Apr 11, 2023
x minutes read
Search engine optimisation (SEO) strategies aren't created equal for all industries. When it comes to the medical profession, SEO can be a powerful tool that connects healthcare websites to potential patients. By implementing an effective SEO campaign, medical professionals can improve their website's visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs) and drive more traffic to their business.
If you're wondering how to do SEO for medical websites, this article will give you a rundown of search engine optimisation for the medical field. We'll also discuss what makes medical SEO unique and how healthcare professionals can use it to their advantage.
There are over 1.88 billion websites in existence all over the world, and it's estimated that approximately 10% of those websites belong to companies in the healthcare sector. Constantly searching for ways to stand out is quite the challenge, regardless of the industry. The same rules apply to the healthcare industry, which is why SEO for healthcare providers plays such a significant role.
Medical SEO stands for medical search engine optimisation (SEO), a specialised form of SEO that focuses on optimising medical sites for search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. It includes a variety of tactics and techniques optimised for the healthcare industry.
Healthcare SEO aims to increase how many patients can find a medical practice's website by ranking higher in search results. Keyword optimisation, high-quality content, link building, and other SEO strategies will result in more search traffic, new patients, and a higher conversion rate.
For example, let's say you run a medical practice specialising in paediatrics and child health in Melbourne. In this case, SEO would include creating content around the keywords "pediatrician Melbourne" or "pediatrician near me." Optimising your website around these keywords will allow potential patients to find you on Google and other search engines.
Even though SEO has become a mandatory requirement for any website, it's especially important for healthcare businesses. Despite the fact that healthcare services are provided in person, people who need those services will first search for them online.
Search engine traffic can be beneficial to a wide range of health services, including:
Healthcare SEO is crucial for medical professionals to attract website traffic, gain new patients, and establish their online presence. It's an invaluable tool for healthcare providers who want their website to appear at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs) when potential patients or other healthcare professionals search for services or information related to their medical practice.
Keep in mind that SEO isn't only used for generating increased visibility on major search engines. Users are more likely to choose a service based on the quality of the website and to what extent it's optimised for SEO. Important elements, like site architecture, high-quality content, and mobile friendliness, can also make a difference in the conversion process, but we'll get to that later.
Implementing an effective SEO strategy can make any business stand out in its niche. When it comes to the medical industry, the advantages are multifaceted.
Here are some of the most important benefits of SEO for medical practices:
Healthcare SEO has unique characteristics that differentiate it from other industries.
The first element is the sensitive nature of patient information and confidentiality. Discussing medical conditions online requires a higher degree of accuracy, precision, and privacy. The language must be clear and straightforward to avoid misinterpretation or potential legal issues.
Speaking of legal matters, medical SEO must comply with ethical and legal guidelines set by regulatory bodies, such as the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and the Privacy Act. Advertising medical procedures and treatments should also be done with caution, as they may be subject to certain advertising restrictions.
When people search online for medical advice, services, and practices, they expect a certain level of expertise. That's why your medical practice's website must demonstrate authority in your medical field, not only to gain the trust of your patients but search engines as well.
Healthcare SEO requires an in-depth knowledge of complex medical terms, as well as the ability to communicate medical information in a way that patients can understand.
Another important element of healthcare SEO is reputation management. Practitioners must respond promptly to online reviews and other forms of feedback. Responding positively helps maintain a good reputation and reinforces ongoing relationships with existing clients.
Search engine optimisation is an essential tool for medical practice websites that want to improve their visibility and rankings in search engines. A powerful medical SEO strategy should contain the following steps:
Healthcare and medical websites have their own specific SEO needs. Website owners need to understand the best practices when optimising medical websites for search engines.
The first step of optimising a healthcare site for SEO involves researching keywords related to the specialty and geographical area of your medical practice. This step determines which keywords are relevant to your target audience, helping search engines understand how they relate to your website.
This process involves understanding users' search intent and researching what terms they're most likely to use. Think about which phrases people would commonly search for so that you can target those terms in your content.
When selecting medical keywords, there are several factors to consider. You need to ensure the keywords accurately describe your services or products so customers can find them easily through search engines.
It's also important to check out what keywords your competitors are using so that you can use less competitive keywords for higher search results. Finally, use keyword research tools like Google Ads, Google Search Console, and Google Keyword Planner to determine which keywords can lead to more organic search results.
