Google search is the most common way for current and potential patients to find information about your practice.
Research shows that less than 10 percent of searchers look beyond the first page of SERP (Search Engine Results Page). That’s why it is important that the most valuable content on your website feature on the first page of Google or Bing search results.
Content that should appear on the first page of SERP
- Your Website – This should be the first thing a patient sees because it has everything they need to know about what you practice. Plus you have control over the content you want them to see so that’s an added advantage.
- Your Bio Pages – Every organization, association, hospital or medical practice that you have an affiliation with should have a biography of your background, experience and current specialties. If they do not, consider submitting a unique bio to each one for them to post on their sites.
- Your Blog Content – Blogging can help reinforce your expertise and authority in a given field. Any content that you have written for other websites (guest posts), should also be listed high up in the first page of search results.
- Social Media Profiles – Social profiles establish ‘social proof’ or social influence – the idea that if you have a large social following then that is proof that you are doing something right (of course there are problems with this assumption, but that is a discussion for another day). For doctors, LinkedIn, Twitter and Doctors Hangout, are good places to start.
Now that you know what needs to be on the first page of SERP, the next step is how to move your results up. Software Advice, an online guide for software buyers, recently published an article about this.
Here are 6 tips to consider when developing an online reputation management strategy to help own the first page of Google:
#1. Start a Blog
If you haven’t already done so, start writing a health blog. Blog posts should be compelling and well-written. Find content that your patients would want to read and publish it regularly on your website.
As a physician your audience is made up of existing and potential patients, so the content your provide should be engaging, educational, and most importantly, easy to understand. A good start is blogging about frequently asked questions or preventative measures for illnesses that you treat.
#2. Edit Your Work
Google can penalize a site for poorly written content.
No matter how good you are at writing, have a second set of eyes look over your work to ensure your content make sense and is easy to understand. Ask a colleague who is familiar with the material to edit for clarity, and then ask another unfamiliar with the subject for a second perspective.
#3. Avoid Repetition
People do not want to keep reading the same things over and over again, so keep the topics focused but fresh. Mix up your content to cover the different areas of healthcare solutions that you offer.
Also, if you are listed on different websites, write a different bio for each one and focus on what you do for each organization.
#4. Share Your Content
Spread the word about your new blog.
When you first begin writing, be sure to promote your blog to people that will enjoy it. Also share each new article on your Facebook page, your Google+ community, Twitter profile, LinkedIn page, email list and every other social outpost you own.
The more content you publish and share, the easier it will be to improve your search listing.
#5. Ask Others to Share Your Content
When others link to your content, it’s like a high-five in the eyes of Google.
Ask your peers, medical associates, and other credible sources to link to your blog. It will further demonstrate authority to Google and build a larger following for others to read your material.
#6. Be Relevant and Avoid Spam
Share your content on websites that are relevant to your brand.
If a website seems “spammy” and you suspect its owners are participating in suspicious activity, stay clear of that website.A mention on a relevant website such as a top association in your specialty will increase your credibility in the eyes of both readers and Google.
Improving your website’s listing in search is an ongoing process. But if you take action with these tips, you will begin to see improvements. Monitor your progress and check your Google listing often. By taking control of what people see about you online, you are securing your success for the new year and beyond.
Over to you: Are you pleased with your brand’s listing in search? What steps have you taken to influence the results? Please share your ideas in the comment box below
**This is a guest post from Brittany Richards of Softwareadvice.com