Pharmacy Website Design
Anatomy of a Great Pharmaceutical Website Design:
Effective Engagement with Patients
The moment your Pharmacy's Home Page appears on a screen – desktop, tablet or mobile device – you have approximately three (3) seconds to pause your visitor in their tracks, convey professionalism, and enable them to determine the website’s navigation. Excluding direct visitors that might be looking to access your scheduling system, three seconds is the attention interval that visitors give to your Home Page when finding it on Google, Yahoo!, or Bing. If they’re not impressed or can’t figure out the website, your visitor is destined to move on to the next search result.
Engaging Visitors with your Home Page
Motion and animation are key. Movement especially on the eye's peripheral edge – instinctively focuses attention on the motion. Visitors will wait to see what has happened and what will occur next. Three seconds is definitely short, but it’s enough time for a visitor to process two other items on your Home Page.
General Navigation - Quick & to the Point
A pharmaceutical website may consist of different pages – pharmacist and staff biographies, educational content, services offered, etc. It’s therefore important that visitors immediately grasp how to navigate the website. A website establishes a navigation trail with multiple ways visitors to explore the site, so icons and graphics which lead directly to popular pages are helpful.
Dr. Leonardo websites feature intuitive menus with multiple shortcuts to the refill prescriptions page, online appointment scheduling systems, social media links and more. Each are completely editable for a custom presentation.
The Supporting Pages
Once a visitor has reached the Home Page, the goal is to engage them by leading them through supporting pages. Visitors can spend a good amount of time educating themselves on the staff and pharmacist biographies, and reading up on the conditions, treatments and services that the pharmacy treats and provides. First time visitors are often ‘vetting’ the pharmacy, and this level of engagement is generally at a direct expense of other, similar pharmacies that the visitor is potentially considering as well.
Deep clinical content on conditions and treatments achieve two purposes:
Content is the primary information for search engines.
Many factors are at play in top-of-page search results – relevant links, responsive site design, load speed, etc. But content remains as the greatest component of effective organic search placement.
The reason is simple: the primary objective of any search engine is to answer questions posed as queries. Whenever a search engine provides accurate and comprehensive answers, visitor return to use the search engine again. This is Google's formula to maintain dominance in the search market – it provides the most relevant answers to its visitor's questions.
Every page on a website is robotically reviewed on the Internet by search engine web crawlers (also referred to as 'bots'). A site which features in-depth written content with clinical terminology is ranked as an authoritative source. The results are high placement for queries that include common cold or flu vaccination questions and the associated treatment regimens your pharmacy prescribes. This authority translates to website visitors.
Dr. Leonardo features detailed content on more than 8,800 healthcare conditions, treatments and procedures. Discussions average 400 – 700 words each, and include clinical illustrations and professional medical photography. Rich-text, print-ready functionality lets you distribute point-of-care information at your pharmacy and on your patient's desktop and mobile devices.
Refill Prescriptions Online
Having a pharmaceutical website enables you to offer your existing patients access to the conveniences they expect and compete with larger pharmacy chains. For example, your pharmacy may not have the same extended hours offered at big box stores. A website would allow your patients to schedule a consult or submit a refill request outside of your business hours, which helps to bridge the gap.
Dr. Leonardo's Fill / Refill Your Prescription function makes it easy to integrate your software so patients can request refills at any time of the day without ever needing to pick up a phone can talk to someone.
Online Appointment Scheduling
In 2021, it was estimated that 67% of patients prefer scheduling medical appointments online and about 94% of patients would be more likely to choose a new service provider if that provider offered online booking options [ ]. Expect two-thirds of your own patients to book their appointments on their own.
Most appointments will be made through the use of a phone, which can often be clumsy to use to enter data. Keep it simple and get the basics needed to schedule the patient on your calendar: Name, telephone, email address, and appointment time. Detailed medical history and insurance questions can saved be for appointment confirmation notices by sending the patient a link to the appropriate place on your website to log in to your Patient Portal.
Dr. Leonardo’s intuitive appointment interface collects:
- Date, time and office location of the appointment
- The patient's first and last name
- Primary and mobile telephone number
- Email Address
- Preferred contact method (phone or email)
- New or existing patient
- Reason for visit
Your pharmacy is automatically notified of the appointment basics by email, with any Personal Health Information (PHI) being automatically encrypted using SecureForms™ on our HIPAA-compliant servers.
Patient Portal Access
Since patients often struggle to remember how to access the Patient Portal, the best place to find your Patient Portal is on your website. As a core component of Meaningful Use Standards, Patient Portals extend the functions that patients typically call about each day onto your website. This frees up time for your staff and relieves congestion at the pharmacy. Additionally, referring healthcare providers can be given access so they can review your office's EHR notes on joint patients.
Dr. Leonardo allows you to select from our list of more than 100 EHR systems to feature your Patient Portal with a short-cut from every page of your website.
Patient forms remain a necessity to every medical office. Place those patient forms on your website as PDF files that patients can download and complete before their appointment. Today’s forms are often available as interactive PDF files to be completed online and imported directly into your EHR system. If your Patient Portal offers the forms as part of registration, patients can be directed to the portal to register in your EHR before they arrive at your office.
Dr. Leonardo lets you upload patient forms of various format including Adobe PDF, Word files and other documents.
It is important to provide a page listing the insurance plans that your pharmacy accepts. Equally important is to keep this list up-to-date as well. Patients frequently attempt to match providers with their insurance plans when search the web. Like all content on your website, this list becomes associated with the pharmacy name and the pharmacists.
Responsive Mobile Optimization
Search queries are now conducted on mobile devices more often than not. As a result, search engines now give greater preference to websites that are mobile-optimized, and in particular to responsive websites. The user experience with a responsive website is far better when using a smartphone, and the speed to load is a factor as well.
Dr. Leonardo website designs are responsive and mobile-optimized, so they automatically adjust to the size of the device – desktop, tablet or smartphone.
Websites which use a Content Management System (CMS) give the pharmacy the ability to edit and change the content on their website themselves. This can also include the ability to access and modify the On-Page SEO (Search Engine Optimization) features. While a pharmacy administrator might not care to learn the ins and outs of this feature, an outside Digital Marketing Agency most certainly will.
It's not uncommon to want to switch from one digital agency to another. Whenever this happens, many agencies require that an entirely new website be created with them. With Dr. Leonardo, you can provide access to any third-party agency for on-page SEO work, and continue to keep your existing website.
Important Notices Found in the Website's Footer
HIPAA regulations require that the Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP) be posted on a medical pharmacy's website. You must have webpage for this, or at least a link to a PDF file of the notice that patients can download.
For more information on Dr. Leonardo PharmSites, build yours today.
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