The Top 5 Things Every Therapist Website Needs
We’ve all had it happen – you’re searching Google for someone who can provide a specific service in your area, so you click on one of the links from the first page and are immediately disappointed with the result.
Maybe you couldn’t figure out how to contact them, or it was an overall feeling of not knowing exactly what they could do for you. Either way, you immediately hit the “back” button on your browser because that website just wasn’t worth your time.
The Internet has no shortage of bad websites out there, but yours doesn’t have to be one of them.
If your website isn’t bringing you as many new clients as you’d like, it may be because it is missing one of these five crucial elements:
1. A Clear Message on Your Home Page
It may be helpful to think of your website’s home page the same way you would a book cover. It’s like an introduction – both visually and textually – providing visitors an overview of what you or your practice is all about and what you can provide them.
More often that not, the Home page will be the first page a new visitor sees on your website. So, if you want them to stick around and eventually contact you, you need to provide immediate answers to the question(s) that brought them to your site in the first place.
But be brief! It only takes about 50 milliseconds (that’s only half a second) for a visitor to form an opinion about your page that determines whether they like it or not and, ultimately whether they’ll stay or leave.
You don’t want your website’s first-time visitors to have to guess whether or not they’re in the right place or what the next step is they should take. You want them to know something, so that they will want to do something.
So, write your home page as if it were your only chance to connect with your ideal client. Make it very clear what your overall message is and why they should contact you, then don’t be afraid to tell them to contact you.
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2. An Easy-To-Find Contact Form or ‘Call To Action’
So you’ve caught your ideal client’s attention and peaked their interest. Now, will they know how to get in touch with you?
Today the Internet has become a part of our everyday life. And between the Internet, and all of the mobile applications we use on a daily basis, instant access has quickly become the new norm.
This means that, if you want your visitors to contact you, you will need to give them plenty of opportunities to contact you.
To do this, we suggest including at least one of the following on every single page of your website.
1. Your Basic Contact Information
For those visitors who prefer to contact you directly, make sure you’ve included your basic contact info such as your email address and/or phone number on every single page of your website.
It is generally considered a best practice to include this information in your website’s header or footer area. This way, it is shown in the same place on every single page of your site.
2. A Simple Contact Form
Yes, I do mean “simple.” Think about this from your potential clients’ perspective. If you’re contacting someone about their services for the first time, you don’t want to answer a long list of questions or be required to give them way more information than they need – that’s what the initial consultation appointment is for.
Studies actually show that the fewer questions you ask on your contact form, the more submissions you’ll receive. A recent article from Search Engine People reported that “reducing the number of form fields to 4 or under increases conversions by 160%.” Furthermore, they also stated that “reducing the number of form fields from 4 to 3 increases conversion rates by 50% [more].”
3. A Clear ‘Call To Action’
Call To Action buttons, also known as CTAs, give you one more way to engage with your potential clients on a web page.
Do you have a web page that you’ve written a lot of really great content for, but find that it just feels a bit “blah” when you’re scrolling through it? One great way to break up pages with a lot of content is by including CTA buttons in a couple of places on that page.
Not only does this break up the page and help improve the overall aesthetic, it provides your visitors with even more ways to contact you.
3. A List of Specialties – Not Just Every Condition You Treat
Looking for a therapist is, without a doubt, an immensely overwhelming process.
If you were to perform a quick Google Search for “therapist near me” you would likely find yourself scrolling through pages upon pages of options – all of which could seem all too similar from a potential client’s perspective. So, if you want to attract the attention of your ideal client, you need to set yourself apart.
One of the best ways to set yourself apart is by showing off your specialties. Now, when I say specialties, I’m not referring to a list of all of the mental health issues you are able to treat. I’m talking about the leading treatments you provide that you consider yourself an “expert” at.
Think of it from a potential client’s perspective…
If I’m searching online for a place nearby where I can receive treatment for a particular condition, I want a therapist that specializes in helping people suffering from that condition; not someone who has dealt with it in the past but also sees clients struggling with twenty other conditions. I want a therapist who truly understands my situation – what I’m feeling, what I’m going through on a daily basis – because only someone who really “gets it” can provide the type of insight needed to help me.
