When we talk about website development and what we do as an agency, blogging frequently comes up. But service providers, like doctors and practice administrators, often ask if a blog is something that they really need.
The short answer: Yes.
From patient appointments to clinical documentation and all the administrative tasks in between, your time as a physician is limited. Maintaining a blog on your medical practice website probably isn’t high on your priority list, but here’s why it should be:
1. Your Website Needs to Be Updated Frequently
There are two types of content–paid and organic. Blogging falls into the latter. Its purpose is to provide value to your current and prospective patients and drive traffic back to your website from your social media accounts. But, in addition to people, did you know that web crawlers are frequently browsing the web and your website for key topics?
These website crawlers are how search engines like Google know which websites offer the most relevant information about the topic (or keyword) a user is searching for. And the easiest way to update your site regularly in order to prep for these web crawlers is through blogging.
Example: Let’s say you are a pediatrician and your website includes a list of your services. Unless you decide to start offering an additional service, not much is going to change on your website beyond an occasional update to office hours or policy.
To a web crawler, this gives the appearance that your website isn’t necessarily active or doesn’t have up-to-date information. As a result, your website gets pushed further down into the search engine results to make room for websites that feature more relevant and current information.
2. You Want to Rank Higher In Search
The question that everyone wants to know is how can I get my practice to rank higher in search engine results. There’s no single solution, but adding a blog and writing about topics and key terms related to your field of medicine that patients may be looking for can help improve your ranking.
Our favorite tool for learning what key terms people are searching for the most is Keywords Everywhere–a free browser add-on that shows you how many people are searching for a term and related search terms that may be more common.
Use these key terms to help you plan your blog topics.
3. You Need Content to Share On Social
One of the biggest misconceptions about digital marketing is that you constantly have to create new content. But often the reality is that you aren’t using the content that you do create to its fullest potential.
Start by sharing your blog post to all of your social media channels. If you send an email newsletter to patients, include a short snippet of your latest blogs. These are great ways to not only send followers back to your website but also to position yourself as a credible resource they’ll want to return to.
When writing a blog, make sure it is as evergreen as possible–meaning it doesn’t have dated or time-sensitive information so that it can be reused in the future.
Going back to the pediatrician example, keyword research led you to write a post about the difference between common cold and flu in children. When National Influenza Vaccinations Week rolls around in December, it will be the perfect time to go back and re-post that informative piece of content.
4. You’re an Expert in Your Field and Your Website Should Reflect That
As you continue to add to your blog, you will more than likely write about the common cold or flu again. To keep readers engaged in your older posts, as well as the new, link back to previous blog posts.
Example: Your next blog post is about when your child might need to see a doctor for a sick visit, so simply link back to the original blog post that talks about the difference between the common cold and flu. Internal links help with search engine optimization (SEO) and show visitors that you have an extensive wealth of information on your site that is of value to them.
The quality of your content is what will keep people coming back to your website and help maintain top of mind awareness.
Bonus: Blogs are considered a long-format piece of content. Using a backlink within your blog post can help decrease your website’s bounce rate because users can stay on your site to gather more information rather than having to do more research elsewhere.
The benefits of blogging are undeniable, but there is a downside and that’s the time it takes to write a well-researched, SEO-friendly post. That’s where TargetMarket comes in. Let us take search engine optimization and blogging off your plate so that you can spend more time caring for patients and less time worrying about your website.
Get in touch to request a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you stand out in today’s competitive healthcare market.