Most Plastic Surgery Websites are not set up with user experience or “UX” in mind. You want your website to deliver a predictable, emotionally relevant experience to your visitors that tells a story.
What do your website visitors experience when they visit your plastic surgery website?
If your site is like most plastic surgery websites, chances are that when you surf over to it you’re met by an image of an attractive young woman or some part of her like her butt, breasts or nose. Or if you’re looking at the website of one of these so called “Celebrity” plastic surgeons the webpage is all about them. Pictures of them, their credentials, who their clients are.
Neither of these websites provides the right experience for a new visitor who might be a potential patient.
Defining Your Patient Experience Online:
While you may have mapped out your patient experience from the moment they walk in the door, most practices do not define and plan a patient experience online.
But first let’s lay out the definition for User or Patient Experience we’ll be using here:
“Every aspect of the user’s interaction with a product, service, or company that make up the user’s perceptions of the whole. User experience design as a discipline is concerned with all the elements that together make up that interface, including layout, visual design, text, brand, sound, and interaction.”
This definition from The User Experience Professionals Association is a great place to start but to break it down further into categories we need to go to the work of Peter Boersma who broke UX into 6 categories in his “T-Model”
- Information Architecture
- Interaction design
- Visual design
Let’s quickly touch on how each of these 6 categories relates to your plastic surgery website.
Research: The first step to creating the correct user or patient experience is to research what your user is actually looking for. Patient experiences can differ dramatically depending on the procedure or treatment a patient is seeking. You should know what your top 5 procedures or treatments are and have unique user experiences prepared for all web searchers
Usability: The second factor in your patient experience is how easy your site is to use. Sites that are too busy or have too many calls to action or distracting videos can cause potential patients to leave your site. You want to have clearly mapped out easy to follow instructions to help every visitor who arrives on your website figure out where to go.
Information Architecture: Information architecture is the science of labeling your website correctly using meta-tags, directories, image alt tags, etc to make your site easy to find for the searches that are relevant to your practice.
Interactive Design: Does your plastic surgery website allow your users to achieve their objectives in the simplest way possible? If not then you have interactive design problems.
Visual Design: Since you are in the business of appearance your website needs to look good and current! There is no point in investing a lot of money into a website if you are not going to update it’s look and feel every 3-6 months to keep up with the current trends. It’s not unusual for huge websites to change multiple times a week.
Content: Last but certainly not least your content needs to be relevant, recent, and related to your user’s searches. If all of your search traffic is for botox and all of your content is for Breast Augmentation you’re going to have UX issues.
This article is not intended to be an ultimate guide to user experience for Plastic Surgery Websites ( I might write that if there is enough interest in the comments) but instead to get you thinking about what the user is experiencing when they visit your website and what you want to them to experience.
Hope that helps,