Your practice has had a website for awhile, but when you perform a search for your practice on Google, your website doesn’t show up. What’s going on here? You invested in a website, but it isn’t performing how you expected it to.
There are several reasons why your site might not be showing up in search results. These are some of the most common.
1. Your have poor quality, or not enough, content.
Google’s algorithm is intelligent enough to understand the content on your site, and ranks sites based on the quality and relevancy of your content. If your competitors’ websites have more or better content, they are more likely to outrank you. The key here is not to create content for search engines, but rather to create content that is actually helpful to your patients. This way, it’s a win-win–your patients are happy because they get the information they need, and search engines will likely give you better ranking because of it.
2. You have duplicate content on your site.
Does your site have content that can be found on other sites, or do you have the same content on multiple pages on your site? If so, that could be the reason why you aren’t ranking. Although the content may be informative for patients, it isn’t original and doesn’t explain what makes your practice unique. Search engines can recognize when content shows up on multiple sites, and these sites may get bumped down in rankings in favor of sites with original content.
3. You’re using “shortcut” SEO tactics.
Some website owners used to (and still do) try to cheat their way to better ranking using shortcut tactics like keyword stuffing, hidden links, and comment spam. However, updates to Google’s algorithm have allowed it to recognize these tactics, and sites that use them are being penalized and losing out on search ranking. If you are using any of these tactics, that is something you’ll want to fix right away if you want to improve your ranking.
4. You didn’t do any local SEO.
If you’re not doing any type of local search engine optimization, you could be missing out in ranking for geographically relevant search terms. To improve your ranking for local searches, you first need to create content that corresponds to your location. Next, you need to make sure your online listings are consistent in as many places as possible. Doing this helps to ensure that patients will be able to find you, and it helps search engines understand your location better.
5. Your site is difficult to navigate.
If your website isn’t user-friendly, you may find that you lose out in ranking. If your site is old, outdated, difficult to read, or difficult to navigate, you could lose out in ranking. Your patients need to be able to find and read the information they need, and they shouldn’t have to search several pages before they finally find what they were looking for. Try to combine smaller pages whenever possible to make your site more user-friendly. If your site is really old, you may also benefit from a redesign.
6. Your site isn’t mobile-friendly.
Your website needs to be user-friendly on desktop computers, but it’s just as important that sites be user-friendly on mobile devices. Google is beginning to place more importance on mobile-friendly sites as more and more people view websites on their mobile devices. If your website isn’t easy to navigate on a mobile device (i.e., small buttons, small text, and non-responsive), you could lose out in ranking. The best fix for this is to get a new website with a responsive design. Responsively-designed websites adjust to fit any screen size, from a large desktop monitor to your mobile phone.
We have had clients whose mobile traffic more than doubled after they switched to a mobile site. Learn more about how mobile friendly sites have helped our clients in our case studies.
The best thing that you can do to improve your site’s rankings is to focus on the user experience. Does your website have the information that patients want to know, and can they easily find this information, no matter what type of device they’re using? When you can answer “yes” to these questions, you’re on the right track.