In today’s digital marketing landscape search engine optimization (SEO) has become an essential part of any successful marketing strategy for a cosmetic surgery practice. The Holy Grail for any plastic surgery practice is to rank in the first organic spot for practice and procedural keywords.
It is easy to understand the new patients and practice revenue that can be generated by ranking #1 in your local market for terms like: “botox near me,” “nose job,” “breast augmentation,” and “laser hair removal”. The real problem lies in how do you get there? What are the important things to focus on in a local SEO strategy? Local SEO is more of a micro approach as opposed to trying to rank for some of these terms on a national level. Therefore, there are different tools that need to be utilized in the local market.
What does a cosmetic surgery practice need to do to beat out the competition, as more practices continue to add SEO to their marketing strategy and competition grows?
Remember it’s not just about ranking for terms in the short term but making sure you are going about implementing a strategy that will hold up overtime and is algorithm agnostic. Google releases 500-600 algorithm changes per year so if you take shortcuts it may pay off in the short term, but when an update rolls out your rankings could vanish overnight. Take the time and build a winning, sustainable local SEO strategy.
Below are a few of the key tips and factors that every cosmetic surgery practice needs to implement immediately to begin performing well in local search engine rankings.
1. Claim, Verify & Complete – Google My Business
Formerly known as Google Knowledge Graphic, Google My Business is the rectangular-shaped listing that represents your plastic surgery practice brand in search results. It contains all of the important information that patients need: directions, hours, links to your website, services, reviews and more.
Despite this being one of the single most important local SEO components for ranking in search and map listings, I am consistently amazed at how many go unclaimed or incomplete in the aesthetics space. If you have not completed a practice profile, do it.
Note: when completing your practice profile make sure all of the NAP (name, address, phone) information matches EXACTLY the information that should be present on the contact page of your website.
2. Reviews, Reviews, Reviews
Reviews have become a critical component of a successful local SEO strategy for plastic surgery practices. It only takes 1-6 online reviews for a patient to make a purchase decision about your practice versus a competitor.
When a patient performs a particular search query, such as “best plastic surgeon near me,” the most important ranking factors in the Google “Local 3 Pack” map listings at the top of the results are: Relevancy to the search term, Proximity, and REVIEWS.
Practices need to implement a HIPAA compliant review generation process to gather and equally distribute reviews across important platforms such as Google, Facebook, RealSelf, Yelp, Healthgrades & more.