3 Ways to Improve Your Website Presence

When most people have a medical question or need to find a doctor, they begin their search by consulting the internet. This is why the health of your website is so important. If your practice doesn’t show up in search engine results, your patients won’t find you. To make sure this doesn’t happen, you must make search engine optimization, also known as SEO, a top priority.

SEO is a series of strategies that improve the visibility of a webpage or site. If someone enters a search query for “rheumatology,” “rheumatologist,” or “rheumatology doctors near me,” SEO ensures that you’re the answer to their question. To put it simply, SEO is the difference between landing on the first page of Google results and falling off the map all together.

In order to improve SEO and help your patients find you, there are a number of actions you can take. The following three tips are a great place to start. Try them today, and watch your search engine ranking rise!

Make sure your website is responsive and mobile-friendly.

In 2015, Google revealed that more searches take place on mobile devices than on desktop computers. If you have a smartphone, this information isn’t exactly shocking. Chances are your patients are using their phones for everything, including searching for a doctor or looking up information about your medical practice. If your website is hard to access via a smartphone or isn’t mobile-friendly, those patients will quickly become frustrated and click away. Not sure your website is up to today’s standards? Grab your smartphone and look up your practice. If you don’t like what you see, it’s time to make some changes.

Be active on social media, especially Facebook.

As of January 2016, Facebook revealed that it has 1.5 billion active accounts, that a whopping 78% of Americans use the site regularly, and that the fastest growing demographic is the 55+ age group. This is great news for rheumatology practices who want to reach their target audience and help their SEO.

While social media is usually viewed as fun at best and frivolous at worst, search engines take your social media activity into account when considering SEO. The more active you are across various platforms, the more a search engine will view you as a good resource, and the better your SEO. Social media is also a great way to build backlinks to your website, which is another great way to build SEO.

Create original content that your audience wants to read.

A search engine wants to lead users to the very best resources on the Internet. The way a search engine decides what is “best” is based on a variety of things, including how long users stay on a particular website. If they click a link and then immediately abandon it, it’s a sign that the site wasn’t helpful. If a user clicks a link and then sticks around or, better yet, goes deeper into the website, then the search engine can safely assume they found what they wanted and were satisfied. That website becomes more valuable to the search engine, and SEO increases.

So how do you get people to stay on your website? By posting relevant, timely, and in-depth content on a blog that you update as often as you can, without sacrificing the quality of your posts. As for what to post about, think about the questions your patients regularly ask, information that would be helpful for them to have, and rheumatology related issues that you think are important. Sharing information, ideas, and resources via a blog is a great way to create original content, become a valuable resource for your patients, and help your SEO.

We hope these tips help you dip your toe into the world of SEO. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to let us know.

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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