Google is the most common way current and prospective patients find more information about your practice. Do you know what’s in the first page of your search results? Research shows that less than 10 percent of searchers look beyond the first page, so it’s important to focus on your first-page presence.
Software Advice, a company that reviews medical software, recently published an article on how this can be done. Here are a few of their tips to consider when developing an online reputation management strategy to help own the first page of Google:
1. Find Blog Topics – Blog posts should be compelling and well-written. The first step is finding content that people want to read. Since a physician’s audience is typically made up of current and potential patients, the content should be engaging, educational, and most importantly, easy to understand. For example, a good start is blogging about frequently asked questions or the best preventative measures for patients. If you need help coming up with blog topics or simply do not have time to write the articles yourself, you can also work with a content writing service.
2. Edit Your Work – Google can penalize a site for poorly written content. No matter how good you are at writing, have a second set of eyes look over your work to ensure the ideas make sense and are easy to understand. Ask a colleague who is familiar with the material to edit for content, and then ask another unfamiliar with the subject for a second perspective.
3. Avoid Repetition – People do not want to keep reading the same things, so keep the topics focused but specific to the different areas of healthcare you offer services for. Also, if you are listed on different websites, write a different bio for each one and focus on what you do for each organization.
4. Share Your Content – Spread the word about your new content. When you first begin writing, be sure to promote your content to individuals that will enjoy it. Additionally, ask friends, family, patients and colleagues to share your work with their connections and social media channels. The more content you produce and the more regularly you send it out, the easier it will be to build following.
5. Ask Others to Share Your Content – When others link to your content, it’s like a high-five in the eyes of Google. Ask affiliates, medical associations, colleagues and other credible sources to link to your material. It will further demonstrate authority to Google and build a larger following for others to read your material.
6. Be Relevant and Avoid Spam – Share your content on websites that are relevant to your material. If a website seems “spammy” and you suspect its owners are participating in suspicious activity, stay clear of that website. A mention on a relevant website such as a top association in your specialty will increase your credibility in the eyes of both readers and Google.
Building your online reputation is an ongoing process. But if you take action with these tips, you will begin to see improvements. Monitor your progress and check your google searches weekly. By taking control of what people see about you online, you are securing your success for the new year and beyond.