Whether the copy feels dead, the images just don’t give the right vibes, or something is just no longer feeling like it reflects you, there comes a time when you’ll be needing to give your therapy website an update.
Let’s walk through 9 of the easiest ways you can update your therapy website today. Many of the recommendations can be implemented in as little as a few minutes. Let’s jump right in.
1. Remove One Thing That’s Unnecessary
Probably the quickest and easiest way to update your website is to get rid of something that isn’t really necessary. Think of this like spring cleaning (that you can do during any season).
For example you can remove design elements, images, sentences, or even entire pages.
You might also want to remove anything seasonal (as in, it’s no longer Christmas so it’s time to take the twinkle lights down type-of-thing).
If you’d like to have a simple, effective website, ask this important question: “Is this truly important to communicating how I help?”
Whenever the answer is no, you may have identified something that isn’t really needed in order for your message to come through.
In some cases, we really do need design elements, images, or words to help the vibe of the site.
But it’s also easy to go overboard. Things like swirly borders on images, overuse of patterns and textures, repetitive text, or too many images could all be complicating your design and making it more difficult for your solution to shine through.
The first easy way to refresh your private practice website is to identify and remove something that isn’t needed.
2. Fix One Thing That’s Broken
Broken things are frustrating to visitors and can greatly reduce credibility. In order for your website to reflect your level of professionalism, you’ll want things to work. And by “work” – I mean literally work – as in, not be broken.
Here are some of the things that can be broken on a private practice website and why they matter:
- Broken links – including links to other pages within your website, links that link out to other websites, or links that are supposed to do something (like open up your online scheduler). Links should never land a visitor in the wrong place, result in an error, or do nothing when it looks like it should do something.
- Broken layouts and design – are certain things on your website just not aligned? Columns off to one side? Are there pictures in a row that are all different sizes when they should be the same size? When a website looks like it’s full of layout and design errors, it lowers trust.
- Broken mobile experience – If your site looks great on a big laptop screen but falls apart as soon as someone visits on their phone, your website’s mobile experience is broken. With so many visitors visiting websites on-the-go, it’s vital to ensure that mobile experience is a good one.
- Broken social media menu – Sometimes social links change. And when they do, that change needs to be reflected on your website’s social media menu. Just like with other sorts of links on your therapist website, you’ll want to ensure social links land a visitor on your social media profile, and not an error page.
It’s important to deliver a good experience to the visitors of your website. Both your potential clients and your referral sources want to get to know, like, and trust you. Depending on how broken something is, it could block that from ever happening.
Visiting your website and browsing around to check that everything is in working order is a great habit to get into. It’s also an easy way to update your therapy website.
3. Make One Change To Improve The Navigation
Your website’s navigation is a vital piece of ensuring your website is usable. A well-planned navigation allows visitors to find what they are looking for easier.
In the case of a therapist website, navigation is even more important. Often, those who are seeking therapy services are not at their cognitive best. If they are in high emotional distress, it’s even more vital to make the information on your site as easy to navigate as possible.
If you’re looking to update your therapy website, the great news is that thinking through your website’s navigation can be an easy way to improve the experience for your visitors.
Here are the top three things you want your main navigation to look like:
- The main navigation at the top of your website should have 7 menu items or less
- Follow navigation best practices and make sure the first menu item is “Home” and links to the home page and the last menu item is “Contact” and links to the contact page
- Be descriptive in your naming of menu items so it’s obvious what someone will find on that page. For example, avoid “Personal Growth” as a menu item. Instead use, “Therapy For Entrepreneurs” – be literal, not poetic.
Certain pages shouldn’t be in the primary navigation at all and, instead, can be moved to a utility menu in the footer of the website. Those items include things like links to a client portal or “forms” if you have a page for downloading forms on your website.
Between reorganizing the menu to have fewer items, naming things appropriately, and moving utility items to a separate menu: you’ll have made easy but important website updates.
4. Edit One Page Of Copy, Or Even One Section Of One Page
Whether you wrote a page of copy you were never satisfied with, you wrote too much, or wrote too little, there’s almost always room for improvement with website copy.
Instead of attempting to rewrite your entire website, an easier way would be to edit just a single page.
What if you had the right amount of copy and it was purposeful: accurately portraying who you are, how you help, and encouraging visitors to reach out?
The key is to get some fresh inspiration on what to write, edit, or add. It’s often useful to start with getting clear on the purpose of the page and taking care to speak directly to your best fit clients in language that they would actually use themselves.
What type of help would you find the most supportive in the process? How about using a tool like Empathycopy to draft a page based on your input in as little as 15 minutes? Or finding a course or a editor to speed the process along?
The goal would be to try and have less copy that is more purposeful and client-focused. Instead of a ton of fluffy stuff, or salesy stuff, or clinical stuff, how can you edit your copy to sound like you and make it clear you understand where your clients are coming from?
The result would be shorter pages, clearer formatting, and a website that just makes sense for who you’re trying to connect with.
Editing a page, or even just a section of a page, is an easy way to update your therapy website – a baby step you can take today.
