In an increasingly competitive healthcare market, its important for medical professionals to make the most of SEO to promote their medical office, share knowledge and inspire trust in potential patients.
Done correctly, SEO can be one of the most cost-effective ways to generate more awareness and drive traffic to your website.
From the appearance of your site pages to the back-end technical details, a perfectly optimized page creates an engaging user experience and strengthens your brand.
Once your site is optimized, make sure to consistently add valuable content for patients looking to answers their medical questions online.
Trust is one of the most important factors when choosing the right medical office, so control your reputation and create trust by sharing customer feedback and promoting your medical office on social media.
Understanding your Patient market
Demographic SEO Research
Demographic information like gender, age, income, and marital status are basic information that every marketer should know about their audience.
Find out where your patients live and target them with the most relevant promotions in their area.
If your medical office has multiple locations consider expanding your target to the state level, or if your business is internet-based, then target multiple states.
Psychographic SEO Research
Psychographics are similar to demographics but include more detailed description like your patient’s values, hobbies, and spending habits.
A good way to think of it is that demographics explain who your buyer is, while psychographics explain what motivates them.
Analyze your analytics and consider interviewing your current clients to gain a better understanding of what motivates patients in their decision to select medical care.
Competitive SEO research
When researching your local market it is important to get a clear understanding of the competitive landscape in your area. Do the research to identify your closest competitors and perform a full analysis of their site.
- What do they do well?
- What is their competitive advantage?
- Do they have social media pages?
- How often they post new content?
- Do they have a keyword strategy?
Getting answers to questions like these will help you position your practice for better performance in search against your competition.
Social SEO research
Social media can be extremely useful for marketers looking to better understand consumer trends and new ways to engage with their audience online.
As search function improves, each network is becoming increasingly useful for specific types of research:
- Twitter is the best best platform for monitoring real-time trends
- Facebook is important for identifying trend evolution
- Instagram and Pinterest can both identify trends in visual content
- Reddits is a platform that can monitor viral trends and discussions
Explore all of the major social media platforms and find the ones that are most relevant to promote your medical office online.
Optimize Your Site landing pages
page titles and descriptions
Meta tags are the elements of HTML that provide descriptive information about a webpage for search engines and website visitors.
The page title tag should be a description of the content on that page and is displayed in search engine results as the clickable blue title.
The meta description is the text in the HTML of a page to summarize the content on that page. This description should contain your target keyword and will appear as a snippet under the title and URL in search results.
Optimize alt text
Alt text is the code that describes an image and the function of that image on a webpage. The description should be meaningful in the context of the page’s purpose on your site.
Alt text is an effective way to communicate the topic of your page and can attract more traffic through image searches.
H1 and H2 tags
Header tags are used to communicate the hierarchy of the content on your webpage and are an important ranking factors in SEO.
Search engines will recognize the text in your header tags as more important than the rest of the text on your page. Beginning in level of importance with the h1 tag, here is a general explanation of how to use header tags.
- Create one H1 tag that is relevant to your content and contains your target keyword
- Use as many H2 tags as needed to denote sections on the page and target relevant keywords
- Use H3 tags as a subheading for your H2 tags describing how it relates to the other headings on the page
Header tag optimization will tell search engines what your page is about and can lead to improvements in search rankings.
Inbound links are links that come from another site and link to your pages. These are the most valuable aspect of SEO because it means that someone else has visited your site and is considers its content valuable.
Internal links are also important. These are the links that point to other pages on your site and encourage visitors to engage more with your website.
Content to promote your medical office
Blogging to Promote your medical office
The most important thing to remember when blogging is to make sure that your content is interesting and relevant enough for people to share it or link to it.
Try to identify the questions that your patients are asking online, and help answer those questions with a relevant blog article that is fully optimized for search.
Target Relevant Medical keywords
When creating content, focus each article on one specific keyword that is relevant to the phrases and questions that your patients are searching online.
Adding content that is relevant to your audience and optimized for key search terms will have a positive impact on the overall performance of your website in search.
Focus on medical symptoms and Advice
In order to make the most of SEO to promote your medical office, focus on providing basic information about the symptoms that you are able to help treat.
Talk to your patients and get an understanding of common concerns that they have before scheduling an appointment. Then create content on your site to help educate patients before they come to see you.
Leverage your Medical expertise
Monitor social media discussions to find out what information that your patients are looking for and create unique content that helps educate them, making it easier for them to make decisions about their health.
If your medical office is specialized then your knowledge is at a premium, so it is important to offer your free advice and opinions about the latest medical trends to create more awareness for your practice.
Conduct In-depth keyword research
Research highly searched Medical terms
Your strategy should be targeting highly relevant, highly searched keywords that will power SEO to promote your medical office
Use a variety of tools from Google Analytics to Moz and HubSpot to determine keywords that have the highest monthly searches, the lowest competition and rank on the second page of google searches.
By targeting these specific keywords your site pages have a better chance of capturing a piece of that search volume.
Concentrate on long tail keywords
Long tail keywords are longer keyword phrases that usually contain three or more words and can be easier to rank for than more generic short tail keywords.
For example, the short tail keyword “knee replacement” would be harder to rank for than “knee replacement surgery risks”
When someone is searching for something this specific, they are closer to making their decision than someone who is searching for more generic terms.
Look at other medical office websites
SEO is a zero-sum game and if your competition outranks you, they are getting more value from that search term. So in order to beat the competition you need to understand who you are competing against.
Enter your target keywords into Google and add all of the websites on the first page of each search to your list of competitors.
Once you have a list, do some additional research into the traffic rank, linking domains, Moz rankings and social media profiles of your competitors.
promote your medical office on Social
Build an organic following of patients
Encourage your patients to follow you on social media to stay informed on the latest news and trends in your medical field.
Make sure to share all the unique content that is available on your site and provide value to your patients in all of your social posts.
Once you build a large network of patients, social media can be a great way to promote your practice to a very qualified audience of patients for free.
Join the discussion on social
Social media can be a great place to post photos and share information, but it is also a place for vibrant discussions about very specific topics.
To maximize your social reach, make sure to frequently post content in Facebook groups, Google+ communities, LinkedIn Pulse, Quora and Reddit.
Participating in social discussions will create trust and thought leadership, while also giving you insight into what your patients are thinking and what is most important to them.
Monitor social trends and topics
One of the great things about social media is that everything is well organized and easy to search, which makes it easier to monitor specific trends and topics.
So use tools to monitor discussions on social media and insert your expert opinion when you can add value.
Having your pulse on social conversations is an excellent way to generate ideas for content that is more shareable for the patients in your network.
Encourage Patient feedback
The value of patient reviews
Patient reviews provide unique content that can help differentiate your practice. Search engines love customer reviews because they provide relevant information and help users make decisions about potential purchases.
Recent data from Moz suggests that reviews ranked fifth among the most important ranking factors, making it an important part of your overall SEO strategy.
Customer reviews create trust
Choosing the right medical care is an important decision and patients reviews create trust and authority, placing even more weight on what your patients have to say.
In order to create that trust, encourage patients to give reviews and have a clearly defined strategy for how you will share those reviews online.
Using SEO to promote your medical office will help you rank higher for key search terms and drive more qualified patient search traffic to your website.
If you are struggling to get your website to the top of Google searches, consider hiring a consultant to audit your site and recommend improvements. If the changes are basic, you can make them yourself.