Once identified, the right keywords should be strategically incorporated into the medical practice's website, including a blog post, page title, meta description, heading, and other parts of your site.
Aside from being optimised with appropriate keywords in strategic locations, your content should also provide value to your readers so that your website can be appropriately indexed by search engines. Optimising titles and meta tags with long-tail keywords and phrases will give users a better understanding of what kind of services medical practices offer.
Regarding content, you can cover a wide variety of topics related to your medical field. You can write different types of blog posts, including:
Posting blog posts regularly will keep your website fresh and relevant. Don't be afraid to use different types of content, not just blog posts. For instance, your website can contain images, videos, podcasts, infographics, etc. Just be sure to refer to original research papers when making a medical claim or adding facts and figures.
Every website should contain three types of links: internal links, external links, and backlinks. While internal links are equally important for SEO, today we'll focus on the other two types, as both increase your domain authority and thought leadership.
Backlinks from reputable sources play a major role in improving a site's overall online visibility. Acquiring links from high-authority websites demonstrates credibility related to the subject matter of a web page. Backlinks and external links signal to Google that your website is trustworthy, thus boosting its chances of appearing on the first page of search engine results.
Asking partners or suppliers for links as well as seeking out guest blogging opportunities, are just two ways you can acquire links naturally without breaching any ethical guidelines set forth by Google and other search engines.
Making sure you link back to quality websites is crucial for medical websites, as readers rely on the information given to them. Your readers need to be able to trust you as an expert in your field. False information or linking untrustworthy websites can damage your reputation or even ruin your business.
By adding links, visitors will stay longer on your website, which helps increase engagement levels and search engine rankings over time.
User behaviour is an essential aspect of SEO for medical practices. Understanding how search engine users interact with content on your website, including their search patterns, click-through rates, and page visits, can help optimise its performance.
The first step in understanding user behaviour is defining your target audience. These are people who are most likely to search for medical information related to your business. The next step is to analyse their search intent, which will help you further understand what users are searching for.
Gaining insight into user behaviour can also include monitoring site performance, reviewing search rankings, analysing user queries, and optimising content strategies. By understanding user behaviour, medical websites can tailor their content strategy to attract more qualified leads and more patients while improving conversions during every stage of the browsing journey.
Applying these strategies allows for better customisation within pages and enhanced targeting so that each visitor receives a tailored experience based on their needs and preferences. Switching from generic messages to personalised experiences improves user satisfaction and brand loyalty.
Healthcare SEO and local SEO go hand-in-hand. Since healthcare practices include providing healthcare to patients in person, a medical institution can use SEO to gain more patients on a local level. There are many reasons you should use local SEO, including increased online presence, greater credibility, higher conversion rates, and more web traffic.
Here are some local SEO strategies you can use for your medical business:
By implementing these localised SEO tactics, medical practice sites can rank higher within geographically-relevant queries, improving overall website traffic and visibility. Using social media and content marketing will further support the goal of reaching a larger audience.
Every SEO strategy takes time to work, but you still need to monitor its performance to ensure it's going well. It also helps you stay ahead of your competition. You can use various tools to monitor your bounce rate, click-through rate, conversion rate, organic traffic, site speed, keyword rankings, and more. These metrics can help you build a better browsing journey and improve user experience.
Since technology changes quickly in the healthcare industry, SEO strategies must also evolve rapidly so they can remain relevant over time. This includes keeping track of advances such as telemedicine and artificial intelligence, which may alter how patients access care or interact with their healthcare team online.
Running a medical practice comes with many responsibilities, some of which are more important than others. If you would instead focus on your practice and your patients' health and well-being but still want to optimise your website for SEO, you can always hire an SEO agency.
Here are a few reasons why you might consider hiring an SEO agency to develop a healthcare SEO strategy for you:
Healthcare SEO comes with unique challenges, as there are specific regulations and guidelines that must be followed. Search engine optimisation can help medical sites get more qualified leads, build trust with potential patients, and increase search engine visibility in organic results.
RankRise has experience growing websites in a wide range of industries, including the healthcare sector. Let us help you create the perfect SEO strategy for your medical practice. Contact us for further information about our SEO services.
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