wordpressMany aesthetic practices utilize the WordPress platform for their website, and for good reason. It’s open source, incredibly robust, and it’s free. You can customize it any way you want and take advantage of it’s many free plugins.

Here’s a breakdown of some of the essential types of plugins you should be using:

1) SEO: You have many options here, and with most you can’t go wrong. Yoast SEO, All in One SEO, and Headspace are a few of the more popular ones. You’ll want to make sure that you can:

– customize the permalinks to auto-generate clean urls (yoursite.com/facial-rejuvenation instead of yoursite.com/?category=3)

– easily add title tags & meta descriptions

– create an XML sitemap

– add a meta tag to confirm  your Google Analytics or Google Webmaster Tools accounts

2) Contact Form: We always preach about the ‘call to action’ being essential for lead generation, and it should always be paired with a form. There are quite a few contact form plugins you can choose from, including Gravity Forms, CForms, and Contact Form 7. One tip when implementing these is to have your developer code them so that you can pull source information about each lead, including where they came from, down to the keyword they searched.

example lead tracking

3) Photo Gallery: If you run an aesthetic practice you should be using a photo gallery, even if you’re not performing surgical procedures. The biggest thing with your gallery is to

i) take quality photos (from the same angle and with the same lighting)

ii) take them consistently

ii) keep you gallery organized

Most of the gallery plugins will get the job done because the flaws I notice are more with items #1 or #2. With #3, the biggest issue is ease of navigating from one case to another. We’ve got a new photo gallery plugin we’re introducing in the coming weeks that is nothing like anything that’s available! It has a custom backend for easy bulk uploading and editing, full mobile responsiveness, and custom filtering. The latter is great for practices with huge quantities of photos as you’ll allow patients to filter by gender, age range and more (implant size)! If you’d like to learn more about this plugin leave us your info here.

photo gallery filtering

Turbo gallery preview with filtering tools

4) Spam Control: While there are many other spam plugins available, the one we’ve been using for years is Askimet. This plugin will help you better locate and reply to legitimate comments on your blog.

5) Login Security: Before you consider this, start by ensuring that all your users have different, strong passwords. Next, consider a beefed up plugin for preventing brute force attacks, such as Login Lockdown, Better WP Security, and WP Login Security, among others.

6) Caching: It’s important you take several steps to ensure your site loads quickly, as this can affect your organic rankings and user experience. You’ll first want to check on the server side, making sure your site’s available bandwidth and disk space are adequate. Then look on the site, and consider compressing CSS, javascript, and images. The latter can be done with tools such as tinypng.com. Most importantly though, utilize a caching plugin, such as WP Super Cache, which will generate static HTML files much more quickly than some of your heavier PHP scripts. All of these things lead to a faster website.

7) Lead Pages: This 3rd party software is great for building landing pages, incorporating calls to action that pop, and sliding contact forms. Better yet, all these marketing tools integrate with WordPress. If you’re considering running an Adwords campaign try using Lead Pages. You can even split test with a Lead Pages landing page vs a page on your site to see how they perform.

While WordPress comes with a bevy of advantages, the one main disadvantage is security. The reason is that the plugins (and themes) that you may be utilizing are susceptible to hacking, especially as they become outdated, so remember to keep all your plugins up-to-date. You may also consider using a 3rd party WordPress security software such as Sucuri. This is a very solid solution that goes above and beyond the login protection noted in #5.

If you have any questions about developing a WordPress website or simply enhancing it then drop Turbo a line here or call us directly at 877-673-7096 x2.