JOHN DIXON ACUPUNCTURE

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Webhealer.net: A Good Starter for your Complementary Therapy Business

webhealer article

If you are a Complementary Therapist looking at creating a new website for your business, then Webhealer.net is a good choice.

Even if you already have a website, if it is not furnishing you with any enquiries, bookings, or traffic, then you may want to consider Webhealer.net as a viable option.

Unaffiliated Article

Before we go on, I’ll make it known, that unlike my articles about WordPress.com or Solo Build It (SBI), this is not an affiliated marketing article. I get no benefit or financial reward for promoting the services of Webhealer.net.

So why do it?

I am simply sharing my business experience. This company helped to give my business a good boost in terms of patient bookings, and if you are just starting out, I believe it can help do the same for you.

I genuinely believe that Webhealer.net can be very beneficial to a Complementary Therapist starting up their business in the UK. In this article, I will give a short review of Webhealer.net along with some of the pros and cons of using this website platform.

Choosing a Website platform

Before using Webhealer.net, I had tried a couple of different platforms before then, but neither gave me much traffic or bookings.

I started using Webhealer.net for my acupuncture business website in 2014 and I still use Webhealer today as it has helped build my business substantially.  However, I have now began moving away from it to WordPress.com. I will explain my reasons later in this article.

Despite this, Webhealer.net still continues to provide me with patient enquiries and bookings (as well as a share of sales calls).

What is WebHealer.net

Webhealer is a UK-based company that specialises in creating websites for psychological therapists, complementary therapists and other type of sole-traders in the field of alternative and complementary healthcare and counselling in the UK

The company behind it is called PHD-interactive. They also have a sister company, which provides websites for other kinds of sole-traders like builders, gardeners and so on. They are easy enough to find online through google and straightforward to set up.

Costs

Webhealer charges an initial set-up fee of £50. Then you must choose and pay an additional one-off fee for one of their three designs – Bronze (£39), Silver (£150) or Gold (£450). If you go with the gold option, Webhealer will provide a bespoke service and design your website to fit your needs. These kinds of websites do look and feel a lot more professional compared to the standard bronze design that I went with – mind you for £450, they should do.

After that, there is a small monthly fee depending on your plan. The basic plan is £10 a month. The Basic Plus plan is £13 a month and the Premium service is £20 a month. This is charged quarterly. The difference between these plans is the number of pages you get.

They also register a domain name for you and charge for it (approx £2.50 a month). They also offer a 2 week trial, which you can cancel and you also have the option to upgrade plans later on.

I chose the most basic option – the Bronze Design and the basic plan. So I only pay £45 (inc VAT) every three months.

Good return

And to put this in perspective, if I have 1-2 clients a month, I will easily cover this fee. With Webhealer, I have usually averaged a lot more than this. So it has been a good investment for quite a small amount of money and some initial work at the beginning.

I know a lot of Complementary Therapists don’t want to pay money for a website or think that a free website is fine. But I would advise you to reconsider as you are losing out on a lot of potential business.

Set-up

At the beginning, you fill out a simple enquiry form on their website and then a representative from Webhealer.net will call you to discuss what kind of therapies you want to advertise and ask about your business needs. It is all very friendly and efficient. You can start with a free 2 week trial.

Then they will give you details of how to log into your account and get started with building the website yourself. Well that has been my experience on the bronze plan.

Templates

The Webhealer website platform is fairly straightforward to set up and use. You choose from one of their themes and basically create your website from there. You decide what text and pictures you want to put on each page.

Depending on your plan, you start off with a set number of pages which you can arrange into a ‘Home’, ‘Contact’, ‘Location’, ‘About you’, ‘FAQ’ and any other kind of pages. The ‘Home’ page is usually fixed and will be the most important page for you to work on as it will be the one containing your all important keyword phrases.

Guidance

Webhealer will give you guidance on creating your homepage and the choice of keywords based on your initial consultation with them. You have to follow their advice and put the work in to make this website company work for you and to get traffic. Two major parts of their advice is to have a lot of content on your homepage and to include an adequate amount of your keywords in a natural way.

On my plan, I got around 5 pages, which was plenty for my purposes. I have noticed that most of my traffic rarely goes beyond my homepage as they can pretty much get all the information they need from it e.g. what services I offer, my cost, location and contact details. Actually as I write this, I’m suddenly aware of just how efficient their homepage design actually is.

