Every day, we consult with chiropractors all over the world who are looking to attract new patients to their practice through online marketing. We've been doing this work since 2000, so we've seen a tremendous amount of change in the world of SEO in the last fifteen years and we know what it takes to create a successful chiropractic website.
There are five basic components of a successful organic marketing campaign, and the first five are well known:
- Content. You need to have original articles, blog posts, and videos on your site to please both Google and your patients.
- Citations. Your website needs to be listed in all of the major online directories.
- Social media. You need to have a solid presence on Facebook and, now that Google is going to start indexing Twitter posts, Twitter.
- Backlinks. Google assumes that good quality content gets shared, and so the biggest search engine in the world looks at how many people are linking to you. The more good quality backlinks you have, the better your ranking.
- Reviews. Good reviews for your practice on Google+ and Yelp show the search engines that your practice is reputable and worthy of recommendation.
The sixth element of successful online marketing is the toughest, though, and is seldom talked about. What is that sixth part of the equation?
When we first started building chiropractic websites for our clients, the search engines were simple and naive. You could create a web site that was titled, "Wichita Chiropractor," submit your site to the search engines, and it would show up and rank on the first page pretty quickly.
Well, in 2015, nearly everyone has a website, and not everyone can be on the first page, obviously. Plus, the search engines can't trust that you are who you say you are, as too many people tried to cheat and trick the search engines into ranking their site higher than other sites.
Because of the growth of the internet, the sheer number of people competing to be on the first page, and black hat SEO people who tried to cheat the system, Google has had to develop incredibly complex algorithms to determine how to rank a website, and one of these factors is how long your site has been active.
Why is Site A Ranking Higher Than Mine?
When a competitor's site is ranking better than yours, the most common reason for the other site's superior ranking is the fact that their site has been up longer than yours. If another doctor in your city has had his or her site since 2008, and you've just built your site, it's going to take some time to catch up, and you're going to have to work harder to get to #1.
You Can't Control Time
The time aspect of ranking your chiropractic website is frustrating. Because of this element, you can do everything right -- you can create good content, add your site to directories, build reviews -- and your site might continue to languish on page 2 or 3 of the search results for many months. While it might seem like you're not making progress, it's very important to keep working on the first four parts of a successful marketing strategy, and you have to be patient, which lead us to...
Don't Make Yourself a Moving Target
It's very common for SEO clients to freak out a little when they don't see an immediate jump in search rankings after hiring a marketing firm. The assumption is that if you're aren't seeing immediate results, the strategy isn't working. We've seen many chiropractors jump from one domain to another over the course of a year or two, hoping that a new domain will solve all of their problems. The reality is that each time you change your domain, you're resetting the clock, and you're even further away from your goal of good ranking.
With our SEO clients, we typically work on 12 month service agreements, simply because it takes that much time (and concentrated work), to significantly move and build search ranking.
Over that 12 month period, we can build a solid library of articles and blog posts, build your citation profile, get you some backlinks, and strengthen your social media followers.
Instant Results - Guaranteed!
This is a claim you're going to see when you're shopping for a marketing agency to help you with your ranking, and you need to understand what these firms are doing -- they're paying for placement with AdWords or other pay-per-click advertising.
There's nothing wrong with AdWords, but these types of campaigns don't build your organic or local business rankings. Basically, with these types of programs, you're going to rank great...as long as you're paying for ads. Once you turn your ads off, you're going to disappear again.
While paid placement can be a useful tool, we work to build our clients' long-term, organic ranking. This approach provides you with good traffic and new patients over many years without paying for each click.
The Long Game
While instant results would be great, the real goal is to create a solid, reputable ranking for your website that will get you new patients for years to come.
If you need to improve your site's ranking in the search engines, we can help. Give us a call today at (800) 295-3346 to learn more.