All is Not Lost…
The only way to get a website to rank well on Google is to constantly study the indicators provided by Google and others and then implement, observe and analyze the outcomes of SEO changes and actions first hand. This requires time, effort and advanced analytical ability. Like it or not, you need an SEO company that:
- Has extensive expertise in search engine optimization
- Also has experience in your specialty
- Does this every day, for a variety of websites
For healthcare websites, it’s even more critical that the SEO Company has specialty-specific expertise. Consumers researching healthcare often include in their searches, procedure or product names as well as slang terms, so your SEO Company must have knowledge of what and how your target audience is searching and what will convince the search engines to choose your website over all the others.
With all of this in mind, it’s ludicrous to think that simply setting up a website, while ignoring or automating SEO, will take care of rankings. So why is it that some digital marketing companies make precisely these claims? These marketing companies either lack any meaningful understanding of SEO or don’t want to admit that they are incapable of executing it. Either scenario spells disaster for their clients!
It’s clear that properly executed SEO requires considerable skill and experience. Improved rankings and traffic, and hence improved revenue generation, doesn’t happen by accident or by doing something as simple as using a WordPress or Squarespace SEO plug-in, or some other so-called “automated” system. According to the article in Forbes, since the intricacies of SEO remain a secret, determining which SEO actions should be carried out can only be ascertained through Experience, Intuition and Titration.
What Does This Mean for Your Practice or Business?
Since SEO is not automated, it is extremely important that you choose a digital marketing company with considerable knowledge and experience. Only a firm that employs personnel who have worked through multiple Google algorithm changes and have achieved continued traffic growth for their clients is a good choice. Here are some of the things to keep in mind with regard to an SEO company’s personnel:
- Acquiring the proper knowledge requires at least two years of experience updating websites and digital footprints, and then measuring the results to see what worked, when and why.
- Extensive knowledge of and experience with Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools must also be required of your SEO company, because the only true way to measure SEO success is through analysis of the data provided by these tools.
- An understanding of site code is also a big plus, because many of the off-the-shelf template website platforms have coding issues that conflict with proper SEO. The code can inadvertently block Google from analyzing the website, and cause a host of other problems, such as slow load speeds, duplicate pages and low-quality pages. Therefore, your SEO team must have working knowledge of how to identify and diagnose coding issues.
And of course, a good SEO company should also have experience managing “off-site” SEO factors, such as reviews and links.
In summary, successful SEO requires extensive expertise and analytical ability, but that isn’t enough. It also is vital that your SEO Company understand how your patients or clients make buying decisions online and what key word search terms they use. This industry-specific knowledge is critical in scenarios where the buying process and decisions occur over a longer time period, such as in elective healthcare.
Questions to Ask About SEO
Below are some of the most important questions you can ask a digital marketing agency about their SEO expertise, experience and activities. We have also provided some tips for what to look for in their responses.
Q: How many years has the team performed SEO?
Someone on the team that will directly touch your account should have at least 2-3 years of SEO experience with similar clients in competitive markets.
Q: Can you provide 4 or 5 examples of rankings and traffic for clients that have benefited from your company’s SEO services?
Make sure the firm provides pre- and post-ranking and traffic reports for a number of clients. Not just 1 or 2.
Q: Will the SEO team analyze my Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools data manually and on a regular basis? If so, how often?
These data should be reviewed manually at least once a month.
Q: Will your team manage important off-site SEO factors, such as Google MyBusiness, reviews, links and social media?
The SEO company needs to touch all aspects of your online footprint in order to maximize the SEO strategy rankings and traffic. GoogleMyBusiness, reviews management, links and social media are key components that must be touched regularly.
Q: How often will the SEO team evaluate the site code to analyze crawl errors or indexing issues?
The site index should be examined once a month manually to look for any clues to coding issues that would conflict with SEO.
At Ceatus, we offer best-in-class SEO services. SEO senior managers have more than 10 years of experience in elective health care, as well as numerous other industries. Individual SEO specialists, i.e. those assigned responsibility for specific clients, are required to pass a number of tests, including data analysis for Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools, before taking on their own clients. And, the SEO team undergoes regular weekly training sessions in order to share information and ensure that knowledge and experience, including site coding issues, are at the highest level.
To read the full article from Forbes, click here.
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