3 Ways we can improve online patient experience, lets get into it.
We all know that if you provide good service it's likely your clients or customers will return next time. It's actually true for the online world as well.
Therefore, we are going to look at ways we can improve online patient experience, so you can keep building a successful business.
What is UX design?
UX design stands for user experience. It's about taking the user through accessibility, usability and a pleasurable experience by interacting with the product.
It's important for patients to feel a good experience by making it easy for them.
Have you ever heard of the 'golden rule'? Treat others the way you want to be treated. This is actually a Biblical principal that was taught by Jesus, but this very simple rule can be applied to any business transaction.
Imagine Mrs. Smith, a new patient, has come to visit you about pain in her bones. You, the physician, take the time to empathize with Mrs. Smith and allow her to express her feelings of her symptoms of pain, and the recent loss of her husband.
By treating Mrs. Smith with gentle loving care, it puts her at ease, which is the same way you want to be treated. That is what the 'golden rule' is all about. Treating others the way you want to be treated. If every doctor on Earth, treated me like this I would be so happy and your pockets would be a little fatter.
But the positive interaction doesn't need to stop there in the clinic, it can continue from you to your staff down to your online presence.
Here's what I mean..
3 Ways to improve online patient experience
1. Examine UX Design goals
When you first design your website, you need to solve a problem. Then you start working on the solution.
Ask yourself: What problem am I trying to solve?
Are you trying to get your patients or clients to register? Are they filling out forms? or Are they making an appointment with you?
For example, imagine you're a physician caring for patients with diabetes.
What to do:
To improve online patient experience, have your design team analyze the requirements for the design and really understand it. Examine the patients in real time, so you can see the full process of completing a certain task to discover what they are struggling with. By doing this, you will know what your patients are experiencing and what works and what doesn't work.
-Ask stakeholders and discuss general design approach, for example "What are we building?" instead of "What problem are we solving" maybe this will make more sense to the client.
-Conduct one on one interviews with patients
-implement user journeys and implement data analytics software
User journeys for patients
Macmillancase study: Example of how user experience was improved in their website.
A good example of a user journey is implemented in Macmillan research create a region-specific, online marketplace which could help to provide practical support to people affected by cancer.
Have a business process model notation
Your web designer should have a business process model notation , which is a standard for business process modeling that provides a graphical notation for business process in a Business process diagram.
Don't assume that people know what to do on your website. Also, don't criticize them with an attitude by saying, "they're just too dumb to figure it out on their own." This will drive people to leave your site and perhaps never return to your business. Making it too difficult for people to navigate through your website, will just frustrate them all together.
Imagine going to an airport to catch a flight. At the moment you drive up to the airport you see signs telling you where to park, what level the baggage area is at and where the arrival section is. Not to mention the rental car area and the waiting area is located at. Blah blah blah.
Okay now what if there's no signs..
Now what do you do?
We don't know because we don't have any instructions.
It would be a chaotic nightmare. Cars would be crashing into each other and there would be tons of complaints by angry people missing their flights. Not a good experience.
I would avoid the airport forever.
So now imagine your website with no direction. Yikes!
Who would do such a thing?
I repeat do not confuse your users on your website.
What to do:
To improve online patient experience, use less clutter on your website. Too much text confuses the user because you get lost in all the words. It confuses the user all together. Have headlines big and bold, such as
The directions should be clear and understandable. See example below:
Directions: Please fill out all your information in this area.
Buttons and call-to-action
Your submit call-to-action button should be a bold color other than black. Do use the same color for all your buttons. Also, links should stand out to show the user it goes to another website or page in your site.
Going to the movies doesn't need to be a painful experience. Just make it better. This is an awesome article by Medium.com that you will love if you like movies and it will show you how user experience can be improved.
3. Booking appointments online
What to do
To improve online patient experience, incorporate booking appointment systems online to make health care more accessible to the patient. You will also save time and increase revenue by having patients book their own appointments.
This case study conducted by the National Institute of Health showed positive results by using a web-based appointment system. The results included: low no-show rate, decreased staff and waiting time, and improved patient satisfaction.
However, adopting to a web-based system sometimes could be difficult for patients because of their negative past experiences with computers. Most elderly patients are not willing to adopt to the way of technology simply because they were raised in a generation of making phone appointments instead.
I can totally understand why online booking systems could be a problem for some people, so we can only adopt according to the patient's ability and not our own.
Although, we can suggest that booking appointment systems have many advantages, such as increase revenue, saving time, and eliminating environmental waste by going paperless, it can only be fair to list some of the disadvantages.
Abstain from forcing patients or customers to adopt to your new software. This will only can agitate people and only make matters worst.
I can only mention that these web based software can improve the online patient experience if the patient permits it.
We can't force a person to do something they are not willing to do.
Therefore, you will probably get a younger population to change to a web-based system easier simply because they're a generation that was exposed to the most technology over the years.
The only way to see if this could work is to do an experiment with all of your patients. Notify them to see who will actually use the system and get some feedback to adjust your system on the website.
Just remember to always keep your patients happy to improve online patient experience no matter what.