Studies show that less than 1 percent of Google searchers click on sites beyond the first page of results. That means you need to get listed on that first page if you want to get any new patients from web searches.
Search engine optimization (SEO) will help you get your website ranked in the top results. Let’s look at how you can use SEO techniques to drive more patients to your practice.
It’s All About Keywords
The foundation of all SEO work is keywords. Those are the words and phrases that someone looking for a chiropractor would likely type into the Google search box.
Terms like “chiropractor near me” or “chiropractor in city name” are logical searches for someone looking for a local chiropractor. On the other hand, a search like “what does a chiropractor do” probably isn’t someone looking for your services.
You can use tools like Ahrefs and the Google Keyword Planner to develop a list of keywords to target. Once you have those, work them into the content on your website to help it rank higher.
Focus on Local SEO First
Your chiropractic practice likely serves local clients for the most part. If that’s the case, it doesn’t matter how you rank for someone searching for a chiropractor in another part of the country.
Focusing on local SEO will help you reach the people who are close to you and most likely to become patients.
There are several important steps to optimize your website for local searches, including:
- Complete your Google My Business profile
- Use a consistent NAP (name, address, and phone number) everywhere on your site and other pages like Facebook and Twitter
- Create a separate page on your site for each service you offer
- Get reviews from your existing clients
The local search results in Google show a map with your location, review ratings, and other details right in the listing so it’s important to make sure it’s all available to Google.
Your Website’s Performance Is Critical
How quickly your website loads is important for a couple of reasons. First, studies show that people will click away from your site within a few seconds if it doesn’t load immediately (known as a bounce).
A slow website means you’ll lose a lot of potential patients before you even have a chance to connect with them.
Second, a high bounce rate will negatively affect your search rankings in Google. If someone clicks on your site in the results and almost immediately clicks back to try another one, Google can see this happen. If it happens often, it tells Google your site isn’t a good solution for searchers and it will stop showing it in the top results.
Make sure you use a high-performance web hosting service. It might mean paying a bit more but it’s worth the cost if it helps you get more patients.
Build Backlinks to Your Website
Another fundamental component of chiropractic website SEO is what’s known as backlinks. These are links from other sites pointing to yours.
The original PageRank algorithm that was the basis for Google’s search engine used backlinks as the primary way of determining a website’s value. The idea was that links pointing to a web page were like votes — more links meant the page must be more valuable.
Google’s algorithm has evolved to consider far more than just links but they’re still an important part of the calculation. Getting links from local websites like Chambers of Commerce, community pages, and other businesses will help your site rank higher.
Use Social Media
Social networks like Facebook and Twitter are a great way to connect directly with your current and potential patients. You can use these websites to answer questions, share your knowledge, and drive traffic to your website.
Google doesn’t give links from those sites as much credit as links from other places but they are still backlinks. And having more people commenting and sharing on your posts there helps create “buzz” which Google does take into account in its ranking algorithm.
Create a Content Marketing Strategy
Content marketing is one of the most effective long-term SEO strategies. This is the process of sharing information, both on your website and through other channels like social media and other blogs.
Content is usually text-based, such as blog posts or articles written for other websites, but it also includes things like YouTube videos, Instagram and Snapchat posts, and podcasts or other audio.
There are lots of ways to come up with ideas for things to create content about, such as:
- Answer common questions from your patients
- Write about health-related topics in the news
- Weigh in on local news or events
If you publish new content on a consistent schedule, it helps “train” Google to check your site more often. Fresh, valuable content is another factor that Google considers in its algorithm.
Track Your Results
Once you start optimizing your website for better rankings, you’ll start to see your traffic increase. But unless you’re tracking the results, it’s hard to know exactly what’s working and what isn’t.
Use a tool like Google Analytics to track the visitors coming to your website. It provides details like:
- Where visitors are coming from
- What pages they visit once they land on your site
- Which pages have the highest and lowest bounce rates
When you change something on your website, give it enough time to gather some data and then compare the results with the numbers before the change. This type of A/B testing will tell you what’s working and what isn’t so you don’t have to guess.
Where to Get Help With Your SEO Strategy
Healthcare SEO isn’t a complicated process but it does take some time to implement. And Google is constantly tweaking its algorithm so you need to stay on top of the latest changes if you want to keep your rankings.
If you’d rather focus on your practice and leave the SEO work to experts, Harris and Ward is here to help. We offer a range of SEO services to help improve your search engine rankings and bring more patients into your practice.
Get in touch with us today to find out how we can help your practice grow.