San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 02, 2014
Patients are getting savvier in researching physicians online before making a commitment to care. According to a recent study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), many patients are looking online for physician reviews and ratings before deciding on a physician. However, online ratings are just one of the many factors that influence a medical practice’s online presence.
As a response, San Diego web design agency Bop Design has released a list of tips for medical offices using before and after photos on their practice’s websites as part of a medical marketing strategy. “Quality photos can give patients a sense of what to expect when changing their appearance (in the case of reconstructive surgery or cosmetic dentistry), recovery time and progress or post-surgery scarring,” explains Bop Design Creative Principal Kara Jensen.
Here are Bop Design’s suggestions for medical offices about what to do (and what to avoid) when adding photos to a medical website.
- Use only high quality photos. The caliber of a physician’s work may be judged based on the quality of the images on the website attention should be paid to lighting, composition and focus when shooting photos for the practice’s website. While some photos might be perfect for professional analysis before performing a procedure, they might not idea compositions for the website.
Depending on the sensitivity of the procedure, medical offices should consider scheduling a professional photographer to take before and after photos of patients. While working with the photographer, medical office staff should ask for professional advice to later shoot images in-house.
Photographs should always be taken with a high-quality camera and always use a flash. Medical office staff should resist the temptation to snap quick pictures with camera-phones, as even the best quality images could look amateurish and devalue the perception of the quality of care or expertise.
- Use editing software to point out pertinent details. “With lots of free or low-cost photo editing software options, it is relatively easy to quickly learn the basics to add text or circles and call-outs to an image to pump up your medical website design,” explains Jensen. These tools can be used to draw the reader’s attention to the changes in the before and after photo. “Depending on the type of procedure, some readers might not be able to spot a huge difference in the images, so circling certain areas to highlight and adding short comments or the names of procedures will help patients understand what they’re looking at,” continues Jensen.
- Watermark photos with the business name and website address. Using photo-editing software, medical offices should add company name and web address to the corner of all images. This will ensure that the images are not taken from the web and posted on another medical website, and will also help readers remember where the images came from if downloaded onto a desktop or emailed to a friend.
- Streamline medical website design by putting the “before” and “after” photos side-by-side in one single image. This will create a stronger impact as it will help the reader clearly spot the differences between the two images.
- To help SEO efforts, images should be set up correctly before posting them to the website. Medical marketers should pick file names that contain desirable keywords. Additionally, marketers should use the “Alt text” tag to describe exactly what the image contains. Images should always be saved with a small file size (without losing quality) before posting to the website so ensure faster load times, which help SEO efforts.
“Before and after photos have the potential to create a lasting impact with patients and can make your medical website design look current and be more useful,” concludes Jensen. “However, haphazard use of photography can inadvertently drag down the perception of your site, so be sure to follow the tips above. If you’re not sure where to start or would like further advice, work with a web design professional to evaluate your medical website needs and develop a custom solution that will work well for your practice.”
Bop Design is a San Diego marketing and web design agency with offices also in Orange County, CA and the New York metro area. Specializing in B2B, Bop Design creates holistic marketing plans geared toward lead generation and business development. Bop Design offers services in branding, logo design, website design and development, responsive web design, SEO, PPC, social media and content marketing. http://www.bopdesign.com
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