Websites for Therapists: 10 Essential Features to Elevate Your Practice
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Do therapists need websites?
If you run an independent therapy practice – meaning you cant depend on a hospital or medical group affiliation to send you patients, one of the the best ways to attract new clients is by getting found online in local search.
About 97 percent of consumers use online media when researching products or services in their local area.
In order to reach a wider audience and market your therapy practice, you need to build and maintain a strong online presence.
Having an optimized website is a great way to get started.
What Makes a Good Therapist Website?
Not all websites for therapists are created equal.
A compelling website will help you attract new clients to your practice while catering to your current ones.
Ideally, websites for therapists need to accomplish multiple objectives including the ability to market your practice, increase appointments, promote referrals and ultimately, maximize your revenue
Whether you are looking to design a new website or redesign your existing one, focus on ensuring the site fulfills its intended function.
Here are ten essential features all websites for therapists should have.
Well Structured Navigation
Your website should have clear, simple and well-structured navigation. This will ensure human visitors have an easy time finding the information they are looking for on the site. Well-structured navigation will also enable search engines to crawl and understand your site, something that will boost your SEO efforts.
To ensure your site navigation is user-friendly, include a search bar, have a clear structure for the navigation menu, and keep it consistent. In the end, easy navigation and a UX design will help you get visitors to stay on your site longer.
Mobile Responsive Design
Today, over 90 percent of internet users access the web via mobile devices. If your website is not mobile-friendly, you risk falling behind the competition.
A website that is designed for compatibility with different devices and screen sizes will enable you to effectively connect with this online audience. Websites for therapists should be no different.
To make your website mobile-friendly:
• Choose a mobile responsive theme
• Strip back your content
• Use a large and readable font
• Make images as light as possible, and
• Eliminate pop-ups
A mobile responsive design will enhance user experience and improve your search engine rankings, effectively helping you gain more visitors and potential clients.
Compared to most small businesses, therapists have to take privacy more seriously.
Patients usually share a lot of sensitive information with medical professionals. As a custodian of this information, you must make sure that the data is safe and secure at all times. This will not only help you earn your patients’ trust but also ensure you are compliant with the relevant laws.
Websites for therapists should be both designed and hosted in such a way that they are HIPAA compliant. You will need to adhere to rules relating to privacy, security, breach notification, and enforcement.
Visually Appealing Design
Your website is the first point of contact for your clients. To ensure you catch and hold your visitors’ attention, choose an attractive web design. A well-organized website design will also help you come across as professional and credible, two important factors that patients take into account when choosing a therapist.
When it comes to website design for therapists, keep in mind that less is more.
In order to make a great first impression:
• Aim for a minimalist look
• Select a good grid structure
• Use white spaces strategically, and
• Choose the website color palette wisely
Consistent Web Pages
A consistent design will not only enhance the functionality of your website but also ensure you stick in the minds of your online visitors. When your web pages are consistent, users will not feel confused or lost when navigating through your site.
For your design to be coherent, things like design elements, font sizes, spacing, button styles, coloring, photo choices, and messages should match throughout the website. This will help you build brand credibility and make people feel at home whenever they visit your website.
Fast Page Loading Speed
For many internet users, nothing is more frustrating than a slow website. When potential patients are desperately looking for a solution online, a website that loads quickly will help to reduce their anxiety and stress.
To speed up your site:
• Compress all images
• Leverage browser caching
• Choose the right web hosting plan
• Use a content delivery network (CDN)
Speeding up your site will enable you to make a good first impression and result in a better user experience. This will reduce bounce rates and increase the chances of a user visiting the site in the future, leading to better conversion rates.
Content is the backbone of your website. Although it is not a design element, content plays a critical role in helping you attract new clients. As such, you should maximize relevant and up-to-date content.
As a therapist, you will want to show your potential patients that you understand their struggles and demonstrate how you can help. Make sure your content is well-written so that it communicates and helps you connect with your audience. The content should be easy to read and free of grammatical and spelling errors.
Compelling content will make visitors want to keep coming back.
Wise Use of Graphics
Humans are visually-oriented creatures. To ensure you capture users’ attention, connect with them and speak to them clearly, choose the right images to support your content. The images should be suitable for your practice and elicit an emotional reaction from the reader.
Your therapy website should include friendly and professional photos of yourself, your staff and your facility. You can also have photos that speak to the journey that potential patients will travel with you and the results you can help them achieve. Make sure you use high-quality photos and that your videos are easy to play.
Reviews And Testimonials
Therapy is about building trust. Apart from professionalism, potential patients will look for a therapist that they are comfortable working with. In addition to asking friends and family for recommendations, online reviews and testimonials will influence their decisions.
When looking to create a therapist website, remember to feature reviews and testimonials.
Reviews and testimonials from patients whose lives you have changed can be powerful tools that will increase your credibility. This information will give potential patients the assurance that you are a reliable professional who produces results.
Given HIPPA regulations and privacy concerns, depending on the type of therapy practice you run, actually getting patients to leave online reviews can be tough. So be creative about how you feature these reviews w/o compromising their anonymity or privacy.
Calls to Action And Contact Information
The best websites for therapists have clear and compelling calls to action. Once visitors have gone through your site, you need to invite them to take the next step. Help potential patients know exactly what to do to get your solution by including CTAs on every page of your website. You can add interactive tools such as appointment setting forms, live chat, and social media buttons to help keep users engaged.
Lastly, make it easy for potential clients to reach out to you by including prominent and easy-to-find contact information on your website. These include your business address, phone number, contact form, and email address.
Upgraded Features to Consider
Once you’ve got the basics in place, you may want to consider adding some cutting edge functionality and features to your website.
Popularized during the recent pandemic, telecounseling software is completely HIPAA compliant and offers therapists the ability to interact with clients from virtually anywhere. Giving therapists and patients alike the versality to provide or receive therapy without having to be there in-person.
Integrate your client forms directly onto your secure website while protecting your clients’ information. All information sent to and from your office is within HIPAA guidelines and is safe and secure on a dedicated secure server.
Integrate an unobtrusive secure messaging application to the website which enables patients to communicate directly with your office staff for quick and easy communication.
Online Appointment Scheduling
Eliminate missed calls and opportunities by allowing clients to schedule appointments online with an integrated calendar that automatically & instantly lets you know when a client wants to schedule an appointment.
Let Us Help Grow Your Practice
Are you planning to build a website that will help you grow and develop your practice?
LocalBizGuru can help. We have been helping therapy practices of all types design and develop custom therapist websites and dominate in local search.
Contact us today to learn more about our services and to request a consultation.