Today, the internet and digital world play a significant role in learning, shopping, and communicating. Many users will turn to search engines to find businesses or answers to specific questions. The same goes for clients going to search engines for information on therapy services, answers to any therapy questions, and finding a therapist to make an appointment with. SEO ( Search Engine Optimization) is a crucial component of ensuring that your therapy practice appears on the search engine results page of the thousands of users searching for therapy and counseling services. If you are looking for people to find you, you need to appear on those search results. SEO is more than just getting found on search engines. Many components make up an effective SEO strategy and are unique to therapists. Learn more about how SEO works for therapists, why therapists need SEO, and how you can implement a strong SEO strategy to grow and succeed in your private practice.
If you are wondering how SEO works for therapists, you’re in the right place. SEO plays a vital role in the therapy, counseling, and mental health industry. When potential clients seek answers to a specific therapy question or find a therapist for help, they often turn to search engines for a fast answer. Many new clients may want to keep quiet that they are looking for therapy services and would search for themselves on search engines instead of a referral. Many users will search “therapy near me” across the country. When you have an optimized SEO strategy as a therapist and owner of a private practice, you can show up on the results page of thousands of new potential clients. SEO works for therapists by ranking for specific keywords and key phrases that clients may be searching for so you can get your online private practice in front of the eyes of new clients.
The reason therapists need SEO is simple. They can target new clients in various locations. SEO aims to generate more traffic to your website and get more leads and conversions. When therapists implement a strong SEO strategy, they can increase their organic online traffic. Getting more potential clients on your website is only the first step of SEO. Engaging with those new clients, giving them the information they are looking for, and making it easier for them to convert is equally crucial for SEO. When you are looking to improve your local searches, meaning targeting various locations, you can signal to Google, and other search engines, all the different places your clients come from. Local SEO helps optimize your website for a local audience searching in that specific location. This will allow you to expand your target audience and optimize your ranking across many locations.
Without SEO, therapists would not be able to rank and target those different locations efficiently because Google would not be able to show their website on the search engine results of those users searching in that location. SEO is needed if you are looking to target new clients from various locations and get those new clients on your website that are informative, clean, and easy to convert.
The website of your therapy practice is the face of your business in the digital world. It is crucial to ensure your website is up to speed and optimized for user experience. Clients want to land on websites that load fast, are easy to navigate, and give a clear answer as to what they are searching for. Many clients will leave and move on to a new website if your website is slow to load. Ensuring your website is optimized for mobile, desktop, and tablet is extremely important in today’s world. Many clients are searching on their mobile phones, so it is crucial to ensure your website is readable across all devices. An aesthetically pleasing website will also be eye-catching to new clients and show your dedication and professionalism. Keeping up with your competitors includes an optimized website easy for clients to navigate and request a session with you. Google is aware of websites that are optimized for user experience. An optimized website means Google will rank you higher over other therapy websites that are not performing as well.
As a therapist, it is important to rank for the keywords clients are searching for but to do so, you must get a better understanding of what exactly it is they are searching for. With keyword research, therapists can optimize their telehealth private practice by implementing those keywords into the content on their website. Doing so will signal to Google your services and improve your ranking when potential clients search for a new therapist. Say you offer family counseling services and want to improve your ranking for those keywords. Seeing the key phrases people are searching for about family therapy will allow you to understand better how you can improve the pages on your website. Creating rich family counseling service pages and blog content with those keywords will improve your ranking and signal to Google that your website includes those services. Determining what type of content will be extremely valuable for your website depends entirely on keyword research from new and existing clients.
If you are a local practice, local SEO is a critical component of how others will find you on search engines. Local SEO allows you to optimize your website to potential local clients who are searching for therapists in their local area. In order to get the most out of your local SEO tactics, creating a Google Business Profile and optimizing the listing is a great start. This will help increase your visibility on search engines as well as improving your SEO strategy, seeing quicker results. This Google Business Profile is a free tool and allows you to include your practice’s address if it is not an online or telehealth practice, the therapy services you offer, how to get in touch with you, and more. A consistent name, address, and phone number (NAP) of your practice allows users to easily contact you as well as show Google the accuracy and relevance of your business as well as being an important ranking factor of local SEO.
