SEO for Healthcare Businesses: The Basics You Need to Know

October 19, 2023

If you’ve been in the health space, you’ve probably heard plenty about SEO, or search engine optimization. What you might not know is how it applies to you, and how to use it to your advantage. This article will lay out just that, making sure you have the information you need.

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What is SEO?

SEO is short for search engine optimization. It refers to a set of processes that will make your website more visible in search engines like Google. The goal of SEO is to increase your website traffic so that you get more people through your door.

Why does SEO matter for healthcare businesses?

It’s not always enough just to be a standout in your field and work hard to get your patients results. People rely on the internet to find practitioners, and online reviews can make or break your practice…SEO has to be considered.

Just look at these numbers:

0%

of patients use online reviews to evaluate physicians

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of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations

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of patients use online reviews as their first step in finding a new doctor. (Source)

If you have an online presence that makes you look knowledgeable, trustworthy, and reliable, people are going to be more likely to choose you as a practitioner. And providing valuable information that considers search engine optimization is a piece of that puzzle.

What’s the big secret to SEO for my healthcare practice?

It might surprise you to learn that at its heart, the concept of SEO is very simple. It’s all about fulfilling a user’s search needs by providing them with the high-quality, informative content they’re looking for.

For example, say you’re a massage therapist, and you want to make sure people know massage is a great option for recovering from low back pain after a car accident. You might write a series of blogs on topics such as massage for low back pain, massage for motor vehicle accidents, and the injuries that commonly occur after a car accident that massage can address.

Any of these might satisfy a user who is looking for more information about why their low back pain has set in after a car accident, and who is wondering whether massage might be beneficial.

By giving users the information they’re looking for, search engines will consider your content to be highly valuable, and you’ll likely see your blogs move up on the search engine results page, or SERP.

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5 Easy Steps for SEO In Healthcare

If you’re busy running your practice, you don’t have time to become an SEO expert. Here are some simple, actionable tips that just about anyone can find the time to do:

  • 1

    Create informative content.

    Like the example above with massage therapy and car accidents, create content through blogs that people will want to read. If you’re short on ideas, think about what your patients or clients frequently ask about, or even look at your competitors in the industry and see what they’re talking about.

  • 2

    Look at your citations.

    Yelp, Google, and Healthgrades are just a few listing services to check. You’ll want to be sure they have the correct practitioner name, address, and phone number, along with any other info listed. Having the wrong information on one can mean lower local rankings.

  • 3

    Interlink relevant pages.

    For example, when you’re writing a blog about thyroid health and are talking about common signs that a person has a thyroid problem, you’ll want to link to other blogs you’ve written that touch on those symptoms. That’s a big signal to Google that those articles are also relevant to people looking for this type of information.

  • 4

    Improve your website experience.

    The more time a visitor spends on your site, the more a search engine will go, “Hey, that page really gave that user what they were looking for!” And that makes it more likely to pop up in the future for users searching the same query. Your site should look up-to-date with engaging copy and different forms of content to consume. And check your page speed with PageSpeed Insights, because a long load time can be a reason for a high bounce rate.

  • 5

    Get on social media.

    Don’t fall into the trap of thinking it’s not worth your time. A few posts a week can make a huge difference. Now, there is debate as to whether social media impacts SEO, which is a topic for another day. But consider this: social media increases brand recognition, allows you to drive more traffic to other content you create, and increases both your authority, and the chance for potential clients to connect with you.

When You’re Not Sure Where to Start, We’re Here

There are far more things you can do to improve your SEO than what’s in the list above – we curated that list specifically for the busiest of healthcare practitioners and their team.

Don’t get overwhelmed thinking you have to do everything. The Health Writers provide a range of services to suit your needs, including SEO-optimized web pages and blogs, and compelling social media content. And we won’t even make you choose which you need if you’re not certain yet!

Get on a free discovery call with us, discuss your concerns and what you’d like to change about your current marketing efforts, and we’ll recommend a path forward.