Don’t Make a Mess of Healthcare Website Development: In-Depth Guide for Founders
The global pandemic has made healthcare the most sought-after service. Yet, it remains inaccessible to many. Most people stay afar due to fear. So, online accessibility is the only silver lining.
If you want to stay relevant and accessible to people who are staying indoors yet need care and support, build a website.
But read this first!
According to Statista, there are more than 49,890 healthcare apps. Implying you already have enough competition. But, yes, each one may be catering to a specific audience, and that too may be in hundreds.
On top of it, healthcare website development has its share of challenges. The good news is you can overcome it with a robust development process that is well documented and strategized.
Before Starting Development
Fulfill your dream!
Define the kind of product you are envisioning. Because until you are clear about what you want, you cannot communicate it with others.
Option 1: Web App
Web apps provide an excellent non-interrupting method of tracking your customers. Besides collecting valuable data to improve services. They also help connect customers to the business.
First, let’s see what it is.
- What is it?
The backend can use a LAMP, MEAN, etc., only as a software stack. Moreover, there is no SDK (Software Development Kit) for building web apps. But, if the designers like, they are free to use templates.
- Why medical web apps?
Because they are faster and much easier to design and develop. Here are a few examples.
Healthcare website development should display intuitive designs and robust products.
- Fitwise Physiotherapy. One look at it, and you feel the positivity of the design. The high-quality images with comprehensive information and soothing colors are sure to impress one and all.
- IU Health. One of the most striking features of Indiana University Health is the keyword search feature. A patient can create his profile and choose his location for better services. No mess design with easy navigation is a brownie point.
Option 2: Corporate Website
A corporate website is the one that represents the brand online. A website that has a set of many pages having a similar goal for business promotion makes a corporate website.
As is apparent, a corporate website represents a large organization. Pfizer is one of the best examples in the context. Over 60 websites were moved to a single platform while providing a responsive design of top-notch quality.
The Choice Defines the Efforts and Costs
Are you looking to build a web application for a small clinic or a big hospital? Is it basic or needs customization?
Each type of web application will have a different cost for development. This further helps decide the team members, the timeline to design and develop a website, and the overall price.
|Basic web application||480 hours||~$20,000|
|Average web application||960 hours||~$40,000|
|Average corporate website||120 hours||~$5,000|
The table above discloses a general estimate. However, it may be different in different places.
How to Develop a Medical Website
A Business Part
Suppose a developer whose prime focus is on creating innovative solutions follows his heart. Sadly, he may not be able to deliver a product that fulfills your business requirements.
Therefore, a founder must build solutions to deliver value in terms of:
- Financial gains
- Intellectual capital
- Employee satisfaction
- Customer value
The Healthcare website development process should ensure all with robust creation.
First off, create a business model. Your business model will help you define:
- Who is your target audience?
- What value is your solution providing?
- How can you increase your revenue?
- What are the main functionalities of your app?
- How will you communicate with your audience?
Define the Unique Value
Value matters. While many healthcare solutions are available with the same functionalities. It is how well your solution performs for a specific customer that matters.
|Killer feature +||Aim at developing a medical app that boosts productivity and revenue.
Focus on adding features such as:
These support both users and the hospital staff to use the tool.
|Target audience||A healthcare solution reaching everyone and not the target audience is bad.
Identify your target audience carefully. You may be a hospital, physician, surgeon, pharmaceutical company, define your customers.
Sub-categorize them into the
|“A new way of doing something”||A healthcare app development has changed in the wake of the pandemic.
With an increase in the online consultation, few functionalities are deemed more important than others.
For example, Teleclinic created a specific questionnaire. It helps identify the possibility of clients contracting the virus.
The product discovery phase is a crucial stage in software development. Here you identify the target audience, define the product market, and have all the requirements for the project.
|What is this?||Any mistake made during the planning stage may cost you dearly. Therefore the primary goal of the discovery phase is to test the ideas and implement strategies.
Also, hasten the product development process and optimize the development cost.
|What does it include?||Medical website development includes the following steps.
Step 1. Alignment
The product manager must bring all stakeholders together to explain the issues they foresee and help them to see the context.
Step 2. Research
Identify opportunities for the product. Find out the pain points of the customers and define their problems.
For better insight, divide it into attitudinal, behavioral, quantitative, and qualitative issues.
Step 3. Customer Analysis
Analyze your customer. See if they need it or not. Check the following aspects:
Step 4. Market Analysis
Analyze the market for:
Step 5. Competitor Analysis
Identify and analyze your competitors:
Step 6. Prototyping
Show your ideas to the customers. You may utilize both high and low prototypes.
It helps the team understand the project and define the cost.
Step 7. Project Blueprint
This step ensures that every all process are completed and taken care of.
