It can be frustrating to work so hard on your private practice website, write blog after blog, only to find that no one can find you in Google. But optimizing each blog post for search engines can be extremely time consuming and frustrating as well. In this post we’ll talk about on-page SEO (search engine optimization) and how to use it to increase your chances of being found in Google.
I’ll also share how you can save time on your SEO efforts with my mini course, A Little Course About SEO.
What is on-page SEO?
Knowing what keyword or topic you want to write a blog post or web page about should be your first step when it comes to creating content for your therapy website.
But once you know what keywords you’d like to focus on, then what?
You must now take those keywords and know where search engines will look for it within your blog post or web page.
On-page SEO has to do with the key factors that tell both search engines and readers what your content is about.
These are the factors that are squarely in your control – they are places you can put your keywords on the page you’re working on.
Doing it well can boost your search traffic and increase your rankings in search engines.
The flip-side of this is, of course, off-page SEO, which has to do more with links back to your website and content.
According to this article from Neil Patel, “ Off-page SEO simply tells Google what others think about your site. For example, if you’ve got a lot of valuable links pointing to your pages, search engines will assume that you’ve got great content – the type that provides value for users.”
4 Ways To Use On-page SEO on Your Therapy Website
Ok, so let’s talk about some specific ways you can optimize your blog posts and web content to ensure that users and Google are happy with each page of your website.
1. Optimize Your Meta Description
It’s good practice to spend some time crafting an effective meta description for your content.
This description can be extremely powerful in persuading a user to click on your link and view your blog post or web page.
Here’s what the meta description looks like in Google:
A meta description is a 150-160 character description of what that page is about. Users will read this description and decide quickly it your content is what they are looking for.
Make sure your keyword or keywords appears in this description and spend time making it informative and pursuasive.
For more info on crafting the perfect meta description, check out this post from The Practice Academy.
2. Include Social Sharing Buttons
This has more to do with generating more traffic to your website than true SEO tactics, however, having some social media klout (people sharing your content) can be an indicator of quality content, which Google likes.
So, in order to capitalize on this, you’ll want to make it as easy as possible for your blog readers to share your posts.
To do this, you can use a social share plugin (on WordPress) or, if you’re using Squarespace, enable the share buttons within your settings.
If you’re using WordPress, I recommend a free plugin called Share (genius name!) from SumoMe.
I love this plugin because I can easily customize the style to match my blog as well as control what pages the share bar appears on and where on the page it appears.
For more on setting up and using the Share plugin, check out this post here.
3. Use SEO-friendly URLs
One of the first places Google looks to understand what a web page or blog post is about is to look for keywords in the URL.
Because of this, you should use simple URLs, making sure they contain the keyword you think people will use to find your content in search engines.
If you’re using WordPress, I recommend setting your permalink settings to “Post Name”.
Permalinks are the part of the web address that appears right after your domain name and point the user to a specific page on your website.
You can edit your permalink settings under Settings > Permalinks.
Setting it to Post Name means that WordPress will use the title of your blog post or web page to automatically create a URL for you.
If your keyword is in your title, then you’re all set!
Note: Editing your permalink settings is best done at the outset of creating your website, because it could change the URLs of old content on your site.
If you have other websites linking to your content, you could end up with broken links.
Luckily, there are plugins to help fix this. If you’ve got a lot of content and want to change your permalink settings, I recommend reading this first.
If changing the permalink settings is too daunting a task or if you’re not using WordPress… not a problem.
Just make sure your keyword appears in the URL of each page or blog you create to make it easier for Google to know what your content is about.
4. Include Multimedia in Blog Posts & Web Pages
Adding photos, videos or audio to a blog post or web page can indirectly help boost your page rank.
Well, posts with multimedia have a higher perceived value than those without.
If you have two blog posts about the same topic, one that only contains words about the topic and one that has video showing you exactly what the post is about, which one do you think would be more helpful?
Adding photos and video can also be a great way to lower bounce rates (the percentage of people who land your website and just bounce off rather than consume your content) and get people to stay longer on your website.
When adding photos, it’s recommended you name your files in a way that helps Google understand your content.
So, instead of leaving an image as image456.jpg, include a keyword, such as marriage-communication-tips.jpg.
You should also include a description of the image within the ALT tags of images, as another way to signal to Google what the content is about.
7 More Ways to Optimize Every Blog Post or Web Page for SEO
Making sure that every new piece of content on your therapy website is optimized for Google can seem like a daunting process.
It can suck the life out of blogging, that’s for sure.
I don’t know about you, but for the longest time I’d write blog posts, hit publish and then feel this guilt knowing I did nothing to ensure it was SEO optimized.
Then, I started including a keyword here or there, but never really knowing if I was doing the right thing.
But I’ve learned a lot about SEO through the years and I’ve seen first-hand how knowing what Google looks for – and implementing those things with every post or page – can help your pages rank better over time.
That’s why I created a mini course called A Little Course About SEO; to take the mystery out of SEO optimization for each blog post or web page you create.
A Little Course About SEO is a mini-training for mental health professionals who want to confidently create SEO optimized web pages and blog posts consistently
In this training, you’ll learn 10 crucial things you can do to help boost your page rank in Google and drive more traffic to your private practice website.
This training will help you reduce the time spent optimizing each piece of content you create, feel confident knowing your web page or blog post has what it needs to rank in Google, and quickly help you get found by potential clients.
You’ll know exactly what’s important to Google and publish SEO optimized content EVERY time.
The best thing is, it’s only $29 and in just 15 minutes, you’ll be armed with the SEO info you’ll need for the next you write a blog or web page.
You can click on the banner below to learn more: