Did you know that local SEO can help your healthcare clinic get more patients? Find out four free ways to improve your healthcare clinic’s local SEO performance here.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO is a more specific form of SEO, or search engine optimization. It refers to your healthcare clinic’s ability to show up in online searches that are local to the searcher. For example, local SEO is vital in searches that use either a location-based keyword or the phrase “near me.”
Why Does Local SEO Matter?
In terms of getting patients, local searches are much more valuable than general searches. The more broad a search term is, the less likely it is that the user is looking for help right now. In other words, someone searching for “strep throat symptoms” may not be ready to go to the doctor—but someone searching for “strep throat doctor near me” is far more likely to be ready to make a call and request an appointment.
Local SEO is particularly important in healthcare because people want to get care close to their home, school, or workplace, especially in urgent situations. If potential patients aren’t aware that you’re nearby, you have the ability to help them, and you provide quality care, they’re never going to contact you.
In short, utilizing local SEO can help your healthcare facility get more traffic from more qualified patients.
How to Boost Your Healthcare Clinic’s Local SEO—for Free
Now that you know the importance of local SEO for your healthcare facility, here are four FREE ways you can start boosting it:
Perfect Your Google My Business Profile
The purpose of a Google My Business profile is to provide essential at-a-glance information for searchers. The more informative your profile, the more likely your profile will get clicks—and that your clinic will get calls.
“Your Google My Business profile is to local SEO what a phone number was to the yellow pages,” explains digital strategist Scott Merilatt. “It’s the easiest way for people to find you, and it’s a crucial step when deploying a location-based digital marketing strategy.”
Here are some tips on how to boost your healthcare clinic’s local SEO for FREE via your Google My Business profile:
- Be detailed and accurate. Ensure that the information you give matches up with the information provided on other online listings.
- Upload professional photos. This can help ease anxiety and foster trust with your clinic’s caregivers. IF you want to get really advanced, upload a 3D view of your facility, too—searchers love the interactivity.
- Utilize the post function to inform searchers about events or updates about your facility.
- Keep up with questions users may ask on your Google profile. The more attentive, up-to-date, and transparent you appear, the more trustworthy you seem.
- Make a profile for each location your facility has. This will help users find the clinic that’s most convenient for them.
Claim Your Online Listings
Just like your Google My Business listing, the other places where your healthcare facility appears online must be complete and accurate. (Google is arguably the most important, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect other listings and directories!) Patients like to be well-informed: the more helpful info they can find about your facility online, the better.
Some places your healthcare facility should show up online include:
Note: Some of these directories offer paid plans that give you more benefits or ways to control your profile, but their basic plans are free.
Make sure your information is exactly the same across all listings. While search engines are smarter than ever, any differences in your listings can still confuse them. You should make it as easy as possible for them to know exactly who you are so they’ll be more confident in suggesting your clinic to its users.
Include Local Information on Your Clinic’s Website
Including local references on your clinic’s website encourages search engines to produce your content in its results for searches with local intent. This increases the chances of someone who’s doing online medical research in your area coming across your website.
Some ways to incorporate local keywords into your content include writing press releases, posting blogs about local events, and including a map to your facility’s location on your contact page. It’s important to incorporate the local keywords you choose into your URLs, page titles, headings, schema markup, alt image tags, and more.
Optimize Website Content for Voice Search
Another way to improve the chances of your healthcare facility turning up in local searches is to optimize your website’s content for voice search. Imagine that someone asks their Siri, Echo, or Alexa about medical specialists in their area. The voice assistant will search the internet and respond with a sentence pulled from somewhere online. If you include local keywords in your content, such as “surgical hospital near Little Rock,” you increase the chances of the voice assistant suggesting your facility as an answer to a user’s voice search.
“Between Google Home, Amazon Echo, and Google Assistant, Siri, and more, 40% of internet users in the U.S. use voice search. What’s more, voice searches are three times more likely to have local intent than their text-based alternatives,” Merilatt explains. “Use that to your advantage by making it easy to voice search for your business, and weave local keywords (like city name, neighborhood names, regional slang, and other local color) consistently throughout your website.”
Boost Your Healthcare Clinic’s Local SEO
Local SEO can help get more patients through your clinic’s doors. If you’re ready to boost your healthcare clinic’s local SEO performance and get more phone calls, contact Kirkpatrick Creative today. Our philosophy of performing advertising that’s engineered to work has benefited several healthcare facilities in central and southern Arkansas.