However, you can get extra pages added for a few extra pounds a month.

Webhealer is a kind of ‘do what it says on the tin’ – kind of product. The website I finished up with was quite practical and focused on advertising the services of my business – that of a sole trader/small business. Or at least that was my impression. And really, this is what most complementary therapy practitioners need more than anything.

Other  Pros: Setting up your homepage

Webhealer proactively wants to help you set up a website that ranks high on Google. I have discussed in my eBook ‘How to Write a Blog for a Complementary Therapy Business‘, how important it is for your website to rank high on Google in order to be found.

After your discussion with a representative from Webhealer, they will come back to you with a list of potential keywords that they believe will rank higher in the search engine and will help your website become more visible to potential customers

They will advise you to insert these keywords and keyword-phrases a certain number of times in your homepage.  There is also a special dashboard which helps you assess if your usage is adequate.

Dashboard

Webhealer utilises a special dashboard in its administration pages, where you can see how your website ranks for important factors that will affect your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) ranking. These are 1) Keyword Placement, 2) Homepage Wordcount, 3)  Homepage Freshness and 3) InLinks (linkability).

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Basically for each factor there is a dial and four colours.

For example, on the dial for homepage freshness, if you dial falls into the red or orange, it means that you haven’t updated your homepage for a few months, and it recommends you to do something. This may mean you have to add a few lines of text or alter something. If a dial is in any of the greens, it means your freshness is at a good level and you can smoke a cigar to celebrate.

By regularly checking this dashboard and keeping it green, Google will recognise that your website is active and being regularly updated, which it seems to like and hopefully furnish you with a good placement.

This is a very simple and practical tool and makes you stay active in updating your website.

Pros: Visitors

This has been another positive factor for me. I get approximately 1000 visitors a month, every month to my website. That number never seems to fluctuate  It is nearly always the same amount.

That can lead to a minimum of 1-2 new contacts per month. I only need one client who books several times to make a return for me. This traffic came very early and without any major effort on my part other than following their instructions regarding text and keywords.

With any new website, it can really take a long time to build up traffic, so I think that with Webhealer, this regular traffic is a good thing.

Pro: Page one of Google

Webhealer makes a claim that 85-90% of its users will be able to get a page 1 ranking on Google for some of their keyword searches.

At the time of writing this, this is the case for one of my three keyword phrases which Webhealer advised me to use. This is the phrase: ‘Acupuncture Highbury’.

In this instance, I can imagine that is this kind of keyword phrase that will be typed into a search engine, by someone living in Highbury looking for an acupuncture treatment. And indeed, I have picked up a number of clients in Highbury.

Pro: I assume your website will rank high if you work in towns or smaller cities

This is my assumption, but I believe that if you live in a town or small city, Webhealer’s strategy can be very helpful in ranking high on page 1 of Google. This is because your competition will be less.

Pros: Simple to use

Webhealer is very straightforward and simple to use. If you are not confident with building a website or computers in general, then it is very good way to start. They have an online help guide which pretty much explains everything simply. Or if you get stuck you can email them and they have always replied quickly to try to help me.

The limited size of the website template actually means you focus on the most important aspects of your website in order to bring in clients, so there’s no fluff. You only have a few pages on the basic plan and really that is all you need. You do have the option to increase the number of pages for a little extra next month.

Pros: Good customer support.

With a website, you need a good customer support. A team of people who will respond to you quickly and fix any problems you have or offer advice. If I ever had a problem, I simply need to email and usually someone will email back pretty quickly. In many cases, it is because I don’t know how to do something and usually the Webhealer support team will give me a link to the relevant pages in their support guide.

Their support guide is very comprehensive and simple to understand. Also they will personally answer your emails, so you know you are dealing with really human beings.

Pros: a Good Guide book

Webhealer provides a free guidebook – ‘Using the Web to Attract More Clients’. It is worth reading as it helps to understand some aspects of designing your website to rank better.

Pros: Security

Also as regards security, you are unlikely to have any security issues as your website is on their server.

Some Cons

Ultimately I have made a move from Webhealer towards WordPress.com and in some ways I wish I had started earlier. WebHealer has been really helpful in picking up clients over the last few years. It has helped me develop my business and also has return my investment. So for this reason, I would definitely advise therapist to go with it especially when starting.

