How to Attract Local Patients to Your Site

Marketing your practice online is an intimidating task. The Internet is vast and ever-changing, which makes it difficult to stay abreast of Internet marketing best practices; however, one thing is certain: whether you’re marketing your services on social media or implementing search engine optimization, targeting your local audience is critical. In fact, 67% of all online searchers specify a location within their queries. If you haven’t started targeting your local audience, the time to start is now.

The following methods are ways you can start incorporating location into your online marketing strategy:

1. Infuse location into your content – When writing the content on your website, it’s important to personalize it with your location to get in front of your relevant audience. You can use Google Analytics to determine where, geographically, your website visitors reside. Incorporate these locations into your content for better reach.

2. Focus on quality locations – All too often, doctors think the more cities they show up for in search, the better. Some even see ranking for their state as the Holy Grail. This method of thinking isn’t always lucrative. Prospective patients are much more likely to search “San Diego dentist” than something as broad as “California dentist”. The more targeted your location is, the better chance you’ll have at converting online searchers into your new patients. 

3. Link to your optimized Google+ Local page – An optimized Google+ page will increase your chances of showing up for local search queries. Even better, including a link to your optimized Google+ page on your website increases the authority of both. When optimizing your Google+ page to focus on location, be sure to do the following:

a. Include your practice’s physical address and city.

b. Make sure the address listed matches the address displayed on your website.

c. Make sure the phone number listed matches the number displayed on your website.

d. Make sure your page is owner-verified.

e. Use the “About” section to describe the services you offer, and be sure to mention the various cities you service.

4. Join your local Chamber of Commerce – Not only will most chambers link to their members’ websites, but being affiliated with a community organization will give your website increased local exposure.

5. Encourage Facebook or Foursquare check-ins – When a patient visits your practice and checks-in, each check-in reiterates your location to search engines and shares it with all of your patients’ social connections. This can drastically increase your exposure among local prospects. 

6. Add optimized Alt tags to your images – Alt tags help search engines “see” the images you add to your website, as they cannot determine what the image is on their own. When you add an image to your site in the WebEngine, right-click on the photo, and select “Image Properties”. Then, within the “Image Alt Text” field, type a descriptive sentence that includes the cities your practice serves. Save your changes; publish your website; and, you’re done!

7. List your address and phone number on every page – Search engines don’t always scan every page of your website to determine its ranking on their results pages. Adding your address and phone number to every page will ensure the search engines see it, no matter which pages they scan. 

Now you’re ready to start optimizing your website to reach local prospective patients, but don’t stop there. Add your practice to online business listings, publish a press release, and continue to get your name out there!

Want to hand over your local search marketing to our optimization experts? Contact your website consultant at 888-932-3644.