It's not uncommon to see a business's website still suck in 2009. But it is important to know that if one of those websites is yours, you are missing out on a lot of important modern features that makes a website user friendly and functional.
Having an outdated website can cause a business to lose visitors, and that for any business (including a research site) is money out the door. Many small business owners design their own websites to save money and to have more control over the project. However, that can lead to a website that lacks the most important features such as functionality, Search Engine Optimization, design appeal and organization. This article will review a few of the common mistakes or oversights that often lead to a lack in website visits or conversions overall.1. Slow Loading Websites
It might not be an obvious issue, but it is a major reason people will navigate away from a website. If your website loads very slowly, especially on mobile, your visitors will not stay very long. A website visitor's attention span is short and they're likely used to lightning fast load times on many other frequented websites. As a general rule, pages on your site should lead in 3 seconds or less whether desktop, mobile or tablet.
More than half of users connect to the internet via a device (Mobile phone/iPad, etc) therefore fast loading speeds on any device are critical. As a clinical research site business, your ability to quickly and effectively educate potential patients and capture their information before they navigate away is important to the success of your business. Don't let a slow website cause missed opportunities.
Most common reasons for slow websites:
- Outdated web hosting server or website platform
- Bloated code (i.e. code structure is not organized or updated)
- Non-optimized images/videos (media files are too large and take too long to load on browsers)
2. Outdated Design & Content
It is so important to make sure your website's content does not go out of date or go untouched for months or worse, years! Websites should be ever-evolving, remain current and updated on a monthly basis. When a visitor sees that you have not posted on your blog or events page in over 3 years, or that it lists an outdated clinical trial, it gives a negative impression of your business. You want the information to be an accurate representation of what they can expect from your business whether it's your staff, your current clinical trials, address, contact info and more.
The content you choose to show on your website is also important. Here are some items that different visitors are expecting on your page.
Patients or pharmaceutical companies want to view: visual of location, list of recruiting studies, study participation details and FAQs, staff friendly photos and bios, brief details on facility operations (exam Rooms, overnights, etc). sites should have linked social pages, multiple forms for submission and contact, offer information on study areas or testimonials.
Visuals that showcase stock photos of doctors, doctor equipment and test tubes do not work. Patients do not want to get into clinical trials in 1993, they want to in 2019.
Like bell bottoms and suspenders, you just kind of know when somethings out of style. With website design, it could mean too much white space on your pages, not enough white space, obnoxious color schemes, web pages not balanced, pages that don’t look finished, among others.
3. Inconsistent Messaging
Our company works with many clinical research sites to redesign their website. When we analyze their website initially, often times it is not immediately obvious what kind of business they are, what services they provide or what kind of patients they treat. The people visiting your website are busy and they don’t have time for guessing games. Your site needs to quickly and easily communicate who you are and what you do. This can be right on the homepage in a simple and succinct sentence like: "Providing clinical trial opportunities to patients in the Greater Boston for asthma, COPD and respiratory health". Sure, your site needs to look nice. But at the end of the day people are visiting your site for information.
There are a number of other suggestions and ways to improve your business website right now. If you are a research site and would like to learn more, contact us for a free website consultation!
ClinX is the parent organization of ClinEdge, BTC Network and GuideStar Research. Collectively, the companies provide a full suite of clinical and outsourced business services to clinical research institutions, pharmaceutical companies, and CROs. The companies include: two global networks of research clinics, consulting and financial services, marketing and creative design, and a patient recruitment and retention division. With extensive experience in over 300 different medical indications representing all therapeutic areas, the three companies have helped clients successfully conduct thousands of clinical studies over the last several years. The units work together to streamline clinical research operations, minimize enrollment times and assist clinical research to thrive.
If you would like more information about this topic, please call Christian Burns at 857-496-0054, x510 or email firstname.lastname@example.org