In a recent USA Today interview Matt Cutts, who works for the Search Quality group in Google, specializing in search engine optimization issues, gave his top 5 easy tips on how to “optimize” your site so Google and the rest of the world can find it.
Matt gives an example of a San Diego chiropractor who lamented that his site was not listed at the top of the Google search engine results. A quick peek at the site revealed that nowhere on the site was the term “San Diego Chiropractor” spelled out.
This would seem like an obvious oversight, until you consider that even after deducing what word or phrase (AKA search term) Internet users will be searching on to find you, you must then decide how many times to repeat the search term on the page, whether to include the term in the “title tag”, in what order, and at what “density”. Should they be repeated in the “H1″ and “H2″ tags as well?
Once that has been worked out, go out and get some high quality “backlinks”, create a “blog” for your practice, get some traffic to your blog, hopefully resulting in some additional incoming links. Create interesting and fresh “content” for your blog and employ the latest strategies to get your blog found.
Next, go out and begin to “bookmark” your site on some popular social media sites such as Digg and Stumbleupon. Participate in the the discussion, get to know the etiquette necessary to successfully engage in these social media communities and you should, in time, have some limited success.
You are now ready to develop an “XML sitemap” for your site. If you create a search engine friendly “URL” structure, hopefully in a neat “silo structure”, factor in some “latent semantic indexing” terms that are appropriate for your site, and voila, your site will be found, indexed, and if you are really lucky, you may appear in the top 50 or so results of the current 283,000 results Google has indexed for the term “San Diego Chiropractor”. Change the search to “Chiropractor San Diego” and Google has 460,000 results indexed.
Now if all this is Greek to you, rest assured you are not alone. The fact is, trying to get an individual practice website to appear at the top of the search engines is a daunting, if not impossible task.
In fact, one of the largest Chiropractor web site companies in the country sent out an email very recently that stated ” we had neglected the whole search engine thing”. He went on to exclaim, after several years of charging nearly one thousand doctors a monthly fee for chiropractic websites, “We need to figure out this search engine thing”. This self inspection occurred only after being berated by a potential customer.
If the president of a company that has collected millions of dollars from chiropractors for web site services had to be taunted into investigating how this stuff works, should you feel bad if you need an Internet to English dictionary to make sense of all of this?
You are, after all a chiropractor, not a web site developer. And at the end of the day, having a top placement for a term such as San Diego chiropractor doesn’t mean much these days anyway.
Why? Because the “local” search results now appear over top of the “natural” search results for searches that contain a city name. So all of the aforementioned work and effort still will not put your practice information in front of consumers, at the top of the search engine results page (SERP).
And even if you could achieve top placement in your town for a term like “San Diego chiropractor”, this still only reaches the 5% of the population that are already looking for a chiropractor. This does nothing to reach the 10 million Americans who are searching the Internet for health information each and every day. They have no idea that chiropractic care can help them.
Do yourself a favor. Join together with the thousands of other chiropractors who had decided to let the computer geeks handle this web stuff and stick to making sick people well.
Together, we have developed a comprehensive program to not only put you in front of the Americans that regularly seek chiropractic care, but also put positive, accurate information about chiropractic in the hands of all Americans that can benefit from your care. And we reach them at the exact moment they are deciding what form that care should take.
You owe it to yourself to check out what is possible, by working together, rather than against one another. There is great power in numbers. Power to change the world. Get on board with other like minded chiropractors. Get involved with something big.
Let us worry about the complexities of search engine placement, local search optimization, keyword density, title tags, heading tags, blog posts, content creation, optimization, directory structure, etc, etc.
Do what you do best: improve the quality of life of your practice members. Let us handle getting them in the door.
Chiropractic America has launched a new website to provide free local search optimization as well as behavioral statistics of online health seekers to chiropractors. The mission is to see to it that those seeking information via the internet are introduced to a subluxation based chiropractor when they seek a chiropractor online. For far too long, consumer understanding of chiropractic has been shaped by the medical profession and the segment of the chiropractic profession that most closely duplicates the allopathic medical model.
