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How To Get Your Patients From Your Phone To Your Website

It’s one thing having a great website. It is something else altogether to get patients to use it. Although this issue isn’t exclusively a problem that the healthcare industry faces, the problem is felt acutely by GP’s who spending time and effort building a site only to see a low take-up. It’s natural. When people are used to using one method to contact you (the phone) then introducing another seems unnecessary to your patients. They could already get in touch with you, so why do anything different?

Well, the answer to this question will also go a long way to helping answer the question of how to get patients from your phone to your website. The phone is a one-to-one tool, where your resources are stretched. It can feel that you need to employ more and more reception staff to answer these calls and deal with ever-increasing levels of complexity. In some ways, it is human interaction that makes it more complex. The simple stuff can happen on the website, freeing up your time to make a difference in the lives and healthcare of your patients.

So, let’s take a look at how to make this happen – how to get your patients from your phone to your website.

Make The Website Do What People Want It To Do

A long title, we know, but there’s no point in migrating your patients across to a website if it doesn’t do what they want it to do. We need to start from the start – getting the website right opens up the power of what it can do for both your patients and your practice. There are three ways to establish just what people want and need –

  1. Ask your patients what they want from a website
  2. Look to the NHS guidance on Creating a highly usable and accessible GP website for patients
  3. Speak to an expert who has helped GP’s like you before

We actually suggest that you do a little of all three – giving you a website that follows best practice, is innovative and meets the local demands of your patient population.

Ask People To Migrate To Digital

It sounds so simple, doesn’t it? Well, the first step to getting people off the phone and onto a website is to ask them to do it. Make it the mission of everyone in the team in their daily conversations with patients. It only takes a few seconds to ask, “have you signed up to our website?” From there, a simple QR code or leaflet can explain the benefits and help to get people across to using your website.

QR codes again can be displayed prominently in the waiting room so people can very quickly and easily learn how to connect with you online. A concentrated effort to get people over to your website will reap great rewards. And it is essential to know the benefits to your patients – why would they move over? Make this clear and compelling and you’re on to a winner.

Get The Content Right – Across All Platforms

You are in contact with your patients far more often than you realise. Every email, text message, phone call, social media post and everything you put on your website are potential touchpoints with patients.

Make these touchpoints count by having engaging and informative content in your website. If they come to your website to find out the best ways to stave off a common cold in the winter, then they are much more likely to use your online services to order repeat prescriptions or check for their test results.

And when you have content such as this, share it on social media, tag it to the bottom of your emails and make it part of your overall communication strategy. The more people you reach digitally, the more natural it is for them to stay digital in their interactions with you. This frees up the phone lines, saves time and money and enables you to offer a better service.

Consistency Is Key

We can all fall into the trap of making an effort when a website is first launched and then forgetting about it. But the most effective results come from consistency, as with most of the best things in life.

Make it part of your culture to talk about the website in positive tones, directing people there for more information and a range of services. This is all about convenience for the patient. Ensure that they know that.

If you want to discuss how to use your GP website to its full potential, then please drop us a line.

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