Physical therapists understand the importance of creating an accessible environment better than most professionals. Working with people who are injured or struggling with pain often involves meeting them on their level, and the same is true for creating a space that’s welcoming for people with physical disabilities.
When it comes to creating accessible spaces, we usually think first about entryways, bathrooms, and other concrete obstacles that may present challenges for those with limited function or mobility. Tackling these areas is essential, but it’s also important to ask yourself whether or not your website is as welcoming as it could be.
Does the Americans with Disabilities Act Apply to PT Website Design & Development?
When the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed in 1990, the idea that being able to use a business’s website would be essential to engaging with their business didn’t exist. As such, the bill has few guidelines for accessible website design. In the 30 years since, though, online commerce and interaction has become a much more integral part of our lives.
This year, the idea that a website is an essential part of a business was debated on the floor of the Supreme Court. Early in October, 2019, the Supreme Court upheld the right of blind people to sue Domino’s for failing to make their website and app accessible.
According to the LA Times, the court’s decision was based on the idea that the ADA “protects access not just to restaurants and stores but also to the websites and apps of those businesses.” The ruling doesn’t mean the plaintiffs will win their suit; it simply means they have a right to bring it. Legal precedence on the matter is still far from established, but that won’t stop lawyers from finding as many businesses as possible to bring suits against.
E-rehab has accessibility tools for your website that might help you to avoid the hassle of a lawsuit.
Contact Us today at (760) 585-9097 or request a free consultation by clicking here.
Most practices owners would agree, that in today’s competitive PT market, you need a great physical therapy online marketing to win. With the myriad of online marketing options, get-rich-quick, “be a 7-figure practice” schemes, misinformation, and time constraints, practice owners are often left very confused.
While every practice has different needs, we’ve found that there are seven fundamental strategies that practices should invest in to win online today. Focus on these, and you can beat the POPTS, HOPTS, and corporations…and in most cases generate some significant new business.
1. A Physical Therapy Responsive Website
Your website is hub of your of your physical therapy online marketing strategy, but if it’s not mobile-optimized, you’re simply missing out on patients that would like to easily connect with you on their smartphones.
According to our research mobile visitors account for over 40% of visitors to physical therapy websites. This is slightly less than the research site Statista, which indicates that mobile website visitors account for approximately half of the web traffic worldwide. In the first quarter of 2019, mobile devices (excluding tablets) generated 48.71 percent of global website traffic, consistently hovering around the 50 percent mark since the beginning of 2017.
In addition, Google has made it clear that it evaluates your website for a mobile optimized version, and if the site isn’t optimized for the mobile user, it’s likely to impact your search rankings. Google states:
“Mobile-first indexing means Google predominantly uses the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking. Historically, the index primarily used the desktop version of a page’s content when evaluating the relevance of a page to a user’s query. Since the majority of users now access Google Search with a mobile device, Googlebot primarily crawls and indexes pages with the smartphone agent going forward.”
If your site isn’t optimized for smartphone users, your search rankings are very likely to suffer.
NOTE: one tool that can be extremely useful on physical therapy websites, is chat. 79% of customers prefer live chat over email or social media for customer support due to its immediacy.
The problem with live on small PT practice websites is staffing the live chat. If you do have a request from a website viewer to chat and no one in your office is available or knows how to use a chat service, it can negatively impact your reputation.
A good solution is a chatbot. Physical therapy chatbots can proactively answer common questions and provide immediate answers to common questions and can help nurture users to the end goal of requesting an appointment. Interestingly, E-rehab.com chatbot data suggests that 1 in 10 chatbot users actually request an appointment. A chatbot should be included in your website and is an affordable way to convert more website viewers to new patients.
2. A Fast & Secure Website for Physical Therapy SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the marketing practice of engineering your online brand and website content to increase your website’s chances of appearing at or near the top of search results.
According to a recent study, the number one search ranking position earns around twice as many clicks as the number two. Once you reach position six, you start receiving clicks from less than 3% of the people who see your search result listing.
More specifically, “People will have a really hard time finding your practice if you aren’t ranked near the top of search results, and you’ll miss out on the lifeblood of your practice – new patients!”
It’s been reported by many SEO authority websites that Google’s algorithm contains over 200 factors that impact a practice’s physical therapy search rankings. Some of them are out of your control and others can be addressed to improve your search rankings. Two such factors are a. having a secure website and b. the speed at which your website loads.
“Google has indicated site speed (and as a result, page speed) is one of the signals used by its algorithm to rank pages. And research has shown that Google might be specifically measuring time to first byte as when it considers page speed. In addition, a slow page speed means that search engines can crawl fewer pages using their allocated crawl budget, and this could negatively affect your indexation.”
“Page speed is also important to patients that are visiting your website on their smartphones. If your web pages take a long time to load some of your website visitors will leave and search for your competition. Longer load times have also been shown to negatively affect conversions.”
Simply put, a faster-loading site will rank higher and when people click on your Google listing, they will have a better experience and are more likely to become a patient.
If page speed isn’t something you’ve considered in the past, we do recommend you consider it now.
3. Physical Therapy Reputation Management
Physical therapy reputation management has a negative connotation. Many think of reputation management as the process of limiting negative reviews, responding to negative reviews, and getting them removed from your online directory profiles (Google, Yelp, Facebook, Healthgrades, etc.).
Here at E-rehab.com, we use the term Reputation Marketing for physical therapy private practices. It’s the process of not only making sure you deal with negative reviews but also the systematic approach of capturing ratings and reviews and marketing those reviews to generate more new patients.
First, a quick reminder about why you should be building your online reputation.
