Tell Me About SEO for Doctors…
Search engine optimization ("SEO" for short) is a vital aspect of any website receiving traffic. When people go online to research something, often times they won't look past the first few search results.
How Does SEO for Doctors Work?
Patients will research doctors, facilities, procedures, medications, disabilities or illnesses, and will then proceed to visit the first few results that turn up in their search; the websites receiving that traffic will receive an influx of even more visitors down the road when those patients share the information they found with other people.
But how did those visited websites get such a high ranking in the search results in the first place? There are a number of factors, but the key to SEO for doctors (or anyone else) is proper utilization of keywords.
When users get on Google to research something, they type in a word or phrase so they can quickly find answers. The words inputted into the Google search bar are called keywords and the phrases are called long-tail keywords.
Keywords tend to be more generic whereas long-tail keywords typically indicate a user who may be closer to point-of-purchase. For instance, “dermatologist” is considered a keyword, and “dermatologist in Manhattan” is a long-tail keyword.
Local listings are an essential part of SEO for doctors. Patients researching practitioners are going to want to find someone who works near them. Most major search engines have an outlet that allows business owners to list their whereabouts and contact information (e.g. Google +).
Patients want to know the address, phone number, email, hours of operation, and proximity from their location when searching for a doctor. Failure to list this information could lead to patients either not finding your website in their search, or them not being able to locate your practice.
These potential patients will become frustrated and turn to other doctors with the foresight to localize their search listings. Optimizing your webpage for keywords is a crucial factor in its rank in the search results.
Proper usage of keywords and detailed local listings are just the tip-of-the-iceberg; it's also imperative that your website has concise, original content. A web page that merely rehashes previously published information will have a difficult time competing with already established results. Consider publishing a blog to continually publish fresh content.
In summation, SEO for doctors should first be approached with these steps:
- Proper utilization of standard and long-tail keywords
- Creating local listings that affirm your whereabouts
- Publishing unique content pertaining to your keywords' subject
How this approach to SEO benefits those doctors:
- Potential patients will discover your website during specific searches
- Those same potential patients are more likely to set up appointments with you upon establishing your location and office hours
- Patients who read valuable and relevant content are more likely to share it, resulting in an upswing of organic traffic for your medical practice
You may have a great website, but if no one ever finds it or reads it then it becomes irreverent.