These days, one of the first actions people take when they’re deciding if they want/need plastic surgery, is to go online.

Once online, these prospects type in a few key search terms (Plastic Surgeons in LOCATION), (Do I need a nose job?) (What to expect following a brow lift) to kick off their buyer’s journey. The higher you rank for these (and other) key terms, the more likely you’ll attract these prospects to your practice.

But what can you do to rank high on Google’s search engine results pages for organic searches? These four tips will help you not only rank high but should also help you increase web traffic to your site.

1. Create content that you know your audience is searching for

search-resultsSeeing as key terms are the start of your prospects’ buyer’s journey, it’s only natural that you focus on targeting these terms.

And for that, you need to produce content.

Keep in mind that Google’s goal is to offer its users the best possible experience. They do that by ranking good, relative content very high on their SERP pages.

So, what is good, relative content?

This all depends on the mindset of your prospect. For example, if your prospect isn’t sure if she wants plastic surgery (which is why she’s typing in Do I need plastic surgery to fix my nose), then the content you create for this prospect should provide a lot of details about the benefits and specifics of rhinoplasty (it should not be a hard sell for your services).

You should also use before/after pictures as part of your content strategy here, as well as a video from someone in your practice discussing the latest advances with this type of procedure.

This diverse approach to content (words, video, images) will keep your visitors engaged on your page. The more time they spend on your site, the more likely Google will assume your page offers something of value, and thus will reward you for it.

In terms of relevant content, your goal here is to produce diverse content that is narrowly focused on all of your potential key terms. What we mean here is that one blog post titled “The benefits of plastic surgery” (where you highlight all of your services in brief paragraphs) is not going to yield great traffic or results. You’re better off creating multiple posts for each of your services (The benefits of getting a nose job; How a brow lift will improve your appearance, etc.).

There’s no end to the kind of content you can produce here to target keywords. The topic “nose job” alone could have dozens (if not hundreds) of blog posts, each focused on one singular aspect related to what a potential nose-job patient searches for online.

These narrowed-focused posts will rank high for prospects who use long-tail keywords in their search (these folks are far more likely to be qualified prospects, particularly if they’re drawn to one of your specific posts).

Pro tip: Skip newsjacking and produce evergreen content

We see a lot of clients create quick 300-400 word posts about something timely in the news (some folks call this newsjacking). Newsjacking is designed to give your web pages a boost in ranking because you created content that’s enjoying a spike in traffic at the moment.

This isn’t a bad strategy at all, but it’s not one designed for long-term results. If you have a limited amount of resources, you’re far better off focusing on producing evergreen content, which is content you can use and promote over and over again.

This type of content leads to higher SERP rankings in the long-term.

2. Focus your energy on your local audience

There likely isn’t a plastic surgeon out there who wouldn’t take clients that came to them from across the globe.

But that doesn’t mean you should waste your marketing efforts on folks across the country (or world) from your office. Not only does that approach dilute your messaging, but it also goes against the strong local trend that Google’s pushing hard these days.

geofencingPart of the reason why Google is so gung-ho about local is because more and more people are using their smartphones to conduct searches. Google wants to give these mobile web surfers results relative to their immediate area – when appropriate.

For people searching for plastic surgeons or information about plastic surgery, local is very appropriate.

How do you focus on your local audience?

First and foremost, make sure your practice is registered with Google My Business. This will help you show up on Google Maps, and gives your patients a place to submit reviews (which helps your rankings).

But it also means you should add a local slant to your content strategy as well. Make references to local landmarks, cities, and neighborhoods with your content.

It certainly can’t hurt!

3. Build a website with a clear outline

The more time people linger on your website, the higher you’ll rank on Google’s search results pages.

A significant reason why folks linger on a site is because that website is loaded with engaging content. However, none of that content will ever be found if your website is poorly designed.

Make sure that your visitors can easily bounce around from page to page (your navigation and internal linking will help).

Rather than create one services page, create web pages for each of your offerings (Rhinoplasty, Brow Lift, Botox). In fact, consider breaking your services into the following landing pages:

MEDICAL PROCEDURES
COSMETIC PROCEDURES
COSMETIC SURGERY

Then, within these three landing pages, you can include links to web pages for each of your specific services (Medical Procedures might include links to pages such as Eczema, or Psoriasis, or Sclerotherapy, while Cosmetic Procedures might lead to Microdermabrasion, Laser Hair Removal, and Chemicals Peels).

This type of setup allows you the ability to optimize each page for a very narrow and specific key term (which we’ve discussed in #1 above).

4. Keep your page speed fast

websiteImages will play a huge role in converting prospects into patients. If you can show your work on your web page, prospects are far more likely to trust you with their health and beauty.

But all these videos and images that you add on your site could be hurting your SEO. That’s because Google still factors site speed into its ranking criteria – it certainly doesn’t want its users clicking on a page that takes a couple of seconds to load.

Make sure every single one of your images and videos are optimized for the web. You can check out free tools, such as PageSpeed Insights, to see how well your site performs. Beyond your image and video sizes, you might have to look into leveraging browser caching, and minifying JavaScript, to boost your site speed.

Despite a push to the pay-to-play model, SEO is still the best way to rank well.

From Google to Facebook, it seems like it’s inevitable that if you want to build an audience, you have to pay for advertising.

But a recent study by Conductor disagrees. In a recent study, the company discovered that organic search is responsible for 64% of all web traffic. In comparison, social made up just 2%, and paid search made up just 6%.

In other words, even today, focusing your efforts on organic SEO can yield tremendous results. By following these four tips above, you’ll not only rank higher for your key terms, but you also bring more qualified leads to your website.