People will drive past your competition if you use this form of marketing
It’s the second most trusted form of advertising
86% of consumers read this type of marketing
50% of consumers visit a local business after reading this type of marketing
79% trust this form of marketing as much as a personal referral
65% of patients say this marketing is moderately or very important
48% are willing to go out-of-network if you use this strategy
72% of consumers use this as the first step to choosing a doctor
Implementing a process this like this can have a profound impact on your bottom line. Making the active choice to be number one in your market, as evidenced by a large number of ratings and reviews, can generate 5, 10, even 20 or more new patients per month.
Unfortunately, many practice owners don’t understand or are unwilling to do the work to capture ratings and reviews. The good news is we’ve made the process very simple. Some of our clients are generating over 50 new patients per quarter. It’s one of the most affordable marketing opportunities for small practices and one of the only ways to compete with the large corporations and hospitals ( that will always have a bigger marketing budget than almost all small practices ).
Reputation marketing is also a marketing multiplier.
Not only does having a large quantity of ratings and reviews increase the likelihood that someone will choose your practice, they can also impact or enhance other areas of your marketing efforts. For example, if you are looking to hire a PT. We’ve heard a number of anecdotal stories from practice owners stating that they had PT employment applicants mention the practices “large number of reviews” as a factor as to why they considered applying for a job at the given practice.
While some say it is “the way” to rank number one, this is simply not the case. Take a look at this search for “physical therapy costa mesa”.
As you can see here, the company with the most Google ratings and reviews (i.e. Ann Steinfeld Physical Therapy) does not rank number 1. Nevertheless, accumulating ratings and reviews is a positive factor that can help with your Google Maps/Three Pack ranking. It’s just not the only factor.
Nevertheless, Google ratings and reviews are indeed a marketing multiplier and physical therapy reputation marketing should be one of the top fundamentals you implement in your marketing mix.
4. Physical Therapy Content Marketing
As the saying goes, “content is king”. This means that good physical therapy content will have a positive influence on new business generation. Good physical therapy content can:
Help capture the attention of potential new patients,
Help define you as an authority,
Help you rank in the search engines for various keywords, and
Your physical therapy content can be used across a variety of online marketing channels.
Whether it’s a blog, videos, podcasts, or all of the above, your physical therapy content should be a great resource about the conditions you treat, the services you offer, and above all, make it clear that for most diagnoses, physical therapist directed care is a great first choice.
But content is also the way prospects find and evaluate your clinical expertise. Content that educates, answers questions, puts a patient/reader’s mind at ease and is generally helpful can then be followed by a call to action that can generate more initial evaluations.
Content is an important part of your search engine optimization efforts. Google loves to index new content, meaning that more frequent quality content is produced, the more likely your content is to rank for a given keyword search.
As marketing guru Gary Vaynerchuck famously said, “ We are all media companies now.”
Commit to producing high quality content on a regular basis. It’s a fundamental marketing strategy.
5. Physical Therapy Email Marketing – A System for Keeping in Touch
Once you’ve done all of the hard work of generating new patients, you also need a system to educate patients about the additional services you offer. Retention marketing or patient reactivation are the terms commonly used to market to past patients and get them back in your clinic.
Email marketing has long been a reliable channel to stay in touch with your past patients. Offering “good will” by providing quality educational information is an easy way to stay top-of-mind with your past patients.
It’s also a good idea to use other options like SMS if you have special offers like a free screening offer for past patients. Younger generations are rarely in their email inbox, preferring the speed of text messages and the social connection of messaging apps instead.
Regardless of the choice of technology, build your list and keep in touch to maximize the value of your marketing activities and the relationships you develop.
6. Really Want to Stand Out? Use Physical Therapy Videos
Video has officially taken over the Internet! According to Cisco’s Visual Networking Index, online video will account for 80 percent of all web traffic by 2019, up from 67 percent in 2014.
Ninety-five percent of people say they have watched an explainer video to learn more about a business, product, or service.
Why is video specifically a great choice for physical therapy practice owners:
It helps build trust. People like to see the providers that will be treating them and the clinic where treatment is provided.
You can deliver your specific message. Fact is that most scan web pages these days. With a good video, patients will watch the entire piece and will hear your entire message.
It’s a great educational tool. Using video to in the following ways can be extremely beneficial:
Help potential patients understand their condition,
Share the services you offer,
Share success stories and the experiences of other patients,
Help patients understand what will happen during their first visit,
Help patients understand why physical therapy should be their 1st choice
You don’t need a degree in film to produce great videos. Creating quality video is very simple with a newer smartphone and any number of apps to assist you.
If you really want to set yourself apart, physical therapy video marketing is a great opportunity. Most do nothing more than share exercises. There aren’t many (or enough) videos to describe why patients should be choosing physical therapy in the first place.
7. A Physical Therapy Social Media Presence
According to Verto Analytics, as of July 2017, we spent more than 41% of our online time on social media apps, which equates to an average of more than 25 hours per month per user. This number has stayed pretty consistent so far through 2019 as well.
Social media has its place in physical therapy marketing. The problem is that most potential new patients DO NOT look for a physical therapist on social networks. Let me illustrate this with a simple question. “If you are in need of a locksmith, an emergency dentist, a plumber, an orthopedic surgeon, or a physical therapist, would you search for someone on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram?” Most answer this question with a resounding “NO”! First this reason, social media marketing shouldn’t be your top priority. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t do it or it isn’t important. When practice owners think of marketing, they think about generating new patients. Your social media presence might help with the retention of past patients when they follow you on Facebook, but if you want to generate new patients, posting content on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and/or YouTube isn’t going to generate many calls or appointment requests.
That said, advertising, or paying to get your social media posts/content in front of your local audience can be an effective way to generate more new business. This type of marketing is an advanced advertising strategy though, and requires considerable time, money, and ongoing effort. It’s not a fundamental marketing strategy for most new and small PT practice owners.
