- Posted by wainscot
- On March 24, 2014
Okay, you’ve got a blog for your medical practice and a website … now what? These pages won’t do you any good if nobody finds them.
But how do you help people find you? That’s easy- SEO. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is the process of creating and optimizing a website to appear high in search engine results.
While paid ads that place you at the top of the page are an option, free actually perform better: according to internet marketing agency Imforza, 70% of the links that search users click on are organic, or non-paid, search results. And considering most people don’t bother scrolling past page one of results, you really want to make sure you appear towards the top.
Here are some tips on using SEO to help grow your medical practice.
The first step? Know your place! Chances are, most of your current patients live in the area of your practice. Would you publish an advertisement in a newspaper without including your address? Probably not! You’d include your location and target advertisements to those in your geographical area.
It’s the same for SEO. As we discussed in a blog post earlier this month, using Google+ Local- a way to “tag” your practice online with your physical address- will allow those in your area searching for a practitioner to find you. Submit your info to online review websites like Yelp as well as Vitals and RateMDs, which are both specific to doctors, so that those specifically looking for physicians in a certain area will be sure to find you. Another option is local niche directories, like our Local Guides for Bergen and Westchester counties.
Be a big fish in a small pond. If your website declares that you’re simply a “doctor”, you’ll show up as one of millions of results. Compare the number of search results for “doctor new jersey” vs. “surgeon new jersey” vs. “cardiac surgeon Bergen county nj”:
As you can see, the more specific our search terms get, the fewer results there are. On your website and blog, be sure you’re using terms that are as specific as possible in all writing, so that you do not simply get lost in the midst.
Link up and be social. When other, relevant pages link to your website, Google sees you as more important. A survey by QuantiaMD showed that only 20% of doctors were effective communicators on two or more social networks. Start getting on more social networks, link to other practices’ pages, and share content from medical journals. Inform others when you post about them on your blog, and they might share it on their blog or website, exposing you to a bigger audience and increasing your authority in search result ranking.
Don’t overdo it. Just like everything else, it’s important not to go “over the top” with your SEO practices. Power Your Practice stresses the importance of avoiding “keyword stuffing”, or using a keyword too many times within the text of a page. Google will catch on to this, and instead of ranking you at the top of search results will place you even further down the list. But don’t forget to create quality content as well- SEO will help people find your page, but it’s the content that will keep them there.
Bottom line, if an individual has a medical condition, they’re not going to want to spend hours searching for a doctor near them- instead, they’ll most likely click on the first thing that pops up. All of these tips will help make sure your medical practice will be one of the first to pop up when someone searches for what they need- and when you combine good SEO with quality content, they’ll call you to make an appointment.