How SEO is Important for Doctors to Grow their Practice

With the current shift in marketing trends from traditional to digital, SEO services for doctors are more vital than ever. While there are several ways for patients to locate providers, the search engines, especially Google, remain the most common. New data reveals up to 68% of new patients looking for physicians will pay close attention to the organic search results (as opposed to ads). For physicians, having a catchy website doesn’t automatically translate to traffic and top rankings. The competition is stiff and the results can present dozens—or even hundreds—of doctors in a limited geographic region. Search engine data research also shows the majority of web users only browse the top results. As a result, it goes without saying that in order to occupy the top listings, you must engage in robust search engine optimization, or SEO.

Is it true – “if you build it, they will come”?

Many physicians have fallen for the age-old belief that “if you build it, they will come” In other words, there is a widespread misunderstanding that a visually appealing website inherently attracts traffic and good search engine results.

The truth is, websites don’t just appear at the top of search engine results pages by chance. Traffic and high search engine rankings are a result of a deliberate strategy of ongoing monitoring, content-building, optimization, and tweaking.  Depending on the strength of the competition and other factors, this process can take weeks or even months.

SEO Services for Doctors – A Closer Look

To succeed in physician SEO, a doctor or physician must consider the specific types of queries performed by their patients. These queries are largely driven by user intent. Some users will be merely seeking information while others are more transactional (for instance, looking to book an appointment).

Physician SEO must also focus on Google My Business (or what is commonly known as “Google Maps”). This is critical because unlike many other professions, most physicians provide their services in person rather than remotely. That is why “[doctor] near me” is a popular search term.  

The best way to achieve the greatest results with your doctor SEO approach is to focus on keywords with a variety of intentions. This strategy enables your practice to connect with prospective patients at every stage of the purchasing funnel, from researching information to  selecting a physician and booking the appointment.

This is important because when a web user searches for a physician, practice, or area of expertise, the search engine can return millions of results. Other results are more focused and may return only a few thousand. In order to make an impact, your site must use relevant search terms and must appear on the first page of the search results (preferably in the top three positions). 

Benefits of SEO Services for Physicians

In order to succeed, a medical practice requires a continuous stream of new and returning patients. In this regard, physicians are just like any other business, in that they need traffic in order to grow. This is where SEO comes in. As a physician, you’ll need the most up-to-date search engine optimization and digital marketing strategies to set yourself apart from the hundreds of other healthcare practitioners in search results. Below are the benefits of performing SEO services for physicians.

Improved visibility and more traffic

When prospective patients search online for a specific therapy or service, they seldom go past the first 1-2 pages of the search results. This is why SEO is so critical to boosting your internet visibility for the relevant search terms for which you wish to rank. 

Lower your overall marketing costs

Traditional marketing and outreach for physicians can be expensive. This is because historically, this involved radio, print, and television. However, in today’s digital world, you can drastically reduce the cost of your marketing campaigns simply by developing an effective SEO and digital marketing strategy. Digital marketing is simply far less expensive, more effective, and more targeted than traditional marketing. SEO services for doctors can significantly lower your overall marketing expenses while boosting your consumer base. 

Three SEO Pointers for Physicians and Medical Practices

The following are three key SEO strategies for physicians:

2. Optimize your website for search

Building a website is only the first step. Not only must it be visually appealing, it must accurately represent what you do. Visitors shouldn’t have to work hard to determine your areas of expertise, nor struggle to book an appointment. The website must also load in under 5 seconds. 

3. Proper keyword research

The key to successful physician SEO begins with robust keyword research. The goal is to determine the most relevant search terms that are driving traffic in your particular area of practice. Next, you must perform additional research to determine such critical metrics as search volume, keyword difficulty, and intensity of the competition.

4. Building a content plan

Content is critical to SEO. An effective content plan addresses the following questions: Who is your content’s intended audience? Why are you attempting to communicate with them? Your content strategy also directs and determines how each piece of content is created. This is key because effective content draws an audience and motivates them to act. 

Conclusion

Now more than ever, SEO services for doctors are becoming the best avenue for physicians to grow their practices. It also provides an outstanding return on investment and is the most effective strategy for achieving high search engine rankings. 

If you’re a physician, you can contact Web Rocket Media to schedule a free consultation.