At the end of the day, physicians are business owners and need to promote themselves to gain new patients. In addition to having a professional website, one must allow it to be listed on search engine results pages. Although there is no cookie-cutter recipe for physician SEO, there are some general guidelines you can use to get on the right track, as well as build engaging provider profiles.
Writing User-Focused On-Page Content
Today, many patients start their search for physicians online. Search engines typically rank your content that best matches their queries. It is important to write quality content that is user-focused and original. These elements help establish the foundation that’s needed for your web pages, blog, etc., to rank well on search engines such as Google.
Physicians can consider writing content that answers a patient’s common questions. Below are several examples:
- Do you accept new patients?
- Can you treat a certain condition?
- Do you accept insurance?
- What are your operating hours?
- May I see your physician ratings and reviews (e.g., Yelp or Google Reviews)
- Where is your office? Is it accessible via public transportation, driving, and/or walking?
By answering these questions, you can instantly connect with a potential client and inform them you can meet their primary needs.
In order to help a visitor better understand your practice and team members, you may also feature on-page content such as:
- Blog posts
- Personal biographies
- Outside-the-office activities
- Philosophy of care
- Get to know me videos
Remember that these factors are important because they can influence a visitor’s decision to pick up the phone and schedule an appointment with your physicians.
Earning High-Quality Backlinks
Although search engine algorithms change, the demand for high-quality backlinks remains consistent. These off-page links are an important factor in ranking results. If your website has a blog, remember to link the content to relevant provider profiles. Business owners may also strengthen the context by embedding interviews with their physicians.
Physicians should claim (if you haven’t done so) and optimize their business listings. Claimed and accurate listings have a major influence on your patients because of voice search’s growing popularity. Don’t forget about social media marketing. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are influential for your providers’ rankings as they can be used to add another referral traffic path.
Employing Technical SEO Best Practices
Google, Bing, and other search engines still rely on various technical elements to deliver comprehensive experiences to human searchers. In the case of physician SEO, below is a list of technical SEO elements that should be in place at all times:
- Reduce page load speed by optimizing images and CSS elements.
- Ensure that robots.txt doesn’t block your provider profiles.
- Utilize canonical meta tags
- Implement Schema.org semantic markup
- Ensure that all pages feature complete page titles and descriptions
- Use a simple URL structure that doesn’t contain complex industry jargon.
A number of technical SEO elements are easy to check and edit. Others, however, might require specialized knowledge. If you are having trouble cleaning up your provider profiles, it may be a good time to engage an SEO professional to take the load off your hands.