The COVID-19 pandemic has completely reshaped the face of healthcare. All around the country, and the world, people are looking for healthcare options that are both informative and easily accessible.
Gone are the days spent counting the hours in hospital waiting rooms or fighting for last minute appointments. Instead, customers expect a digital healthcare experience that meets their needs whenever and wherever they require care. In our new healthcare climate, convenient care is king.
Where does all this insider information about new digital healthcare demands come from?
Boston Digital recently surveyed 500 healthcare customers to understand their sentiment about their current digital healthcare options. Using the insight of respondents ranging from Gen Z to Baby Boomers, we learned about some key factors that are driving the increased demand for digital healthcare.
The results are clear: this past year and a half has reshaped the modern healthcare landscape. As more people require online options for medical care, it’s up to healthcare providers to adapt to the new environment and create engaging digital platforms.
Three major concepts stood out in our data - the importance of engaging websites, the need for informative healthcare content, and the lack of digital healthcare accessibility for all ages.
Building comprehensive digital healthcare platforms with these concepts in mind could be what many companies need to ensure that their clients are able to access information and feel comfortable seeking treatment on and off the screen.
Healthcare-related websites are often the face of digital healthcare. Our results indicate that 92% of consumers manage their health online using a website in some capacity. Whether it’s scheduling an appointment or something as simple as researching a physician’s phone number, almost every single individual is interacting with a healthcare-related website to help with their medical care.
This means that healthcare websites need to do it all - provide an eye-catching interface, have intuitive navigation layouts, incorporate the right tech stack to efficiently capture visitor data and curate personalized experiences and effectively engage with customers through communication tools.
Informative Healthcare Content
The most common way patients are managing their health online is through education. A third of respondents said that researching symptoms was the online healthcare activity they participated in the most, with 93% of them turning to digital healthcare content to inform them about those symptoms.
When it comes to finding answers for their health concerns, consumers are looking for information that comes straight from the source. 82% of respondents claimed they would trust educational healthcare content more if it came directly from their providers.
Paired with the shift in Google’s algorithm, this insight should spark real momentum for those looking to build a robust content strategy for their healthcare-focused website. Now, healthcare providers, especially those focused on local search optimization, will be favored over larger databases such as WebMD.
Providers who aren’t generating content that speaks directly to the health challenges of their patients are missing out on a critical opportunity to build trust and thought leadership within their sectors.
Digital Access for Everyone
Additionally, the data made it evident that customers of all ages are looking for improved digital healthcare options, not just the tech-focused Gen Z.
While many in the healthcare industry perceive digital options as a youth-driven solution, 63% of all consumers surveyed used their healthcare site often or occasionally.
Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Baby Boomers all listed scheduling appointments as their top online priority. This kind of data makes it obvious that companies who ignore the demand for digital healthcare will miss out on a wide audience of customers interested in cutting-edge care.
As you implement the above strategies, efforts must be made to make your digital healthcare options accessible to all audiences. This includes translation functionality for your ESL patients, as well as remaining up to date on ADA compliance.
With the massive changes in our healthcare environment following the pandemic, customers of all ages and backgrounds expect an impressive digital healthcare experience from their providers.
The question becomes, is your healthcare company meeting those needs?
For more results and implications from Boston Digital’s survey on digital healthcare trends, download the full report.