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What to Expect When You’re Expecting a New Website

November 15, 2018 | Keir Bradshaw
Technology

Every marketer can agree that there is nothing quite like committing to building a website. From hosting and design to publishing and maintaining, there’s much that a brand should know about their upcoming domain.

At MERGE Atlanta, our specialty is to position our healthcare clients as leaders in a complex, competitive market. And for the healthcare industry in particular, designing a website requires a particular focus on providing a clean and user-friendly experience for patients, providers, and other users. To help guide others along this journey, we’ve put together an all-in-one guide to help ensure your website redesign project is a success.

Find a trusted partner

Choosing and working with the right technology vendor really is half the battle. There are certain things to look for in a partnership—reputation being one of them. Do your research and review the vendor’s portfolio to see recent examples of their work. Do the case studies reflect the ambitions of the projects? Are the websites currently functioning in a way that supports the user? What do others have to say about the functionality? Find a right vendor that you trust, and the rest should fall into place.

Plan for the year ahead

From kickoff to launch, a website often takes about nine months to a year to complete. This is because most healthcare websites require complex development processes. Technology moves rapidly, and the build inevitably becomes more and more intricate. Soon you’re left with a laundry-list of necessities such as optimizing the site search engine and providing a consistent mobile-responsive experience. Therefore, it’s crucial to budget for both time and expenses. Keep a contingency budget in mind when planning for a project of this magnitude.

The big day

Launch day has finally arrived. That’s it, right? Unfortunately, getting the green light to publish doesn’t guarantee a smooth delivery. There are always a few hiccups at go-live—and that’s when the true value of partnership and trust really kicks in. An experienced vendor will have an arsenal of tricks at hand to course correct any errors. These challenges should be solved in real time, so make sure your vendor has a fully employed versus outsourced team to be all hands-on deck until you’re in the clear and the site is running smoothly.

Post-partum

Congratulations! Your new website should be up and running without any glitches. Be proud of all the hard work that went into making this happen and enjoy the moment because now the real work begins Like an infant, a website can’t launch and be expected to run itself. You’ll need to build a healthy routine of constant care and maintenance: create compelling content and optimize and promote your pages.

Remember to keep a healthy perspective throughout this entire process. Your website isn’t a static page; it’s a living, breathing, organic process. You’ll need to keep iterating versions for it to work at optimum performance for your users. After launch, continue to go back and track its usage, measure the results and make changes to increase performance. Doing so will ensure that your brand delivers the quality of care and excellence that you’ve promised at home, in the office, and online.

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