When clients are searching on search engines like Google, the most common searches are “therapist near me” or “therapy near me”. The “near me” keyphrase that is searched allows Google to find businesses in a close proximity to the user searching. Creating a “Service Area Page” and mentioning all the other surrounding towns that you provide your therapy services, will allow you to show up on the results page of those searching for local therapists in their area. This helps signal to Google all the various locations your clients come from to receive your therapy services. Another component of local SEO that is helpful is being listed on local citation listings across the web. These help you get trustworthy backlinks to your website from trusted local directories in various locations. A local citation is the mention of your NAP and includes the link to your website for users to find you. This is an essential component of local SEO and shows search engines the reliability and certainty that your therapy business exists.
On page optimization is an important component of SEO for therapists. On page optimization refers to everything that occurs on your website in terms of SEO practices. This includes content marketing and service pages with optimized keywords, proper formatting and header tag structure. Content Marketing is a key component of SEO; fresh, original content is a must when ranking on search engines. Google can tell whether your content is relevant and authentic, affecting how you appear on search engines. After performing keyword research and getting a better understanding of the types of key phrases clients are searching for, you can optimize and improve your content strategy. Relevant blog content or articles will allow you to keep up with your SEO strategy and gain an advantage over competitors. Content marketing ideas for therapists can include talking to your client and giving them the guidance and answers they are looking for. It also is essential to have content that is genuine and easy to understand. Clients may not be familiar with the same terminology as you, so creating content that is clear and to the point allows them to have an effective experience on your website. On page call to actions are also important for users to engage and contact you to schedule an appointment.
Off page optimization is another important component of SEO for therapists. Off page SEO includes building relationships with other website owners including trustworthy backlinks. In short, a backlink is when the link to your website is on the website of someone else’s. A quality backlink includes content on the page and not just the URL, which avoids spamming and improves the quality and trust Google has with your website. These backlinks signal to Google that your website is trustworthy and reliable. This in turn will help your website to rank higher, and you will generate more traffic to your website from those reliable sites. Google likes when visitors are landing on a website that is trustworthy and will rank them higher on a search results page for users. Submitting your website to various local listings will provide you with quality backlinks to your website. For therapists, listings like Psychology Today, Local Chamber of Commerce, and Google Business Profile are great places to start. Earning certain backlinks may be challenging for therapists as your website must offer something valuable and in turn be valuable for the local listing’s website. Local and high authority websites are the best sites to have backlinks to your website and be relevant to your practice. Submitting listings, reaching out to local sites and working with them are all ways to start to get your website out there and improve how you rank on search engines.
Testimonials are an essential part of every business. As a therapist, potential clients want to hear real stories about recent experiences before they schedule an appointment with you. It helps build a positive reputation and lets clients know they are in good hands with you. The same goes for search engines like Google. Google can read and analyze all the client testimonials you have, and this can optimize how you rank on search engine results pages. Client testimonials on a listing, such as Google Business Profile, allow you to show Google that your business is important and worth an increase in ranking. Google not only wants to see reviews from real customers about real experiences, but they want to see a reply from the business owner, which will also improve your SEO. The time people spend on your Google My Business listing reading all the reviews will show Google that you are worthy of optimized ranking because of user engagement.
For expert support and guidance on starting your telehealth private practice, contact our business coach for therapists today! Our coach consultant has years of experience in the counseling and SEO field and is eager to help therapists market their online presence to the highest ability. We work hard with each therapist, mental health coach, and more to guide them through growing and succeeding in their online therapy practice. Whether you are looking to implement an SEO strategy for your business or are looking to improve how you get found with additional marketing tools, we are here to help. We show therapists how to navigate through SEO, social media, email marketing, content marketing, and much more! To get started with a consultation session, contact us today!