3 Digital Engagement Trends to Watch
Get ahead of the curve and drive growth in healthcare by looking to innovations from other industries.
Digital patient engagement technology, such as online scheduling and patient portals, became essential during the pandemic as providers looked for new ways to furnish care remotely. But these tools are not going anywhere and healthcare consumer expectations continue to evolve.
Consumers expect transparency and convenience, and digital engagement tools can be the make or break difference. According to Fierce Healthcare, 60% of consumers say virtual care options impact what provider they choose. Medical providers need to look beyond their industry walls to source the next and best practices that are shaping their market. That includes better customer experience, streamlining services, and digital tools compatible with the devices consumers use all day, every day.
Creating a Beginning-to-End Consumer Experience
Creating a positive healthcare experience from start to finish is key to maintaining a loyal patient base. Look at how the hotel industry leverages technology to improve customer experience. From online check-in and check-out to one-click taxi booking, guests receive relevant and immediate responses to their needs. Meanwhile, the staff is able to focus on more important, immediate demands. According to Hotel Technology News, “81% of travelers seek advanced digital customer service experience from hotels.” Setting the stage at the first point of contact has a profound influence on patient impressions. Consider reviewing these steps:
- Scheduling an appointment should be painless and provide clear, concise instructions on the next steps. Patients should understand what the appointment entails.
- Showing up to an appointment should be simple and straightforward, since the provider has already engaged with the patient and provided necessary information. The patient should be reminded ahead of time to show up with the required documents or information.
- With a patient portal that houses test results and provides a platform for the client to interact with their medical provider, digital engagement continues past the appointment itself.
Streamlining Admin Work with Digital Tools
From OpenTable to Yelp, the restaurant industry has led the way with online scheduling options for customers. For food service companies, reservation systems lift responsibilities from staff and significantly improve day-to-day operations. Management can better manage the workflow and resources needed based on reservations, all while growing their client base.
Staffing shortages impact all aspects of healthcare and, ultimately, hurt patient experience and satisfaction. Health systems of all kinds are working beyond capacity while facing resource shortages, resulting in staff burnout and resignations.
Anytime a process can relieve task management for an already overburdened and fatigued workforce, businesses are accomplishing two goals at once—increasing customer satisfaction and reducing staff burden. Tools that can streamline operations and elevate the patient experience include:
- Convenient online scheduling, including the option for easy cancellation and rescheduling, as well as automated appointment reminders
- Automatic test result delivery, including the opportunity to review test results instantly online
One solution for labs and radiology centers is LabFinder. With automated appointment reminders, test results delivered directly to consumers, and a convenient portal, our white-label solution increases patient satisfaction while reducing staff workloads.
Strategically Climbing Search Engine Rankings
When your business comes up quickly on search engines, it means that the right patients can find your business when they need it. Let’s take an example from e-commerce. Etsy achieves incredible SEO results, consistently reaching the top of page one for shopping queries. There are a few reasons why Etsy ranks well, one of the main reasons being keywords.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of utilizing keywords to improve rankings on search engines such as Google. Online users click on the first few results knowing that the higher the placement of the result, the more relevant and valuable the information is.
Etsy has relevant keywords throughout every page of their site — in product descriptions, artist bios, and even reviews. Etsy sellers also leverage seasonal keywords and trends, often frontloading those into product descriptions.
Optimizing every page on your site to target specific keywords will help to improve your ranking, but it can be a bit of a haul. Like Etsy connects artists and makers with consumers, LabFinder connects laboratories and diagnostic centers with patients looking for these services nearby. With LabFinder’s white label service, you can instantly begin improving your SEO strategy. When you join the largest online healthcare network, you receive some of the SEO benefits of a robust website, without having to build out new web pages. LabFinder allows you to collect online reviews, full of relevant keywords from your happy customers, which helps to increase your search ranking for relevant queries.
When users search for “find a lab near me” or “where to get a COVID test,” your website is going to rank higher thanks to search engine optimization, increasing website traffic volume and your chances of booking a new patient. What’s more, new patients can discover you for the tests they need via our search tools—and the whole process is free for the consumer.
Across multiple industries, customers’ needs are being addressed online at a personal level. Healthcare providers need to not just keep up, but stay ahead of the curve.