You can be too reliant on it

However, on the con side, it has made me lazy. My online presence has been not been as developed as I would have liked it to be. By leaving everything to Webhealer, I feel I have  missed out on some learning processes that a lot of website users would do well to go through.

For example, bloggers will be aware that building organic traffic and followers takes time, work, commitment, consistency of posting and a clear strategy.

These lessons are not covered through Webhealer’s programme. Which means that you will miss out on the opportunity to learn specific online skillsets that could help you build a very busy website.

This is fine if all you want it to promote your services but not if you want more than that. In this event, it may be better to give Solo Build It (SBI) a try as their website includes a comprehensive online learning experience.

I have relied too much on WebHealer for my private business. Webhealer helps promote your business and picks up clients. But that is mostly all it is for. If you wanted to do more like sell your own products, create a blog, have an online store, build up an email list or even install a basic monetization option like AdSense, you would not be able to.

Con: Limited choice of customisation / Blog

The WebHealer website template is very fixed and these options I mentioned in the previous paragraph are not really compatible.

For example, when I wanted to add a blog. I tried uploading some articles onto one of the pages and then soon found I had run out of space. When I contacted Webhealer, I was told that there is a limited amount of space per pages and that if I wanted a blog, that I should use an external blogging platform like WordPress.com or Blogger.com and then provide a link to that on one of my pages. That is indeed a practical solution, but not the one I envisioned.

I have looked at other webhealer users for acupuncture practitioners and I was only able to find one website that had a blog. For counsellors, I did find a couple of webhealer users that utilise a blog.

One has turned individual pages into blog articles, which means there will be a limit to the size of the blog and another has used WordPress.com (free plan) as an external blog, which is the more viable option.

Perhaps a blog is not as important as having a relevant homepage stuffed with keywords in getting bookings, but still it is a way to showcase what you are about to perspective clients. And it may be able to get you more traffic if it is a good blog.

Con: You may not be able to grow your traffic past a certain point

Well, this has been my experience. I mentioned that Webhealer getting you a good amount of traffic and visitors is definitely a pro. 1000 a month is a great accomplishment, especially for this field.

On the other hand, it has always remained 1000 visitors. I could never increase the number. I did try various things like creating back-links from other websites and writing articles for other websites to try to draw traffic, but other then a few extra spikes, that has never made much difference.

It may well have been, that I needed to rethink my keywords. However, this thought would not have occurred to me without going through the learning process of setting up another different website and working on building organic traffic by myself.

Checking out other Webhealer.net users

Since writing this article, I have looked at other Webhealer users who practice the same therapy in the same city and noticed that some of them rank a lot higher for more generalised keywords like ‘Acupuncture North London’. A couple are even on page 1. But I am many, many pages behind. I have to wonder why after all these years, I am not there with them.

Obviously, it is because I have not put the work in and perhaps I am not using the right keywords, but then I didn’t know until now, that I could be doing more.

On consideration, if I ranked like this, then my traffic would likely be higher. In comparison, one of my keyword phrases – ‘Reflexology West London’ doesn’t really have much relevance to me, particularly as I don’t really practice in West London, nor is Reflexology my main practice.

Yet, I only realised this because I started writing this article and also because I started to create my own website. So in this respect, by relying on Webhealer too much, has stopped me from developing my own knowledge and skills.

Who is this traffic?

For a long time, I did not even try to figure out who all those visitors were or how they were finding me. I assumed, there were a lot of sales companies finding me through the net, because several times a month, I may get cold-call emails or calls direct to my mobile from salespeople trying to redesign my website or offering me sponsored google listings.

This was my problem and again my laziness. I always assumed that it was not possible to find out through WebHealer, so I let it slide.

Pro: You can install Google analytics with Webhealer

Only recently, I found out that Webhealer does have a way of enabling you to install a Google analytics plug-in. It is not as straightforward as installing a plugin for WordPress.org or WordPress.com, as you have to sign up with google and then ask Webhealer to install the code for you, but it can be done nonetheless. And it is something I should have done myself earlier. It would have helped me figure out my traffic sources and look at ways to optimise my website much earlier. Although, I wonder just how many Webhealer users are aware of the value of doing this?

