What your SEO provider may not be providing.

September 28, 2015 by in category Marketing, SEO with 0 and 0

Are you missing something in your urgent care SEO?

SEO_ProcessPatients are making more and more decisions about their healthcare options on their own. And the first place they turn, of course, is the Internet.

However, urgent care selections are made in the moment. Rarely are patients researching urgent care clinics online. They need help and they need it right now. In the parlance of digital marketing, this is known as “high commercial intent.” They are ready to “buy.”

So we encourage our urgent care clinic clients to optimize for these types of searches. Keywords like “urgent care near me.” This tactic is necessary.

But that strategy, by itself, can be short-sighted.

Many claim SEO is dead. Ironically, you can do an online search for “Is SEO dead?” and you’ll find dozens of articles about the demise of SEO like this one.

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Basically, it’s the process of making websites more accessible and understandable to search engines. For years, this meant the more keywords you placed into your website, the more often the search engines found you. Unfortunately, this is still the tactic employed by many marketers. However, over the past few years, search engine algorithms have become more and more sophisticated, making it more difficult to manipulate search results.

So yes…if you define SEO as manipulating search engines to raise an undeserving website above those of competitors in the search engine results pages (SERPs), you will suffer lower and lower rankings and in worse-case scenarios, sanctions by search engines like Google.

Smart marketers now approach SEO as a branding tactic: becoming the source of information patients need and want to share with friends and family.

In the 80s, television icon Heather Locklear did a Faberge commercial for shampoo in which she “told two friends and they told two friends.” Imagine how powerful Ms. Locklear’s dissemination of shampoo wisdom would have been using the power of the Internet.

You can leverage the Internet this same way. Provide content your patients are interested in and they will tell two friends. And so on and so on.

No one knows for sure how the search engine algorithms work, however, experienced SEO strategists note that there are hints that Google’s Panda algorithm punishes “low-quality” websites. Most believe this is due to what is affectionately referred to as “pogosticking” where the visitor returns to the SERPs because they did not find what they were looking for.

Please note, there is no direct evidence that this is a Google algorithm criteria, but we’ve seen enough evidence to believe it may contribute.

If you produce content with higher relevancy for your patients, you will be rewarded with higher patient engagement and less pogosticking.

Multiply that patient satisfaction by the power of the Internet, you can not only drive those rankings higher when patients have an immediate need, but also build a more memorable brand.

Check back next week when we provide more ideas on how you can improve the digital impact of your urgent care clinic.