Search engine optimization (SEO) is a popular topic in online marketing. Some consider succeeding at SEO to be the Holy Grail of the online world. At IlluminAge, we take a more holistic approach. We create a comprehensive program that develops ways to cultivate and nurture referral sources, build targeted email lists, and create campaigns that reach your target audience. These programs not only attract more people, they attract and engage the right people.

That being said, SEO is an important tool in building your business. So how does one maximize SEO and get more visitors to their site?

Keywords and phrases
In the past, SEO focused on keywords. But as algorithms become more sophisticated, keywords, while still important, aren’t everything. For instance, not too long ago, if you wanted to show up in a search for “Kansas City nursing homes,” you needed to have the phrase “Kansas City nursing home” on a page three or four times, which often resulted in stilted, awkward content. Having “Kansas City nursing home” on the page and preferably in the title or header is still best practice (as well as including that phrase in your meta data), though today, search engines also make the effort to understand contextually what your page is about by your description of services.

Good content matters
As we mentioned in this post, creating great content that will engage the visitor once they reach your site is critical to SEO success. Search engines are now looking at how people interact with your site – if they spend a lot of time there and are engaging with your site instead of going back to their search results, search engines will take note and move you up in the rankings. It’s all about post-click activity. Not only do you need to get them in the door for your targeted keywords, you have to satisfy their need once they’ve arrived.

A constant stream of original content continues to increase in importance
Search engines love fresh content. A blog is a great way to provide your users with new, relevant content that satisfies their thirst for knowledge. Create content that your customers are interested in. Targeted, original content is one of the single most important things a marketer can do to increase SEO.

Know what people are searching for
Here are some recent trends we’re watching in search terms. While you should always include your primary service as a keyword or phrase on your site, these trends give clues about how to reach customers in the senior care industry.

  • “Assisted living” is the most-searched term when people are looking for long-term care housing. “Nursing home” remains a popular search term, but is trending down in popularity. “Senior living” is trending up and has overtaken “nursing home” in phrases most searched.
  • “Memory care” is still fairly low on the list when people are seeking senior care, but is trending up fairly quickly over recent years as the need continues to increase and people are becoming more acquainted with the term.
  • “Home care” has almost twice the search volume of “nursing homes” and is trending up.
  • For Geriatric Care Managers (Aging Life Care managers), “Alzheimer’s” and “senior care” are trending at five times the volume of “elder care,” “aging care,” “GCM,” or “care manager.” “Geriatric care” has had a steady decline over the past 10 years and now trails other search terms by about 50 percent. “Aging life care” is searched a fraction of the times as other terms – it has not yet caught on with the public.

The online marketing experts at IlluminAge can help you improve your SEO, create a website that delivers results, and create targeted, original content, for blogs, online newsletters, emails, and social media.