Con: Lack of monetization options.

Webhealer is all about promoting your business, but not monetization options. One of the reasons is that they have a fixed template that I understand is not compatible with AdSense. It may be possible to use affiliate marketing links, but I never really tried. They do not seem to have their own affiliate marketing scheme.

I think if current users like myself had an incentive to promote Webhealer to other complementary therapists, I probably would have done more.

Con: No affiliate programme

Over the years I have met several therapists who had websites that as far as I could tell, did not have much traffic nor get business through their website. At the time, I may mention to them that I get around 50% of my business through my website company, Webhealer.net and would half-heartedly mentioned they might want to try it. But I never really pushed it. I had no incentive to do so.

With hindsight, if Webhealer had an affiliate programme than, I would have made more of an effort to promote it to them, or even have written a review article like this earlier. And that would have been a win-win for everyone.

A therapist get a website that helps boost his or her business. I get a very small percentage and Webhealer gets another client for a number of years. Oh yes, and some clients are able to find a therapist in their local area that can help them.

Con: Unable to install a mailing list.

Not being able to install some common plug-ins means I can’t design a mailing list. This is really something that complementary therapists need to do start looking to do as a business strategy. And yes, we do need one, especially online. Don’t think we don’t. We probably have the potential to connect with lots of different people online. We need a way to build an audience.

Complementary therapists need mailing lists

To give an example, as a complementary therapist it is not uncommon to see a client a few times, then the sessions come to an end and they move on. Then a few years later you suddenly get an email, call or text from that person asking you if you are still working.

Well, I think rather than completely lose contact with someone and then drop completely off their radar, wouldn’t it be more beneficial to stay somewhere on their radar. Perhaps you send the odd mail or newsletter to them. Sure they can unsubscribe, but often they may not.

It may also increase the odds that they will contact you and rebook again, especially if they are having any problems, They may even refer you to someone else if you are still somewhere on their radar.

And one way we can build a mailing list is by offering an incentive like a free PDF. Well I did do this. I offered a few free PDF’s. But I had no way of doing it in a way that would enable someone to sign up to any kind of mailing list. All I could do, was put these free PDF’s on my website for free for people to download. Which they did.

And that was all that happened.

I am happy to share knowledge for free, but in this case, there was no purpose and certainly very little benefit for me other than potentially getting a little more traffic.

Con: Design choices

I think compared to WordPress.com, the design options are a bit basic. There are not many templates to choose from and at the time of writing this, they only have two mobile optimised templates. Considering, that most people will search through their smartphones, it is clearly becoming more important to have a mobile optimised template.

Webhealer’s templates are very practical and do look professional. However, they do lack the choices that you can get from WordPress.org or WordPress.com.

Obviously with fewer template options, I can pretty much recognise when another therapist is using a Webhealer template if I check their website. Some sites also use the same default pictures that Webhealer provides, not that it really matters.

But what if two different massage practitioners in the same area, use the same Webhealer photo of pebbles in the sand or a person on the beach, and a client checks both websites out?

It’s kind of like when you go to a party with your wife and that lady she hates from work is there, wearing the exact same dress… Awkward.

Damn those Zara sales!

Pro: Webhealer.net is responsive and adapting

However, Webhealer is a responsive company and I am sure they will be providing more options in the future. The two mobile optimised versions that are available are pretty good, although they probably need to add a few more. I have used one of them for a long time and found it to be adequate.

What is important is that a can client finds you and book you. And as I said, webhealer will help you do this.

Competition

The thing is that as an Acupuncturist in London, I have plenty of competition. I don’t mean this in a negative way. A few of them are colleagues and friends, but nonetheless, many are more experienced and more established than I am, so I have to figure out a way I can compete for a share of the acupuncture pie.

We are all there having to carve out a business any way we can. So really, I need to consider lots of different business strategies in order to build my business, otherwise I have to consider other lines of work.

And one of those ways I would like to consider is by building a bigger online presence and utilising my enjoyment of writing content (like this article). So that is why I highlight some of these cons. They may not be cons for other therapists, who simply want to pick up private clients. But they are cons for me, because they limit my potential.