I absolutely believe that practices must have an active social media presence. However, measuring ROI can be a challenge.
Conclusion: Focus on Physical Therapy Marketing Fundamentals
There are a number of online and offline marketing options. It’s easy for practice owners to get confused, waste money on bright and shiny objects…marketing tactics that promise riches, and lose focus on the basics. Don’t make this mistake.
E-rehab.com has been helping private practice with their physical therapy online marketing and physical therapy offline marketing for over 15 years and chances are, we can help you too.
Click here to request an appointment with me or call (800) 468-5161 to learn more about how we can help.
When a potential new patient visits your website (we’ll call them a visitor) there are seven questions you need to be answering for them. Good physical therapy website development should address all of these and your physical therapy web designer/developer should have experience in and the ability to help you answer all of these questions.
1. Can “You” Solve Their Problem?
Patients are looking for a clinician that can put an end to their pain and dysfunction. Does your website communicate clinical excellence to your visitors?
2. How will Physical Therapy Help Them Out?
Why should visitors use physical therapy versus a pill or an orthopedist? Do you let visitors know they will have better outcomes if they start PT sooner than later?
3. How will Patients Benefit from Going to “Your Practice”?
What makes your practice unique and different? What is your USP? Is it your location, specialties, certifications, education, insurance plans you accept? Can you get them in fast? Boutique/family oriented versus big-box corporate?
4. Do You Convey Social Proof?
Why should a website visitor expect to have a great experience and outcome with your practice? Do you have case studies? Do you have video of other patients with similar diagnoses as visitors that might be considering your services?
5. Are You Trustworthy?
Over 90 percent of consumers consider ratings and reviews when making buying decisions. Do you have a high aggregate rating? Do you have a high volume of reviews? What’s the overall sentiment of the reviews? Are your reviews recent? Do you offer quality, educational, and cutting-edge information to build trust?
6. Is Your Online 1st Impression Credible?
Visitors judge what they can’t see based on what they can see. Do you have a website that accurately reflects the quality of care you provide or is it simply a poorly designed online brochure without any interactivity? Does it load fast? Is it secure? Is it responsive for smartphones and tablets? Is it easy to navigate?
7. Do You Offer Clear Calls to Action?
Once a visitor decides to use your clinical services, what do they do next? Is your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) at the top of each page? Do you tell them how to contact you/a particular location? Is your location information clear? Do you have Click to Call, Click to Map, Click to Review Us options easily accessible? Can visitors request an appointment?
A physical therapy private practice website serves many functions. Get it right and you can educate, build trust & credibility, and drive more business. Get it wrong and you are certainly losing business.
We get a lot of questions from our clients about what should be on a physical therapy website home page.
Your physical therapy website first and foremost should be responsive – a website that adapts to or changes its shape and presentation in response to the screen that the viewer is looking for at your website on. A physical therapy website that’s responsive looks different on the smartphone versus a tablet versus a desktop.
Starting from the Top of the Home Page and Working Down
At the top of a physical therapy web site you can include what is called a “hello bar”. It’s a thin row across the top and is typically a different color from the rest of the website. It usually has an appointment request link and a link to your payment page where patients can pay their bills online.
Next is the main banner. In the banner on the left-hand side is where your logo is located and on the right-hand side you usually have your address with your phone number.
Moving down the home page, there is commonly a slider or a “hero photo”. A slider is a series of images that are slide across the home page and are very popular in a modern web design. It’s a graphic feature that is very pleasing and makes a great first impression…especially if you use photos of you, the practice owner. I recommend you have a picture of your team as one of the slider images. Then a photo you or your staff performing special neuromuscular reeducation exercises with your patients. Don’t put a picture of a clinician stretching someone’s hamstrings. Personal trainers do that.
Next consider having a picture of you educating a patient a about a condition. You can be holding a model like a spine or the shoulder, or the knee and talking to a patient about that body part. Another good photo to include is a picture of you performing hands on treatment. People like to go to physical therapy and receive hands on treatment and frankly, manual therapy is one of the things a physical therapist do best. Why not include it on the homepage slider?
It’s important when you have these slider slighter images moving across the page that you also have key messages or text overlying the pictures. You first of all want to get their attention. Include phrases about where you are located, your reputation, your clinical expertise. These should be short 3-4-word phrases on top of the slide images, that encourage people to choose you.
Next, moving down the page, I would suggest you have a row of patient reviews. Today, patient ratings or reviews, in the form of star ratings and testimonial reviews are very common. I recommend you have a row of these across your page. Use slider controls to enable viewers horizontally scroll through a number of these; have perhaps ten, twelve, or fifteen of them.
Below your ratings and review is where you want to have your primary message.
Your “welcome to the practice message” and additional content text goes here. I recommend you have a video that perhaps floats in the right portion of your text. This video should share information about who you are, your expertise, why people should use you, and should be presented by the owner or one of the partners. Make sure you have a call the action at the end of the video. Use YouTube to host this video for you, and of course this video should be on your YouTube channel as well. Use lightbox plugin to allow physical therapy website viewers to click on the thumbnail picture of the video and have it “pop up” over the top of your website’s home page.
Then, I recommend including your location(s) information. Make the photos or city names clickable links that go to the specific location(s) page(s) on your website.
Moving down the page, have a list include a graphic list of your services. Have web cards (squares or circle images) that people can click on to go to individual service pages where they’re described in detail.
Then you might consider including a row of blog excerpts. A blog excerpt is the title of a blog post and then the first two or three sentences.
In the next row on your website you might consider having a link to your store so people can easily clic over to it and buy physical therapy products.
Below the link to the store, you might have the badges of any awards that you’ve received from companies like the BBB, ZocDoc, local top ten awards, etc.
Next, you might have links to your lead magnet pages. Lead magnets are pages that require people to enter their name and email address and in turn you give them a white paper or some information about why they should come to your physical therapy practice.
