In the highly competitive field of health care services, how do you make sure your brand stands out from the crowd?
Search engine optimization (SEO) can help your company improve brand visibility, increase qualified visitors to your website, drive conversions and prove marketing ROI. Health care SEO is a set of strategies your marketing team can use to ensure your website and web content appear on the first page of search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo when users are searching for your products and services. It can help your brand gain credibility, trust and authority in your field.
SEO is an incredibly powerful tool for health care companies to wield. Below, we’ll explore what SEO is and 5 benefits your company can expect to gain from using optimization strategies.
What Is SEO?
SEO is the practice of using specific tools and strategies to increase website traffic through search engine results. When you pose a question to the internet, search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing send you sources of information they believe will help answer your question. These sources may include videos, images, e-commerce sites or website links. From this selection, you spend time clicking on different links and browsing pages until you find a satisfactory answer.
But how do Google, Bing and Yahoo decide which websites to show you on their results pages? The answer is SEO. Search engines use algorithms to rank web pages based on their relevance, credibility and usefulness to searchers. The goal for your brand is to land on page one of the results pages when users search for keywords and keyphrases related to your products or services. A page one ranking means that Google, Yahoo or Bing has determined your website or web page has value to users.
Search engines use several factors to rank websites and other web content. Below, we’ll explore the primary optimization practices.
SEO Best Practices
You can employ several SEO strategies to optimize your website and content to rank better on search engines. Here’s what search engines are looking for:
- Quality content. Google evaluates websites and web content to see if it meets the standards of E-A-T: expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness. E-A-T is a key ranking consideration for “Your Money, Your Life” (YMYL) search topics, which include health care. Your brand can increase its rankings by producing and promoting original content that is relevant, useful and backed by credible information and sources. When it comes to SEO, good content is king.
- Technical SEO. Search engines analyze the technical aspects of websites that make them easy to find and navigate. They look for site maps, a secure certificate, metadata, site speed and loading time. Websites with a secure framework and clear structure receive better rankings.
- Mobile responsiveness. Starting in 2015, Google began rewarding websites with a mobile-friendly design. Today, 52.6% of global website traffic comes from mobile devices and mobile phones are a primary search device for many internet users.
- Link building. Search engines like to see website content that contains high-quality external backlinks to other credible, relevant websites. Backlinking to authoritative sources increases your own brand’s authoritativeness and trustworthiness.
- Keywords and keyphrases. Search engines check to make sure your website and content uses relevant keywords in appropriate context. Your brand will be penalized for “keyword stuffing,” which is the practice of overloading a piece of content with keywords to try to influence search rankings. Not only will improper use of keywords damage your SEO strategies, but it will confuse users and decrease your credibility.
5 Ways SEO Can Benefit Health Care Companies
Health care SEO is a critical component of a good marketing plan for health care companies. It’s cost-effective, measurable and it helps your brand provide a better experience for new and existing customers. Here are 5 goals you can expect to achieve from search engine optimization.
1. Improve Search Engine Rankings
75% of internet users never scroll past the first page of search engine results. If your website isn’t ranking on page one for keyphrases related to the products and services you offer, then you’re losing valuable visibility and traffic to competitors in the field.
You’re also losing out on a chance to increase brand authority and trust. Search engine algorithms are designed to display search results that are credible, relevant and useful to user queries. If your website is ranking on the first page, users are more likely to believe you have helpful information that will answer their questions. The top result in Google’s organic search results has a clickthrough rate (CTR) of 31.7%, and the second and third spots have CTRs of 24.7% and 18.7%, respectively. Ranking position matters, and a high ranking can help drive more new customers to your website.
2. Generate More Qualified Leads
Optimizing content for keywords and keyphrases that relate to your products and services is a principal SEO strategy. Using keyword research to gain insight into customer needs, questions and pain points will allow you to create focused, targeted marketing content and campaigns around the keyphrases and information customers are searching for.
By optimizing your website and content for relevant keywords, you’ll attract organic traffic from customers who are already looking for the products and services you provide. These leads are more qualified, intentful and have a higher chance of conversion.
3. Increase Visibility in Local Search
Convenience and accessibility are important factors to customers searching for health care services, which makes local search traffic a great audience pool for your business. You can use SEO to attract users who are searching for products and services “near me,” “nearby” or “in specific city, state.” Using local search terms ensures that people in your service area can easily find you. Once customers find a credible brand in an accessible location, they’ll be less likely to keep searching for options further away.
Make sure your contact and location information is up to date online — including on your website, Google My Business, health care review sites and other online directories. Current listings will help both search engines and potential customers find you online.
4. Boost the User Experience
One important aspect of health care SEO is optimizing your website for ease of use. Google and other search engines use website navigability, site maps, site speed, loading speed and mobile responsiveness as part of their ranking algorithms. A fast website with a clear page structure will appear higher in search engine rankings.
Not only is that a boon for your business, but technical SEO also provides a better user experience for customers visiting your website. Today’s internet users expect speed and navigability when they’re searching the web for information. If your website is slow to load, or if users can’t easily navigate the site to find the information they want, they won’t waste time on your brand. They’ll move on to the next search engine recommendation in hopes of finding a more user-friendly site.
5. Measure Marketing Return on Investment
SEO is highly measureable and can be used to help your business determine the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. You can track several engagement metrics from your SEO efforts, including:
- Organic website traffic from search engines
- User time on page and pages per visit
- Bounce rate
- Blog views
- Form completions
- Landing page visits
- And more
These metrics will give you a deeper understanding of what customers are looking at, as well as where they’re spending the most time on your website. You can gain valuable insight into leads and prospects who visit your website and use those insights to make performance-driven decisions about budget, content and messaging that optimize your campaigns for better results.
NewGen Marketing Offers Performance-Driven Marketing Solutions
At NewGen Marketing, our executive team has decades worth of experience leading sales and marketing initiatives for top health care brands. We use performance marketing strategies to drive marketing campaigns that grow brand visibility, increase conversions and help you meet sales goals. At the same time, we streamline the customer acquisition cycle to help you grow your business and see a positive return on investment.
When you’re ready to invest in performance-driven strategies that will drive more to your bottom line, contact us to schedule a free consultation.