Choosing a plastic surgeon is a decision that, for many people, will require hours of research. Undergoing plastic surgery has become somewhat routine — especially in affluent areas — but making the decision to go under the knife still requires a great deal of trust. There are certain risks involved with plastic surgery — not the least of which is the possibility that the patient will be unhappy with the work performed. A potential plastic surgery patient will undoubtedly use the web during his or her research. In the process, that person will visit many websites. You need a website that’s ready to act as a 24-hour salesperson by fielding questions and fostering a sense of trust among your potential patients.
At Crystal Clear Digital Marketing, we have completed projects for more than 3,500 medical professionals in our 16 years of doing business. We understand plastic surgery website design like no one else, and we’ve developed deep insights about what potential plastic surgery patients truly want to see when they research providers online. In this article, we’d like to share some of the core elements of our plastic surgery website design philosophy.
The Basic Elements of a Plastic Surgery Website Design That Works
Above all else, a plastic surgery website needs to instill a sense of calm and confidence in the visitor. We utilize every aspect of a website’s design to create the emotions that ultimately lead to conversion. Soft color palettes and careful typography choices help to create an air of quiet professionalism. A clear, uncluttered user interface helps to prevent the anxiety of not knowing which option to click. It is also vital to carefully compose the website’s text. Although the ultimate goal is to convince a visitor to submit a form or call for a consultation appointment, it is important to avoid the pushy sales tactics that can make your practice appear desperate. Your website should gently indicate to a potential patient that you don’t need his or her business — but you do value it.
Building a plastic surgery website that works isn’t just about aesthetics — it also requires technical expertise. A potential patient wants to see professionalism when he or she visits your website. The website’s features need to work. No broken links should exist. The website should have optimized code for fast page loading speeds — even on slower Internet connections. The website should also have a reliable hosting provider that offers great performance — even during peak hours — and doesn’t experience downtime.
Perhaps the most important technical aspect of a successful plastic surgery website design is that the website must look great on any device. More than half of the people who visit your website will use mobile devices such as smartphones — and since the search for a plastic surgery provider may take several months, it’s likely that a potential patient will visit your website several times before making a decision. If someone visits your website on a computer and comes back later on a smartphone — and your website doesn’t provide a great mobile experience — you will almost certainly lose that person as a potential patient.
Plastic Surgery Website Content
When people research plastic surgery providers, they aren’t just looking for information about the providers themselves — they also want information about the procedures. No two plastic surgery providers are exactly the same in the procedures that they offer or how they perform those procedures. Your website should have a dedicated page for each procedure that you offer. Along with any blog articles that you may eventually publish, your pages about specific plastic surgery procedures will likely generate most of the traffic that your website receives from search engines. You should strive to make each page a comprehensive and valuable resource in its own right. Some of the questions that you may want to answer include:
- What will the procedure do for me?
- Who is a good candidate for the procedure?
- How much does the procedure typically cost?
- Are there any less invasive alternatives to the procedure?
- How did previous patients look before and after undergoing the procedure?
- What technologies or techniques make your practice the best place in which to have the procedure performed?
- What can I expect when recovering from the procedure?
Once you’ve answered all of the most common questions about a plastic surgery procedure, you’ll likely have a very long — and very informative — article. In other words, you’ll have exactly the kind of content that Google loves to highlight in its search results.
Your website should also include content highlighting you and your staff. People love to see pictures of doctors when they’re researching local medical providers — pictures help them form their initial impressions — so include a friendly, reassuring picture of yourself. Tell your potential patients about your education and experience along with any notable accomplishments such as techniques or technologies that you helped to develop.
A potential patient wants to know that you value him or her as a person — not just as a source of revenue. Few website design elements can do a better job of humanizing your plastic surgery practice than pages highlighting the members of your staff. Your receptionists, nurses and other staffers each bring something unique to your practice. Give your potential patients the opportunity to get to know them a bit.
A plastic surgery website design absolutely must include a space for before-and-after photos. Your potential patients will always want to have an idea of what they will look like after undergoing plastic surgery — and how you handled previous patients with similar issues — before they commit to you. Generally, it’s wise to highlight people of average beauty in your before-and-after photo section. If a “before” photo shows a patient who already had an unattainable level of attractiveness before entering your office, the photo could actually discourage potential patients from undergoing plastic surgery at all.
Use high-resolution photos for the before-and-after section of your website to give potential patients the ability to zoom in and see the fine details of your work. Like the rest of your website, though, the photos need to be responsive for mobile devices. If smartphone users constantly need to pinch to view the photos, they’ll most likely lose interest.
Other Marketing Opportunities
A plastic surgery patient is often affluent and willing to spend significant money on his or her appearance — which means that your patients can sometimes provide revenue opportunities that extend far beyond their initial plastic surgery procedures. Less invasive products and procedures such as wrinkle treatments, injections, fillers and creams will greatly interest many of your clients — especially if you partner with the manufacturers to offer discounts on those products.
Through email marketing, your website can greatly help to power the alternative revenue streams that less invasive procedures can provide. Your website will also generate many visits from people who are interested in plastic surgery but aren’t ready to commit to it yet. A person who fears the permanence of a facelift, for example, could potentially be convinced to visit your office for the first time with an offer of a discounted Botox treatment. With skillful email marketing, you may even build up a significant base of consistent clientele who don’t actually utilize your plastic surgery services at all.
Most businesses handle their email marketing through third-party providers such as MailChimp and Constant Contact. An email provider saves the email addresses that you collect, provides an interface for creating and sending an email and tracks the results of your campaigns. Your website also plays a role in the email marketing process; your email marketing provider will give you a block of code that you can add to your website to embed a signup form.
How do you build an email list? It’s wise to add the signup form to almost every page of your website. When you use a form to give a website visitor an opportunity to request more information or schedule an appointment, your form should have a field allowing you to collect the visitor’s email address. Add the email address to your database, and continue nurturing that lead until he or she finally does schedule an appointment.
You can also collect leads from your website’s blog section. Once you’ve finished developing your website’s core content — such as the pages describing the procedures that you offer — starting a blog is a great way to continue adding fresh content to your website. Use the blog to describe new products and procedures that you’re offering or to share case studies about your patients. If you’ve partnered with a product’s manufacturer to give your patients a discount, offer the discount as an incentive to website visitors who sign up for your mailing list. The discount can simultaneously help you grow your mailing list and generate new business for your practice.
Contact Crystal Clear Digital Marketing today to make your plastic surgery website design work for you!