Then, have a link(s) to your workshop landing pages where people can sign up to attend one of your presentations.
Finally, have a mega footer built for you at the bottom of your home page. Include your PT practice name, your address, and your phone number exactly as it appears on Google (this is called your NAP [name, address, phone number]). If you have just one location, then include your office hours, an embedded Google map, and then links to your social media business pages. If you have multiple locations, then consider linking the locations in the footer over to specific locations like we have done in this example.
A Word on the Text or Copy on Your Home Page
Before I end this post, I want to go into some detail about the text or the words that you should have on your home page. Since the words are present to inspire the viewer to take the action of calling you, we will call this your home page web “copy”.
As people are scanning down your website and most other websites these days, it’s very visual. Therea are lots of graphics and image. But, we ultimately need to have some good text or copy on the home page.
What you want to do first is get their attention. Use text that stops them from scanning down the page. A common question I like to use is, “Did you know that not all physical therapy practices are the same?” That’s going to get their attention.
Then the next thing you want to do is arouse some desire in the viewer to choose you. Talk about the fact that your expert physical therapy services
1. Saves them money,
2. It’s fast and easy to get an appointment with you right now,
3. that your treatment is conservative, natural, hands-on, personalized, and customized treatment for them.
Tell Patients Exactly What They Want to Hear
The next section of the copy should pique the reader’s interest by addressing four important factors that patients are looking for when choosing a PT practice.
These four factors are:
A. Clinical excellence – your board certifications, your doctoral degree, fellowships, and areas of specialization.
B. Empathy – write about your caring staff and the fact that you’re a family-oriented practice and that exceptional customer services is one of your corporate values.
C. No Long Waits – mention that patients are not going to have long waits to get into your practice for their first visit or long waits when they come into your practice for treatment. Patients are busy and they don’t want to wait around for treatment.
D. Shared Decision Making & Treatment – share some information on the page about your treatment approach. Patients want to be involved in the treatment and decision process. they want to know what their problem is, how you are going to help them, how long it is going to take, an estimate of how much it is going to cost, and what their role is going to be in the recovery process.
Money always matters. Have a brief section on your website that might say something like, “We accept a variety of insurance plans, click here for details.” Then link over to a comprehensive list.
End Your Page Content with a Clear Call to Action
Finally, make sure you have a clear call action and don’t just put your phone number at the bottom of the page. Side note, for goodness sakes, don’t ask them to sign up for an e-book. The call the action on your home page should be clear and should be in a large heading, known to web coders as H1 or H2 tags. Consider using some language before the phone number to inspire a viewer to call you now.
Use were phrases like, “Don’t wait, call now.” Talk about a delay in starting physical therapy care may cost them more money. Perhaps indicate that getting into your clinic fast will allow them to alleviate the pain sooner. You might want to create a sense of scarcity by saying something like, “We are now accepting new patients.”
Make sure you give anyone that is browsing your website multiple ways to contact you. What I mean by this is don’t just put your phone on the bottom of the page, but also include an online appointment request form too.
There’s a lot to Consider on Your Physical Therapy Website Home Page
Above we discussed some ideas about layout, graphics, and copy that you might be included on your physical therapy practice home page. It’s important to have a good designer that can create a clean design and layout with responsive technology. Following the above concepts can go a long way to converting patients that are visiting your website.
If you want more information want about how E-rehab.com can help you with your physical therapy give us a call. We’ve been helping PT practices market their business online longer than Facebook or Yelp have been around.
We have the experience, the passion, and great customer care to serve you. Just check out our ratings and reviews and give us a call if you have any questions. You can reach us at (760) 585-9097.
Physical therapy website design is a great opportunity for a private practice to differentiate themselves from the competition. If you run a physical therapy clinic, you know who your competitors are, and you know what makes you different from them. So, how do you convey what makes you different from the rest when crafting a physical therapy website design?
Astute branding choices, plus specific attention to SEO, so you’re found easier online, is the right strategic formula. Additionally, you need a site that is patient friendly, loads fast, offers the right information to your viewers (i.e. services and specialties), and has clear calls to action throughout. Of course, you want your website to work well on not only desktop computers but tablets and smartphones too (this is called a responsive website and you can read more about what that means by clicking here).
Here at E-rehab.com, we’re an experienced team that gets your business there, step by step.
Branding in Your PT Practice Web Design
Your physical therapy practice needs to demonstrate how it stands apart from others. While it’s important to use quality images, graphics, and a consistent color palette to make a statement, branding should also be about the information you share with your prospective patients. Here are some ways you can differentiate your practice:
List special credentials and the benefits of seeing a PT that has them (perhaps you have and OCS and/or doctoral degree)
Do your outcomes set you apart? If so, list them. FOTO has a widget for that. Ask for the code and we can include it.
Do you have a unique physical location?
Do you treat/touch every patient every visit? While it’s getting harder to do so with declining payment, this is a good differentiator and something the big box clinics don’t do much of anymore.
Include Your Own Physical Therapy Images & Video – Images and Video are Everywhere and You Should Leverage This Too
In the age of visuals, providing videos on your website that showcase what you offer, is a great method of branding. Don’t just do a video about a treatment technique, create a series of videos on the conditions you treat, why physical therapy is a great choice, and then why someone should choose you.
Patient Video Testimonials and Social Proof
Also, patient testimonials are one of the best methods of branding for websites. Real results are everything when it comes to patients choosing physical therapy, and they’ll hear it directly from your best cases. This is called social proof. Here’s what social proof means:
…often in situations where we are uncertain about what to do (i.e. I don’t know which physical therapist I should choose), we would assume that the people around us (experts, celebrities, friends, patients.) have more knowledge about what’s going on and what should be done. Reference: https://blog.bufferapp.com/social-proof
Your website should be optimized not only for your brand name but also for the keywords “physical therapy + city your business is in”, so those in your local area find you easier on search engines.
