Today's patients are better-informed healthcare consumers, which means they won't settle for subpar services and experiences from healthcare providers. With more options than ever before when choosing their provider, patients are willing to shop around for the best experience if your health system doesn't deliver. And with innovative disruptors like Amazon, Google, and Apple entering the marketplace, healthcare providers need to improve their digital marketing game to attract new patients and retain existing ones. Here are five ways to boost new patient acquisition.
Improve Your Search Engine Ranking
It's not enough to have a good website to attract new patients to your health system. You also need to make sure your website gets found. This means winning the organic search battle, so your website displays as high up on the first page of results as possible. To improve your ranking, you'll need to apply best practices for search engine optimization (SEO), including the use of strategic keywords, consistently updated and high-quality content, and social media.
Pay Attention To Reviews
If a consumer searches using the term "best," Google often shows only results for businesses with a 4-star rating and above. That's one important reason why it's critical to manage and respond to comments and reviews on social media and review sites. Your rating is also important because you want consumers to compare you favorably with other providers to help you attract new patients.
Optimize The Patient Journey On Your Website
Often the part of the consumer journey in searching for a new provider to scheduling an appointment is a major source of frustration and confusion. For instance, many websites have separate processes for finding physicians and scheduling appointments. A consumer may spend time locating any number of physicians who meet their criteria on the website but cannot schedule an appointment with these same providers. To identify speedbumps in your processes, map your patient journey and what a consumer needs to do at each step of the way. Are you making it particularly challenging for new patients to find the right provider? How can you streamline the process of getting an appointment with that provider?
Focus On Conversion
It's not enough to get healthcare consumers to your website. Once they are there, you need to understand whether your calls to action are effective in getting them to take the action. Are your calls to action converting into appointments? You'll need to collect this data to understand and improve conversions if you want your website to play an essential role in driving new patients into your system.
Rethink The Mobile Experience
As health systems moved to engage consumers on their mobile devices, many adopted mobile apps. The problem is that traditional mobile apps need to be downloaded and updated by healthcare consumers, many of which don't want to go to this level of effort. The better alternative is to use a progressive web app, which delivers an app-like experience in the mobile browser. They provide a fast and engaging experience with no need for the end-user to download the app.
New patient acquisition is vital for staying competitive, growing volumes, and ultimately increasing your practice's revenue. Differentiating your patient services and delivering the kind of experience that informed healthcare consumers are looking for will ensure that you keep new patients coming through the door. To learn more about boosting patient acquisition, watch this webinar.