Of course, this does not mean that you have to limit yourself to only those few conditions you specialize in. After all, you may not be an expert in more than a few conditions, but as long as you’re qualified to help with another condition (or conditions) and want to attract that client base, it’s perfectly fine to mention those on your website as well.
The best way to do this in a way that shows your visitors which conditions you specialize in versus the other conditions you can help with, is by creating individual Specialty Service pages in addition to your main Services page.
The content on each of your Specialty Service pages will serve as confirmation that you will provide them with quality treatment for a particular condition, validating that they should contact you for help.
Then, you can include links to each of your Specialty Service pages, as well as a list of all other conditions you’re qualified to treat, on your main Services page. This will show visitors everything you have to offer while providing them with the opportunity to learn more about what you specialize in.
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4. An About Page with a Professional Headshot
In a time where therapists seem to be everywhere, making a good first impression is vital to building a thriving practice. But how do you ensure a good first impression?
By writing your About page with your ideal client in mind. What are they looking for? What do they want you to help them with? What can your services do for them?
If you really think about it, your About page should be just as much about your potential clients as it is about you. Yes, your visitors do want to know about you as a person, but more importantly, they want to know how you are going to help them. Let them know how your approach is unique and why they should come to your practice.
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Then, include a photo or two on this page as well – a professional headshot is always recommended but photos of your office or therapy room are also good options. It’s shocking how many therapist websites don’t include a headshot of the therapist anywhere at all or, if they do, it’s a “selfie” that was taken in the car – yes, we can see your seatbelt 🙂 – or a fuzzy photo that someone else has been poorly cropped out of.
Remember, you work in a field that involves face-to-face interaction with people who are in their most vulnerable state. They’re likely going to be nervous about contacting you in the first place so a friendly, professional headshot of yourself is a must.
If you don’t have a professional headshot, consider hiring a professional photographer to take some for you. Even if that new bio photo only brings in one new long-term client, it already paid for itself.
5. An SEO Strategy
Now that you’ve ensured you’re giving your website’s human visitors everything they want and need, it’s time to make sure you’re also giving search engines what they want and need.
Search engine optimization, or SEO, is essentially the art of convincing Google that when someone searches for a particular phrase – for example, “therapist near me” – your website deserves to be shown.
Search engine optimization is essential to your therapy practice because search engines are by far the best source of new website visitors. In fact, Google has reported that as many as 93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine.
This means that you could have the best therapist website online today, but without receiving any new traffic from search engines, you won’t get many new clients from it.
Of course, the easiest route would be to hire an SEO consultant to optimize your therapist website for you, but this option can be very expensive.
While there are some great online options available to learn how to do your own SEO, Brighter Vision offers this service as a part of their all-in-one package.
If you’re a current Brighter Vision Customer you more than likely have all these essential pieces on your website already. However, if there’s anything you’d like to change based on the insights from this article, please don’t hesitate to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking for some help with marketing your private practice online? That’s what we do better than anyone.
Brighter Vision is the ultimate marketing package for therapists, centered around the best therapist website you’ve ever had. Fill out the form below to learn more about our team of professionals who can’t wait to help your practice grow like never before. 🙂
1. Lindgaard, Gitte, et al. “Attention Web Designers: You Have 50 Milliseconds to Make a Good First Impression!” Taylor & Francis, 4 Mar. 2011, www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01449290500330448
2. Karr, Douglas. “How To Increase Conversions 120% With Less Form Fields.” Search Engine People Blog, 28 Jan. 2017, www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/150450955-how-many-form-fields.html
3. Nikolovska, Hristina, and Harsha Kiran. “60 SEO Statistics to Help You Rank #1 in 2019 – SEO Tribunal.” Seotribunal.com, 5 Feb. 2019, seotribunal.com/blog/stats-to-understand-seo/