An excellent example of this is telemedicine. The developers ensured an in-depth discovery phase with patients’ pain points as the prime focus to build the app.
Check the entire process here.
|What are the key benefits for the founder?||The most significant benefit of the discovery phase is getting an idea of the product.
Interface sketches, workflow diagrams help you visualize the final product. Besides, it removes any scope of missed communication.
Some key benefits include:
Development teams become capable of deciphering the goals and the requirements. Thus boosting accuracy in time and budget.
This, in turn, minimizes the danger of overbudgeting and missing deadlines.
The plan provides clarity to every team member on deliverables and deadlines. You have more control over the project’s scope. It adds value for the investors too.
The uncertainty levels are high in the initial stages of a project. Discussion and meaningful communication instill trust in the minds of the stakeholders.
We have now arrived at the technical part of the development process.
Intuitive and mindful designing in healthcare web development boosts your website’s value. Thus, you acquire more customers and generate more revenue.
The role of design
Design is one of the many elements that help build an online identity. It is bait that creates a perception of your business in the minds of your prospective customers. It is an asset that promises high ROI.
It offers a few advantages, including:
- Brand recognition
- Visual appeal
- Improved client experience
- Better conversion rate
In medical website development, UI and UX can help you build an interactive and engaging product.
|What are UX and UI||UX refers to the user experience. It is primarily what a user feels when he uses the product. Includes the design, branding, usability, and functioning.
The UI stands for the user interface. It is the graphical representation of an application. Incorporates the screen, keyboard, touchscreen, lights, and sounds.
|What does design define?||The design of your website or app defines its outlook. The colors, fonts, and images. It is often linked to the layout – the information structure and the categorization.|
|What are the factors that define the design?||In a healthcare website design, even a tiny mistake can cost you immensely. So, consider the following to avoid the mess later:
The first thing that defines the design of a website is the aesthetic part: the look and the feel of the website. You have only 0.05 milliseconds to impress a visitor. Failing to do so eliminates chances of further interaction.
People have a low attention span these days. Besides, there are so many options available. So, if your webpage loads slowly, you will lose out to your competition.
The product should be usable for an average user. Ensure it with strategic healthcare web development. Most people do not understand technical jargon; avoid using it. Keep things simple and understandable for an average user.
Your website has a great design and functionality. It is easily accessible and loads quickly. But if the content is not engaging enough, you have missed the bull’s eye. So spend some on content and content marketing.
Take a look at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. The clean design and right color combination ensure correct information delivery.
If your website cannot be accessed through a mobile device, it is of no use. With 3.6 billion smartphone users worldwide, be wise. Ensure your accessibility through your design.
List of Core Features of a Website
A medical website has some unique features exclusive to its online existence. Check them out:
|User-friendly navigation||Accessibility is vital in medical web development. However, a rational structure with easy-to-read fonts and contact forms are not the only UX features you need.
Follow the best practices:
|Intuitive Search||Provide patients with answers to their problems in real-time with quick navigation.
Medical website developers from SPDLoad created an outstanding solution for Telemedicine patients. As a result, customers are no longer required to wait for long, even if they need a short-term consultation.
|Scheduling||Have a built-in booking system and make it easy. For example, a user should select a doctor, a suitable time in the available time slot, and the desired appointment type.
They should receive an SMS or email about the appointment.
|Online Video Consultation||In the wake of the global pandemic, it has become even more critical.
Allow patients to have unlimited access to high-quality medical services in the comfort of their homes.
|Online payment||Your medical website development should include the ability to accept online payments.
Include online payment options such as include PayPal, Google Pay, credit cards, etc.
|Social Media Integrations||With 4.33 billion social media users, there is a high chance of your patient being on one of the social media platforms.
So, integrate social media buttons to enhance your customer engagement. You may also use these platforms to share your e-books, blogs, and other vital content on social media.
|Google Analytics integration||You should also have a tool to examine your performance online.
For instance, use Google Analytics in healthcare website development. It is a free tool that helps you know user behavior and analyses the marketing channels and web pages more frequently.
|Contact details and a map||Add it to the header or footer. Though generally, contact details should be furnished on a separate page with a hyperlink from the homepage.
Add options such as headquarters, email, phone number, social media accounts.
Integrate Google Maps on Contact Us forms.
|Team||Create a staff directory and let patients know who they are entrusting their health with. It should primarily include the physician with his/her qualifications and experience.|
List of Additional Features of a Website
A medical website should have all the features mentioned below in the table to make it work and stand against the competition.
|Disable-Friendly||Out of 4, 1 adult is living with a disability. And this section of society requires medical assistance more often than the general population.
Cater to their needs with W3C accessibility. W3C accessibility is an initiative to help people with certain disabilities. People from different industries, research labs, government, and disability organizations frame the guidelines.
|Chatbots||In case of emergencies, patients would need quick support, and for that, you need to provide customer service 24×7.
