Are you looking to improve your senior care SEO in 2022? Follow these four tips.
Tip #1 for better senior care SEO: Take a fresh look at your keyword strategy.
OK, ‘fess up. When was the last time you did a thorough review of your keyword strategy? If your answer is “not sure” or “never,” don’t fret. (And if you’re the unicorn who regularly does keyword research, bonus points for you! You can skip to the next tip.)
The reality is most senior living communities don’t regularly do the keyword strategy work. And the word “regularly” is the main point. You need to review and monitor your keywords like you do any other analytics. We recommend quarterly at the very least (and perhaps more often if you’re more aggressive with pay-per-click advertising).
Why? Well, keywords can and will change over time. Some might become more competitive. Others might increase or decrease in search volume. New phrases might come into play. Local search terms might be needed if your company expands into new markets. And, of course, you need to pay attention to competitors and the words they use.
Like all other aspects of your senior living marketing, you need to take a thoughtful approach to your keyword strategy for senior care SEO. An intent-based strategy can be an excellent way to tackle this. The Semrush blog discusses the four main types of keyword intent:
- Informational keywords. These keywords answer a specific question, like “how much does senior living cost”? (That search query receives 140 monthly searches.) These keyword phrases tend to be more of the longtail variety and can make for excellent blog posts. They can perform well in search, especially if they have less competition. These are great words for people at the top of the sales funnel who are in the research/education stage and who may or may not be familiar with your name.
- Navigational keywords. These keywords tend to be looking for a specific page on your site: “brookdale senior living address.” (That search query also receives 140 monthly searches.) In this case, people are already familiar with your name. They’re looking for something very specific.
- Commercial keywords. We’re talking about all the keyword-phrase results that would come up if you did a search in your SEO tool on your community’s name. (It’s a great exercise, one that many communities overlook!)
- Transactional keywords. The searcher appears intent on taking some sort of action (or even making a purchase). These folks are likely in the bottom of the sales funnel. Think “how much does brookdale senior living cost.” (That search query receives 56 monthly searches.) These search terms can help fuel your PPC strategy, too.
By breaking out keywords into intent, you can make sure that . . .
- Your site has compelling content around informational keywords.
- Your brand name has great visibility throughout the site, especially in obvious places, like the header and footer. But also think about less obvious places. For example, consider your logo. If someone hovers over it, does the alt text say your community’s name? Little things like that can have an impact.
- You’ve created smart buyer journeys based on the research you’re seeing with transactional keywords.
- You haven’t lost sight of local search terms (more on this below).
Tip #2 for better senior care SEO: Have awesome content.
Google’s main goal is to provide the best, most helpful results to searchers. That’s it. To do this, it has a complex algorithm to help decide which sites to serve up on the first page of its search results. Remember, the site listed in the first spot in the organic listing gets the highest click-through rate.)
The best way you can ensure your site gets served up is to have awesome content. It sounds so simple, right? That’s because it is (in a way). If you have great content and use keywords thoughtfully in that content, you’re more than halfway there.
- Write for humans first, search engines second. Don’t stuff keyword phrases into sentences. Use them naturally. Use synonyms. Don’t become obsessed with how many times you use a keyword phrase in the content (because we guarantee that will lead to clunky, unreadable sentences).
- Title tags shouldn’t exceed 60 characters. In fact, studies show that title tags between 15 and 40 characters tend to have a higher click-through rate (8.6% higher). This is likely due to the number of folks conducting searches on smartphones.
- Meta descriptions shouldn’t exceed 155 characters. Pay attention to how you write them. This serves as a mini ad for the page or blog post you’re inviting people to click through to.
- Always write content with your buyers in mind. A friendly, casual tone works best. Keep sentences short and easy to digest. Break up longer blocks of text with sub-headlines and other formatting (like bullets).
- Don’t be afraid to go long. This is especially true with blog posts. Studies show that longer blog posts perform better. HigherVisibility reports, “Articles of 3,000 words or more get twice the amount of page views, as well as 24% more shares.”
Tip #3 for better senior care SEO: Don’t overlook or underestimate the importance of technical SEO.
Does your site load quickly? Is it easy for Google to crawl and index? Is the architecture sound? Have you optimized the site for mobile devices?
Google considers the entire landscape: on-page SEO (the copy), off-page SEO (typically the quality of the backlinks pointing to your site), and technical SEO. Don’t put all your effort into awesome content, only to have it flounder on a poorly built site bloated with unnecessary code. Check out HubSpot’s ultimate guide to technical SEO for more specifics.
Tip #4 for better senior care SEO: Think beyond your senior living website.
When it comes to SEO, you might think you only need to focus on your community’s website. But to successfully compete, you must optimize your entire online presence for search. This includes social media platforms, popular senior living directories, and the all-important Google My Business listing.
- Make sure you weave in relevant keyword phrases, particularly in the “about” and profile sections.
- Follow best practices for each platform. At a minimum, this will likely include filling out all relevant sections, having current and accurate contact info, and posting plenty of images.
- Audit these sites regularly (every quarter) to make sure everything is in working order. Things can and will break.
Need help with your senior care SEO? Give us a shout.
We know senior living. And we know digital marketing. Our team can make sure your entire online presence is optimized for search. Let’s chat about your senior care SEO!