How WebMD Ignite Built a Multimillion Dollar Business on Pantheon

Yulia Popova, Senior Manager, Content Reading estimate: 2 minutes

This post was updated in January 2024.

Imagine you could build a site in hours instead of days. Now, imagine you could use Slack for that. WebMD Ignite, a division of WebMD and Internet Brands, has the future of SaaS healthcare at its fingertips. 


WebMD Ignite web page on yellow background

Pantheon enables WebMD Ignite to automate its processes and scale fast. Using custom Slack commands, the company’s developers can turn a custom upstream site into a fully branded, data-driven campaign in hours. The same goes for backups and monthly updates.

The company credits Pantheon with a 70% increase in speed to market and over $30 million in total campaign revenue growth. Here is how our partnership began. 

It's amazing how building on top of Pantheon has allowed us to really innovate and move forward a lot faster in a very nimble way."

- Andy Waldrop, VP Digital Experience and project management, WebMD Ignite

The WebMD Ignite history on Pantheon started with, an operator of independent healthcare ratings, which was acquired in 2021. With 30 million patient visits a month, was custom-built on React with a large-scale Solr search engine.

Looking for a WebOps partner that could take on security updates and guarantee stable uptime, as well as provide modern developer tools, the company first only considered HIPAA-compliant vendors. With one billion medical encounters recorded and used to build predictive models to facilitate finding patients at risk, Healthgrades had to be extra careful about which provider to trust. After evaluating multiple vendors, “we realized that even if your provider is HIPAA-compliant, you shouldn’t store patient data in your CMS anyway,” said Waldrop. Once they found a way to pass and store that data in a different secure location, the company was able to find “a solution in Pantheon at a fraction of the HIPAA-compliant vendor cost.”

“Pantheon for us has been an incredible partner to build a business from scratch,” said Waldrop. He found value in the fact that Pantheon does not charge for sites until they go live. “Not being locked into a timeframe of large SaaS billing cycles has been outstanding. Health systems are merging and going through many external changes so timelines are hard for them. Look at Covid — it delayed everything. If you had a half-built website project and then Covid hit, I promise you, it got delayed by six months." said Waldrop. And if that unfinished project was on a major proprietary DXP, "inevitably you were overpaying for your SaaS license and you were not even live yet.”

WebMD Ignite works with healthcare systems across the country to help them with patient engagement in three ways: building CRM and predictive analytics models, offering full marketing automation journeys and licensing software to help clients build websites, doctor finders and microsites. 

Pantheon powers WebMD Ignite’s digital experience pillar in a unique way. Using a custom Slack command, the company can build a microsite in hours instead of days. It allows them to go from a bland pre-built site to a branded content campaign filled with specific doctor data incredibly fast. For example, if a hospital wants to launch a joint-replacement awareness campaign, they can start with a standard package and then personalize it for their patient target group, such as the aging population or outdoor sports enthusiasts in a specific locale. 

Read more about WebMD Ignite's experience on Pantheon in this case study.

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