Get your Healthcare Website Ready for SEO!
Pre-SEO Website Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a methodology we use to drive relevant traffic to your website. What some people don’t realize, however, is that in order for SEO to be maximally effective, your website needs to be ready for SEO, or “up to Google standards.” Thus, paying for an SEO campaign when your site isn’t up to standards, is like building a new house in the mud — it simply won’t hold up.
Why should I care about Google standards?
Google has told us what a website needs to be “SEO-ready”, and this list really hasn’t changed for over a decade. The reason we need all sites to be up to these standards is because the effectiveness of your SEO campaign has everything to do with what your competitors are doing. For example, a medical website should load at around 3 seconds (as should a dental website, etc). If your website loads at 10 seconds and your competitors websites load at 3 seconds, they will have a ranking advantage over you for this ranking factor. However, if all of your competitors have sites that load in the 9.5-10.5 second range, then having a load time of 10 seconds won’t be as relevant in terms of ranking positions.
But, if your competitors tomorrow decide to bring their page speed numbers down to ~3 seconds (as Google suggests), then your site will now take a potential rankings hit because your site still takes 10 seconds to load. And because it’s too costly (and completely impractical) to base your website adjustments on your competitors, it’s more practical (and more effective) to get your website up to standards in the first place.
What are Google Standards?
“Google Webmaster Standards” are a list of ranking factors and site design preferences that Google has told us make for a website that can be indexed well by search engines, and used easily by human visitors. There are over 300+ ranking factors, but critical ones include:
- proper heading tags on all of your pages
- a fast website load time
- passing the mobile-friendly test
- presence of a valid SSL certificate
Updating your website to Google standards can improve web traffic even without SEO!
In the case study below, a client came to us with an under-performing website. After determining that the website had a traffic problem vs. a messaging problem, we analyzed the website, made a treatment plan, and updated the website to meet Google standards. The screenshot is taken directly from the client’s Google Analytics account and it shows that from January 1, 2019 – May 31, 2019, there was an 34% increase in new users compared to the previous 6 months — a direct result from our efforts updating the website.
Thus, in this instance, bringing the website up to standards increased organic traffic without a formal SEO campaign.
How can SHD help get your healthcare ready for SEO?
We help by taking your existing site and applying our Proactive Web Design approach to retrofit your website to meet Google standards as closely as possible. Remember, optimizing your site in this way is critical because you won’t get the maximum benefit of an SEO campaign if your pages don’t meet standards and your competitors do.