Posted by: admin | Posted on: May 31st, 2013 | 0 Comments
Columbus AMA’s Social Media SIG hosted a presentation created by Bill Balderaz that revealed how online search and content impacts a patient’s personal medical decision. As patients increasingly turn to the internet for answers to their health issues, healthcare marketers are presented with an opportunity to be proactive. The influence of paid search and relevant content marketing are two tools to help jumpstart your marketing strategy. Here’s why:
- 43% of visits to hospital web sites originate from a search engine
Almost half of the patients are searching before they land on your hospital’s page.
- 77% of patients used search prior to scheduling an appointment and 53% of patients visit 2 or more hospital websites before converting
The majority of patients are searching healthcare information before they even step foot into the doctor’s office. If a patient lands on your page during the searching process, it’s important to provide the most timely and relevant content on your site so it connects with your audience and holds their attention.
- 57% of patients are using specific search terms that relate to their condition’s symptoms or treatment.
For example, if a local patient searches carpal tunnel, your site may not appear on the first page of results—even if you have one of the best hand specialists in town!
So how can your healthcare organization stand out amongst the search engine clutter?
- 81% of people click on a sponsored link when looking for health information
Paid search is a very important resource to use to reach your audience. You can identify influential key search terms that align with your specialties so that you’re directing patients with those conditions to your page.
- 60% of patients active online say that watching a web video effected a personal medical decision
YouTube is ranked as the second largest site next to Google. Videos accumulate hits and appear on search results. Make sure you tag your videos with effective keywords, and produce relevant content that is specific to your patients’ needs
- 94% of patients say that reputation of the facility is important
In a digital age, your reputation is more than just word-of-mouth, you need to build a strong content base that your patients will respect and look to for guidance. Being consistent and efficient with creating relevant content is a necessity if you want to attract and retain patients to your site.
Being an active online listener can increase your chances of attracting the right patients to your site. Patients are looking for specific answers to their healthcare questions, and if you can approach these questions by identifying appropriate keywords and creating relevant content you will be taking a proactive approach to attracting and retaining patients to your practice.
For more interesting information that relates to online search in the healthcare industry, check out this article that refers to the millennial’s online process of choosing a healthcare provider.
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research sources derived from Pew Research Center, American Medical News, GreenBuzz Agency, EMG, Google