If you're a chiropractor and you're building out a website for your clinic, you need to ask yourself why you have one. Well, you do need web presence, and your website will serve as a hub for your content marketing. Everything links back to your website, and your website will drive people to call your office or make an online appointment.
I originally wrote this blog post in 2021 as I was building out my clinic. What I wanted to do with my web page, adjust.clinic, was to make the site a big learning platform. With that in mind, I started looking for an LMS to add on to WordPress.
An LMS is a "Learning Management System." It's software that helps you build an online course for your customers or patients. Outside of WordPress and your own website, some popular LMS's are Udemy, Linda, and Skillshare. Inside of WordPress, you have several options, but they cost you.
Initially, when I built this website, I based it on the Buddyboss Pro Theme with the Learndash LMS. I did a little digging around, and I saw that this is a popular combination for hosting your own website and courses. Learndash is by far the most popular LMS plugin on WordPress, and I remember being impressed with a sample site created by either Buddyboss or Learndash.
Buddyboss has a great look and some powerful features if you are building a community. You can build your own social network out of Buddyboss. Kind of like your own early Facebook or Twitter. It's got a news feed where people can sign up for an account, and write on the wall to share their stories.
If you are a reader of a Buddyboss website, you can create your own account, upload your pictures, create a bio, and participate in forums and groups. It's just like a social media platform. You can share articles, and post them to your wall. you can do the same with picture. Sounds amazing!
And I liked how BuddyBoss integrated so well with Learndash. Up and running, I converted two of my Udemy courses to host on my own site using Learndash, and it was functional. Nice.
Buddyboss is amazing. However, its capabilities far exceeds my needs. What I quickly found out is that there is no change I would build a following on my little chiropractic clinic website to take advantage of what Buddyboss had to offer. I stuck with the theme for a while, but then it started to feel like bloat.
Buddyboss builds so many pages to match its amazing capabilities as a social media platform. And these were features I started to turn off one by one. Even still, I found that I wanted my website to be as lightweight at possible. I didn't want all of these excessive pages that did not contribute to my content and my mission.
I had Buddyboss for a year, but unfortunately, I got rid of it and went to Elementor Pro instead.
But I was still using Learndash as my LMS.
Learndash is also a very powerful plugin. You can create courses with some great course structure, just like you can do with Udemy. And with Learndash and Woocommerce, you can sell your courses to make some extra income.
Now that I take another look at Learndash's website, I see that they will cloud-host your own site for $29 a month. I think if they host your site with high speed servers, make it easy to add content and take payments, and help you maintain your WordPress site, then this is a smashing deal. I have not tried it.
There are pros and cons to any software, and I can only tell you of my experience. Learndash cost me money every year, but I wasn't making the most of it. I just didn't have any students taking my courses.
And beyond that, I felt that Learndash was just adding a little bit more complexity to my workflow. I'm in the business of getting patients to notice me, and to come in to be treated in person. I haven't focused on building a teacher-student following in a long time. I have over 2000 students on Udemy.com, but I haven't updated my courses on there in a while, only because I've been starting up this new clinic.
So, in the course of simplifying my site, and making my site a leaner, faster content machine, I converted my online course into web pages.
I converted my Learndash course, "How to get the most out of chiropractic care" into regular WordPress pages. Now, if you are an instructor who has courses on an LMS, or are an employee of Learndash, you might cringe. It's not the most elegant solution.
I threw away the strengths of having a nicely structured LMS into a haphazard structure of WordPress pages and a new menu.
But I think this gives me an opportunity to focus on SEO for each individual topic.
More importantly, though, I think it allows me to simplify my workflow as I narrow my focus on this new clinic.