Your homepage is your online welcome center, and as such it is often the first opportunity for your practice to make an impact on prospective clients. But beyond merely creating an impression, your homepage must accomplish a number of goals within a finite amount of space.
First of all, you’ll need to communicate the fundamental information about your practice:
- who you are (medical staff)
- what you do (the services and treatments you offer)
- when (general hours, walk-ins, appointments if appropriate)
- where (region, city, neighborhood, street address, other contact info)
- why (what sets your practice apart, what specific benefits do you offer your patients?)
You will not be able to say everything there is to say about each of these items. Instead, your objective should be to position your practice by focusing on the most important factors, or those that set you apart from your competition.
You’ll also need to account for ease of navigation. You are trying to convey a lot of data in one place, so you can only provide a general overview of your different service areas, and not go into too much detail. The layout must be clean, well organized and intuitive, allowing the patient to quickly find and choose the appropriate path based on their specific needs.
Because homepage real estate is at a premium, you must focus on only the most vital elements–in other words, elements that can directly contribute to your company’s bottom line. Your homepage should only be a quick stop on the way to more productive activities–scheduling appointments, arranging payment, etc. In addition, never let graphic design get in the way of high conversion rates. Minimizing visual clutter will go a long way toward maximizing your homepage’s impact.
Finally, there’s the all-important concept of keyword research. In order to optimize your search results, you’ll need to get inside the heads of potential clients. What specific terms do people use when investigating your type of services? There are probably dozens if not hundreds or thousands of words relevant to your medical specialty. Your highest priority keywords and key phrases should always be found on the homepage (and, for that matter, all other pages), and there are also ways of bundling keywords or phrases to even further enhance your search-results ranking.