It’s also important to include appropriate titles, include keywords, and alt tags for your images and videos, so the search engines have a better idea of who you are and where your business is located.
While keywords in text are still important, be careful in being too general. Developing unique long-tail keywords pertaining to specialized physical therapy procedures you provide, will help you get found easier too.
Easy Integration with Social Media
Integrating a website with social media is essential in order to provide content about the physical therapy services you offer. You can do this by creating social media buttons that link to your social properties as well as easy shares on your web pages, blog, and videos.
Creating educational information on your site for social media sharing is important to alert your followers about services and specials you offer. The more detail you include in your content, the more apt it is that visitors will share. Just be sure the content you create for social media is information not found anywhere else. You want to get all the “juice” you can which will help with your search engine rankings.
Customizing Your Site for Mobile
Responsive design for mobile devices is more essential than ever for your physical therapy site. As more and more people use mobile devices to look up information (statistics indicate that approximately 35% of PT website viewers are using mobile devices now), your site needs to be optimized for mobile platforms as well. If you aren’t sure if your current website is mobile optimized, we recommend you check it out here: https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly
15+ Years of Experience – We’ve Got You Covered
We’ll help make your site easy to use so those searching for you will find exactly what they need and fast. This means possibly restructuring the desktop version of your site, so the most essential information gets seen first.
Stand out and show prospective patients that you’re there to help. Contact us here at E-rehab.com, so we can create a unique website for your physical therapy practice.
We are pleased to offer physical therapy responsive websites. Websites developed by E-rehab.com are even better with our advanced G5 development platform. Built on top of the WordPress infrastructure, they are screaming fast, extensible, and highly customizable.
Today, I want to share with you one of the very important features of our new G5 platform…our responsive, mobile optimized websites.
Why does this matter? Take a look at your website analytics. You’ll notice 25-40%+ of your website traffic is coming from mobile devices.
It’s critical that all PT private practices have responsive mobile website… one that is not only optimized for smartphone screens but is also optimized for physical therapy patients. You see when a patient looks you up on their smartphone, chances are, they want to contact you right now.
You want to make sure that your website has the right technology. You need what we call quick access buttons. Here’s an example.
Notice quick access buttons right on the home screen of the mobile optimized website. They are highly visible, designed for the specific actions that physical therapy patients commonly take, and make it faster and easier for patients to:
Tap once to call you,
Find you on Google or Apple Maps,
Request an appointment,
Follow you on Facebook, and
Even review your practice online.
Does this really matter. The answer is yes. We’ve tracked over 250,000 calls, calls appointment requests, Facebook actions, and Maps request from our physical therapy mobile optimized websites.
The calls are often from patients that are ready to come in for treatment.
Don’t miss out on new patients that are trying to contact you. Let us help. You can see several examples of our responsive designs by clicking here.Call E-rehab.com today for a free consultation. You can reach us at (760) 585-9097. We hope to hear from you soon.
It appears to be more useful on a personal level but physical therapy social media marketing can help greatly in increasing the visibility of your business. By promoting interaction with your patients, it can also help you to perform market research.
The Aura of Authenticity About Facebook “Likes”
Since Facebook is largely an informal space, people feel free to comment on it, either positively or negatively. And a positive Facebook comment counts for a lot more than an advertisement, because those who read it know that there was no coercion involved. If someone “likes” a post, it’s generally because they genuinely like it, and not because they were paid to say so. So there’s an aura of genuineness and authenticity about physical therapy references you might get via Facebook or Twitter.
Celebrity Endorsements vs. Reviews from Friends
The skeptics among us might point out that celebrities are often paid to endorse products or services online. This is true but most of us are more likely to be swayed by what our Facebook friends tell us rather than what a celebrity might say. This is because there are many similarities between us and our friends. We perceive them as being at the same or only a slightly different level of attractiveness, economic class and intellectual understanding. We pay more attention to their “likes” because they’re like us!
Coming up with a Social Media Marketing Plan
If you’re unconvinced about the role of social media marketing companies, keep in mind that you can come up with a social media marketing plan, as suggested by this Hootsuite article. Depending on your business objectives, your social media marketing plan may include an evaluation of what your current social media accounts are doing for you, the creation of new accounts, the development of accounts you already have and the addition of new, relevant content. Checking out what your competitors are up to can also help you to figure out where your business is going and how social media can help you to get there.
Interacting with Prospects via Social Media
Social media helps you to stay in touch with your audience. It’s an interactive space from which you can learn what your patient prospects are looking for. For example, if you put up an update regarding a new type of physical therapy you’re offering, it’s possible that you’ll get a number of positive or negative comments with regard to it. Depending on what your patients are saying, you can decide whether you want to make any changes to your service.
Staying Alert to Figure Out The Tipping Point
If you stay alert on social media, you can also figure out which way the wind is blowing, before it actually gets there. In his book, The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell talks about Hush Puppies, a type of shoe that had slowly been declining in popularity. The makers of Hush Puppies had almost decided to stop producing them when there was a sudden upswing in their sales. Although the middle-aged, conservative demographic had stopped wearing them, they had suddenly become popular with hipsters.
Using Social Media for Market Research of “Niche” Services
What happened with Hush Puppies came as a surprise to many people. But this is the kind of change that soon becomes noticeable via comments or likes on social media. Although a number of people might feel the same way about a certain product or service, there might be undiscovered market segments/audiences that feel differently. If it’s possible for your niche service to start appealing to a new demographic, social media is a great way to find this out first. In this sense, social media is not just a marketing platform to increase sales; it’s also a great place to perform a bit of market research and change direction if need be.
