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Many medical professionals do not have a website and do not see a need for one. Often their reasoning is that they are providing a needed niche service that is often based on a particular geographic marketplace, so why is a website necessary?

In some cases, websites are not really necessary for medical professionals, however with the internet now increasingly being used by other medical professionals as well as many patients as a source for information, it is worthwhile looking closely at your services and considering whether a website will be able to enhance your service provision.

WHAT ARE THE PROS?
Your business is open 24/7. Unlike your consultancy, treatment or surgical services that are typically open from 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday; your website is open 24 hours a day; 365 days a year. This around the clock access makes it convenient for your potential referrers, other health professionals and your patients to find out more about you and the services you provide that can assist them. As you have probably personally experienced, more and more patients are turning to the internet to self-diagnose themselves. Not having a website means you lose the opportunity to reach these people with information that may be important to them in their decision making process.

A website is your online information centre that can be easily updated at any time. It is much cheaper and quicker to update a website than to print material. Website capabilities are almost limitless which allows you to provide visitors with more comprehensive and interactive information. This can also serve the purpose of being able to save you money on printing and distribution as well.

Improved customer service. By providing answers to questions on your website, information requests can be processed automatically and immediately, regardless if someone is in the office or not. Online forms can be used to allow patients to request further information or in some instances, to book an appointment with you.
For a health professional, a well-designed web site is a great way of raising your profile and boosting confidence with patients by helping them find information and assurance. It is also is an ideal medium to show your potential patients that they have a choice. Millions of users are referring to the web and are using websites to make major decisions when they need a specialised service.

Help overcome a person’s concerns and worries by providing access to relevant up-to-date information. When people are concerned or interested in something to do with their health, they don’t like to wait for information. People today are also very busy. A website helps give them what they want by allowing them to access information and also assurance, when they want it. That could be via brochures, presentations, videos, access to seminars and even blogs/articles focusing on your speciality.

ARE THERE ANY NEGATIVES?
Even if it seems that having a website is full of advantages for medical specialists, they need to consider some difficulties that may occur by having it.

A website comes at a price ranging from several of hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on how complicated the site will be. Also, all websites require paying for website hosting and a domain name.
If poorly designed, a website will not work well with patients and search engines. Therefore, it is essential that this is not only a website, but a well-designed website.

Healthcare professionals are always responsible for their websites. If you offer online forums you need to answer questions patients ask online – otherwise, patients may lose trust in the information provided. The website owner also needs to make sure their website content is relevant, true and up to date, so the website seems valid.

Icon Visual Marketing specialises in building interactive medical websites which allows you to reach your clients. Find out more, contact us today

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