needs to direct visitors to the important parts of the site before they do anything else on the site. Making things easy to find actually increases the time people stay on your site and it improves conversion rates. Be sure to include a services page that includes a sub-menu featuring each of your services separately. We recommend at least the following pages for our physician clients: Home, About the Staff, Services, Patient Information, and Contact Us.

Encourage Visitors to Take Action

Encouraging visitors to take action on a website is known as a “call to action.” It encourages visitors to follow up and contact you directly. There might be a contact or email button on each page or you might include a contact page. Most of our medical websites use a “Request an Appointment” form that makes it easy for visitors to submit their name, phone number, and email. The form can then be forwarded to your front desk which can follow-up and schedule an appointment.

In addition to contact information, we also include Google Maps that makes it easy for patient to find your medical practice. This can be at the bottom of every page or just on the Contact Us page.

Is your medical website design missing any of these important components? If so, it could be costing you business. Now is the time to make a change. Contact a Project Manager at Physician Designs for a free consultation and quote.

What Your Medical Website Design Should Accomplish for You

Most doctors know they need a medical website for their practice, but fewer understand exactly what that website should accomplish. A physician website is about more than just letting people know you exist online. It is about sharing information with potential patients, establishing a reputation, building a relationship, and helping your practice achieve success. What exactly should good medical website design accomplish for you?

The majority of adults in America use the Internet to gather information and make important decisions. Choosing a doctor is one of the most important decisions a person makes and many utilize information from the Internet to make this decision. In addition to information online over which you have no control, you can supply patients with everything they need to know about your practice. This is one of the most important things good physician website design can do for you. There are four specific things you want your site to achieve:

Attract New Patients

A good physician website makes it easier to grow your practice. It attracts the attention of search engines, which leads prospective patients to your page. Once they arrive, good design encourages them to stay and learn more about you, your services and philosophy. Great optimization and design can even help you target the specific types of patients you want to attract to your practice.

Establish a Relationship with Patients

Your website should build your brand and help you create trust between you and current or potential patients. The site should feature your logo, your goals as a physician, your menu of services, and anything else you want people to know about your brand. Your site should reflect your brand and help you establish brand presence online. This makes it easier to build trust with patients. They get to know you and feel comfortable working with you before you meet in person.

Good medical website design allows visitors to the site to see “behind the scenes” and feel like they are a part of their medical care team. A good design also establishes a sense of community. Providing a forum in which patients can share information and experiences eliminates the need for prospective patients to go elsewhere looking for information over which you have no control.

Educate Patients

Not only will good website design make it easier for prospective patients to find you, it will help you educate people about your practice and issues associated with the type of care you offer. Many prospective patients are looking for details about health conditions and medical issues. If you are able to provide well-researched, up-to-date information, they will call on you for future concerns. (Read our post about using social media for your medical practice)

Allow Your Office to Run More Efficiently

Your patients are not the only ones who benefit from a great website. Great design can also take a lot of the burden off your office staff. How much time is wasted answering questions about office hours and taking appointments? A website can do these things for you – and 24 hours a day. It allows patients to contact your office about non-emergency issues that can be answered automatically or through email. This means you and your staff are able to focus on providing care to patients in need in the here-and-now without missing out on opportunities to interact and provide information to potential new patients.

Is your website working for you? Does it accomplish everything it possibly can? If not, now is the time to make improvements.

Website for Colorectal Surgeon in Newport Beach

We recently completed a website for Dr. Babak Rad, a colorectal surgeon in Newport Beach, CA. Services at Newport Colorectal include the treatment of anorectal diseases, colonoscopy cancer screening, laparoscopic surgery, and robotic surgery.

Be sure to check out the new design!

Colon & Recal Surgeon

Dr. Rad has dual board-certification – in general and colorectal surgery. He has also received training and performs robotic surgery with the da Vinci robot for colon conditions. da Vinci robotic surgery allows for a quicker return to a normal diet, a shorter hospital stay, and smaller incisions.

Besides a custom designed website, Physician Designs also provided custom search engine optimized content for the four service pages. This was particularly important since we are also managing the SEO for the website – and a lot of emphasis is placed on useful and unique content by search engines.

Websites for Doctors – How A Website Can Help Your Medical Practice

Anyone in the medical profession knows how hectic their job and profession can get. Patients can get a little impatient sometimes, and down time can easily become scarce.  Whether you have your own practice or not, have a website for a medical practice can be a huge benefit if you know how to use it.

1. A Custom Medical Website Can Make Patients’ Lives Easier

It’s not something you would typically think about but having a physician website could take a huge weight off your shoulders when it comes to pleasing your patients.  By having a website or your medical practice, you can post trusted content and answer common patient questions. Instead of having to contact your office directly, your site can be a resource for them to get information directly FROM YOU without having to leave their house or wait for a response.

2. A Medical Website Can Make Your Life Easier

As a doctor, patients are your number one priority, and dealing with them comprises most of your work day. If you can get your website up and start posting updates regularly (you can also use social media), you will be able to reach more patients in less time – that means freeing up valuable hours in the day.  Your website can take on a lot of the grunt-work, especially with marketing, for you so that you have time to get to more patients.

3. Your Website Can Become a Healthcare Resource

The internet has become a valuable resource for people searching for healthcare related information, which means your website services do not have to be restricted to your personal patients.  You can optimize your website so that it pops up on search engines like Google and Bing (which go through millions of searches every MONTH).  If you can get your site ranked on one of these search engines, you will be able to not only bring in more patients, but you will also be able to become a public health resource that people can go to for medical information.

This can be especially true if you have a blog on your website. A blog can let you comment on any healthcare related news or discoveries.

4. A Website for Your Practice Can Only Help

In the long run, websites don’t cost very much to maintain and can offer an entire range of services that would otherwise be unused. For someone in the medical field, it can greatly streamline the day-to-day process when used properly. The internet is a very big place, and technology has provided us with something that no one in history has ever had. It makes sense to use to use it to your advantage instead of letting it go to waste. Having a medical website can take a lot of time off your hands and improve the lives of patients as well as providing a variety of benefits for your medical practice.  If you are smart about it, you can get a lot of bang for your buck than you might expect.