Provide them with a chatbot option in medical website development.
|Feedback form||Do not turn away from listening to your patients. Let them know that their voices are heard. Even better, if implemented.|
|3D Hospital Tour||A patient may like to see what the hospital looks like even before they visit it. So, allow them the luxury with a 3D tour. Give them a glimpse of all the high-tech treatment they would have access to when they choose your hospital.|
|Security and Privacy||Data security is most vital, mainly due to cyber attacks. Healthcare information is confidential. So is the financial data shared by patients. You need to protect it.|
For healthcare websites, a responsive design, easy-to-use interface are not the only requirements. The most crucial element of such websites is HIPAA compliance.
HIPAA defines all the requirements for the storage, management, and transmission of information.
|What is it?||The full form of HIPAA is Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. It is a law created to protect the patient’s data. PHI (Protected Health Information) carries any information that reveals an individual’s identity.
It may include the patient’s full name (including his initials), email address, phone, or fax number. Also medical record number, social security number, health insurance number, and financial credentials.
HIPAA includes privacy rules, security rules, breach notification rules, and enforcement rules. In your medical website development, comply with all of them throughout.
|When you need it?||If you receive, maintain, create, and transfer ePHI, you need a HIPAA-compliant website. If you gather information via forms, the onus is on you to protect the data as per the HIPAA rules. Save it from a potential data breach or unauthorized access.|
How to Make a Website HIPAA Compliant?
HIPAA compliance isn’t easy. It required deep niche expertise and experience working with a specific set of tools. For example:
|SSL Certificate||A non-SSL website is technically insecure. Have an SSL certificate. It makes transmission from user to server unreadable and encrypted for third parties.|
|Backup||Provide backup for client information. Create a local backup in medical web development or use a secure cloud service.
We had a similar request from one of our clients. They were unable to save data for more than six months. How did we ensure it? You may read it all on this page.
Grant access to patient information as per staff role and requirement: doctor, and other personal.
|Business Associate||Make sure the third-party vendor signs the HIPAA Business Associate Agreement.|
|Storage Encryption||All files, including local as well as via cloud service, should be encrypted.|
Our SpdLoad developers built a HIPAA-compliant app named MedPortal for one of our clients. Read what they did in the link above!
Cost of Healthcare Website Development
The price for developing a healthcare website or app varies from place to place. While an agency or freelancer from a developed country may charge a lump sum amount for startup development.
The same job can be done at an affordable rate in developing nations.
Besides, factors such as complexity are also considered while pricing healthcare websites.
The local agency in the US
You may be charged anywhere between $150 to $250 per hour if you select a local agency from the US.
Outsource in Ukraine
Get ready to pay $30 to $50 for the development team from the East European country, Ukraine.
It seems that Ukraine is a better option. Simple healthcare website development will cost somewhere between $20,000 to $40,000.
However, the price may go up if you want to add some customization.
You need the right people for your medical website development.
How to Choose a Reliable Partner?
Choosing a trustworthy partner is necessary. They assist you in developing an appreciable medical website that needs some homework. Pick wisely. Assign responsibilities to specialists only.
Read more in the table.
|PM||Someone who monitors the entire software development process.
|BA||BA stands for business analyst. He fills the gap between stakeholders and the development team.
|Designer||Provides software solutions with planning.
Works on intuitive navigation and product usability in healthcare website development. The UI designer’s role is to design the layout and look of the product.
|Backend||Builds and also maintains the technology.
|Frontend||Takes care of all interface development.|
|Tester||Take care of the software development quality.
|DevOps||Have comprehensive knowledge about the operational problems.
|G-Suite||Google-powered set of business, collaboration, productivity, and education software.
Main tools include Gmail, Docs, Drive, Slides, Sheets, Form, Google+, Calendar, Hangouts, SItes.
|Figma||Mainly a prototyping and graphics editor tool. It has additional offline features allowed by desktop applications for Windows and macOS.|
|AWS||A subsidiary of Amazon offers on-demand cloud computing tools and APIs.|
|Laravel||An open-source PHP web framework. The free framework intends to make the development process easier without compromising functionality.|
|React Native||An open-source mobile web framework. It helps develop iOS, tvOS, macOS, Web, Android, Android TV, UWP, and Windows applications.|
|3rd party integration||Addition of vital external data to a current project with different APIs.|
|Testing||Test the product for its quality. It can be manual or automated.|
Look For a Reliable Partner for Medical Web Development?
Take your time before selecting a partner for your healthcare website development. Treat your website as your asset. Invest your time and money in trustworthy people.
Most importantly, ensure they understand your requirements well.
Or just contact us to get your project off the ground in a reliable and budget-wise way.