Building Your Website with WordPress

WordPress logo

Your LTC Pharmacy or consultant pharmacy practice needs a website. Your website is your portal to your customers and your potential customers so consider it the hub of your digital identity. We covered several options for a website platform in a previous post, but WordPress is worth considering.

WordPress is a website platform that is classified within the broad heading of a Content Management System (CMS). These types of websites allow people other than the designer or webmaster to edit content and update articles, posts, and other content. WordPress powers more than one-third of all the websites in the world.

Why Consider WordPress for Your Website?

Unless you know the basic language of website development: html, CSS, Javascript and PHP, you will need to rely on a developer or some type of drop-and-drag editor to create your site. WordPress is a proven platform that, with a bit of training, can be used by non-technical people to create fully functional, interactive websites.

The magic used by WordPress is that it’s built on PHP, which is a server-side programming language that makes it possible for you to create and interact with databases and deliver customized content to your audience. For example, a PHP can manage a login attempt by checking a database to determine whether a user is registered and if the password entered by the user is correct. If so, the user is granted access to your site. If not, the user is invited to register.

PHP also allows your website to handle eCommerce solutions and many other functional elements of a modern website. There are alternatives to PHP, but PHP is among the most popular web programming languages, used by such stalwarts as Facebook, Wikipedia and Yahoo.

Customize Your Site with WordPress Themes and Plugins

A key advantage of using a platform like WordPress is its almost endless number of themes. WordPress themes are site templates that you can customize for your own purposes. There are thousands of free WordPress themes and many of them are free to use and customize. Not every theme is as simple to customize as others, but the great feature of a WordPress theme is that you can swap themes easily to see how each one looks with your images and content without having to do much work.

Plugins Add Features

WordPress plugins are modules that perform particular functions. For instance, there are plugins that create web forms, perform analytics, create pop-ups, eCommerce and a vast assortment of other things you never imagined you needed. Plugins are simply downloaded to your WordPress site, activated and ready to go to work. Again, no coding needed.

The WordPress Learning Curve

While WordPress is simple to use there are a few things that you need to know to use it to its best advantage. Fortunately, since WordPress is such a popular platform there are plenty of tutorials available to get you up and running quickly. One of the most complete sources ins wpbeginner. There is also a You Tube channel associated with this site and can help you get up to speed in short order.

WordPress.com has very good tutorials that will help you along the way and has webinars and prerecorded content for those who learn best by video.

Give it a Try

WordPress may, or may not, be your perfect solution, but it is worth giving it a try. The main attraction is the sheer number of developers who continue to churn out new themes and plugins that can produce professional websites without having to learn a markup language, scripting or programming.

Choosing a Website Platform

 

logoYour website is the central character in your digital marketing efforts. Prospects can search for you and find your business (provided you have optimized it for search). Your website will probably host your marketing documents, content marketing materials and will be a platform for exchanging information to prospects and customers.

There are three primary options for your website platform: You, or your developer, can create a custom site using html, css and server-side technology; you can use a commercial drag and drop platform that makes building a website fairly simple and requires no coding skills, or; you can use a content management system that provides a comprehensive set of tools to enhance the user experience and requires minimal coding skills.

Take some time to review your options when creating your website. Do you have technical support? If so, you might find the content management platform to be a good starting point. The templates used in these sites can be modified but take a bit of skill to make things look right. If you’re on your own you may find the drag and drop platforms to be a way to create an effective site with a fairly shallow learning curve. 

Take a look at our free download: Deciding on a Website Platform to get an overview of the options available.

 

Define Who You Are

You can’t be everything. Trying to satisfy everyone is the quickest way to satisfy no one. The first step in creating your value proposition is to determine what it is you do best.

Are you a consultant pharmacist? If so, what’s your strength? What makes you different from all the other consultant pharmacists? Time to be brutally honest. Maybe you can ask colleagues to help you figure this out. Do you have a special talent for persuading prescribers to alter a resident’s drug regimen? Perhaps efficiency is your strong suit. Time is money and you can thoroughly evaluate resident charts faster than your peers.

If you manage a pharmacy what is your strength? Are you great at helping your client nursing homes maintain compliance? Do you excel at on-time delivery? How about therapeutic interchange that maintains high-quality medication therapy at the lowest cost? All these are valuable to nursing homes but they are more valuable to some than others.

Try to make your value proposition as tight as possible. In the world of digital marketing fortune favors the specific. Consider your competitors. Do they promise excellence in everything? If so, they’re bending the truth and your potential customers know that. Be the one consultant pharmacist or pharmacy that builds on its valuable strengths and buyers will notice.