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SEO for Doctors: A Quick Guide on What Works in 2019

SEO for Doctors: A Quick Guide on What Works in 2019

In our digital marketing for healthcare work, we have come across dozens of projects where doctors need more bookings. Physicians of all practices already understand the need for SEO. The amount of people in need of health professionals googling “doctor seo” is only going to bet bigger.

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Why would a doctor need SEO?

Because their potential new patients are:

  1. Googling for their next provider (but doesn’t know names)
  2. Googling the doctor’s name (this happens a lot)
  3. Googling treatments for ailments

Not only do people look for healthcare providers, but once they find the provider, they google the doctor’s name. It’s very much a reputation management game.

We explain what we do for online sentiment management here:

The reputation management angle of this has given rise to the major players in doctor ratings and review sites such as RateMDs, Vitals, and Healthgrades. These review sites serve as a bit of a necessity given the search volume for the names of doctors. They allow previous clients to leave their feedback and reviews. It’s a no brainer for health professionals – they want to keep a close eye on their reviews.

Starting the SEO Process

When looking at any search engine optimization project, you start looking for what people search for and how often. The below chart explains there’s millions of searches for just a small sample of “doctor” terms.

“Doctor” Keywords Annual Googles in US
eye doctor 3,612,000
doctor 2,952,000
eye doctor near me 1,980,000
foot doctor 594,000
orthopedic doctor 594,000
family doctor near me 486,000
doctor salary 397,200
ent doctor 397,200
diet doctor 325,200
do doctor 325,200

We can see the terms “eye doctor” as a major search term in the United States. So, what’s next? How do we capitalize on it? Pump the breaks before diving into what to do as there’s more research to expand on. You’ll want to dig a bit deeper and concentrate on the practice to make it more relevant if possible. Zooming in on “eye doctor” searches:

“Eye Doctor” Keywords Annual Googles in US
eye doctor 3,612,000
eye doctor near me 1,980,000
my eye doctor 325,200
walmart eye doctor 217,200
pediatric eye doctor 79,200
eye doctor name 64,800
kids eye doctor 64,800
eye doctor near me that accept medicaid 52,800
what is an eye doctor called 52,800
kids eye doctor near me 43,200

From this list we can already start seeing some fantastic optimization opportunities for ophthalmologist and optometrists.

If you’re an office that specializes in pediatric ophthalmology, those keywords are where you should focus your attention. Start with the most specific and obvious search queries that have ample search volume.

On-Page SEO

Let’s imagine we need to optimize one page on a website for a kids’ eye doctor. Most on-page SEO checklists will include optimizing the basics:

  • page title
  • meta description
  • url
  • h1
  • site speed

There’s a million other optimization items, but it would be a fantastic start to include the term “kids eye doctor” in each one of these elements.

Local Listings for Doctors

How and where a doctor shows up online (Local SEO) is crucial. Medical professionals get googled constantly, and the best way to navigate those waters is to comprehensively support upkeep on major listings like Google My Business, Yelp, RateMDs amongst others.

Googling “doctor seattle” doesn’t bring up necessarily the best doctors. It will show the user the best closest doctor. The number one takeaway here is to ensure your local listings are air tight.

There’s more to doctor SEO that this, but this is a great start for any medical practice. To inquire about our work on SEO for doctors, contact us or check out our digital marketing agency for healthcare page.