Experiment with the marketing of niche services – sports performance, vestibular rehab, women’s health, tmj treatment, and more. Run an ad, point the viewers to a page on your website about that niche service, give them something of value (this is called a lead magnet or a trust trigger product) in exchange for their name and email address, and see what happens.
Contact us for more great ideas to come up with your own social media marketing plan.
The phrase “location, location, location” doesn’t only apply to real estate. When you design your physical therapy website, focusing on your location with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind is an absolute must, whether you have one location or multiple offices spread across the state.
The thing is, you can’t just have your physical address posted on your website and call it a day. There are multiple strategies that you should use to help you promote and improve your local SEO. By utilizing all of these practices, you’ll improve your reach across the Internet and among local searchers that are in need of your physical therapy services. Read on to find out how to make your physical therapy website more “SEO-friendly.”
Make Your Location a Prominent SEO Keyword
Your address or location should not be listed only in the header or footer of your website. Instead, you should focus on integrating it into your SEO strategy by putting it in key elements of your website. For instance, title headings for your webpages can be SEO-optimized instead of just giving them generic titles. Here’s an example: instead of using “Our Office” for your location page, optimize it with your location to “Our Brooklyn Office.” Other elements you can optimize include headings, titles, tags, image tags and other HTML and metadata descriptions. The more you use the name of your location throughout your website, the more optimized it will become.
Make Separate Local Pages for Each Location
If you have multiple offices, it’s important to provide separate pages that are dedicated specifically to these locations instead of just publishing content for multiple locations on the same page.[pullquote4 bgColor=”#ea8400″ textColor=”#000000″]Having multiple local pages not only helps people find the right location for their needs, but also improves your searchability across different places.[/pullquote4] Having multiple local pages not only helps people find the right location for their needs, but also improves your searchability across different places.
On each separate page, also be sure to include location-specific descriptions and content, instead of copying and pasting the same generic description or your mission statement. A good practice is to include local events you’ve sponsored in that area or describe the location in relation to special features or physical landmarks to make the description rich with local SEO.
The same should be done with other location listings: have separate pages on Google+, Yelp, Yellow Pages and other sites for each of your locations, too.
Attempt Address Accuracy Across All Map Listings
Search engines prefer consistency, especially when it comes to contact information like telephone numbers and addresses. To reach the most people, make sure that your practice is listed with the same contact information in every listing. For example, if your physical therapy office is located on “43 Main Street,” decide whether or not you will spell out “Street” or abbreviate it to “St.,” and stick to this designation throughout all uses of your address. The same goes for your practice name. The more consistent your name, number and address are, the more likely your website will be cited correctly and found.
Reviews are also an important part of building your practice’s local reputation. Besides adding testimonials to your website, you should also try to gather reviews for your local listings, such as your Google+ local page.
One of the best ways to get a Google+ review from your patients is to kindly request that they add a review before leaving your office. Set up a laptop or tablet that they can log into, and give them a few guidelines to help them write a short review. Not only does this give you a better spotlight in Google rankings, but they can also be helpful for you and your office. A great tool to use is Whitespark’s Review Generator, which will print out instructions for computer or smartphone use based on your office’s information.
Improving Your Local SEO Can Better Establish Your Physical Therapy Website
[highlight1 bgColor=”#000000″ textColor=”#3391ff”]Overall, improving the local SEO of your physical therapy website can make a big difference in your online efforts and significantly draw in new visitors that may become patients. By establishing your local SEO presence, your potential patients will be able to find you and your current patients can lend their own experience and recommendations to your practice. To get more help with your physical therapy website, contact us at E-Rehab today, and we can show you how to elevate your SEO to the next level.[/highlight1]
When it comes to building a website for your business, there are a few basic practices that are standard in any industry. The following are often considered essentials:
An eye-catching display
A clear sense of what your business is and what it has to offer
But when it comes to physical therapy websites, there are a few additional factors to keep in mind that will make your website stand out from your competitors. You want to convince new patients to come to your clinic, while also offering your current patients the information they need without getting bogged down in a marketing campaign. With that in mind, here are some features that the best physical therapy websites offer their visitors:
Valuable—and Free—Health Information
Because so many physical therapy patients are referred by their doctors, your website needs to do more than just attract business. It should stand out as a leader in the field of physical therapy by providing valuable information that patients and other site visitors may be searching for. [blockquote align=”left”]According to Pew Research, up to 80% of e-patients turn to the Internet to find out about an illness or injury. [/blockquote]
Based on this, your website should offer e-patients a credible resources with credible and useful information. There are several possible ways to accomplish this:
Host a blog where you write about a different physical therapy topic every week
Ask site visitors to sign up for a weekly email newsletter that will contain more in-depth research and columns from various physical therapists; make sure your sources are current, reliable and credible
Provide links to articles, and make sure to check facts before posting them
The time you invest in making your website informative will pay off when you are seen as a thoughtful and experienced leader in the field.
A Practice Run of the First Appointment
Keep in mind that physical therapy is new for many patients, and as a result, it can be a little intimidating. Give site visitors a feel for what they should expect during their first appointment. Offer a video or picture tour of the facility and include photos and bios of all the physical therapists. Give new patients a rundown of what to expect from the moment they walk in the door and answer some of these questions:
How long is the typical wait time?
What should I wear to the first appointment?
How long will it last?
What types of insurance do you accept?
Your visitors should leave your website with the confidence of knowing exactly what is waiting for them when they step through the door for their first appointment.
The ease and convenience of the Internet means that many patients are online at most hours, including hours your clinic isn’t open. Allowing patients to schedule, reschedule or cancel appointments online gives them freedom to consider their appointments during off-business hours.