5. Replace One Image
When it comes to an effective therapist website, images really matter.
Brains interpret images much quicker than text. So work work work on writing great words for your website AND remember that the very first impressions that your website makes depends on things like images (and other visual stuff like colors, and fonts, and textures, and layouts).
Images and design are the first impression. Text is the deeper look.
Images communicate visually with visitors. Images tell the story of the transformation you offer, reflecting the destination that your clients wish to reach with your help. Connected, happy, calm, feeling better. What are you offering and what are your best fit clients needing? Images help you communicate that.
And luckily, it’s easy to swap out images to update your website.
Instead of doing an image overhaul, what about replacing just one image? How do-able could that be?
Perhaps it’s an image that you never really loved, or it’s the homepage image, the one that makes a huge first impression. Or maybe it’s an updated picture of you.
Updating images can make our website feel totally refreshed.
6. Add One Call To Action On Every Page
A call to action, or CTA, is your invitation to your website visitors to take the next step in getting your help.
For most therapists, their website’s CTA is to reach out for a free consultation call or to set up a first session.
If you don’t already have a CTA on every page of your website, doing so is a great way to update your site.
Every single page of your website is an opportunity to invite your visitors in. To guide them with the “how” behind getting your help.
If you already have a call to action on every page, another great way to update your website is through a call to action audit. Visit every page of your website and access:
- Is my call to action noticeable?
- Is it easy to understand?
- Does it leave any questions or concerns unanswered?
A strong CTA will do all three. So use the list of questions to improve your calls to action.
Calls to action help guide your website visitors through the journey of getting the help they are seeking. As a key component on every page, ensuring you have a CTA and that they are effective is a great way to update your therapy website.
7. Create A One Minute Video Intro
Updating your website isn’t only about working with what’s already there. Sometimes, updating your therapy website is about creating and publishing completely new content.
Whether you already have or don’t have a video of yourself for your website, creating a quick, one minute video is a great way to update your website.
Data shows us that videos keep people on your website longer and with higher engagement. Video also helps people understand your vibe. They get to know, like, and trust you on a way deeper level enabling them to figure out, “yes! This is the therapist for me!”
Videos are also proven to make you more memorable. So you will stand out more to that client that is in the middle of comparing all the therapists out there.
Ready to create your intro video? Make it as simple as possible. Turn on your laptop camera or set up your phone. No expensive equipment needed.
Talk for 30-45 seconds about who you help, specifically focusing on what your clients tend to struggle with. Then invite them to reach out for a free consultation call or for their first appointment.
You can do as many takes as you need to get it all in one take. Upload your video to a platform like YouTube and embed it on your website.
Although creating a one minute intro video and putting it on your website takes quite a few steps, it’s also a proven way to increase the number of clients reaching out to you. So updating your therapist website with an intro video makes good sense.
8. Change One Color Or Color Combination
It can take a lot to do an entire website overhaul. But changing just a color or two? That ought to be doable.
Color plays a huge role in your website’s vibe. It can convey various emotions, speak to different types of clients, and even influence behavior.
Color can also reflect aspects of who you are as a therapist and how you support your clients. If you’re that energetic therapist that is extremely motivating, go for warmer and more saturated colors like oranges. Or if you’re the therapist that everyone instantly feels calm around, maybe go for a pastel like lavender or light green.
If you feel like your website’s colors could be matched more closely to you and your clients, updating a color or two can make a world of difference.
Try changing the color of all the links on your site or maybe of a background that appears across multiple pages. You can approach it as a color replacement or simply find opportunities to infuse a new color or two.
Changing out colors is a fun, creative, and easy way to update your therapy website.
9. Update Your Copyright Notice With Correct Year
Even if your copyright notice displays the wrong year, anything that you post on your website is instantly copyright to you.
However, if a visitor sees that the copyright notice is the incorrect year or span of years, they may assume the website is abandoned or at least neglected.
Neither assumption is good for building trust.
If you’ve forgotten to update the copyright notice, taking a few minutes to update it can help build trust and reassure visitors that you are there – there’s an actual person behind the site generally keeping all information up to date.
There’s some differing opinions as to what the most correct year to insert is, but general consensus is that your copyright notice should read as one of the following:
Either with the current year
“Copyright © 2022 Your Business Name”
Or the birthyear of your website until the current year
“Copyright © 2015-2022 Your Business Name”
Determine which style you’d like to go with and keep that current year up to date. Keep the trust alive between you and every visitor you have.
Updating Your Therapy Website: Important
Updating your therapist website is an important piece of building and growing a private practice. By keeping your website updated, visitors feel your site is current, trustworthy, and will lead to an increase in clients.
Keeping your website updated can also have a big impact on you. Your confidence in your website influences how you show up in your marketing.
A website you are proud of is a huge motivator for being seen and making authentic connections. And visibility and connection are the main elements of getting clients.
Imagine having a website that always reflects you. What impact would that have on your practice and on you?
There are so many reasons it makes sense to keep your website up to date. And with the above list, you have 9 easy ways to do so!
Hope these ideas help you on your website journey and help you continue to do the important work you do as a therapist.