SEO 101

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Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Learn about SEO and why it is important.  Jump to custom SEO section.
What is Search Engine Optimization?

SEO is basically how well your website or business is detected by major search engines like Google and Bing.  Major search engines use robots or 'crawlers' to search the internet for new and existing websites. These robots determine the relevancy of your business to whatever the user is searching.  How you rank depends on a number of factors and many of them are not known because the robot owners keep it secret!  The robots are also changing and getting smarter all the time.  The algorithms that are used are extremely complex and proprietary. 

How is this relevant to physiotherapy?

Well, major search engines are the first place people go to find information.  If you have bad SEO, people aren't going to find you.  It is very difficult to create a physiotherapy website that is optimized for every type of search query (you can read about this more below).  Physiotherapy businesses have compensated for this by paying for ads. By paying for ads, you can show up at the top all of the time! 

How do I rank higher?

This is a billion dollar question but here is some general info. It isn't always true but in general, bigger websites with more content result in better SEO.  There are other variables to consider, but this is generally the case because the bigger websites have a landing page for more search queries. 

Landing pages are an entry point into your website.  They're the page that everyone is finding on Google to access your website. It is impossible to have a landing page that ranks well for everything.  For example, a page talking specifically about IMS will probably rank well when someone searches for IMS, especially if it is within the searcher's geographic region. Many websites have a "treatments" page that lists all of their treatments.  This type of page is far too broad to rank well for any search query (unless there is no competition).

The Status of Physiotherapy and SEO

Our profession is dominated by paid advertisements.  Many practitioners and clinics also pay money to be part of databases provided by courses or training providers. Unforuntately, the databases provided by courses and other organizations are very poorly indexed by search engines (they have bad SEO!). Even our professional organizations have databases that are barely indexed by major search engines. The only way that anyone will find you or your clinic on these websites is if they go directly to the training provider / database website. Believe me on this one, I have looked at almost all of them.

Yelp and Yellowpages type business directories have also found a place in physiotherapy. Google is also a very common business directory that clinics use. If you're registered for enough of these websites, you will probably show up on major search engines on way or another.

Physio Roots & SEO

Physio Roots is not going to change the fact that people go to major search engines to find information. This is why all the pages on Physio Roots are optimized for search engines. Physio Roots will have thousands of landing pages specific to physiotherapy services. Whether a user is searching for a service on Physio Roots or on a major search engine, relevant pages from the Physio Roots website will appear.

SEO is a never-ending task. It takes time to gain ranks on search engines. Data also needs to be updated to follow best practices.

By signing up with Physio Roots, whether or not you have a free or paid account, landing pages will be created for the data attached to your clinic. For example, if you own a clinic in Northwest Calgary and perform pelvic health physiotherapy, you will show up on a landing page specific to that. By optimizing the website for search engines, users will find you for your skills and services without using the Physio Roots directly.

Your individual clinic pages are also indexable by search engines. By having a Physio Roots account, you are just increasing the chances that patients find your clinic.

Doesn't Physio Roots offer paid ads? How is it different?

There are a few big differences in how Physio Roots provides its advertisements. The main one being that priority listings are not "stuck" at the top. On other search engines and business directories, paid advertisements follow you wherever you go and their position can't be changed. With Physio Roots, you can simply sort the clinics differently. If you haven't sorted them differently, when you move to the next page, the priority listings will be gone.

This can be seen as a disadvantage to advertising with Physio Roots. But it is against the goals of the website to have paid advertisements follow people around. It is very important to Physio Roots to have users see all their options. If users are bombarded with paid ads, they don't get to see all of their options.

Ultimate Goal

It would be preferable to have users just use Physio Roots to find clinics! As Physio Roots gains presence on major search engines and becomes more well known, this will happen to some degree.

In the mean time, Physio Roots plans to have users indirectly use the website by having good SEO practices.

Custom SEO For Sponsors

What is it?

Physio Roots is pleased to offer custom SEO services for sponsor clinics.  Within 1-week of registering a sponsored account, custom meta data is attached to your clinic to help major search engines find you.  This process isn't immediate and is not guaranteed to have you #1 on Google; however, it greatly enhances your clinic's chances of showing up.

What about free accounts?

Free accounts have meta data attached to them to help search engines but follow a more general formula.  The data for these clinics is automatically generated by the website and may not be perfect, but in many cases it might be enough!  It takes a lot of work to customize clinics for SEO, so this is a feature for sponsors only!

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