In today’s digital age, having a professional and user-friendly website is essential for any medical practice or healthcare organization. A good website can help attract new patients, help more new patients find you online, and establish credibility in the competitive healthcare industry. Choosing the right medical website design company makes a big difference in the outcome. Many people can build webpages, but to stand out in healthcare, you need a medical website designed to generate more new patients. To ensure you make the right choice, we’ve compiled a list of the top ten questions to ask when selecting a medical website design company.
1. How much experience do you have in designing medical websites?
Healthcare industry websites are a little different than the average websites. They have special considerations a designer will need to know in order to make them ADA-compliant and effective at getting new patients. It’s a good idea to review the company’s portfolio and previous work with medical practices or healthcare organizations. A company with relevant experience will have a better understanding of your unique requirements and compliance considerations. At Practis, we have over 25 years of experience designing medical websites, which means we know the industry inside and out.
2. Can you provide examples of medical websites you have designed?
Ask to see specific examples of medical websites the company has designed in the past. It’s even better if they’ve had experience creating websites for your specific healthcare specialty. This will allow you to evaluate their design style, functionality, and user experience. Take time to go over the examples they have sent. Are the sites visually appealing? Are they easy to navigate? How do they look on mobile devices? Check out this gallery of medical websites we’ve created for many different specialties like Urology, OBGYN, Orthopedics, and medical groups.
3. Are you familiar with HIPAA compliance and patient privacy?
Medical websites must adhere to strict privacy regulations, such as HIPAA in the United States. A good medical web design company will be well-versed in these compliance requirements and will set up necessary security measures to protect patient information. HIPAA violations can be very sneaky. It’s critically important to make sure your website and any other way you interact with patient data including chatbots, social media, public reviews, and forms are compliant. Here’s more information about the many different ways we deal with HIPAA data at Practis.
4. Do you offer responsive website design for mobile devices?
Over half of all website visits come from a mobile phone. Because of this, it is essential to have a website that is fully responsive and optimized for mobile devices, so users have a good experience with your site no matter how they access it. Having a mobile-friendly website is also important for improving your search engine rankings. You’ll need to make sure the web design company can create a responsive design that delivers an optimal user experience across different screen sizes and devices. Remember- responsive design is different than just mobile-friendliness. You’ll want to choose a medical web developer who knows how to design mobile-first websites.
5. Can you integrate HIPAA-compliant online appointment scheduling and patient portals?
Online appointment scheduling and patient portals have become increasingly important for healthcare practices. Anything that makes it easier for patients to start the appointment process is going to help your business grow faster. Find out if the web design company you’re interested in has experience integrating these features into medical websites, allowing patients to conveniently schedule appointments and access their medical records securely.
6. Do you offer medical search engine optimization (SEO) services?
A great website is more than just a pretty page on the screen. It must be beautiful to use, but the content must also be optimized for search engines so patients can find your site in the first place. Search engines like Google also have higher standards for healthcare websites, so it’s important to work with a company that knows how to optimize for medical specialties. Ask if the web design company offers medical SEO services to optimize your website’s visibility in search engine results. A strong online presence will help attract potential patients and boost your website’s organic traffic.
7. What content management system (CMS) do you recommend?
A reliable content management system (CMS) makes it easier for you to update and maintain your website’s content. Find out which CMS the web design company recommends for medical websites and whether they provide training or ongoing support for using the CMS effectively. At Practis, we build medical websites with WordPress. It’s a very popular CMS that has great support. Watch out for companies that hard-code their sites with no CMS. It can mean making even simple changes to your site will be costly.
8. How do you ensure website accessibility for individuals with disabilities?
Ensuring that your medical website is accessible to individuals with disabilities is not only a legal requirement in many jurisdictions but also a moral obligation. Ask the web design company about their approach to website accessibility and if they follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). Inquire about features such as alt text for images, keyboard navigation, color contrast, and other accessibility considerations that can make your website inclusive for all users.
9. How do you ensure healthcare website security?
There is some scary data about how often websites get hacked. 43% of website attacks are aimed at small businesses. When you’re handling medical data, the stakes are even higher to keep your website secure. When you’re choosing a medical website provider, you’ll need to ask good questions about the security measures the web design company implements to protect your website. Ask them what they do to protect from cyber threats, such as encryption, if they do regular backups, or if they monitor for potential vulnerabilities.
10. What is the process for ongoing maintenance and support?
Websites aren’t fix-it-and-forget-it. They require regular updates and maintenance to ensure they remain secure, functional, and up to date. Ask about the web design company’s process for ongoing maintenance, including software updates, bug fixes, and technical support. Also, be sure to ask them what the process is for making changes to your site after it’s finished. Who do you contact if you want changes made to your content such as an updated address, new services, or anything else you need to keep your website current? Clear communication channels and a responsive support team are essential for a successful long-term partnership.
The Right Medical Website Company Makes All the Difference
In many cases, your website is the first impression a patient has of your business. It’s critically important your healthcare website has all the right elements in place – security, search engine optimization, ease of use, accessibility, and aesthetics to convert visitors into patients. The right medical web design company will know how to do this well and help you grow your business.
Looking for a medical website company that can do all these things (and more) to help grow your medical practice? We can help! Contact us to get a free website assessment.