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How SEO Boosts Web Traffic, Patient Appointments

Marianne Aiello, for HealthLeaders Media, February 29, 2012

Staff Investment
As you launch your SEO program, it's important to keep in mind that it is an investment that should pay for itself in dividends. Paid SEM is often allotted a larger portion of a hospital marketing budget, but SEO can have a better ROI.

"Most of us are woefully non-committal when it comes to finding dollars for SEO," Scott says. "If you are like most hospitals, it will be worth the dollars to have your site set up correctly."

Cannon hired an in-house SEO specialist in 2010 to guide the team's strategic direction and to provide expertise in keeping up with the latest updates.

"Having someone whose main job is to orchestrate our entire department's SEO efforts has made the biggest impact in not only seeing our traffic numbers continue to rise but to keep the staff engaged with the importance of everything we place online," Cannon says.

Content and Links
SEO should be kept in mind when writing every web page, blog post, article, and press release that goes on your site. Writing for SEO requires knowledge of how search engines work.

Page information should be written in a way that allows a search engine bot to scan it quickly and identify the keywords and phrases you want them to associate with the content. Pay close attention to page titles, headings, HTML meta tags, and ALT tags, Scott says.

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