This one goes hand-in-hand with online scheduling. More and more consumers are conducting business on-the-go through cell phones and tablets, so make sure your website is mobile-compatible. [pullquote4 align=”right” textColor=”#2aec3f”]People are using mobile devices 60% of the time compared with only 40% of time being spent on computers[/pullquote4]A recent report from comScore shows that people are using mobile devices 60% of the time compared with only 40% of time being spent on computers. Most of that mobile time is being used on apps, so it’s worth considering whether or not you can make an app for your physical therapy clinic that allows patients to track their progress, their payments and their appointments.
E-Rehab Creates and Improves Physical Therapy Websites
[highlight2]There are clearly many elements that go into building physical therapy websites that will attract new patients and still be a useful tool for returning patients. Fortunately, you don’t need to build your website on your own. Contact us to see how E-Rehab can create the perfect website for your physical therapy clinic.[/highlight2]
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)—the never-ending quest to fine-tune (or completely gut) your website so that it performs better in search rankings—can be a tiring race to run because the rule-makers (i.e. Google) are always changing the rules. This can be especially frustrating for your practice when it comes to physical therapy SEO.
But as we push further ahead into 2016, the picture of what the SEO rulebook will look like in the future—and what physical therapists will need to do to keep up—is now starting to come into focus.
Some marketers have predicted that there are three certainties in SEO that will affect all web traffic in the future. By understanding and addressing each of these now, you can prepare your practice for the changes ahead and be ahead of the game:
1. Mobile Searches Will Triumph
As Huyen Truong, the SEO Manager for the SEO Agency in Sydney, points out: “mobile search will soon reach the tipping point—the stage at which the majority of time spent, organic traffic and paid clicks comes from smartphones and tablets rather than the traditional medium of desktop and laptop search.”
Every decision you make, whether it’s web design or social media posting, should come from a mobile device mindset. Before you begin any project, big or small, get in the habit of asking: “How will this look on a mobile phone?” [pullquote3 align=”left” variation=”red” textColor=”#000000″]Before you begin any project, big or small, get in the habit of asking: “How will this look on a mobile phone?” [/pullquote3]
In addition, having a website that uses scrolling more than clicking is gradually becoming the new standard for website design. The old system of pages, where your journey through the site’s content involves clicking through layer after layer of pages, is dying. Web designs now leverage the easy scrolling motions of smart phones to place all (or most) of the site’s most important content into a single page that unrolls before the mobile user with a swipe of the thumb. The other mobile-centric practice is, when clicking is necessary, make the buttons large and easy to hit. That helps users overcome the primary weakness of smartphone navigation: it’s hard to accurately click on small targets. And Google knows all of this. (It feels like it knows everything, doesn’t it?) One recent algorithm update specifically looks for mobile-friendly designs and gives them preference over others.
2. High Quality and Great Visuals
Some of the recent Google algorithm updates have also removed keyword optimization from the top of its priority list, and the search engine now looks at the quality of your content—especially whether it’s contextually relevant or not—when it assesses your website.
It also likes visual content, especially when paired with high quality, thorough, well-structured written content.
As the blog Keywords and Jargon explains: “Search engine results page (SERP) rankings show that images, infographics, video and other visual media are much more engaging and relevant than plain text. It’s assumed that a user is more likely to find information that is relevant to their search query.”
3. Voice Search Will Become More Important
With the entry of the oddly endearing (or not-so-endearing) computer personalities of Siri, Cortana from Windows, and Google Now, voice searches are now beginning to influence SEO.
56% of adults like using voice search because it makes them feel “tech-savvy”
Phrases that begin with “who,” “what,” “where,” “when,” and “how” increased by 61% year-over-year
This spike in these phrases correlates with the increased use of voice search. When people do a voice search, they tend to begin their question with these words. Keep this in mind for your physical therapy SEO keywords or even your FAQ pages.
And in case physical therapy SEO still makes you feel overwhelmed, let these parting words from Keywords and Jargon remind you why SEO is worth the trouble: [blockquote align=”right”]”[With SEO,] instead of disrupting a user’s schedule or activity, you’re paving the road for them to easily find you when they’re ready to buy what you’re selling. Instead of having to convince them to buy a product or service, you’re establishing in advance that you are the best option to buy it from.”[/blockquote]
If you’d like some more helpful information on physical therapy SEO, contact us at E-Rehab, where we can put you on the path of capitalizing on these upcoming changes so you can stay ahead of the curve and keep your website in top shape.
Is your PT practice struggling to get new clients, losing clients, or just lacking the consistency needed to keep your therapists busy? If this sounds familiar, it might be because you aren’t taking full advantage of all the effective PT marketing strategies that are available to you. To help you make better use of these essential tools, here are the best PT marketing ideas that you can start utilizing at your practice today:
Overcome the POPTS dilemma:
Many orthopedic doctors refer to their own physical therapy (POPTS), which can leave your PT practice hanging, especially if the majority of your patients come from orthopedic physician referrals. If this is your practice’s problem, then it’s time to overhaul your marketing strategy, which will help you rely less on orthopedic physician referrals and more on referrals from GPs, internists, returning patients, and patient referrals. When it comes to marketing, it’s best to re-order your priorities to the following groups:
Referrals from GPs & internists,
Referrals from returning patients,
How do I do that?
Start with a budget for marketing. Many practices don’t worry about marketing because they’ve been reliant on orthopedic physician referrals to drive their business. With your new priority list in mind, develop a realistic budget to determine how much you can spend on marketing.
How much should you budget for physical therapy marketing? My standard answer is as much as it takes to grow the practice and meet your goals, and not a penny more. That said, it’s not uncommon to budget 20-30% of your profits or 4-10% of your gross revenue for marketing.
Once you’ve established a budget, focus on formulating a game plan for how you will market your PT practice.
