Okay, so you know having a website is critical to private practice success in a modern world, but how do you get website traffic to convert into office visits with paying clients?
A clear, inviting site is vital- but there are a few spots many of us miss in developing therapist websites.
If you have your site set up, here are the key areas you can clean up in a couple minutes to bring more traffic in your door:
Check your contact information
The point of a site is to get folks to contact you- right? Let's make sure it's super easy for them.
This step is simple (but often overlooked): make sure your contact information is correct and easily visible on every page of your site. Yes, every single page- we want them to be able to contact you whenever they are ready- without clicking through to other pages.
Having a google maps link available will also help clients find you. If you haven't made one before there's an easy tutorial here.
Use a scheduling link
Remember, clients are often in crisis when they contact us so we want to make it as easy as possible for clients to move from our site to an appointment. Asking them to get out their phones to type in a number is too much for many modern clients.
Using an online scheduling tool to help clients say yes to an initial session with ease. I use Acuity Scheduling for my free screening consultations (before they become clients) but there are many other tools (some of which are HIPPA compliant and will also handle your billing and case files).
Use client language
Clients want to know how you can help them. Use their language instead of jargon about your training or therapeutic orientation to help them know clearly and easily what you can offer and how you help.
Make your offering clear
Most clients will spend under 10 seconds on a site before deciding if they want more information- or leaving to check another therapist's site. Be sure your homepage clearly says you offer counseling, or therapy in a specific form (therapy for teens, couples counseling, premarital consultations, christian counseling etc).
If it's easy to understand quickly clients will be far more likely to explore your site for more information (and set up a consultation).
Clean up your about page
The about page is the most visited page on most therapists' sites. Use this page to get clear by writing from the client's perspective, tell them what makes you passionate about this work and what makes your work unique.
If you outline your training and education make sure it's clear to the client how your training applies to helping them (for more on what to write on your site click here).
Answer the phone
Here's where a lot of therapists miss potential clients. If they call you, they want to see you- set a time near the end of each day and be sure you return each and every call.
Here's a rule of thumb: if you don't have time to return calls, you don't have time to take new clients.
Finally, follow up is one of the places many therapists miss opportunities with new clients. If you miss a call, or someone doesn't give a call back, do take the time to reach out one more time just to be sure they have the referrals they need, or to let them know you have a new opening.
I can't tell you how many of my clients have appreciated this follow up and have told me how few therapists actually followed up with them. Lots of clients are out their writing for a call back, if you are the therapist who does you will have an advantage in filling your caseload.
There you have it- seven simple tips to fill your couch. Take a few minutes this week to tune up your site and notice how it helps connect clients to your work in the coming months.
If you want further help building your private practice site, or developing a purposeful practice schedule a free consultation here. I am always happy to talk with other providers to help you build your business.
Gina Senarighi is a business coach for therapists, social media strategist, and author. With careful planning and strategic marketing, in under one year she lead three thriving therapy practices.
Gina has quickly become a trusted voice on authenticity in marketing as an author, teacher, and guest expert on local and national media.
Due to her successes in therapy business she's been coaching other therapists to grow their counseling practices with ease and integrity.