Our 113 year history of drugless health care has never been communicated effectively to the public. Until now. By providing free instruction on how to increase visibility in the major search engines and take full advantage of the incredible opportunity which the Internet provides, we free up chiropractor’s resources previously spent on individual websites, yellow page advertising and other out-dated marketing methods. The savings can then be used to reach out to the 95% of the population who are unaware that the health of their spine has a major impact on their overall health and wellbeing. Pooling the resources of thousands of leading chiropractors, we have created a powerful marketing engine to educate health care consumers nationwide about the importance of spinal health, motivate them to seek chiropractic care, and direct them to exclusive local partner practices.
A series of instructional videos has been developed which will provide information and instruction on how to minimize advertising expense while maximizing results. The term “Unity” has been bantered about for many years in our great profession. But never before has a comprehensive plan been put forth to unify like minded chiropractors behind a common, cooperative marketing program like that which we have created. Chiropractic marketing is in need of an adjustment. When the power of the chiropractic adjustment meets the power of the Internet to reach a global audience with our message of hope and healing, the new patient problem will be solved once and for all.
A special guest blog post by Dr. James Sigafoose
After failing as a chiropractor for eight years because I did not understand the philosophy behind why we do what we do, I was ready to give up and quit. How did I turn that around and develop one of the largest practices in the country?
First, I had a mentor which I actually used by calling and or meeting with him frequently and I did so until I achieved my goals for the practice.
I also went to philosophy meetings and only to those kinds of meetings: six times a year in Georgia, monthly in Pennsylvania and monthly in New York. I bought (at any price) the Green Books and read them faithfully and believed what they said. I still read them daily. I not only read and studied them, I did the things that were taught in them.
I was asked to speak at the Georgia meetings, because my mentor suggested same, and that began my speaking career. I started doing talks in my office and kept a video program running all day which I created to explain chiropractic and innate. I let the world know about chiropractic through constant newspapers ads. I gave x rays away. I had a family plan and I suggested a fee and expected people to pay it (or as close as they could) while coming in daily or 3 times a week.
I joined Toastmasters and became a better speaker and then had programs in the office inviting other speakers or entertainers. I would teach chiropractic after they spoke or between sets if it were music. We had an annual chiropractic day where we gave away free x rays, dinner, tea and coffee under a tent on our 20 acres. We drew as many as 1200 people, fed them and x rayed as many as 135 people on a Sunday afternoon.
We handed out written information weekly: testimonials, information about the dangers of medicine, chiropractic philosophy and chiropractic thinking. We showed no fear and were determined to do the all we could. We attracted many folks suffering with cancer, diabetes, ulcerative colitis, skin, lung and kidney problems including about 150 children and babies per day. Why? Because we believed we were capable and the best in the world. We gave a lot away and received a lot in return. It was all based on loving service. We never locked our office. It was open like church and people came in as they pleased and watched the educational tapes and children’s programs about the inner man and health.
We had fun and loved what we did. We didn’t do it for money. We did it for love and service. We did however seem to make plenty of money.
After many years of serving, we decided to retire to a beach home in Florida. That soon became boring, so we went into offices throughout the country to observe and recommend changes. That evolved into helping a management company and then helping chiropractors around the world, and of course that’s where we are now till God presents some other need or challenge.
We have opened other offices since then using the same formula and then sold them. We still go out several times a year to talk and do seminars, some our own and some for others and go on mission trips at least once a year.
We never quite feel like we do enough, but our mission is to serve God by serving mankind chiropractic, and that will be until our dying breath.
You can become the chiropractor you wish to be and have the practice of your dreams. Remember, the steps are the same for you as they were for me and every other chiropractor who has a large, thriving practice:
1) Get a mentor that has had a successful practice
3) Read and study the Green Books and own the philosophy
4) Tell the chiropractic story to those in your community (and join YourSpine.com to reach the masses with the chiropractic message)
5) Love and serve those you attract
We aim to help you with step one. Visit my website to download a stat sheet, fax it back to us and let’s see if there is a fit. I realize we aren’t for everyone, but then neither is Jesus or BJ, but that didn’t stop them, nor will it stop me.