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SEO for Podiatrists: Put Your Best Foot Forward

By: DoctorLogic Employee

With the market size of the podiatrist industry growing by over 2% every year, the competition for podiatry practices is becoming more and more fierce. Search engine optimization (SEO) is essential to taking market share and positioning your clinic as the local industry leader.

SEO for Podiatrists: Put Your Best Foot Forward

With the market size of the podiatrist industry growing by over 2% every year, the competition for podiatry practices is becoming more and more fierce. Search engine optimization (SEO) is essential to taking market share and positioning your clinic as the local industry leader.

You may have heard that SEO is growing increasingly complex. While some tactics change, the basics stay the same. The difficult part is competing with other healthcare practices that hire expert SEO agencies. One way to stay ahead of them is to look toward the future of podiatry SEO.

What is podiatry SEO?

Search engine optimization is a set of tactics that marketers use to bring your website to the top of the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). This marketing strategy aims at making your website appealing to your audience and search engines at the same time.

According to a recent study, 89% of Americans Google their symptoms before going to the doctor. This creates an excellent opportunity to bring potential patients to your doorstep.

When someone searches for “foot pain” or “ingrown toenails” online and sees your website on top of the search, they are highly likely to visit it. Once the potential patient arrives at the website, your conversion tactics kick in.

The three types of SEO are:

  • On-page SEO – practices that make your web pages more appealing to search engines. They include high-quality content with keywords, mobile-friendliness, and metadata.
  • Off-page SEO – actions you take outside your website to improve its ranking. They include backlinking, citations, and social media presence.
  • Technical SEO – technical aspects of your website that contribute to higher rankings. They include page loading time, XML sitemaps, security, robots.txt files, and more.

A survey conducted by American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) demonstrated that only one-third of people who suffer from foot problems seek professional assistance from a podiatrist. Proper SEO tactics can help educate these people about podiatric medicine and bring them to your clinic.

On-Page SEO for Podiatrists

The main goal of on-page SEO is to make your website look appealing to the user while keeping search engine algorithms in mind.

Since Google and other search engines adjust their algorithms regularly, keeping up with their demands is becoming harder over time. The best way to avoid a drop in the rankings is to focus on making each webpage highly useful to the visitor.

Keyword Research

Finding the right keywords and implementing them into your content, metadata, URLs, and other elements of your website are key to successful SEO.

A decade ago, keyword research for podiatrists was fairly straightforward:

  • Brainstorm practice-related keywords.
  • Enter them into a keyword research tool.
  • Generate similar keywords.

  • Check how well they perform.
  • Include them in your content, meta descriptions, page titles, etc.

However, fierce competition made it nearly impossible to stand out from the crowd. Meanwhile, Google adjusted its algorithms to understand the user’s search intent.

It no longer limits search results to websites with exact keyword matches. It recognizes the semantic meaning, the context, and the searcher’s intent from the query and acts upon them. That’s why intent-specific keywords are becoming a big part of SEO.

For example, a patient who is looking for information may search for “medicine for heel pain” or “foot and ankle fungi information.” Meanwhile, a patient who wants to find a doctor may search for “Podiatry practice in Dallas” or “foot doctor in Boston.”

On-Page Optimization

On-page optimization involves optimizing your website for an excellent user experience. This includes:

  • Creating high-quality informational content
  • Adding keywords to the content naturally

  • Making it easy for the user to find information
  • Working on internal links
  • Adding alt text to images
  • Making your website accessible to people with disabilities

Older SEO practices involved using as many keywords in the content as possible. Today, such a tactic is called keyword stuffing.

Overusing keywords doesn’t just hinder your content’s flow, it carries zero value to the search engine. In the worst case, Google may decide that the content is spammy and drop your rankings.

Overall, creating valuable content that matches your audience’s needs and intent is much more important than using as many keywords as possible.

Off-Page SEO for Podiatrists

While you have less control over off-page SEO tactics, they are just as important as everything you do directly on your website.

Backlinks

A backlink is a link from another website to one or several of your pages. The more trustworthy and credible a website is, the more valuable the backlink is.

Backlinks are SEO gold. For search engines, backlinks from credible websites are important ranking factors. They show that content on your website is valuable enough to link to. In Google’s eyes, that makes it good enough for searchers.

The best way to attract high-quality backlinks is to create top-notch educational, informative, and valuable content. You can use this content on your website or write guest posts for other credible websites that allow you to include a link.

Keep in mind that buying backlinks is a black-hat SEO tactic, which is against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. If Google catches you, it will issue a penalty, and kill your rankings.

Citations

Citations are mentions of your website’s Name, Address, and Phone Number (NAP). They increase your website’s visibility, generate reviews, and raise awareness. Citations are integral to local SEO practices that work to attract a local target audience.

Getting listed in both local and national directories helps your SEO visibility. It’s important to keep NAP data consistent across all these directories to prevent confusion. It’s also imperative to reply to reviews to show that you care about your patients’ opinions and experiences.

Google Business Profile

You also need to claim or create your Google Business Profile. This profile makes your practice visible across the Google Network (Search and Maps) and gives it a chance to show up on the 3-pack (top three search results for a local search).

Technical SEO for Podiatrists

Technical SEO works behind the scenes to make it easy for search engines to crawl and rank your website. However, it also contributes to user experience by making your website more secure, faster, and easier to navigate.

To improve SEO and stay compliant with HIPAA, your podiatrist practice website must have:

  • HTTPS encryption
  • Responsive website design (so it looks the same across all devices)

  • Secure web forms
  • Fast-loading pages
  • Optimized robots.txt file
  • XML sitemap
  • Optimized URL structure

If your website is built on WordPress, you can face a variety of problems with implementing high-quality technical SEO. Instead of dealing with the disadvantages of WordPress, you may want to consider building a new SEO-geared website.

The Future of Podiatry SEO

Currently, the majority of high-ranking podiatrist websites are developed by outsourced SEO agencies. As more and more podiatry clinics take advantage of third-party SEO experts, the benefits of professional techniques start decreasing.

The only way to outdo the growing competition will be to find innovative SEO solutions. Today, these solutions, such as A.I.-driven SEO tools aren’t common. By taking advantage of them right now, you can gain a significant head start.

While regular SEO and website management agencies only target a few keywords, agencies like DoctorLogic use A.I.-driven to automatically target tens of thousands of keywords while maintaining top content quality.

This innovative approach allows podiatry clinics to get all the benefits of an SEO agency with the perks of automation that take SEO to the next level.

Find out how it works by requesting a free demo today.