The use of local SEO tactics will immensely benefit assisted living communities. The level of promotion afforded by search engine optimization and the myriad opportunities for marketing for senior living it presents are far too invaluable to be ignored. It’s at the heart of digital marketing, in short, and should be regarded as a key piece for a senior care facility’s success.
What’s wonderful about SEO is that it gives you more than one route to take. You can always opt, for example, to do local SEO for the assisted living community instead. And, mind you, it’s actually one of the most logical and practical directions to go to. We shall be explaining why here and give you a boost, so to speak, by outlining how to get started.
The Importance of Local SEO for Assisted Living Community
Local search engine optimization is basically a subcategory of SEO that aims to get your facility to rank higher for more “localized” search terms. Instead of the broader, global reach of standard SEO, local SEO provides traffic coming from your local area. For example, let’s say that your facility is located in San Diego, California, then you should target search terms like “assisted living communities in San Diego”.
Why is this specificity significant? Well, you will essentially be getting highly-targeted traffic this way. In digital marketing, it’s the kind of traffic that is considered as a high-value lead and converts well, simply because they have a higher buyer (or, in this case, availing) intent.
Local SEO is also crucial for senior care facilities because their operations are not exactly done online. Practically all their fundamental services are rendered offline. Nonetheless, we also can’t deny the fact that most people nowadays rely on online searches when looking for a service to avail of or a product to buy.
If a local prospect searches for the widely used phrase “near me” when looking for potential facilities in his area, your facility should be among the top companies that pop up. Of course, that is assuming you did your local SEO right. As you can see, you don’t need to opt for a broad scope if you are trying to find leads online.
Other benefits of local SEO for assisted living communities are as follows:
- It reduces competition. With everything significantly narrowed down and hyper-focused, so to speak, you’ll find that you’ll have a relatively easier time to rank higher for even high-volume local search terms. Assuming other facilities in your area are also using local SEO, you can expect them to be your sole competitors.
- Local leads tend to respond quickly. It’s not just a matter of how promising these leads are, for they also tend to want to get in touch with you as soon as possible. Don’t be surprised if you start receiving messages and inquiries in less than a day. Just think of how much you’ll be able to leverage time this way. Of course, you have to be just as quick in responding to their messages.
- You can expect a better ROI. After all, you will essentially be redirecting all your resources to a strategy that focuses on acquiring high-quality leads. Instead of trying to rank for near-impossible search terms or putting your money on ads, you’ll be targeting keywords that put you in front of an audience that is very much interested in what you have to offer. You don’t have to pay too much attention to overcoming the competition as well.
How to Properly Set Up Your Facility for Local SEO
Local businesses love the fact that Google gives them a free way to promote their respective enterprises via Google My Business. Basically, it serves as a foundation for your local SEO centered on senior community campaigns. This is why claiming your location on GMB should be one of the first steps that you should take.
There’s absolutely no money required to use Google My Business, and once set up, will virtually serve as free advertising for your facility! And it’s not at all complicated, too, because it would pretty much be like your average business registration.
You’ll notice that most business listings on Google search have a “Claim this business” next to them. Simply click on that after searching for your business online, then you will be asked to enter the pertinent information about your business (e.g. location, reviews, business hours, etc).
You can even target keywords you want to rank for while entering key data for your Google My Business listing so be sure to capitalize on that! Also, do take note that Facebook has its own version of GMB so don’t forget to use that as well. Considering the current status of the said social media giant as a great place for digital marketing, it’s a local SEO opportunity not to be missed.
The following are the other steps you should take to get your facility more local SEO-friendly:
- Actively seek out feedback and testimonials.
People look immediately to facility reviews when weighing their options. They’re so important that they often dictate whether it’s a Yes or No for most prospective residents. The value of feedback is that it’s often objective.
So be sure to make the most out of them by encouraging your residents to leave detailed reviews. The more they expound on what they love (and even dislike) about your facility, the better because a one-sided review only makes people leery. Surveys will do for this, but feel free to figure out other ways to convince them to rate your services. Perhaps, you can give out rewards and compensation for more in-depth reviews?
- Showcase your facility through high-quality photos.
Don’t underestimate the power of visuals. People want to be able to know what to expect from your facility — as much as possible, don’t be vague and leave them imagining what they would see. Instead, be direct and show them what your facility has to offer. Take this opportunity to exhibit your community in all its glory.
- Make sure your website info and GMB info are synchronized.
Any disparity in information might not only lead to confusion but the failure of your community to rank for the right keywords. Or worse, your facility’s reputation might also take a hit. So be sure that your contact information, address, and the images you show on both platforms are attuned with each other and up-to-date.
- Craft a killer landing page.
There are your standard landing pages with generic content that feebly attempts to make conversions, and there are precision-packed, highly engaging landing pages built specifically for local senior living SEO. You know which one to build — but, admittedly, this is not without its challenges.
So how exactly do you create the better kind? Well, knowing the essential factors to pay attention to. As much as possible, you should focus on making it as user-friendly as possible, as attuned to the needs of your target audience. Seniors more than likely want to have the information they need within arm’s reach and don’t want to have to deal with technicalities as much as possible.
One technique that senior living communities have used with immensely positive results involves creating a smaller site within the landing page and populating it with content that is extremely localized. Whether it’s what events are being held in the community at present or the daily routine of everyone inside, this kind of content is nothing short of gold for local SEO. It’s also content that communities share and update regularly. And we all know by now that search engines love dynamic, fresh, and relevant content.
- Discuss local topics, places, and the community at large.
Capitalize on the uniqueness of your local area. Even nearby sights and other businesses can be the subject of your content. Refer to actual, existing places in the city you’re in and come up with content relevant to your facility’s services and events. The more you season your broth with various spices, the tastier and more distinct its flavor will be. This analogy fits local SEO to a T, particularly how you can enrich and expand your local content.
It won’t take long for Google to turn its attention to you, considering how much area-specific content you are rolling out. As long as you can maintain this hustle and bustle, it won’t be surprising if your community becomes the first to come up for the local keywords you are targeting.
This, of course, takes consistency. If worse comes to worst, you can always rely on digital marketing professionals to take most of your local SEO burdens and turn your venture in the direction it needs to go.
With the right planning and implementation of your local SEO strategy, your assisted living facility should be well on its to more auspicious currents. As it stands, many assisted living communities have already enjoyed remarkable boosts in occupancy with its help. Would you be willing to be the only facility missing out?