Moving On

As, I said earlier, I have become too dependent on Webhealer. I have always wanted to create a bigger website with more opportunities and options. These cons I have mentioned are some of the reasons why I have started moving towards WordPress.com. And even after then, I may move again if I see fit.

However, Webhealer.net offers a great service. I am still using WebHealer, because as I mentioned earlier – ‘it does what it says on the tin’. Webhealer gets me clients and enquiries in my local area and helps me run a business.

I just feel that I have now outgrown it and I need to start working on a bigger website which I have more control over and can do more with.

Conclusion

Ultimately, I would say the Pros outweigh the cons. In fact, many of the cons are not that important because for as long as you get clients contacting you and booking sessions then it doesn’t matter if you have a blog or your website looks the same as someone else’s.

On the other hand, I would like to have something that fits me a little more personally and that I can add to and build as I grow and develop myself, my knowledge and experience.

Since 2014, I have developed in many ways, but my website has remained the same. I feel it still reflects the old me. I have wondered if upgrading to the silver or gold design service may be a solution, but I am not convinced that these services are that much different to the bronze service. Underneath the bespoke appearance, overall the functions still strike me as being the same.

However, despite that I have started a new website, I am still using Webhealer and will continue to do so for some time because they still get me clients and enable me to make a living.

Go with Webhealer.net

If you are starting out or you are not computer-minded nor familiar with creating a website, I say go with Webhealer. If you want to get an efficient website built and then put a minimal amount of effort of maintaining it after, but which still gets you clients – then go with Webhealer.net. Webhealer.net offers really good value for money and a decent return on your investment.

Nice website, shame about the traffic

The reason, is that I know other people who have made very attractive websites and professional looking, but I don’t think they get much traffic. Traffic means contacts, which means potential clients.

Webhealer will get you traffic, which will help you get potential clients. Webhealer provides a useful learning experience, so you will learn some of the basics of using keywords, adding in links, learning to update your content as well as other website basics.

It’s not you, it’s me

But bear in mind, if you want to create something bigger in the future, then you should have an eye to leaving.

And if you are at that stage, you may consider reading these two articles about alternative website platforms for complementary therapists: WordPress.com and Solo Build It (SBI). There is also WordPress.org, which is a popular choice for many.

Here is a link if you want to check out Webhealer.net. Also, here is a link my own Webhealer website, which advertises my private practice: www.johndixonacupuncture.com

Webhealer response

It may be that at some time in the future, someone from Webhealer may read this review and agree or disagree with some of my points. Overall, my article is quite positive towards Webhealer.net and I do make recommendations for complementary therapists to use it. That is apparent from my title: ‘Webhealer.net: a Good starter for your Complementary Therapy Business’.

If I am wrong about some details, I am happy to listen. However, regarding the cons, this has been my experience of using webhealer.net and I think my decision to move away and to build a much bigger website based on valid reasons. And anyway, I am still a customer of Webhealer at the time of writing.

Some advice for Webhealer

I would add a couple of bit of advice for Webhealer.

They should take a few more proactive steps to encourage their clients to put more work into their websites by sending out regular newsletters or perhaps checking-in periodically with their clients – like once a year.

For example, Solo Build It (SBI) keeps in contact with their clients by sending out a newsletter to their users, with advice on developing their website and getting traffic as well as give a profile of a successful SBI website user.

By sending out a regular newsletter, it does two things: Firstly, its helps educate their clients on how to optimise their website experience. Secondly, it helps create a Webhealer community ( – a practice that is used by both SBI and WordPress). And thirdly, it will send some additional traffic to whoever’s website is being showcased, so it helps everyone.

So I think it would be really helpful if Webhealer could send out a regular newsletter, rather than leaving us alone in cyberspace to figure (or not figure) things out.

Is this more work for Webhealer – of course it is, but the potential benefits of creating a community could outweigh that.

Advice: Install an affiliate programme

And also, creating an affiliate programme might be worth trying. Webhealer users could be offered an additional optional page, for if they want to write a review of Webhealer’s service on their website with a personalised affiliate link, which links to Webhealer’s sign up page.

I know that from time to time other therapists check out my website (i.e. checking out the competition). So I thought, this could be an opportunity to advertise Webhealer services, which can also gain some extra income for the webhealer user – just a thought.

Before you go

I hope you found this article useful. Feel free to browse my website and blog a bit more before you go.

 

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