Online marketing is the fastest growing promotional channel, and this is for a good reason: It’s quick and cheap, and also gives you access to a wide audience.
Types of Online PT Marketing to Consider
So now that you have a budget and are committed to online marketing, it’s time to get started. Here are the basics for any PT online marketing campaign:
Search Engines: the search engines are where a vast majority of your patients or prospects start the process of getting to know you. It’s important to put some time, effort, and money into ranking your practice on page one for:
1. a search for your business name,
2. a search for physical therapy in your city (e.g. physical therapy Los Angeles),
3. a search for niche services you provide (e.g. vestibular therapy, women’s health, TMJ treatment, etc.).
Website: Your practice needs a good website that gives visitors the information they need to decide that you are in fact the right practice for them. While you can make a website on your own, it’s a better idea to have it created by professionals instead. A company that builds websites will know the right way to create a design so that it attracts attention without annoying your visitors. You want your website to look polished and professional, and unless you have experience designing business websites yourself, you will will need a professional to get the look you’re going for.
Your website should include basic contact and location information, your hours, and your practice’s specialties. Include bios and pictures of each physical therapist that details their experience, certification, and specialties. This will help you with Internet searches, since many people use it as their main tool to find a therapist who can help them with a specific injury.
Newsletter: An email newsletter is a great way to reach new and returning patients who can subscribe using their email address. These newsletters should detail news about your practice (new equipment, a new therapist, special holiday hours, etc.), along with some information about physical therapy in general. The options are really quite wide open here. Stay conscientious of the fact that your newsletter readers are interested in staying healthy, recovering quickly, and preventing future injuries. Use your newsletter as an opportunity to demonstrate that you are the experts in your field by highlighting educational and informative articles and adding in your own expert voice.
Social media: Your practice should also have a social media campaign as a way to reach existing patients who will refer your practice to their friends. Encourage your existing patients to follow your social media accounts to keep up to date with your practice. Your social media campaign should be informative and interactive. Follow and post content that relates to health and physical therapy in general, rather than topics that are only specific to your practice. Also be sure to respond to any comments you receive, both positive and negative. Having a strong social media presence will make your practice stand out within your community and will also lead to more walk-in patients.
Ratings & Reviews: online reputation is the second most trusted form of advertising. Establishing yourself as a leader in the community, via patient ratings and reviews, will definitely drive business. Having a systematic process in place to capture the 5-star satisfaction your patients’ convey to you in the practice and then getting that message out on Google, Facebook, Yelp, and Healthgrades.com, is another great way to drive new business in the door.
[squeeze_box]If an online marketing campaign seems daunting to you, don’t worry. You don’t have to be in this alone. For more information on PT marketing ideas for your practice or to find out how we can develop a campaign for you, contact E-Rehab today![/squeeze_box]
A crucial part of physical therapy website design is providing information patients really want to know about rather than reading mere sales tactics. When prospective patients seek out physical therapy, they want to know what sets you apart from everyone else. Ultimately, most of those people likely have serious physical problems and don’t want to spend hours of time deciding between physical therapy clinics that look too much alike.
One way to set yourself apart is providing a library of educational information on your site that’s easily organized under categories. Under each category, you can bring a comprehensive list of what you do, what your mission statement is, plus answering pertinent questions most patients ask.
Here at E-rehab.com we’ll help you put this all together utilizing the best in multimedia so a first-time visitor gets a complete picture of who you are within minutes.
Creating a Q&A Section
One of the most essential elements in a menu providing information is a basic Q&A section answering the most pertinent questions about you. However, if you’ve ever been in the shoes of a patient, you know not every question is easily answerable in a Q&A. Try to think more thoroughly about what you’d want to ask and place the question and answer there. The more obscure the question, the better since someone will inevitably ask it eventually.
When creating the Q&A, organize it alphabetically or by subject for faster reference. In a mobile culture, especially, many patients are probably reading this on their mobile devices. If they can’t find information in minutes (or even seconds), they’ll likely give up and go somewhere else.
Also, when providing answers in your Q&A, be thorough in the answers. Provide information you can’t find on a Google search so patients know you went to more work for their benefit. One thing patients won’t warm to is overly simple, pat answers.
Providing Information on Individual Procedures
Most people searching for info about physical therapy want to know what type of techniques you provide for various physical ailments. Again, creating categories for each condition is a smart way to organize this information so someone doesn’t have to search on your site to find something.
Under each category, mention any innovative techniques you bring to physical therapy that few others are doing. Be thorough with the information like you were with the Q&A, especially under categories that are the most typical. Physical therapy for back problems are quite common, as are techniques to help those recovering after accidents or surgeries.
Indicate exactly how long each procedure takes and what the best results are. It’s here where you can provide a separate library of videos that showcase exactly what you do.
Creating a Library of Short Videos
When creating videos about your procedures, being as transparent as possible is essential in an era where we want facts about everything. Creating a video series is also a good idea so you break down a particular physical therapy technique into multiple, short segments.
With patient approval, try creating short videos showcasing the physical therapy taking place. By showing one session in real-time through a series of videos, you give a sense of actually being there, how patients react, and what the immediate results are.
End your video series with testimonials from those patients and how they felt after one or several physical therapy sessions. This is the best information your first-time videos can have and tells so much in a mere minute. Nevertheless, your textual information is there to complement the videos. Add detailed images of inside the body showing how physical therapy helps muscle tissue.
Your Website can be More than a Sales Tool
Patients check you and your practice out online before they come in for care.
Use your website as a digital tool to reinforce the information/education you have provided them verbally. A good physical therapy design should consider educational opportunities. E-rehab.com provides patient education, patient handouts, exercise videos, and more.[/note_box]
Contact us here at E-rehab.com and we’ll help you put together a library of information on your site that encapsulates everything for both mobile and desktop users.