The Top 6 SEO Mistakes that Medical Marketers Make

MDC - Six SEO Mistakes


Running effective medical marketing campaigns can be tricky. While these six mistakes are common, they’re not irreversible.

Whether you’re new to medical marketing or an old pro, you know that a lot of variables go into creating successful campaigns. From selecting the right keywords to honing in on the ideal target audience, medical marketers have a lot on their plates when serving healthcare content to internet users.

With all of those moving parts, mistakes are inevitable in even the best of campaigns. Here are the most common traps that medical marketers fall into – and how to avoid them:

1. Investing In Your SEO Strategy Too Late

It’s understandable that medical practices may want to focus their initial attention on developing their website or building a critical mass of premium content, but putting off investment in SEO until too late will blunt the effectiveness of your overall digital presence.

Instead, medical marketers should refine and enact their SEO strategies sooner rather than later. Whereas number one rankings had, in the past, determined who was destined to succeed, the game has changed. By pairing SEO with smart content creation and compelling website design simultaneously, medical marketers can craft a digital presence and drive traffic even on a modest budget.

2. Attempting to Compete for Highly Popular Keywords

While popular keywords can drive considerable traffic, medical marketers who make that the center of their SEO strategy might not be using their ad spend as effectively as they can. Since medical practices will be competing for keyword attention in one of the highest volume sections of online search — healthcare — they’ll be up against entities that have the budget to dominate popular terms.

Rather than trying to punch too high above their weight, medical marketers should first focus on low-competition keywords specific to a practice, treatment, or condition. By developing credibility for certain queries, even if they’re not the most popular, it’s possible to climb the ranks and succeed with more competitive keywords over time.

3. Casting Too Wide a Net

With so many stakeholders in the healthcare space, medical marketers need to be sure they’re building campaigns that are properly oriented toward the right internet users. Remember, SEO is less about tricking algorithms into ranking your content highly and more about creating content that appeals to your target audience. Deciding who that audience is can help narrow your scope to something manageable.

To avoid casting too wide a net, medical marketers should use platforms such as AdWords to identify keywords that are used most often by their ideal user. For example, if a medical marketer is trying to serve content to an audience made up predominantly of people looking for treatment options in their vicinity, they can choose keywords that differentiate them from users who aren’t as close to making a final decision.

4. Ignoring Long Tail Keywords

Medical marketers who discount long tail keywords because they don’t drive a high volume of traffic are missing out on an opportunity to appeal to customers toward the bottom of the hiring funnel. Because long tails are extremely specific, they can help medical marketers target internet users with greater precision — and at the moment when they may be nearest to completing their search for medical care.

By using sites like Google’s Keyword Planner, medical marketers can craft long tails that are the most relevant to their target audience and to their desired action.

5. Forgetting to Optimize Your Website

63% of smartphone users regularly turn to their devices to search for medical information. That means medical marketers need to be sure they’re doing everything they can to optimize websites for the ways in which modern consumers seek out content and make decisions. For mobile devices, this might include using Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) to load site pages faster or a streamlined site navigation.

Regardless of how users reach your site, however, your SEO strategy should take everything from blog post titles and meta descriptions to URLs and alt text into consideration. By orienting the unseen aspects of your digital presence toward your campaigns, you can turn your site into an engine for greater traffic.

6. Not Tracking Progress

Even if medical marketers design effective campaigns that leverage the right keywords, it’s impossible to determine the effectiveness of your strategy without measurement. Because data guides the best strategies, it’s vital that medical marketers know how to gauge whether benchmarks are being met — and what to do if they’re not.

By harnessing platforms such as Google Analytics, it’s possible to track the performance of campaigns, understand how users are engaging with your content, and identify pain points that can lead to better marketing in the future.