With over 80% of aesthetic consumers starting their search for an elective medical treatment on the internet, I am always compelled to ask practice owners this: Are you spending at least 80% of your time, energy, efforts, budget and creativity on implementing strategies to capture these consumers on the mediums they are using to research?
It is no secret that Google has become the universal platform where potential patients begin researching aesthetic providers and elective medical treatments. However, in today’s highly saturated market, it is also becoming increasingly difficult to gain traction on the first page of Google. So, how do you maximize your practice’s organic search engine optimization efforts without breaking the bank?
Here are three simple SEO tips that deliver results:
1. Write down your practice’s top three to six revenue-driving treatments or procedures. Once you’ve determined this, you must apply the “Reasonable Person Test.” In other words, what would the average consumer, type into Google to find your practice? This is where aesthetic professionals really need to start limiting the medical vernacular.
So, what does this mean? Very few consumers would search for, “ThermiTight Chicago.” However, they would search keywords such as, “skin tightening Chicago” or “what are benefits of skin tightening?”
While we are all highly educated about the most common manufacturers and devices throughout the aesthetic arena, we must keep in mind that the majority of consumers will not be – they are highly unlikely to search for brand names that do not hold much household recognition.
2. Now that you’ve written down those top revenue-driving treatments and procedures you want to rank for, next, you must determine what specific keywords you actually want to optimize. Determine what keywords will be the least challenging to optimize based on local competition and search volume. Here are two things you always want to consider.
· Search Volume. How many people are searching that specific keyword?
· Competition. How much local competition is in your market, and can you even realistically compete for certain phrases? What alternatives may be available?
Often, I find myself in discussions with start-up practitioners who tell me they want their practice to be organically ranked number one for largely searched keywords in highly competitive markets.
Let’s use “Botox Beverly Hills” as a simple example. The phrase, “Botox Beverly Hills,” would be considered a “short-tail” keyword, meaning it will encompass higher search volume AND higher competition.
Considering the current search volume and pre-existing competition for this phrase, gaining a first-page ranking on Google with no current digital presence would be a challenge organically and require extensive marketing dollars.
So, let’s consider alternative “long-tail” keywords. The phrase, “Is Botox right for me” or “Am I a good candidate for Botox?” would be considered long-tail keywords. So, less consumers are searching these terms, but these keywords also encompass less competition. Consider tailoring your SEO efforts towards a keyword strategy like this instead.
3. Content is King! Consistent and frequent blogging is a key driver in any successful SEO strategy. Once again, build off those top three to six revenue-driving treatments or procedures in your aesthetic practice.
According to Google’s current algorithms, blogs should also contain word counts ranging from 1,700 to 2,500 words. While best practices used to be writing three or four blogs per month around 500 words, it is now much more powerful to write just one or two blogs per month – but with higher word counts. Once a month, sit down and write 2,000 words about one of your top treatments or procedures – and if this proves to be an impossible task for you, consider hiring freelance writers off websites such as Fiverr, where you can purchase decent medical blogs at reasonable prices.
At the end of the day, YOU are the most important part of a successful organic SEO strategy. While implementing these three simple strategies today can improve your organic presence, you also must continually dedicate time and effort towards the people and processes in your practice. After all, you can drive all the traffic in the world to your website and phones, but if your staff at the front desk can’t convert your SEO opportunities into consultations and paying patients, then what’s the point? A successful SEO strategy starts and ends with you.
About the author
Ms. Neff is the marketing director for Inc. 500 company, Crystal Clear Digital Marketing, and is seasoned in the development and execution of fully-integrated marketing strategies. Ms. Neff actively contributes continuing medical education through guest webinars on digital marketing best practices, and is an educational faculty speaker for The Aesthetic Show, VCS, A4M, AAFPRS, AAO, ASAPS, AACD, AmSpa and the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine. You can reach Ms. Neff at: [email protected].