Use This Checklist To Keep Your Physical Therapy Website A Success

physical therapy website checklistIt doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that every business should have a web presence. Years ago, all it took to have a successful physical therapy practice was a sign out front, a strong referral base and an advertisement in the Yellow Pages. Now, it is absolutely essential to have a powerful website that will grab your visitors attention and persuade them to act.

Here are some great tips to beef up the web presence of your physical therapy website and increase the profitability of your physical therapy business.

Keep Your Content Fresh
There is nothing more detrimental to physical therapists than having outdated information on their websites. Visitors surely don’t want to see old services or content that are no longer relevant or being offered by your practice. Neglecting the content on your site could also have visitors who would have become patients thinking that you are no longer in business. You should take a hard look at your physical therapy website every month to ensure that all of the information and services you offer are up to date.

As physical therapists, we know exactly what we need to do clinically when treating patients. However, most of us are completely lost when it comes to building a website and creating content that will make your physical therapy office rank high among the search engines for your local area. Let’s face it, the competition for patient refferals in the physical therapy field is becoming fierce on a local level. You will need high quality content that is search engine optimized for your website and that targets your specific patient population that you treat in your clinic. The content must be absolutely original or the search engines will not consider your website as a site that provides value or seen as an authority site. You might need to hire a professional writer to create your content. However the cost will be well worth the increase of traffic to your physical therapy website and help to grow your business.

Clean Up Your Act
They say that a picture paints a thousand words but if the pictures on your physical therapy website are grainy or old, it’s time to break out the camera. It’s best to update your photos regularly. Potential clients or patients like to get a bit of a preview of the facilities and the people working at your physical therapy office. This makes them more comfortable when they come in for their first appointment. Be sure that the pictures are high resolution and portray your business in the absolute best light.  This will improve the image of your web presence and make visitors want to make an appointment at your physical therapy office.

Make the Most of Media
Although pictures are a great way to allow your visitors to preview your physical therapy facility and your staff, they can be a bit boring. Most successful physical therapists have begun to embrace other forms of media for their websites. You can hook your visitors as soon as they get to your site with a killer video about your services and a virtual tour of the office. Podcasts and slideshows are also helpful. The key to making media work for you is to make the visitor feel like they have a personal connection with your office and staff. This will make them want to pick up the phone and call to schedule an appointment.

Improve Your Social Standing
More and more business owners are recognizing the importance of using social media to market their services and products. The use of Facebook, LinkedIn, Google + and twitter are essential for growing your physical therapy practice and keeping your business in the front of their minds. I won’t suggest doing this all by yourself as you may already know, social media can be a huge time suck! However hiring the right people or even training some of your office staff in delivering effective communication through your social media outlets can prove to be beneficial to your physical therapy practice in the long run.  There are a lot of social media tools that can help integrate conversations on your website and social media outlets and encourage visitors to get involved in those conversations and call you for an appointment.

Keep It Short and Sweet
The content on your website can either make or break your web presence. There are a lot of physical therapists who simply put as much information as possible on each page. This is a bad idea. When a physical therapy website bombards the visitors with too much information, the visitors tend to click the back button and find another website. This could be costing you a potential referral or client. People want to be able to click on the page with the information that they are looking for and act on it. The content on your site should be informative but short and to the point unless you are posting articles on your website. Keep your content short and your visitors will have your phones ringing off the hook.

Puff Out Your Chest
Bragging is never a good thing but you really must let your visitors know why they should choose your physical therapy office over your competitors. The “About Us” page is the perfect place to show off your education and that of your staff. Your credentials will improve your visitor’s ability to trust you and cause them to act. Also having a testimonial page helps build trust among those who are not familiar with your physical therapy practice. On this page you can have video or written testimonials of some of your past clients or patients and have them tell their story of how great it was to come into your physical therapy practice and be treated by your staff.

Fast Is Better Than Furious
People who are searching for physical therapists online have very short attention spans. If your physical therapy website takes time to load, they will be aggravated and click the back button in search of another office in your area. You need to make sure that your site loads quickly and is error free. Get rid of any flash or animated intros. They are no longer effective and can hinder your users experience visiting your site. The size of the images and other media files can cost your visitors time if they take a long time to load. It is of the utmost importance that you ensure that your web presence is optimized for quick loading.

Smooth Sailing
Every physical therapy website owner should make sure that their web presence is easy to navigate. Confusing your visitors will only cause them to go to your competitor’s website. Of course, you know how to locate all of the information on your own site but you should take a look at your web presence through the eyes of your visitors. Be sure that your navigation menu is easy to find and that it works without any glitches. It might be wise to add a sitemap and a search tool to make it easier for your visitors. The simpler it is for people to find the information that they need, the higher the chance of them calling your physical therapy office for services.

Out With the Old
At some point, nearly everybody has tried to access a website that had Flash from their phone. It takes too long on the typical computer, let alone trying to get it to load on a Smartphone, iPhone or iPad. Flash is a thing of the past so kick it to the curb and make room for HTML5 and other forms of new technology that provide quicker access to your physical therapy website.

Going Mobile
In the United States, nearly ninety percent of adults and over half of all teenagers have cell phones with internet capability. You simply must ensure that your physical therapy website can be accessed easily by cell phone and smart phone users. Depending upon your web hosting service, you might need to create mobile apps for access to your website content. I will go in detail in a later blog post on developing mobile strategies for your physical therapy website so make sure you connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or via email with the links at the bottom right of this website.

Reel Them In
The most widely forgotten yet incredibly important thing that physical therapists forget on their websites is the call to action. The information that you provide just isn’t enough to make people run to the phone to make an appointment. They are lazy and they want you to tell them what to do next. You simply must tell them what they need to do and the funny thing is that if the site is credible, most visitors will actually make the call. Just tell them what they need to do and they will come through. Hope you found this helpful. Please pay it forward and share on your favorite social network with any of the links above or below this post.